While many people are leaving Facebook for newer platforms like SnapChat and Instagram, Facebook Groups are still going strong! Membership of Facebook Groups climbed 40% in 2018, and the trend is likely to continue.
In this article, we’ll show you how to get more members in your Facebook group. With these tips, you’ll learn how to boost your Facebook group and grow your audience as part of your social media marketing strategy.
Benefits of groups for Facebook marketing
Facebook Groups offer huge value to your Facebook marketing campaigns. They can help you keep customers engaged with your brand, and allow you to steer conversations about your brand.
Facebook Groups have advantages over Facebook Pages. Facebook has changed its algorithm to prioritise content from family and friends over branded content. As a result, brands can reach their audiences better through Groups rather than Pages.
So without further ado, here are 5 tips for growing your Facebook group.
Tip # 1 Be strategic during your setup
In order to successfully grow your Facebook Group, you need to set a goal. This will help you measure the success of your campaign, and also clarify your messaging.
Figure out if your purpose is to promote your product to service. If your offering is relatively new, your purpose may be to answer customer questions and solve problems. Another common purpose for groups is to gather feedback on your offerings and to help improve your product or service. Alternatively, you may design a specific subject or niche interest for discussion.
Once you have your goals and your purpose figured out, clarify this in the About section, so that your audience knows exactly what they’re getting by joining.
Tip # 2 Create relevant content
Use your creative skills to craft valuable content, just as you would do on your other channels.
Posting content to your Facebook Page that shows the value of joining your group is a cost-effective method to increase your members. It’s a great place to share how-tos, interesting articles, promote products or distribute offers and coupons.
Studies show that people share content on social media that is valuable, entertaining or will help them define themselves to others. If your original content can tick at least one of these boxes and leave people interested in more, that’s the ticket to growing your group members.
Tip # 3 Promote your group via paid ads
Once you’ve created your group, the first way to promote it is through your Facebook page. Write a post about the group, and pin this to the top of the page where it will be seen by everyone who lands there.
Next, you should promote your Facebook Group across the platform via paid ads. You can do this by setting up an ad campaign in Business Manager where the objective is Paid Likes. Facebook has a range of targeting options from interests to behaviours, so make sure you have a think about exactly who your audience is.
If this is a little too complicated for what you want to achieve, consider ‘boosting’ posts. This promotes a post on your page and can be done by clicking directly on the post. Tip: try to boost posts that have a call-to-action to join your group.
Tip # 4 Leverage local influencers
Influencers are an important part of promoting your Facebook group. Don’t worry, you don’t have to pay for big celebrities to get involved. In fact, trends show that local or ‘micro’ influencers are more effective than celebrity influencers because customers trust real opinions over sponsored advice.
If you aren’t prepared to reach out to an influencer, you can promote an influencer’s content and tag them. This can encourage the influencer to reshare and comment back. Remember to do this on a public post, as only members of a group can see posts within a group.
If you would prefer a more direct approach, you can reach out to influencers. This is hands-down more difficult for most people but when done right, can lead to quicker results. You need to firstly find the best way of contacting an influencer and then build a relationship with them. For micro influencers, you can usually contact them through their page or profiles. Twitter and Instagram are great for sending a quick message.
In your message, remember to be personal in your approach and demonstrate the value in it for them as well. You might be surprised by how often a local influencer is more willing to give reviews and engagement for free because they’re sincerely interested in the topic. With a local influencer on board, others will follow and join the conversation.
Tip # 5 Cross-promote your group in other groups
There’s no need to view other groups as competition. Instead, view this as an opportunity to connect with more like-minded people. By joining similar groups or groups on related topics, you can tap into new audiences and grow your fan base.
Cross-promotion is one of the most effective growth tactics. First, find a group that is similar to yours by searching for topics that are related to your group on Facebook. Ideally, look for a group with at least 50 members so that you have an audience to work with.
Take the time to be helpful and provide value in your first few posts, then promote your own group. Trust us, it’s worth your time to establish yourself as a trusted member. Always be sure to check the group rules before making any contribution too so that you aren’t violating any guidelines.
Grow your group, grow your audience
In the above tips, we’ve shown you how to get more members in your Facebook group and why this is important.
By knowing how to boost your Facebook group, you can grow your audience faster than you can through Facebook Pages. Your audience will also be bigger and more engaged.
Be strategic when creating your group’s purpose and content, and use local influencers, similar groups, and other channels to grow your membership.
BY MICHAEL BIRD Mike is CEO and Co-Founder of digital marketing agency Social Garden. Social Garden specializes in data-driven lead generation and marketing automation to grow companies’ revenue in different verticals in Australia.