3 Ways to Increase Engagement in your Facebook Group
Hosting a Facebook group can be great for your business. Done well, a group can go a long way in helping you increase your visibility and in getting your message heard (without having to fight the ever-changing algorithms for Facebook pages).
Like most things, however, Facebook groups aren’t a “build it and they will come” opportunity. It takes a lot of work to create a group that clicks and sticks. There are a half-billion groups on Facebook, but many of those have very few members and very little activity.
Perhaps you’re running one of those groups—the type where the only posts come from you, the group administrator? Where if it weren’t for you, the group would be as quiet as the desert? You’re not alone.
Want to take your Facebook group from dead zone to party central? Or hoping to start a new group and want to make sure it isn’t met with the sound of crickets?
Here are my best strategies for success, learned after running a highly engaged, incredibly active Facebook group for nearly a year.
1. Focus on Quality
It’s easy to get caught up in vanity metrics when you run a group. What I learned quickly, however, is quality is far more important than quantity. Having fewer members who are highly engaged is better than tons who only speak up when they have something to promote.
My group is at about 2,000 members after 10 months. It would easily be double that size if I had accepted everyone who requested to join. While I was eager to hit “accept” in the beginning, at about 700 members I realized more isn’t always better.
Because, what’s the point of having a ton of members if the group is silent?
I shifted my focus from “more” to “better.” About that time, Facebook implemented its screening questions for groups. I used, “are you human?” to help me weed out spammers. (If you don’t take the time to type y-e-s, I doubt you’ll be active in the group.)
I also started declining people who were in more than 100 groups. (Someone stretched that thin cannot make my group a priority.) These changes really helped engagement. As the group was more active, members were more excited to invite others in because they knew it was worthwhile.
Now, I only accept people who are invited by other members, or who take the time to provide a thoughtful answer to the question, “why do you want to join this group.” I now decline about 50% of all requests—and I’m happy to do so. This approach is how I maintain a consistent engagement rate of 80+%.
2. Be Real
People want to know the person behind the group. After all, we tend to invest (money and/or time) in people we like, not faceless brands. From the start, I put myself out front and let people get to know me.
What’s more, I’m honest about the difficulties of running a business and being a mom. Both in my posts and in occasional live videos, I share my reality, warts and all. I’ve been told again and again by members that they either joined or stayed in the group because they appreciated my genuine approach.
Too often, people who run groups try to present a perfect picture of themselves. I think they worry people won’t buy from someone who doesn’t seem to have their stuff together. In my experience, that’s just not true. People respect and respond to authenticity.
Also, my group works because I’m present.
Every single day, I set aside time to like and comment on members’ posts. I also post outside of the threads to ask questions or share my struggles. You can’t expect others to be engaged if you’re not.
3. Stop Selling
There are plenty of infopreneur gurus who will argue this point, but I don’t believe in making my Facebook group part of a sales funnel. I don’t sell, sell, sell to the members at every turn.
If I’m asking others to limit their promotions, then I feel like I should do the same thing. And I 100% believe this is why my members love the group so much. They know I genuinely want to see it be a place where people can get help with their businesses.
They know it’s not just a sales page masquerading as a business community.
I’m very active in my group—I do live Q&As with members, offer live training, answer member questions, share resources, ask questions, and more. Yes, I pitch my services occasionally, but the ratio of non-sales to sales activity is probably in the neighborhood of 500 to 1.
These three strategies have made my Facebook group a small but might spot on the web. My members love the space and are protective of it as I am.
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About The Author >>
Meet Becky Mollencamp
Becky Mollenkamp is the creator of the Own it, Crush it movement. With nearly 15 years of experience as a business owner, she helps women navigate the mindset and tactical struggles of self-employment. Through her courses, exclusive membership community, and group program, Becky has mentored hundreds of women to own and crush their boss status.
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