Facebook Groups can be a great place for people to come together around a combined subject or cause. Groups can be built around:
- a topic or subject in your industry
- a mastermind
- a community cause
- a group of paid members for a program or service.
Running a Facebook Group is the new thing that business owners have been “told” to do to build their expertise, grow their market, share, and develop their business. As a founder of a Facebook Group (Business Business Business) I see the value in running one, but there is a little more to running a group than simply setting it up and walking away.
So, let’s look at some questions we should ask ourselves before starting a group:
Do I have the time?
Facebook groups take TIME to run. Considerably more time to run than any other social media channel out there.
It is not out of the ordinary to spend a few hours + per day on running a Facebook Group, even a relatively small one!
If you are already time poor, joining in other groups that are already established might be better than starting one of your own in the first instance.
Who will admin with me?
A good Facebook Group needs good administrators. YOU can’t do it all, so the second question to ask yourself is who will admin with you?
In our case, our admin team are all people who work with us and understand the philosophy of our business and team. When choosing your admin team look for people who have the same values as you when it comes to your group/business.
Your admin team will also need to have a thick skin as admin can be a tough gig, especially when someone does not agree with the guidelines. (It is not personal, but sometimes it will sure feel like it!)
What will the group do?
Be clear about what your group is for and make sure the people joining know what the group will offer them, ie: networking, tips, exclusives
The other point to note is that your group should not replace your Facebook Page, but instead, provide another way for your community to find you and engage with you (and each other).
Determining what your group will do and how it will run gives you the foundation for the group guidelines which will be key to your group’s success.
What value will it add?
The value the group adds to the community is why your members will stay, join in and spread the word about the group.
If there is no value within the group’s content, no one will stay.
What will the guidelines be?
The guidelines come from the philosophy of what the group is about, and what benefit it will have to the community. Guidelines are ultimately what makes a group, so what do you want people to be able to do within the group?
Guidelines can be as free or as tight as you like. Some groups do theme days, while others are ad FREE etc. Your guidelines set the tone for your group. Make sure to set your guidelines down before creating the group, and don’t change them too regularly – in doing so you risk alienating your members.
My Top Tips for Running a Facebook Group:
- Set your guidelines early and stick to them. These are the glue of your group and how it will work and feel.
- Be active, supportive and encouraging. Commit to giving your members a piece of your time each and every day.
- Encourage your members to share their wins. It can be lonely out there at times so sharing wins of any size is important. Foster that as often as you can.
- Encourage your group members to report posts they feel are outside the group guidelines. This will save you loads of time rummaging through every post, and helps members to feel that they are truly part of the community.
- Not everyone will love your group and that is OK. Groups are about community and finding the right people who will fit.
- Do things for your group, engage with them and get to know them by creating challenges, webinars etc., just for them.
- Share the group around. Like all things, people have to know about you to find you, so remember to share your group with people!