Creating a Facebook page for your business is a good move. It allows people to check out your offerings and get a feel of what your brand stands for. You can post cool stuff on your page and watch the likes, shares, and comments stack up. A page also allows you to run ads and promote posts, which may lead to more likes and follows, and probably even some sales.
But if you are aiming to grow your business over the long term, you may want to take things one step further and set up a Facebook group as well. Why? Launching a Facebook group presents greater opportunities for entrepreneurs and small businesses to leverage the platform’s more than 2.5 billion users. How does that work? Keep reading to find out seven benefits of creating a Facebook group.
1. Easier to connect with ideal target audience
Think about all the groups you are in — on Facebook — or otherwise. You likely joined each because they offered you an opportunity to interact with likeminded individuals. That was the basis behind Facebook’s community update in 2018, which aimed to get more people to bond around mutual interests. Setting up a Facebook group creates a space on the platform where people with common goals can come together. Facebook groups about writing , for instance, attract mostly people who love to write and publish digital content.
I personally manage two groups for writers, and have found both to be a very rewarding experience, since I have been able to connect with so many people.
Likewise, the group you create will mostly attract people who are interested in your subject matter. As such, it will largely consist of people who you consider to be your ideal target customers.
2. Improve organic reach
Organic Facebook page post reach has declined significantly over the years. Nowadays, a good-performing post will probably only reach 4–5% of your followers organically. To get better results, you need to run paid promotions on your page. If you don’t have the budget to consistently run ads and boost posts, your Facebook page won’t be of much help.
With a Facebook group, things are vastly different. First of all, the platform is primed for spreading group content, so posts made in groups have a much higher chance of being seen. Each member will receive notifications each time you post (unless they decide to turn off notifications), and they can choose to share your content with their own friends and followers.
3. Build brand loyalty and trust with your customers
Having a Facebook group allows you to grow a close-knit community. The ability to share a variety of content, from blog posts and guides to funny memes and stories, makes it possible to engage with your audience in a more intimate and thorough way than on your Facebook page. At the same time, group members can develop trust and be more likely to turn to your brand for help and advice on the subject matter you specialize in.
As for customers, your Facebook group can act as a place where they can receive customer service, which is highly important to 96% of customers, according to research. Prospective customers can also get help and advice on your products or services by joining your Facebook group. The greater the level of support you provide in your group, the more loyal and trusting its members will become. Loyal customers are most likely to spread good word of mouth about your business as well, so that’s another positive.
4. It’s a place to sell or promote your digital products
If you offer digital products such as online courses, e-books, or subscription newsletter, having a Facebook group can help you boost sales. From a promotional perspective, you can use the group to introduce members to your products and offer perks for buying. For instance, people in the group can be offered a discount code that is not available elsewhere.
I make a lot of offers exclusively to members of my Facebook groups, and have found it a great way to offer your true fans the best content at the lowest price.
On the other hand, you can offer exclusive access to your Facebook group as an incentive for purchasing your product. This would only work if you have a private or hidden group. Either way, the fact that you have an engaged community can help break down many of the negatives people often have about buying digital products. However, Facebook groups are about offering value to members, so be careful not to bombard users with too much promotional content. But having a featured post or mentioning a promotion you are running, is typically fine.
5. Great for gaining consumer feedback
Want to get an idea of what product to develop next, what blog post topics to write about, or the best types of content to share to your target audience? Your Facebook group is a great place to get valuable feedback you can use to steer your marketing efforts. For starters, you can view group analytics (once you have more than 250 members) for insightful data about your audience. On top of that, you can create polls, start threads, and ask questions in your group on various topics. The engaging nature of Facebook groups can fuel intense conversations and raw data. The feedback you receive can help you to get to know your audience better and lead you to create solutions that are more targeted to their needs. I regularly survey members of my groups, and definitely take their input into consideration, when deciding on what my editorial calendar should look like.
6. Helps with driving traffic to your website
Running a successful blog, e-commerce or services website, means having consistent traffic. The more people visiting your site, the higher the chances of achieving your goals, whether that is sales, clicks, downloads, etc. Creating a Facebook group is one way to consistently drive traffic to your website. Once you have spent time building up a relationship with group members by sharing valuable content and being interactive, they will become more comfortable with your brand. As a result, you could get more people clicking on links that lead back to your site.
7. Helps you establish your presence as an influencer/subject matter expert
Building trust online is not easy. The vast majority of people who interact with your content will be strangers and can reside hundreds, or even thousands, of miles away. If you are trying to build your reputation as an influencer or an expert in a particular field, starting a Facebook group is a no-brainer.
Once again, the community aspect allows you to be more interactive than just having a Facebook page. In addition, you can share a wide variety of content — from instructional videos and webinars to infographics and report findings — that can help to demonstrate your knowledge while helping people to know you better.
Reaping success from having a Facebook groups relies on your ability, patience, and willingness to build a vibrant community around your brand. However, the benefits to be had are numerous and totally worth it.