Over a year and a half of experience growing a Facebook group to over 250,000 members has taught me the incredible value of many elements of functionality that facebook group creators are generously afforded. Besides your powerful, and convincing, group name, and stunning logo, your group's description is one of the very first things new potential members will be exposed to when they see your group.
For this reason, it is important that it be structured in the best way possible, so as to promote membership growth of your group, as well as, the desire of new members to continually invite their own friends.
Firstly, while creating a Facebook group is simple and will be addressed in another Info Barrel article, one must fully understand the reasons underlying why someone may actually want to create a Facebook group. From a marketing and promotional standpoint, based on my own personal experience, Facebook's groups' platform is the single best functionality offered by Facebook, with Facebook's pages' coming in at a close second place. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most underutilized, and misunderstood, functional offerings of the Facebook website platform.
While few create their groups to promote a product, service, or to display simple affiliate links, most users tend to gravitate towards Facebook groups in order to essentially adhere to the pureness that I am sure Facebook initially intended. They may have created their groups around a specific cause, or influential political leader. Their church congregation, or youth group, may rely on this functionality just as much as a group of students studying abroad will use it to keep in contact as they all disperse upon arrival back to America. Even still, there are many ways that you can utilize all the elements of Facebook's groups' platform in order to help others, provide quality affiliate link recommendations, or promote your newest Info Barrel article; however, this all begins with your ability to formulate a quality Facebook group description for your group.
Secondly, you must realize that several elements to creating a successful Facebook group should typically be addressed simultaneously. Without your group's name being displayed creatively within the limited space available for your Facebook group logo, your group will have difficulty sustaining interest, and daily, consistent membership activity and growth. Underlying all these elements, however, will be the thoughtful construction of an appealing Facebook group description.
Time has shown that the most popular Facebook groups are typically very successful at engaging new members early on. This will require thoughtful wording that makes your group stand out from the rest. Beginning your group description with an open ended question like something as simple as "Do you like our Group logo(?)" may be just enough to get a new potential user thinking about joining your group, inviting their friends, all while becoming actively involved in any discussion or wall posts.
Thirdly, you must also realize that one of the most underutilized elements of Facebook's groups' platform is the ability for a group's creator to include direct, clickable, links to just about any website they may want. When used appropriately, this could be a tremendous opportunity for you to offer something great to your dedicated members.
While they are responsible for the consistent daily membership growth of your group, you can give back to them by holding contests, that are announced in your group's description, or, you can provide valuable resources that they can be directed to, that fall in line with the general theme of your group.
Fourthly, you can arrange for companies that have product offerings that are similar to the general theme of your group, offer free drawings for products, to be distributed to your faithful group members, in return for their willingness to invite all their friends to your group. Doing this is complex in execution; however, it can benefit you in a variety of awesome ways. Perhaps you created a Facebook group entitled '1,000,000 Baseball fans Worldwide', you could arrange for a company that creates a product that would appeal to baseball fans, to offer that product to one of your members, for free, in return for a month of having their website link placed in your group's description.
In order to qualify for the contest, members would have to 'check-in' in a thread you begin on your group's discussion board. Not only will this encourage repeat visitations, as well as exposure to any affiliate links you may have placed, but, this will also effectively utilize the limited functionality of Facebook groups' platform in an extremely creative manner.
Fifthly, your eHow articles can complement a Facebook group very well. Had you created a Facebook group entitled "1,000,000 Nurses Worldwide Unite", you could create direct clickable links to your articles, in your group's description, about anything from 'how-to take your vital signs' to 'how-to care for a patient with Diabetes mellitus'. As your group became insanely viral, your old and new Facebook group members would view these articles as a 'resource', rather than as spam, simply because they fall within the general theme of what would be expected in your Facebook group. Many wouldn't expect to see an article about fishing or wrestling in your group, however, they would expect to see links to anything medical or nursing related. These members would anxiously read those articles, and thank you for providing them as a great resource.
Lastly, whether you keep your group statistics posted within your Facebook group's description section, or your recent news section, you should periodically do this. Doing this will show new group members that, not only is your group active and moderated, but that it is also serious about whatever goal it had set out to meet. You should be sure to include a quick cross-section of your current membership growth and count at least once a month. When you couple this with the inclusion of a current date at the top of your group description, an awesome title, and an appealing professional group logo, you will be sure to display a degree of excitement and newness associated with your group. People will visit repeatedly, and all involved will ultimately benefit.
More about My Facebook Experience can be read at my complementary Squidoo Lens!
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