Facebook groups: Your indispensable ally!

If you want to raise your brand’s profile, managing your Facebook group shouldn’t be an afterthought. By establishing a solid strategy for building an active community, you’re stacking the odds in your favour. Read on for our top tips for managing your group.

Why would you make a Facebook group for your brand, anyway? To cultivate a large community of people whose interests are aligned with your brand identity. You can build your brand’s reputation by regularly interacting with your members and keeping your group active. That’s what sets a Facebook group apart from a Facebook page. Pages only increase the visibility of a company, with the goal of attracting as many followers as possible. Pages do not encourage member loyalty, but groups do.

Here are five tips to build and grow a thriving Facebook group:

1- Use the right group name

Keep it simple. Users should be able to tell what your group is about just from the name. Make sure it contains at least one keyword that’s related to your field and ties back to your brand. Ideally, the name should also be easy for people to find when they search for a term related to your brand on Facebook. There’s no character limit for group names, but your rule of thumb should be to keep it short and to the point.

2- Keep the group private

Rather than leaving your group public, set it to private. That way, people need to request to join, and that fosters a stronger sense of belonging and exclusivity. Bonus: it helps stop spam. Here’s how to make your group private:

– Click the three dots next to Share, then select Edit Group Settings

– Scroll down to the Privacy section and click Change Privacy Settings

– Select Closed

3- Managing your group

Managing your Facebook group requires a time commitment. To attract and retain members, you need to post compelling content and interact with your members—spark conversation, use Facebook Live, create surveys and quizzes, send newsletters, etc. By maintaining a relationship with your members, learning about their needs, being responsive and cultivating a positive atmosphere in the group, you reinforce their sense of belonging. Try to post content that relates to your audience’s interests and establish a regular posting schedule, without becoming repetitive. It’s a good idea to appoint admins and moderators to stay on top of day-to-day management duties (approving membership requests, moderating conversations, deleting spam, etc.).

4- Be responsive

A good admin doesn’t just monitor user-generated content. They also need to stay on their toes to promptly pass on news related to your field and be the first to comment on members’ posts. Your own posts should also generate engagement and shares. Membership requests should be accepted as soon as possible, and questions should be answered in a timely manner.

Keep in mind that managing a Facebook group is very similar to providing customer service. Always be diplomatic when you’re addressing your audience—that’s key to maintaining a healthy and positive atmosphere in the group. Establish clear group rules to keep conflict, offensive content, etc. to a minimum. You can also set up your group to require that users read and agree to the group rules when they request to join. And don’t be afraid to post reminders of the group rules if needed.

“You really have to monitor the group frequently so you know what’s going on and can answer members’ questions. If the same questions come up a lot, you can use that information to develop relevant content. It’s really helpful for getting to know the community and their needs… The group lets us connect with potential and current customers to understand what they really want.”

– Valérie Fortin-Boily, group manager for Les plaisirs minceur de Caty

5- Promoting your group

If you want to expand your community, you need to promote it. One great way to do this is by linking your group to your page. That way, your group will appear on the Groups tab of your page. You can also write a post about your group and pin it to your page, or try reaching out to admins of other Facebook groups in the same or similar fields to cross-promote your groups. You can use other platforms like Instagram and Twitter to attract new members with the promise of exclusive members-only content on your private Facebook group.

“Exclusive content for group members truly does pay off! In the 5-15 group, we often have exclusive contests, quizzes and fun posts that allow members to win big prizes. We also sometimes run exclusive members-only promotions. It’s a great way to appeal to our members, and it also helps us learn what makes our customers tick.”

– Corinne Dallain, group manager for 5-15

Of course, there are other tools and methods for promoting your Facebook group, but remember that to manage it effectively, you need to raise your profile, think up promotion strategies, build member loyalty and be active and responsive. At Pratico, we are fortunate enough to have multiple brands under one roof. This allows us to promote groups and brands via our own groups for a win‑win of brand visibility. The numbers (members, engagement rate, likes, etc.) bear out the positive impact of this synergy. That’s what sets us apart!