The Noisy Little Monkey Blog

Facebook Groups - are you shouty or secretive?

Posted in Social Media Marketing by Sophie Wells on 18-Sep-2013 10:18:11

Using Facebook for business

Setting up social media accounts for business use can be quite a confusing process if it’s not something you have done before. Once you’ve chosen which social platforms you’re going to focus your time on, it can still take time to understand how to use them properly and effectively.

A common question we hear about setting up a Facebook account for business is if it's better to use a “Page” or a “Group” and essentially what’s the difference. The answer, of course, is that it depends on what you want to gain from your use of Facebook. If you’ve found yourself in this conundrum or just want to know more, take a look at a few different scenarios which should help you decide what would suit you and your business.

Scenario 1:
I want everyone to see my company’s profile and share what I post on it. I have no confidentiality issues with the content.

Answer: Use a Page.

 

ADVANTAGES OF A PAGE

  • Easy way of promoting a business
  • Can only be created by official representatives of that business (protects business)
  • Good way of publicising a brand and interacting with customers
  • Same look and feel as a personal profile page so familiar to users
  • A page is public and can be “liked” by anyone without administrator approval
  • Settings can allow posts to be monitored

DISADVANTAGES OF A PAGE

  • No privacy, anyone on Facebook can see everything that is posted
  • No control over who likes the page

 

CREATING A PAGE

To create a new page, log in to Facebook using your personal login details. Click on Pages on the left hand menu and use the Create a Page button. Follow the instructions and ensure you give as much detail as possible. Remember you want people to be interested in you and interact with you via the Facebook Page, match it to your brand and talk as your brand – use we, us or our, not me or I, and NEVER post about what you had for breakfast or what your kids did at school (unless they are part of your branding!)

Example Facebook Page

 

If you don’t have a personal profile, you need to create one before you create a page for your business. DO NOT try to set up a personal profile for your business, it looks wrong and Facebook will eventually delete it for not complying with the rules.

How do you tell the difference between a personal profile and a business page? You can “Like” a business page but must “Request to be a friend” to a personal page.

Scenario 2:
I want to create a discussion group about a topic I am passionate about, I will welcome anyone to join the group but I want to check who they are first and control what they can post on the group wall.

Answer: Use an Open Group.

 

ADVANTAGES OF A GROUP

  • Provides a space for a group of people to communicate about a shared interest
  • Anyone can create a group
  • Different levels of privacy to suit different needs
  • Administrator has control over who becomes a member
  • Members can be added by other members of the group
  • Photos and documents can be uploaded
  • Can be branded with your logo

DISADVANTAGES OF A GROUP

  • Members have to request membership
  • Functionality restricted if group gets too big (over 250 members)

CREATING A GROUP

To create a group, you must use your personal login details and go to the left had menu, choose Groups and select Create a Group. You can then personalise the settings to suit your needs with regards to permissions for members. In this scenario you would want to select an Open Group so the group is easily found and members can invite other members to join. Note that posts made in an open group show in member’s friends news feeds but their friends cannot comment on them unless they too are a member of that group.

Example Facebook Group

Scenario 3:
I want to share some information and documents to a group of people I work with. I don’t want anyone else to see what we post or access the documents

Answer: Use a Closed Group.

 

ADVANTAGES OF A CLOSED GROUP

  • Non-members can’t see the posts
  • Members must be invited
  • Admin can approve who is invited
  • Members have to request membership

DISADVANTAGES OF A CLOSED GROUP

  • Functionality restricted if group gets too big (over 250 members)
  • Members are visible to non-members

CREATING A CLOSED GROUP

Create the Group as above but choose Closed. Ensure the settings reflect the membership options you require.

Scenario 4:
I want to share documents and discussions of a highly confidential nature with a group of people.

Answer: Use a Secret Group.

 

ADVANTAGES OF A SECRET GROUP

  • All posts are private and confidential
  • Photos and documents can be posted and remain confidential
  • Members must be invited

DISADVANTAGES OF A SECRET GROUP

  • No-one will know your Group exists
  • Difficult to promote your cause to people who don’t already know about it

A secret group

Which should I choose?

Facebook Groups might be a useful strategy for those who have a large and diverse client base. Groups would allow you to segment your customers, create communities around particular products, improve customer service and post about advice or services that are targeted to their needs. With a Facebook Page, anyone who likes your business page has to see all of it, which can just seem like a lot of noise if they’re not interested in everything you do.
So before creating a business page or a Facebook group, think about which of the above scenarios applies best to you and if you are still not sure, give us a call and we can advise. You can also read my previous blogs on controlling what you share and how to use the Timeline to benefit your business and brand .

Image credit - Amnesty International

 

Tags: Social Media Marketing

Sophie Wells

Sophie Wells

Any jobs Sophie hasn't done at Noisy Little Monkey aren't worth mentioning. Sophie blogs about marketing and stuff.