At Sircle Media, we believe in three key categories for a successful social media strategy; content, engagement, and growth. Engagement is often the least focused on, but we believe it is the most important of the three pillars. The whole point of social media is to be just that, social. You need to post content with the hopes of striking up a conversation and then be ready to continue the dialogue when a person takes action. When you actively respond to comments, customer concerns, etc., you show your customers you care about creating a relationship based on trust and respect.
A great way to foster a community is with Facebook Groups. In 2018, the new Facebook algorithm made groups more noticeable on the feed. Nowadays, Facebook Groups operate more like fan pages did a few years ago and they offer the only real organic opportunities on the social network. If you create a group that is properly centered around your brand and what it stands for, you give users the opportunity to move from loyalty to advocacy. You do this by sharing experiences, giving customer support, testing products and services, generating feedback from group users, and much, much more. These groups give you the opportunity to showcase your expertise and display dedication to your customers.
Here are some best practices that we found worked best for our client, Rethink Water, when we created their Facebook Group, called Project MOM-entum. This is where brand ambassadors share photos of their children drinking Rethink and then take part in a small, but active community of like-minded parents.
Facebook Group Best Practices
Give your group a catchy and effective name
Choosing the right name is one of the most important steps when creating your Facebook Group. Make sure your group name reflects the people who will be engaging with it every day.
Define the What and the Who of your group.
What is it?: A community? A hangout? A support group?
Who is it for?: Fitness experts? Personal trainers? Dietitians?
Make sure to include keywords geared towards your niche audience, because Facebook acts almost like a search engine with this. For Rethink, we decided to name their group Project MOM-entum that would be a place for moms to come and share content and stories about their favorite topic, their kids!
Understand your target audience
What are they passionate about? What do they have in common? What are their goals, dreams, and aspirations? What would make them feel like they’re part of a community? Knowing all of this early on will help guide you when posting and engaging with your group members. Make them feel like the group is about THEM.
Engage as frequently as possible
It’s not enough to just know who your audience is, but you also need to give them attention and show that you care. Answer customer questions, generate feedback and improve the customer experience every day.
Post your best content
Yes, a Facebook Group is a community, but it can also be a visual platform. Not only should you post your own “best-of” content to start a discussion, but you can also collect user-generated content from your group members and share, share, share.
Push the community agenda
Make sure that your customers, influencers, brand ambassadors and even new prospects know about the group. Don’t be shy about spreading the word and then make sure to add value to your members so they feel compelled to do the same. You want people to want to be insiders and then partake as much as possible.
The goal is here is more about depth than width. Meaning you want to harvest real loyalists, more than just focusing on boosting vanity metrics. It isn’t about maximum members, but more about highly engaged members.