Everything You Should Know About Facebook Groups In 2018

Let me ask you a question….

How many Facebook Groups are you in right now?

How many did you join voluntarily and how many were you dropped into by friends who were trying to prospect you?

I’ll also wager a bet that you can think of one or two groups off the top of your head where you actually receive a ton of value from and visit often right? They are the groups you remember.

In this post I’m going to share the everything you should know about Facebook groups including all the new enhancements that Facebook has introduced over the past few months.

 

Once you’re done reading this post you will be well equipped to have your own facebook group up and running AND THRIVING!

2 Simple But Powerful Reasons WHY You Should Have a Facebook Group For Your Business and Brand:

  1. Facebook Groups in general are pretty valuable real estate and can have a huge impact in your marketing strategy when done right. Businesses that centre their marketing around a brand ( could also be a personal brand) can build a community around it. This makes your brand and your products and services even more valuable when a community of people come together to share in the value that you offer. Groups give you a real chance to showcase your expertise or products and your dedication to your customers and potential customers. Especially when you are active in your community answering questions and helping people out.
  2. Facebook Groups help you work around the Facebook Algorithm.  You may have noticed some changes in your newsfeeds….. Less and less content from business pages and fanpages and more content from groups. Looks like Facebook is really doing it’s best to preserve the “social” user experience. What this means in essence is that your Business Page posts are more unlikely than ever to be seen and Group posts will be on the top of the newsfeeds of the group members. Cool Right?

So Do I Still Need A Fanpage?

Short answer. YES!

You need to have a Page, which serves as a touchpoint for users at all stages of the digital sales funnel. 
Having a Page allows you to run ad campaigns for your business, get reviews, and have plenty of public updates that include blog posts etc. It will show up in search engines, and provides valuable information like a map and contact information for your business. Users can also message you directly.

A group, on the other hands, puts more of a focus on community. 
When users post to your Page, it gets tucked away under the “Community” tab. In a group however, it stays in the feed for others to see and engage with.  Groups naturally invite more frequent interaction especially when interaction and dialogue is encouraged.  Some of the best groups I’ve see are those that have a comfortable ” living room” feel. Regardless of what your group is about, the questions are meant just for you. And when you answer them, it provides value to all the other members, too.

So definitely YES you will need a page still. Almost as a billboard for your business but a group will give you a place to build a strong foundation, foster relationships, and build community. Remember the principles I taught you about attraction marketing? You can learn more about attraction marketing HERE

So What’s New With Groups In 2018?

Mr Zuckerberg  has given us some great new Facebook group features recently, and the year isn’t even over yet!

There’s a few admin type features that are being currently rolled out. They’ll be available first on mobile. So hop on over to your phone to see if you have them yet. Just tap on admin tools and with any luck you’re one of the lucky ones.

  • Educational resources for admins. I LOVE this feature. It’s like FREE facebook training on how to best run a group. Its filled with case studies from successful people who share their best practices.
  • New group rules feature. This feature will allow admins to easily notify members about the rules they broke when they remove a post. You’ll be able to do this by adding notes to a post, which are viewable to the member who left the violating post. Cool eh?  Yes I’m Canadian
  • Pre-approval of posts from select members. Some groups require that posts be approved by admins before being published for the group to see. In certain groups– especially those where controversy may happen frequently– this is a necessity, but if your group is large and active, it can also can take a huge amount of time. Being able to pre-approve posts from selected, well-trusted members will save you a ton of time and have you spending time on things of greater value.
  • Admin customer support. Allows group admins to report issues or ask questions directly to Facebook itself. WOW! This is huge. Up until now no one asks facebook anything and when you do you’re lucky to get an answer.

In addition to these features, two new big features called Watch Parties and Learning Units are available.

WATCH PARTIES

Fun Right? So what is it? It’s basically a place where you can invite people in your group to watch something with you.  It’s like watching tv or a movie together.  Think of it this way…. Say you come across a great training by a big wig that you think the people in your group will get tons of value from. You can invite people to watch it all together with you at a specified time. It’s a cool feature because people can react and comment on things while the video is playing creating interaction and further fostering the community.  Who’s bringing popcorn? Wine” 🙂

 

Hosting a watch party is ridiculously easy. When you’re in your group, go to create a post. You’ll see the option to add a “Watch Party.”

People in your group will be notified that the Watch Party has started.

This is a really powerful feature but most people don’t know about it so the key to making it successful is to let people know beforehand what it is.  Explain it, invite them, do a facebook LIVE in your group about it so that when they see it they will want to be part of it.

UNITS

OK now this is REALLY COOL. Up until this feature came out, one of the only ways to store content in a group was either in the feed or in the notes. That made it challenging for group members who were part of content rich education groups to find trainings, videos etc.  The search bar in the group could be used to find things but that took…well…searching. And sometimes the search results just didn’t produce what was asked for. So TA-DA Facebook came up with Units! A place group Admins could store things in logical order. Think of them as learning units, modules etc…..and word has it that Facebook is Beta testing subscription service groups so having units is key in these “course environment” types of groups. Pretty exciting eh?

In order to access units you must set your group up as a “Social Learning Group” under settings.

Other Useful Things To Consider When Starting A Group:

  1. Group Name: Your name should be consistent with what your group is about. For instance if your group is about health and wellness let people know so that when they are searching for groups and it pops up in the search they will know exactly what they are getting.
  2. Scheduled Posts! YES you can now schedule posts in your group to go out at times when most of your members are active.  You can see this type of data when you take a look at group insights which another cool feature.
  3. Use a Questionnaire to Screen Members. Wow this deserves a whole separate blog post. If you think about it you can accomplish alot with three simple questions. MY Facebook Marketing group Corner Office At Home is designed to help home based business owners create successful businesses. I WANT to know what people who join my group are struggling with so I ask! That way I can provide the most valuable content possible. It also helps remind people about what the group is all about so they can make sure it’s a good fit for them!  I also offer something for free in a way to capture data for my email list if I’m not running the member ship to my group through a front end funnel before people can join.  So can you see that questions can be very strategically placed so that you can get some good data and also create great engagement and value for your members.
  4. Engagement.  Inside Group Insights you will find the Engagement Tab. It shows you how much activity the group’s posts are getting. Likes, Shares, Comments, Reactions are all an indication of your group’s health!

 

I hope you got some valuable insights from my post! I would love yo have you as part of my community inside “Corner Office At Home”. Join me HERE to check it out for more valuable marketing tips and content.

 

 

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