Companies of all sizes are actively using social media to grow their business. And one of the best ways to do this is with Facebook Groups. This is because Facebook Groups allows an organization to build an engaging community where customers can meet and interact with your organization. What’s great about Facebook Groups is that it works for any size organization whether it’s a start-up, non-profit, mom and pop shop or a Fortune 500 company.
Getting started with Facebook Groups is easy. Simply log into your Facebook account and select Create Group (hint: it’s on the left side panel). Next, choose a name for your group and then select one of the three group privacy settings, public, closed or secret. We’ll discuss these in detail in a moment. Then write an inviting group description, upload a cover photo for your group and pin a welcome post to the top of your group.
Just as the name implies, a public Facebook group is open to the public. Anyone can join a public group. Use public groups to create awareness and build authority as well as interest in your business. For best results, however, consider a narrower niche, so your group will be more relevant and engaging. For example, if a company sells coffee and tea having a coffee drinkers group and a tea drinkers group will help ensure the topics and conversation are more relevant to the members in those groups thus maximizing participation. Also, try to focus on participation rather than just sending marketing messages. Remember, groups are about dialogues, and not direct sales. You should, therefore, create a group that encourages customers to interact and post comments often.
With a closed group prospective members must be invited or they can ask the group host for permission to join. Use a closed Facebook group to deliver support to a specific customer segment to cut down on email clutter and provide a central place that allows you to get feedback on what is and isn’t working for your company. With a closed Facebook group, you’ll be able to generate an open dialogue with your customers because you’ll have a special place for them to pose questions.
A secret group is by invitation only. Use secret groups as networking hubs for current customers because they allow you to come up with a personalized, private feedback channel that can be a priceless retention and engagement tool. Secret groups are great for providing extra value to your VIP-level customers. In fact, a secret group may be particularly appropriate for businesses whose products and services have a more exclusive audience like coaching organizations and training & consulting providers. With a closed group atmosphere, you’ll be able to create a sense of exclusivity and give your customers an opportunity to have direct access to you and your organization.
Image Credit: Josef Jerabek | Flickr