Welcome to #AskedAndAnswered – our weekly series where we answer real-life questions with the same advice we’d give our EXCEPTIONAL Clients.
“I run a few Facebook groups… I just find it difficult getting interaction. People don’t interact. They are not helping each other. They just post their stuff and move on. This is in music/entertainment. The very industry struggling the most where we should have each others backs. It cost nothing to write a comment. Listen to a song. Share your feedback, they just don’t get it….“
What if you set the tone?
What if you decided to be unique – stop following the crowd – and run your group the opposite of how you’ve seen other group administrators run their Facebook groups?
For example, most groups face a similar problem to the one you described above – where the only reason members are there – is to promote their own products/services. What if you had a policy in your groups of ZERO advertising or promotions of any kind – including promoting your own stuff to group members? What if you took the focus off trying to build your group – or build your business using your group – and focused on your stated goal of helping folks in the struggling music/entertainment industry? What if you created a group where people truly had each other’s backs? A community where people helped one another – without asking for anything in return? I think people would love participating in a community where they could give and take value in equal measure.
Another group policy I would recommend, is only real questions are permitted. Members can only ask questions about REAL LIFE situations they are experiencing and trying to solve. Recently, we’ve witnessed a sad trend in most Facebook Groups, where people are asking “Hypothetical BS Questions” meant to increase post engagement so the original poster can surreptitiously market something to them (hint: By using this tactic, you aren’t being clever – you’re eroding members trust). We say, #CutItOut! Instead, focus on building real relationships, and providing true value to your growing community.
If your true goal is to help people in a struggling industry – focus on your goal – and only your goal. You might be surprised how much success you find – and how much your group engagement increases.
Here’s why, people don’t like being sold to – EVER. In fact, they HATE being sold to. You know exactly what I’m talking about – because you’re experiencing it. Post after post, the members in your groups only want to post their own promotions – they are chasing after SALES.
But chasing after sales never works. People are similar to cats when it comes to selling them a product or service. Have you ever tried to chase a cat – or even hold or pet a cat when the cat isn’t in the mood? The cat squirms and swats you away – or worse tries to bite you and then runs off to hide. Now, think about what happens when you ignore a cat – when you’re so focused on what you are doing – or immersed in something you’re passionate about and enjoy – you forget the cat is even there? 9 times out of 10 – the cat comes to you – asking for your attention.
That’s how sales work. You focus on providing true value to others without any agenda – without asking for anything in return. You let your passion for what you do shine. Eventually the law of reciprocity will kick in – and you will find yourself buried in requests from people wanting to work with you. The best part, you never once tried to sell anything.
There are plenty of amazing Facebook groups focused on the music and entertainment industries, with tons of community engagement. How are they different? Well, for starters, their core goal isn’t to sell stuff to their community – but to HELP their community. I will bet, the people running those groups are booked solid – without ever putting up a single promotional post.
They followed a trusted and true formula. First, they provided sincere, no-strings attached value to their members. This helped them earn the trust of their community. Overtime, that trust grew into RESPECT and INFLUENCE. Two assets that are priceless to any business owner.
This is how we would do it – and exactly what we would advise our clients. Slow and steady. You will have to be committed to your goal of helping others (as our old friend Alan used to say – #BeHelpful) – while being willing to delay any potential benefit to yourself.
NOTE: If the only reason you’re running a Facebook group is to promote yourself to your members – so you can sell them things…you might want to take a step back, and rethink your strategy.