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It’s super easy to start your own Facebook group and since it is THE place to be online, why not? But once it’s started, how do you keep it active, keep people from leaving, and grow it for your business? That’s what I hope to share in this post.

Your New Facebook Group

If you’ve just started your Facebook group you need two things; people and content. Content is simple enough, you can find links, images, blog posts, products, etc and just share your comments. You can even just ask questions to get your members to comment.

AND…

People, on the other hand, that’s sometimes more difficult. You can find people in other groups, your email list, friends, social media sites, etc. I suggest having at least 3-4 when you start your group. And you’ll have to work hard to keep them interested and engaged. You see, people want to see that there are a lot of people in a group before they join, that shows that it is active. When they do join they expect interesting content. And, when they engage with the content, you MUST engage with them. For example, if you post a question about what books your members love, you better be ready to answer every single comment, uniquely, and with interest. This is more difficult in the beginning because a large percentage of your group won’t take action on what you share, so you JUMP on every opportunity to engage with a person possible. For new communities, I suggest actively recruiting new people to your group every day. As for content, add new content 1-3x per day, at least Mon-Fri. Answer EVERY Comment!!!

Your Established Facebook Group

Once you get a few comments on each of your posts, you are heading in the right direction. Don’t be surprised if this means you have 50-100 people. However, if you engage with these people personally in messenger as well, you’ll see they are much more likely to participate in the group conversation, so you may have as few as 10 people. At this point, it’s important to keep the momentum growing. Keep adding new members and make them feel personally important to the group. You’ll want to do this for as long as possible because a member that feels important to your community will stick around longer. Keep adding unique content, but plan it in advance. You can plan ahead at any time and you can spontaneously add additional content, but the important point is to make sure there are no holes in your strategy. Recruit an additional admin. Since people love to get immediate responses, it helps to have someone who can more closely monitor for comments and new applications. Set a schedule. Check in with your group at least twice a day. While an additional admin will be able to keep things running in your absence, your group is there for YOU. They want a piece of you, your brilliance, your expertise, your knowledge, so you must deliver.

Advanced Tips for Facebook Group Management

Now that you are adding new members regularly and (more importantly) keeping them engaged with content, it’s time to start focusing on those business results you need so here are my favorite tips to bring it to the next level. Collect Email Addresses. When a new member applies, use the question option and ask them for their email address. You can easily add it to MailChimp to start building your own email list. (It’s free). Make Sure Members Feel At Home. I’ve actually joined groups where only the admin (a digital course coach) was the only one allowed to post. When I did post it was removed and then they posted the same question to the group. While this seems like a great way to maintain control over the group, it hardly works to build a community that can thrive without your micromanaging assistance. And trust me, you do want it to grow because then the leads and business can flow a lot more freely from it. Cook Up Some Rules. Most communities have rules, just look at any subreddit. Most of them focus around spamming, self-promotion, not giving back, etc. I don’t necessarily agree with no self-promotion, but it’s good to give some guidelines on what is acceptable in your group. Call Members Out In A Good Way. The initial post welcoming new members is lame, at best. Sure, most people do it, but why does it have to be so cookie-cutter? It doesn’t. You can welcome members personally in messenger and tag them into discussions they would want to participate in. This is more time consuming but it shows the members you care about their needs, and since we’ve all seen those posts with every new member mentioned, we know we aren’t special when that happens. Let Members Share. You should choose updates that allow members to share. This could include sharing links to their companies or facebook pages, pictures of their dogs, stories about why they started their business, etc. Do this at least every week. Make Connections Between Members. You are the tie that is bringing your community together, but it’s not all about you. Connect members with each other based on personality, availability to chat, interests, business ideas, etc. Helping to facilitate these relationships will build even more loyalty to your group.

The Secret To Any Community’s Success

As much as any community is about the topic, it is more about people and connection. When you take care of the people following you, they will take care of you. I hope you’ve found this helpful for building your Facebook community. If you have any questions please post them in comments or message me.