How To Use Facebook Groups To Build Customers’ Relationship
If you use the Internet you have almost certainly heard of Facebook. The nearly omnipresent social media site is regularly the most viewed website in the world and hundreds of millions of people are now on the network. One feature, Facebook Groups, offers a way for you to connect with other users and share common interests, causes, and goals. This tool can also be a great way for small businesses to connect with customers and other parties.
A group is different from a fan page in that it is a place for discussion. Think of it as a sort of cafe on the web where like minded people can get together to toss ideas around. People can ask questions, share insights, and voice their opinion. They can look for answers to their problems and help others in need.
Groups should be used to spur discussion, not simply to promote a brand. There are many advantages to this, including:
• Holding online focus groups
• Creating and maintaining loyalty programs
• Raising awareness surrounding promotions
• Sponsoring and promoting events
• Social networking and collaboration
• Generating leads to customers and partners
• Gaining truthful and real customer feedback
Building Up Your Group
First thing you need to do is find a unique niche in which to establish your group. If there are already a bunch of groups in the area you want to establish, then you will need to think of a unique angle. One way is to make the group local in terms of geography, another is to appeal towards a specific segment your target market. The idea is to make sure that your group isn’t in a head-to-head competition with an already established group because said group will almost certa inly have the numbers in their favor.
You will also need to carefully hone your profile page. Everything should be well written and informative. Like most forms of Internet marketing you will only have a few seconds to make a first impression so make sure it counts!
After your group is set up you should message and invite your friends and followers on Facebook. You should also send emails to people who aren’t on Facebook and in general tell as many people as you can about the group.
Setting Up Your Facebook Group
The steps are pretty straight forward, especially if you are familiar with Facebook. From your home page you can click on the Groups section in the sidebar. This will bring up the list of groups you are a part of. You will also see a small icon that says “create group.” Click on it.
Once you do so you will be given the opportunity to create a name. Try to think of something creative, simple, and catchy. Your name will be one of the first things people see, so take time and think hard.
Next you will get to invite people to your group. Invite as many people as you think will be interested, and if this group is for promoting yourself or your business, just go ahead and invite everyone you know. While most businesses will want an open group, sometimes a closed group is better. For example, you might create a closed group for a special loyalty program or for your employees. Once you create your group you can edit it. This is when you chose a picture, put in contact details, and write out all of the profile information.
Of course setting up the group is just the first step. Now you have to manage it and keep members engaged. You should start discussions and engage in dialogue with your members. You can also create polls and post content that you find interesting onto the page. The end goal is to create a conducive environment for discussion among your members, so make sure you make that a priority.
Last and perhaps most importantly, groups generally are not meant for direct promotion. Instead, you should emphasize building relationships with your followers and providing information. You should also promote yourself as an expert and provide assistance when possible. By building these relationships you will subtly build up your brand image.