Creating Facebook Groups

I have talked about using Facebook Groups to grow your audience, now let’s discuss creating your own Facebook group.

Your Content Strategy and Group Focus

Facebook is a powerful audience builder because it’s focused on community. Think about how much time the average person spends on Facebook each day. Some estimate it’s as much as an hour a day on average.

Others have it around 40 minutes. Regardless, that’s a lot of time to spend with a group of people, and your audience is on Facebook because they enjoy the community. A Facebook group needs to support that concept of community. So how do you accomplish that?

Create a Focused Topic for Your Group

A focused topic for your group means that you’ll be in a better position to grab and maintain attention. If your scope is too wide, the group conversations may become less focused. Sure, they may reach more people, however you run the risk of blending in with the crowd.

For example, if you are in the dog training industry, you could start a dog training group. However, you’d likely be competing with a dozen or more other dog training groups. However, if you narrow it down to dog training for senior dogs or for Feisty Chihuahuas, then you’ll have a more focused group and audience. It also makes it easier to provide focused content and to initiate conversations.

Keep in mind that your first step was to identify a goal or an objective. Align this goal with your group’s focus.

Then it’s time to create your group. Rather than go into the step-by-step process of creating a group (which is straight forward), we’re going to take a look at a few tips.

Closed, Open, or Secret?

The type of group that you choose depends largely on the goal for your group. For example, do you want it to be part of a membership service that you offer? Then the group should be closed or secret. Making it “closed” makes it seem exclusive which can add to the appeal of joining the group. This also gives you the added benefit of being able to control who is in the group so you can avoid those who might distract from the goal or interfere with discussions – trolls and spammers.

Do you want to attract new members and grow your group? If so, then the group should be open.

You’ll also have the opportunity to invite people. Think about your email subscribers, current customers, and your Facebook page followers.

Your Group Description

You want to attract people to your group, right? Your description, in addition to the group name, are an opportunity to accomplish this. Your description should be as detailed as possible so that anyone can understand who you are and what the groups is about.

You can also include a link in your group description. Consider linking back to your blog or website. This can help prospects understand your group a little better.

Including your website or blog links in the description also helps drive traffic to your site, and can help increase engagement and awareness.

Visuals are important, too. You can add a header, and you should. The header should represent the topic of the group. You may be tempted to add your company logo and that’s fine, as long as it is still apparent what your group is about.

You’ll then be guided through a series of steps to finish creating your group. Choose the settings that best fit your needs. Keep in mind that for most of the settings, you can go back and change them. They’re not set in stone. You do want to take a few minutes to add keywords or tags to your group to help prospects find you. Think about how your group members will search for your information and your community. What words would they use? Then use those tags.

Once your group is up, it’s time to start adding content.

Creating Your Facebook Group Content

Generally speaking, Facebook groups run themselves because the members generate the content. However, you as the group founder do want to be ready to start conversations. There are of course a number of ways to do this. You can:

  • Publish a quote or a tip and ask what people think.
  • Share an image or a video and ask for thoughts or questions.
  • Pose a question to your group and respond to answers.
  • Ask for advice or insight.
  • Pose a “would you rather…” type question.
  • Share jokes, opportunities, tips or other useful resources.
  • Provide member only benefits including downloads, coupons, and information.

Pay attention to what your audience responds to. What really sparks conversations? What creates the most engagement? And don’t hesitate to ask your members what they want and need most from you.

Make sure to post often and respond to comments. The only way to keep your audience captivated is to make sure there’s something for them to engage with. As conversations fade, be ready to spark a new one. And participate as much as possible with your group members.

Finally, let’s talk a bit about promoting your Facebook group. Depending on how you set it up you can:

  • Advertise the group.
  • Share an invitation to join the group with your Facebook followers, with your email subscribers, and with your blog followers.
  • You can also promote your Facebook group in your downloads and your other content. Tell people how they can engage with you and what the group has to offer.

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