The Benefits of Facebook Groups with Jessica Sheehy
March 15, 2023
Remember when Facebook Groups were all the rage?
Think they’re a thing of the past? Think again. There are still many benefits of Facebook groups in 2023. They’re a great way to grow a community around your business or to network if you don’t have a Facebook Group of your own.
But how do you go about finding Facebook Groups? And if you’re considering starting one of your own, do you know what steps to take to grow and nurture the group? Once it takes off, are there any benefits of Facebook Groups for adding to the financial bottom line of your business?
So many questions go into deciding whether or not Facebook groups will benefit your business.
On this episode of Talk Copy to Me, Jessica Sheehy joins us to talk about finding, joining, and starting Facebook Groups. Additionally, we’ll cover the challenges of finding the right groups and avoiding information overload inside of a group. Listen in!
Here are the benefits of Facebook Groups that Jessica and Erin want you to know about:
The benefits of Facebook Groups if you’re looking to build a community for your business
Tips for finding relevant Facebook groups if you’re looking to join as a guest
How to add value as a member of Facebook groups without looking as if you were trying to sell to the group
Why you should consider reaching out to the owner of your favorite Facebook Groups to see if you can support them by sharing your skills or expertise with their audience
At what point in your business you should consider starting a Facebook group
How to approach
Why the decision to start a Facebook Group depends on whether or not your community needs it and if they will use it
Quotes about the benefits of Facebook Groups from Jessica and Erin
“Find a few that have your ideal audience and reach out to the moderators and ask them for that invitation and introduction to the party. I guarantee 99% of the time they are going to say yes.” – Jessica Sheehy
“With social media platforms always changing, the one thing that remains constant, and I think we really learned during and after the pandemic, is people want connection…What Facebook Groups offer is that sense of belonging and the sense of really getting to know the person or the principle behind the brand.” – Jessica Sheehy
“The key thing is, if you’re doing it just to increase your views and you’re looking for that instant gratification, it’s not going to work. If you’re doing it with the intention of building a community and building relationships, then it’s going to work.” – Erin Ollila
“I try to curate my feed and curate the type of content that I consume. Because being a content creator and being someone whose business really does reside online, I consume an insane amount of content, and it’s overwhelming.” – Erin Ollila
“People have a negative opinion of groups because there’s just too many. There are too many that they’re in, and they’re not getting what they need. So when you’re not getting what you need, it’s easy to have a bad opinion.” – Erin Ollila
“When you go to a party, maybe you only know the host of the party, and you want to mingle. You want to meet more people at the party, but sometimes it’s hard to break the ice! I am an introvert…so sometimes it’s hard for me to come out of my shell. But I want to I want someone to start the conversation. And then I’m going to keep it going all night long.” – Jessica Sheehy
Do market research before making any decision about creating a Facebook Group for your business, regardless of what you now know about the benefits of Facebook Groups.
Jessica says, “I really would consider your audience, and if you’ve never done market research…do it. You don’t actually have to ask people, ‘Do you want to join my Facebook group?’ But ask them, ‘Are you even on Facebook?’ ‘What is your go-to platform?’ Or, when you wake up in the morning, what’s the first thing that you do?’ Maybe they open their inbox. Maybe they go to Facebook. Maybe they scroll TikTok…Ask them probing questions, [like], ‘Is there more that I can serve you in terms of [insert what you do for your business],’ and really leverage those answers from your community to figure out [whether you want] to use Facebook maybe for a pop up or challenge or some sort of launch that you have coming up. Take that advice and start the community.”
Jessica Sheehy is the Owner + CEO of Social Savvy HQ, a social media marketing company. She went from side-hustling while working a corporate marketing job in NYC. to having a team of content creators and a full client roster that has been booked out for months in advance when she was laid off from her marketing role. Jessica and Team Social Savvy help creative service-based entrepreneurs build social media presence that converts + thrives.
Erin Ollila believes in the power of words and how a message can inform – and even transform – its intended audience. She graduated from Fairfield University with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing, and went on to co-found Spry, an award-winning online literary journal.
When Erin’s not helping her clients understand their website data or improve their website copy, you can catch her hosting the Talk Copy to Me podcast and guesting on shows such as Profit is a Choice, The Driven Woman Entrepreneur, Go Pitch Yourself, and Counsel Cast.
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Here’s the transcript for episode 062 about the benefits of Facebook Groups with guest expert Jessica Sheehy
NOTE: This podcast was transcribed by an AI tool. Please forgive any typos or errors.
Benefits of Facebook groups, facebook groups, people, group, business, content, community, facebook, audience, moderator, business owner, felt, platform, join, bit, clients, question, short form video, calls, instagram, sell
Erin Ollila 00:04
Hey friends, welcome to the Talk Copy to Me podcast. Here we empower small business owners to step into the spotlight with their marketing and messaging. I’m your host, Erin Ollila. Let’s get started and talk coffee. Hello friends and welcome back. Today we are here to talk all about Facebook groups with Jessica Sheehy. What you might not know about Jessica though, is while a lot of kids when they were younger, and they were playing like house, let’s say they wanted to be a mom, or they wanted to play school and be a teacher, Jessica did things a little differently, the way that she played as a child was pretending to be a business woman. Growing up both her mom and grandma sold Avon and she was totally obsessed with it. And now looking back, she can really see that was the moment that she knew she would be an entrepreneur one day, because she loves selling meeting new people and just networking even as a tiny child. So Jessica, I love that. Now when you were younger question for you, and you were playing this and you just loved it as a game. Did you really think like that moment? All right, I am so going to be an Avon lady when I grow up? Or was it like what just the reflection of now you can be like, yeah, that’s when it all started.
It’s definitely the moment that it all started for me. But there was a big part of me that really loved. I love the product. I’m a girly girl. So I love makeup and perfumes and all of the stuff that they sell. So it was something that was really fun for me to like experiment with and with my mom and my grandmother and learn about the products and all of that, but I really did love it. I vividly remember playing business woman and I would sit in my room and do fake phone calls, pushing these products from the catalog. And I really, really enjoyed I really enjoyed doing that. And then I think from that it sort of stemmed a little bit more into Okay, what else can I sell? I don’t know if you remember, or have experience with but a lot of schools do fundraisers and they sell wrapping paper or random products for the holidays or candy bars or anything like that. I took that very seriously. And I think I moved my love upselling and just, you know, being a business owner from Avon beauty products to to candy bars and wrapping paper. Oh
Erin Ollila 02:33
my gosh, I love that. Were you one of the kids in your school that was like I am going to win. Like, you know how they normally have awards, like, if you like Silva, most things was that you like supercharged and just ready to be like the top entrepreneur as a student.
Absolutely. I think though, too. As a child, I am very realistic with my goals even now as a business owner. So I honestly never, I don’t think I ever strived for the top goal. Because I think those was also maybe smarter than my age, I knew that would require a huge sales team, you know, in incorporating and recruiting a lot of my family to also sell those products for me for whatever insane gift or vacation or whatever they were promising. But I definitely would choose from the top guess something that I really wanted, and kind of worked my way backwards, kind of like how we set goals for our business, whether it’s revenue goals, or whatnot, and figure out like, okay, what are the actual steps that I need to do that? So I’ve been doing that ever since the Avon and wrapping paper days as well.
Erin Ollila 03:35
So let’s just jump right in and talk about Facebook. Prior to having success with Facebook groups, what was your reason for joining Facebook? And how has that changed over time with how you’ve used it as a platform.
As we all know, Facebook has been around for a really long time. And you know, I’m not going to run through the whole history of how we all used to use Facebook and what it was made for and what it’s really evolved to. But I think Facebook is a great platform, we’re all using it anyway, to whether we are running paid ads for our business or, you know, reaching new people, we probably have a Facebook page, even if it is just because we need to connect it to our business Instagram account. So we probably have it set up. It’s one of those first things I think that you set up when you’re a business owner. I really love the platform because it’s been around for a while people know it and people use it, whether they are just going on there because they’ve been tagged by a family member and you know, a memory from five years ago, or they’re going on there to search for a business or a service provider or something. There’s so many things that you’re able to do on Facebook, and I think Facebook groups are it’s probably my favorite part of Facebook. It’s something that Facebook is constantly adding new features There’s to. And it’s something that does take a while, of course, there’s a lot of different strategies to grow it and the content, and all of that. But it’s a really great way to build a community for your business. And I think really, for any business, it definitely works to cultivate that community, bring followers off of another platform, maybe bring them off all of your social platforms into Facebook. And it’s also a great way to get people from your email list into Facebook to kind of have a little bit more of a personal connection. I know, email marketing is pretty personal, but there’s some different ways you can connect with them and a Facebook group.
Erin Ollila 05:41
Yeah, I have a love hate relationship with Facebook groups in complete honesty, you know, I think part of the problem is identifying which groups are best to join. And I mean that specifically for business, you know, when I homeschooled my children, and I was joining homeschool groups, it was so so much easier, because I was like, Okay, I could see clearly how it could benefit me. And like what I would get out of this group versus another group, because there are so many business groups. And I will be honest, I think part of it is messaging, like the titles are not clear or even the description of the group is not clear. If someone were using Facebook as a search tool, not being redirected there because of a referral or something like that, I think it can be a little bit difficult to know how to join. With that being said, like before we even talk about how to use Facebook groups. Do you have any suggestions for people on how to find Facebook groups?
Yeah, I think it’s really interesting, exactly what you said, sometimes you can find Facebook groups that appear to be what you’re looking for. And then sometimes you get accepted and you’re into the group and you’re like, What is this, I don’t think this is the content I need, or it’s just crickets, it’s absolutely quiet, because there’s no strategy or moderators in the group. But I think the best way to search on Facebook’s platform for a Facebook group is to get a little bit more narrow in the keywords that you’re using. So for business owners really using, you know, small business owner, entrepreneur, those keywords, and just honestly, those groups are way too big. And they’ve really become a feeding ground for what I like to call fake community, it’s just a lot of people just sharing a lot of noise. And there’s not a whole lot of connection can be made in that group. So getting specific is a really great way to do that. I know every business owner is different and who they’re marketing to. And sometimes location plays into that. Sometimes it doesn’t, I think even if location doesn’t pair with that, then I think it’s okay. So for example, I’m located in Tampa, Florida, and it’s a big city, there’s several cities surrounding us and but I work with clients all over the United States. And honestly, all over the world. A great place that I like to connect with local entrepreneurs is Tampa small business or Tampa entrepreneur groups. More specifically, I like to add in the keyword women just to get more specific. Now, that’s not to say that I don’t work with men, because I absolutely do. But it just helps really narrow that down a little bit better. And I’m reaching a more targeted audience. I think also, depending on who, you know, besides, you know, gender and location, and different things like that, you can definitely get more specific. So for example, if you work with website designers, there’s so many platforms that people specialize in. If you work with graphic designers, there’s maybe different mediums that they’re designing on, of course, photographers have so many industries as well that they shoot photos for. So there’s ways to get really, really specific. Even if you think, okay, I offer this service or I sell this product, it’s to a general audience, I have sort of maybe a basic understanding of who they are, pick a few of those and go find them specifically. So that does require you to join multiple groups. I think the stat on people who are in multiple groups is huge. I think it’s like 50% of Facebook users are a fan. I want to say it’s five to 10 Facebook groups, I’m sure for some people, it’s 2030 4050 100 Plus, especially when we are admitting people into our Facebook community. We see how many groups they’re in. And there’s people who have almost 1000. So maybe they have been on Facebook since you know, a decade ago, maybe they just are very active in groups, or maybe they just join me in every group they find. So there’s a lot of different groups that you can join but just being intentional with the groups that you’re in. One of the things that I like to add to just my quarterly to dues. I tried to do it monthly, but I really do it quarterly is clean out my Facebook groups and it took a while. But I was on a lot of Facebook groups that I just wasn’t a fit for anymore. Maybe I progressed my skills a little bit more as a social media marketer, and the basic or entry level content just didn’t fit me anymore. Maybe I would see a group that the moderators or anyone in the group hasn’t posted in several months. To me, I don’t think they’re coming back. I know I also joined Facebook groups if I’m a part of a challenge or anything like that. And unfortunately, those groups do get dumped as well. So just regularly cleaning that out, for
Erin Ollila 10:42
the most part, like growing a community is something that is exciting as a way to have lead generation or even on client nurturing. But we have to remember, like we are consumers too. So there are ways that we can use this to our advantage. And I love that you went there as like the first thing to kind of consider before we move and talk about community building. Specifically, I really want to ask you, how do you go about like determining which groups are the best? I mean, not necessarily. I think people can make that decision for their own. But like, once you kind of are sorting through your list like, Do you have a suggestion on how people can cut down the amount of groups that they’re in? And you know, maybe how you handle it on the quarterly basis?
Exactly, I think it really comes down to figuring out the groups that matter for you in this moment or in the near future. Sometimes we just need to be a little conscience of the content we’re consuming. I know personally, I’m always checking the screen time limits on my phone to see okay, how many hours am I spending on tick tock? And yes, hours is the correct measure of time there. And how many hours am I spending on Instagram or Facebook. And I think besides doing that, just looking at the overall activity of the Facebook group, it’ll tell you if it’s really quiet, or it’ll tell you if it’s just way too loud. And it’ll do that by the number of daily and then monthly posts in the group. And sometimes I’m scrolling my newsfeed and I am just consumed with so much content. And a lot of times, it’s just things that don’t really appeal to me, I think sometimes when groups are too active, that’s where you lose members. And that’s where you lose people who probably fit under that audience of the community what you want to build, but you’re just bombarding them. I mean, we get so much content thrown at us a day in our inbox on Instagram, on tick tock on any platform that we’re on. So having that Facebook group just also flooding, more content is just okay, they’re looking, they’re looking for the door immediately. So figuring out if it’s just too much for you to handle. And I have done that with a couple of groups where I’ve honestly left and have come back.
Erin Ollila 13:00
I love that you just ended with that. Because that’s what I was thinking while you’re talking like, there are options. So sometimes I’m on the fence because I’ve gotten a lot of value from a group in the past. And it isn’t necessarily that it’s no longer good for me or I don’t find the value, I just don’t necessarily need it at that moment, as someone who has ADHD, being overwhelmed is very easy, right. So like, I tried to also kind of curate my feed and curate the type of content that I consume. Because being a content creator and being someone whose business really does reside online, I consume it in sane amount of content, and it’s overwhelming. So I think there’s options here right like one I tend to do what you do. And that’s really like leave groups if I’m if I’m no longer finding them valuable, or it’s just not something I need. But But another option is changing the way that your notifications are set up. Right. So like you can if you’re in a group, and I don’t know the exact wording here, but like you can say you want every single notification from the group, you want notifications only from your fellow friends in the group or if you’re tagged right, or you want no notifications, and what has worked for me in those type of groups where it’s like I do find a lot of value, but I don’t necessarily need it is to go to no notifications, right? Like I don’t necessarily leave it because when I do the random checkups of my groups, which I have sorely not done this year, but in the past when I was being a little bit more present with how I consumed content on Facebook, I would do just like you said go like through my group. I don’t know if you call it a folder but like the tab that says groups and I would click through and say like is this a group for me? No leave or whatever. But I do like the option of letting some groups sit there because if you’re in a lot like I am you forget about them. And yes, you don’t need them at that moment in time. But if you really liked him, just having them there can be a reminder when you are doing that checkup that like oh, maybe I will take a peek in here and see what’s happening. Thank you for mentioning that because I think that we really should be as consumers curating what it is that we see and not overwhelming ourselves. Because that’s part of the reason I think people have a negative opinion of groups, there’s just too many, there are too many that they’re in, and they’re not getting what they need. So when you’re not getting what you need, it’s easy to have a bad opinion. Before we jump into groups as the community building, I want one more, I think, important point I want to talk about when it comes to groups as a consumer, you know, I’ve been in Facebook groups, since Facebook groups were really started. And in the beginning of my business, I would say, I have a lot of respect and admiration and gratefulness towards Facebook groups, because that’s how I made some of the best connections with people who have been my long term business friends, I had my own Facebook group with hundreds of people in it for years, you know, circa 2016 2017, Facebook groups were a fun time, like they were like, they had the best information you could have. And like, I just think they were such a great place to be. But what a lot of people would do is they would join Facebook groups where their ideal clients would be and then kind of show up as the expert in those roles. And yes, people are still doing that. But what I find, as I hear this spoken about so much less from the people that like I am business friendly with, right or within my acquaintance, and someone brought it up to me recently, with actually, this week, we had a call and they said, You know, I think I’m gonna go back into Facebook groups, because lead generation has been a little difficult for me right now. And they have a very successful business, but they know exactly who their ideal clients are. And they want to show up in that space. However, because they were in business for a while, because they are very, actually, I would say they’re a very successful business. There was a lot of fear, I think, to be like, join a new growth, and then all of a sudden be like, Oh, hi, I’m so and so. Right. Like it felt like kind of like, in a way starting over. So pardon me, I’m saying I’m sharing this story, because part of me, I think, wants to advocate if would this turn of economy and this really weird time that we’re having right now, I think lead generation is very difficult for many businesses. Everyone I talk to you privately says that, and I don’t hear it publicly. So let’s just put, you know, move the elephant from the room here. The best way to approach changing that is trying new things. Do I think Facebook groups are the only thing you could do? No, but I do think as a consumer of Facebook. And as a business owner, maybe this is a great idea for some of the listeners to join, like a specific type of Facebook group that their clients are in and step forward as the expert. Now, I share this whole rant, because what I’d like to do is ask you if you have any advice for this type of person, who is joining a group that’s really for their clients. Here’s an example. Right? We were talking about someone who was their clients were photographers. So let’s and they’re not there. They’re a marketer. So let’s just say they joined a photography group as a marketer, how can they communicate best with their type of clients in a way that feels good, it doesn’t feel salesy and can remove some of that anxiety, they feel about stepping up in a new space for them. I like to
think about one of my favorite analogies. And it’s usually when you go to a party, maybe you only know the host of the party, and you want to mingle, you want to meet more people at the party. But sometimes it’s hard to break the ice. I am an introvert. I’m an extroverted introvert. So sometimes it’s hard for me to come out of my shell. But I want to I want someone to start the conversation. And I’m going to keep it going all night long. So with that, in how you can mark it in Facebook groups, find the Facebook groups. And I would say maybe try to find a few because they’re all run a little bit differently depending on who the moderators of the group are, and just kind of those intentions that they have for the group. But find a few that have your ideal audience and reach out to the moderators and ask them for that invitation and introduction to the party. I think a great way to do that is to reach out to them letting them know that you are wanting to add value to their group, I guarantee 99% of the time they are going to say yes, I’m sure they’ll probably want to set up a coffee chat on the Zoom beforehand to see what you want to educate and what that would be like and what the format would be, but they’re going to say yes, because that is going to reengage that community it’s going to add value to those photographers lives or businesses and whatever way that you serve them. And it’s a great way for you to open the door. So that’s actually something that we do in our Facebook community. I do a lot of reaching out to people to see if you want to talk in the group but we do have people who reach out to us and it’s a group for social media managers or those aspiring to become one. So there’s a lot of industries that can really educate I can bring value to our community. And what I like to do is go on zoom with that person after we’ve kind of determined what they’re going to talk about how they’re going to share it any free resources they’ll give. And I always allow for promotion, I think when it’s done intentionally, and that value is given first. And it’s something that I know the community would greatly benefit from. It’s a win win win for everyone. So we go on Zoom, we broadcast it live into the Facebook group, and I’m the moderator, I introduced the expert. And I let them take it away, I let them introduce themselves formally give the training, and then I’m there to relay any questions from our community members who are there live to that person. And I think that’s just a great way to avoid the, you know, kind of being in there. And the strategy taught, you know, go comment on people’s posts and give value into that. And does that work? Absolutely. It’s a great way to start genuine conversations on social media. But sometimes it’s just even better to have the group admin or moderator just start the conversations a lot quicker.
Erin Ollila 21:07
I’ll be completely honest with you, in the conversation I had with my friend, we didn’t even think of that right. Now, both of us been in business a while. But I think part of what my friend was frustrated with is she felt like in some ways, it’s kind of sneaky to join a group, right. And again, this is not a sneaky person, but like, she felt like she doesn’t, you know, doesn’t want to step on anyone’s toes. Like, it’s weird, do I just jump in and start offering advice. So the idea of, especially someone who is longer term in business, or even if they’re shorter term, but they have like a, you know, a rapid level of success, or proof of like, what they’re doing, talking to a moderator not only immediately sets you up to be an expert in the eyes of the people of the group, which is exactly what the hope would be here. But it also takes away that level of sneakiness. Right? You don’t like not that anyone is thinking they would like us serve like the Facebook group moderator. But I think like, you know, you don’t want to make anyone feel uncomfortable, like, Why is this person suddenly coming in my group and like spouting out advice to everyone, right, it makes everyone feel comfortable. And it really does immediately set you up as the expert in a group. So that was, I think that was excellent advice. Thank you so much for sharing that. Let’s move on to talk about like using Facebook as a way to build community. So why would someone want to start their own Facebook group?
I think a really important thing to consider if you’re going back and forth of starting a group, whether you haven’t had one, or maybe you had one in the past, because I do find that to be a common theme with a lot of business owners, especially who have been around for maybe three plus years, is that figuring out how your audience or your community is being built on other platforms. And as a social media manager, you know, I have to address that sometimes. It’s slower growth on other platforms. And now can you use Instagram and YouTube and Tiktok and LinkedIn to rapidly grow a business, of course, it happens all the time. Sometimes it’s a slower growth, depending on capacity and strategy and industry. And, of course, all of the outside factors that affect us as business owners and marketers. But if you really consider your community, and consider what people come to you for, and what people are asking you on Discovery calls, what people are asking you in emails in DMS, anything like that. That is what that is where your community needs you. They need that content from you. So it’s a little interesting in the way that our community is ran. Because we do really have two audiences, we do have two sides to the business, we have the done for you social media management services, and then we have the sort of done with you, here’s how you can become a social media manager yourself. So it really is two different audiences. And now could could we have started a Facebook community, for small business owners and entrepreneurs who join and learn strategies on growing organically on social media? Absolutely. That’s the content that we share to our email list that we share on all of our other platforms. But that’s something that I really consider the audience that I’ve already worked with for a few years, current clients, past clients, prospective clients I’m talking to and they don’t have time, they don’t have time for platforms that they’re wanting to market their businesses on. I know they’re not spending their time in Facebook groups. Maybe they’re in a few maybe they’re in wine. Maybe they’re active in them, but it’s not where majority of that audience was. So it didn’t make sense for me to force that community and are the easiest community is the number one question that we get. And it’s, you know, we attract a lot of people who want to become a social media manager, it’s always been like that it’s, it’s similar to any industry, you know, like attracts like. And people aspire to run a business, even if it’s just what they see on social media, but we’re human. That’s what we, that’s what we think. And so we constantly got questions, and DMS and emails, and I did a few, you know, small consulting calls to see how to really like deliver to that community. And ultimately, the Facebook group was born. And it was something that definitely took a lot of trial and error, even though we did have those people knocking up the door for the content, and for the community. But you know, of course, we can dive into content and strategy and all of that, but figuring out your community, who they are, if they’re a fit for it. And if they’re going to use it, I think it’s really great. I think you can also use Facebook groups, to add a little exclusivity to your business. As a marketer, I like to use that term really loosely. I exclusivity in the sense that we’re just having a private group that people request to join, and we add them to our email list. Nothing crazy, we don’t need crazy hoops for them to jump into. But having that to where they’ve got to get in there to unlock that content. And then of course, if you have any paid programs, group programs, maybe a group of buyers who buy every product you put out into the world, having that sort of paid Facebook community, of course always works to cultivate
Erin Ollila 26:41
that group. Many businesses that I work with have different levels of clients, right? That could be like one on one service, and it could be people buying like products from their shop. And that’s just one of the many examples. So I find people will say like, you know, I want to do a membership, bah, like, which group? Should I talk to? I want to do a Facebook group, bah, what should I do? So, yes, you just kind of shared about, like, you know, knowing who your audience is, will help you kind of determine that. But like, is there a way to? I would say maybe like, understand, like, if you understand who your ideal audience is, is there a way to nurture and grow a group that speaks to one larger audience versus being segmented? And is there a reason why someone would want the multiple groups like I loved the like, what you were saying about, like, you know, maybe a pop up group, or maybe this or maybe that’s, you know, is a multi group of method a good idea for small business owners?
Absolutely. I think if you are wanting to create a group, if you have, like you mentioned, whether you have two audiences or two portions of the audience, or it’s one avatar, but at different stages, depending on what level of offer or service they’re paying you for, you can definitely create a community for all. And the way to go about that is to consider the different types of content that’s being flooded in there. So a few ways to do that is to consider really breaking down, okay, who are these two specific or three specific people or the different levels of people, and what content can be created, because it’s going to vary. So for example, if it’s someone who is maybe at the beginner level, they’re going, they want to learn they want to consume, and every audience is so different, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say they probably want to consume from video content. They either want to watch video trainings that are pre recorded and popped into the group, or Facebook Lives of some sort. Now that taking it into other content that can be shared to other people that can be, you know, threads with conversations where those can happen. That can be more like educational content. You can even share in content that you’re posting on other places on social media. So for example, if you are doing essentially the same strategy with your Instagram, for example, maybe you’re trying to talk to a few different people in your audience, and you talk to one of them on stories, that is great content to take that personal content, reword it and put it into the group and a different format. Obviously, there’s no stories and Facebook groups, but you can take those personal touches and put that as posts or threads in a group. If you’re leveraging reels, you actually can post reels in a Facebook group. So if that’s a specific audience, take that content, you’d obviously need to do a little formatting to get that whole video and sound and everything. But you can do that and put that into the group. So meeting people in different ways of the content. There’s another feature of Facebook groups that’s really awesome. And it’s called rooms. What or you can do think of like a zoom breakout room where you can specifically speak to different people. And in conjunction to rooms, and like another part of Facebook groups is the group chat feature, you can have different rooms and different group chats for those people, because they’re gonna go into those chats or the room, and they’re going to find, you know, they’re going to find that content, and they’re going to connect with you on those levels.
Erin Ollila 30:28
Yeah. And that’s, I think, really helpful, especially for like, you know, as all these who haven’t been in Facebook groups, or at least active in them in a while to look at the features. So if you’re considering a Facebook group, and you want to do this, maybe lead generation or maybe community building, Whatever your reasons are, well, actually, first, figure out your reasons, because I think that kind of makes it helpful to determine what features are important, right? Like, if it’s really truly building community, you want to do things like the rooms, let’s say where you’re, you’re pulling people in and getting them to communicate, if you want to do it for educational purposes, like I know, certain groups that I’ve been in, and I will absolutely butcher what this is called, because I have no clue what it is. But it’s like lessons, right? So it’s like you can create units and then put information under that the job is on the moderator or the group creator to successfully organize things like units and things like that. Because I have not the expert, I know you just mentioned two different features. And I brought in the like the units is there any other features people should even think about looking at as Facebook group, like creators.
Another really important feature to look at is the badges in Facebook group. So those have been around for a while Facebook has iterated them over time to change the names, give them cue icons, all of the above. But they’re also rolling out in testing a rewards for badges. So this is something that’s still really new, but it just essentially rewards people and really gamified the engagement of a Facebook group, because one thing that I know a lot of people who maybe abandon their Facebook groups, or maybe they started it for like a pop up or a challenge or something and just kind of left it. Or maybe they just realized, like, I don’t want to start a group because it’s not going to get great engagement. This is really Facebook incentivizing or gamifying people to engage with content, people engage different ways. And depending on who the people are in the group, and what sector of the audience they fit under what tier of the Avatar they are, they’re going to engage in different ways. But it’s a great way to really reward that one feature that kind of goes along with that is the most engaged member of the month. And every month, we pop that in and people love it, they really want to be that person. And in all honesty, we don’t offer any sort of reward for it, we just give them a really great shout out and people are shouting them out. Congratulations, you did so well. And it’s so fun to just have a fun aspect of social media. Of course, a lot of us are using it for our businesses, or to like further our business. So it just really makes the community more fun. And it’s such a small feature to reward those people who are engaging, and it’s just going to be a really great cycle for people to continue to engage. And I know I kind of mentioned and you kind of asked and like the previous question about like pop up groups for challenges and different things like that, I think it’s really important to if you’re going to create multiple groups to really sit down and look at the big picture of a group. Because it’s no doubt that there’s a lot of tasks that go into starting the group. And then of course, promoting the group and then keeping the group active and putting out the content. So one thing that personally we do when we run challenges, we run them to our free group, we don’t like to create the pop up group, we’ve done that before. But it just kind of felt like we were really letting those people down who went out and joined the group and they’re already on our email list. So we could have easily emailed them to Hey, join the main group, but it just felt like we were asking a lot and with that being used for a launch, there was a lot of other things that we wanted them to do other than joining a main group so we run it inside the main group and that’s one of the biggest ways that we’ve grown the group really quickly is by putting that in there and leveraging the you know, the lessons and I think Facebook calls it guides now they’re constantly you know, Facebook is always changing anything in business manager, ads manager, Facebook groups that keep us on our toes, but I’m glad they do update as as time goes on, but really tagging that okay, this piece if content is for the challenge, and it’s something to wear, if it’s a challenge that you’re running in the group, of course, you’re going to get the people who joined for the challenge, but you’re also going to get your other members. And in reality, you’re just probably furthering the results of your launch by getting it in front of more eyes.
Erin Ollila 35:18
So one more Facebook group specific question for you, before we kind of jump into the final questions I have, in one way. I think you’ve answered this in all of the things that you say. But I think when I hear people say that they’re not sure if they want to either be in a Facebook group or have a Facebook group for their business, I think the key thing is that the making them cautious is all of the other social media platforms. So in a time where short form video is, like all of the rage on social media, and everyone’s telling you to, like, you know, create reels and show up on Tik Tok, and nevermind those Instagram posts anymore, right? Why Facebook groups,
Facebook groups are really important to build your community and to meet your clients or customers at a part of the journey that can be done on Instagram, it can be done in a 30 to 60 seconds, tick tock. But it honestly can’t. I think there’s a lot of there’s a lot of people out there who teach that if you do this sort of short form video content, and I’m definitely not bashing short form video, I’m a huge fan of it, love to watch it, love to create it. But there’s a lot of people who share if you do this one magic formula, your video is going to go viral, you’re going to sell all of your course to hundreds of 1000s of people. And you’re going to grow your following and do all of this now, can that happen? It can, it’s definitely not something to rely on strategy. But it can happen. But with social media platforms always changing. The one thing that remains constant, I think we really learned during and after the pandemic is people want connection. I mean, we all connected with family members, for you know, people just felt the connection, whether you had just seen them or haven’t seen them in forever, or just felt like you weren’t gonna see him for a while, we did zoom calls with them. And we did so many ways to connect with people that we didn’t know when we would connect with them again. So what Facebook groups offer is that sense of belonging, and the sense of really getting to know the person or the principle behind the brand, whether you’re a personal brand, or you’re not. One thing that I really love. And it really, really does make my day is when people are talking to me as the moderator in the Facebook group. And it’s such a small thing, but they’re like, thank you so much, Jessica, or that was so great, Jessica. And it’s just, it’s just using my first name and it just making that acknowledgement or asking the question or whatnot. But it’s really great, because as time has evolved over the past two years, I’ve really evolved out of a personal brand and into the Social Savvy brand. And there’s been a part of me that’s like, are people going to know that I’m still there. I mean, I’m still the main person and all of our projects and whatnot. And we do have a few great team members. But I also want to highlight them too. So I felt like I needed to step back a little bit. And like I mentioned the start of the show. I am an introvert so I’m not Oh, he’s talking on Instagram stories or doing all these videos. But in a Facebook group, I can really connect with people. I can answer their questions. I love helping people so I can answer their questions give value, lead them in the right direction, and it’s just a great fit. So if you’re really wondering if you should add a Facebook group into your strategy, but at the same time, you’re also wondering, how can I create all of these short form videos for my business or home man, I have to do that I have to be on Tik Tok, I have to do Instagram, really consider that that might be the best place to meet your audience. And it’s something that you can do just Facebook groups, you of course can do just short form videos. It’s not a right or wrong answer. It’s just what is the best for right now in your business. And I think moving forward, that’s just going to continue to grow. I love that you mentioned earlier Aaron about a few years ago in Facebook groups were all the rage because that’s that’s around the time that I was introduced to the online marketing world and I’m working my corporate marketing job and I just thought I had to do it in in the office and then with our like local clients. I didn’t realize that I could do it from my laptop and you know, kind of that laptop lifestyle living on a beach that was it was never something I aspire to but it shows wouldn’t mean that anything was possible. And I think that all of the help in the community that I found, I’m still connected with some people that I met in a Facebook group way back when I’m glad I finally got to connect with some of them in real life and on Zoom to really put a face to a person. But it’s really helpful in terms of just providing that sense of belonging that sometimes we just need as an entrepreneur. Absolutely.
Erin Ollila 40:27
All right, so I respect your time. Well, I feel like we could talk for a long time about Facebook groups, but let’s just get down to business. If you could give us a tiny homework assignment to the small business owners, medium business owners that are listening and curious about Facebook groups, whether they’re the consumers or the actual, like community builders doesn’t make a difference. What kind of a tiny action would you suggest that they take to determine whether they want to be involved in Facebook groups or start one on their own?
I really would consider your audience. And if you have never done market research, I’m sure that’s a term that as business owners and marketers, we hear it all the time, I hope you’ve done it at some point. If not, maybe do it. Do it now. And you don’t actually have to ask people, do you want to join my Facebook group? But ask them? Are you even on Facebook? What is your go to platform? Or when you wake up in the morning? What’s the first thing that you do? Maybe they open their inbox, maybe they go to Facebook, maybe they scroll tick tock about figuring out those small consumer behaviors? And asking them probing questions that’s not direct. But do you use this app? Do you want that sense of community? Is there more that I can serve you in terms of, you know, insert what you do for your business there what your expertise is, and really leverage those answers from your community to figure out, okay, I can use Facebook, maybe for a pop up or challenge or some sort of launch that you have coming up in the new year, or take that advice and start the community. Alright,
Erin Ollila 42:05
so what are your 2023 predictions for Facebook? And it could be Facebook overall, it doesn’t even have to be groups, but like, what do you expect from the platform,
we’re getting back to the basics. And we’re getting back to the simple things. I think that also applies to Facebook pages, but more. So Facebook profiles, I think, really looking at your Facebook profile in 2023. I’m sure a lot of people who are listening to this podcast are probably or hopefully, hint, maybe using LinkedIn for their business. And it’s such a great platform, I would love for people to look at their Facebook profile like a LinkedIn profile. Of course, we don’t need to make it a full resume or anything like that. But if we are going to be consumers, or moderators of a Facebook group, whether our own or someone else’s, having that full and complete profile, and really leveraging the content that we’re sharing a lot of us our personal brands, or at least the principle behind a brand. So any content that we can share over there would be great. And I think, you know, Facebook is always going to be around in one way or another. So really leveraging that profile. Looking at our page, maybe it’s been years since you’ve updated the company page, it’s got a really old elevator pitch in the about section, but really just optimizing it and just getting ready for the new features that are going to come out in the new year because they will or just really priming yourself for the Facebook community. Or you know, if you just use it for paid ads, just having that ready to go.
Erin Ollila 43:37
If you can meet anyone right now, who would it be and why?
I want to meet and dissect her brain and talk all things and nerd out over marketing strategy. But I want to meet Taylor Swift, and I’m sure there’s any Swifties listening they’re like, but don’t you want to talk to her about her music? And all of that? Of course, absolutely. But my first question is, will be marketing related? Because I really do appreciate the genius that has always been part of her marketing strategy for so many things, her albums, your tours, all of that.
Erin Ollila 44:11
Thank you so much for your time today. There has been so much that we covered and I think there’s just so many things that you said that could be great takeaways or testing for my audience. I will put all of the ways that people can get in touch with you and learn more about how you work with clients and your own podcast. But I just appreciate your time today and I can’t wait to see if some of these predictions. Thank you so much for listening to this episode of Top copy to me. If you enjoyed spending your time with me today. I would be so honored if you could subscribe to the show and leave a review. Want to continue the conversation. Head on over to Instagram and follow me at Erin Ollila. Until next time friends
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