A Facebook fan page is where you create authenticity, it's where you can build your brand and reputation. The benefits of a page include the built in analytics which helps you to understand what works, the optimal time to post and much, much more. You can advertise your page, boost your posts and create adverts to meet key objectives including lead generation.

All valuable in building your following and extending your reach (targeting that ideal client and customer) as part of your overall marketing plan or strategy.

 

 

Facebook Groups do not have the same features as a page however, they do provide greater visibility on Facebook, appearing in notifications of the follower. A group is about the members, not about you, offering a means of providing further value to your customer or client. Groups can be created around a topic, industry or membership only. It’s a place to share and keep in touch, a far more interactive approach to connecting than using a page.

 

Other benefits include:

• A search feature so much easier to find an old post, one of interest or if the visitor is looking information or support on a particular topic.

• A group can be open, closed or even secret depending on how you wish to use it.

• You can create member only events – that no one else will see.

• Unlike pages you can add files and documents – a great way to share freebies and cheat sheets.

• You can initiative chats within the group, perfect for announcements or event notifications. You can chat to individuals, a group of members or the group as a whole.

 

But remember ... 

Like all marketing, it takes time and commitment to run a successful group, so create one for the right reasons, provide value and always put the members first. When creating your group spend some time on the group settings to ensure it works for you from an admin perspective but equally important that of the group members. While I don’t recommend scheduling posts to a page from an outside source, there is no reason why you can’t use Hootsuite (for example) to schedule posts into the group to reduce your time commitment. This will also keep you focused on its purpose and planning your activity in advance will maintain the group momentum.

A closed group requires less moderation to that of an open one, however, in both you will need to monitor content and comments and perhaps having additional admin support is something to consider.

As a small business, a group provides you another means in which you can deliver value to your clients or customers. A place to engage with your audience on events, industry news and share information of interest to members. So why not join me in my group Make It Happen - it would be great to see you there!