Creating a Facebook group can be no small task, but it doesn’t have to be a monumental undertaking either. Facebook groups are fantastic platforms to cultivate a community of like-minded individuals to interact and grow with. You may first want to consider the purpose of your group: Do you want a community where you can gather folks to talk about your shared gardening hobby? Are you a blogger creating a group to boost your engagement or footprint, maybe even sales? Do you own a business and want a forum for your customers? Do you want to create a buying and selling group? Whatever your reason may be, we’ll list four best practices (and a couple of no-no’s) for Facebook groups that anyone can benefit from using.
Give Great Leadership
Great management starts with people. Whether you choose to manage the group on your own, or you plan to form an admin team, make sure that whoever is in charge is dedicated to facilitating a positive and progressive environment. Remember that the attitude of any group trickles from the top down. Your admins should be responsible, fair, available, and have a passion for your cause.
Give Great Guidelines
What is a community without rules? Absolute anarchy, and that’s what you’ll get if you don’t establish guidelines for your group up front. They should dictate group communication such as being respectful of each other and each other’s opinions. They should also answer any common questions group members may have about expectations so that you aren’t always answering the same questions.
BONUS: Be sure to pin your guidelines to the top of the page to keep them visible and easy to find.
Give Great Engagement
Be consistent! Don’t just create the page, post guidelines and let members have at it. Direct the flow of conversation and focus within the group. Engage with members by asking questions, post a poll (this can be a great research tool for bloggers!), share members’ work, encourage them to share their work, brainstorm together. There are lots of ways to engage with and learn from your members, don’t be an absentee group leader.
Give Great Purpose
One of the more philosophical bits of best practices is to define your purpose. How can potential members align with your beliefs if they don’t know what you’re about? A well thought out group description can be the deciding factor as to whether you receive lots of interest from those who share common interests and are interested in your community and what it has to offer, and no interest at all. Or even worse, people interested in your Facebook group for the wrong reasons. You should always include a type of mission statement that will describe what the goal of the group is or what it is about. It would also be helpful to include any conditions for joining such as location restrictions or contacting a certain email for an approval.
Alright, now that we’ve talked about how to ‘Give Great Group’, I’ll mention a couple of no-no’s when it comes to Facebook group best practices.
Where’d you go?
As I stated before, don’t be an absentee group leader. Groups need moderation. Sometimes conversations get off-topic and derail the main discussion away from the group’s purpose. Other troublesome issues arise when internet trolls join groups just to wreak havoc. Don’t be afraid to reprimand those that need it and oust problematic individuals when necessary. Your top priority should be maintaining a safe, positive atmosphere for everyone.
It’s All About Me
It’s awesome that you created this group, good for you! But constant shameless self-promotion is not going to go over well with your members. They need value, and while it may seem like blasting posts about your best-selling book that is on sale for the umpteenth time this year is plenty value… It’s not. Members will be turned off by the lack of personalization and sleazy sales vibe. There’s nothing genuine about that!
Well there you have it! Now, this definitely isn’t an end all, be all list — But it is a perfect starting point if guidance is what you seek. Think about your own group or group you’d like to create. How do your expectations match up to this list? How can you implement some of these tips and merge them into your plan? Think about it.