Biz Tips: Why All Facebook Groups Eventually Suck

Biz Tips: Why All Facebook Groups Eventually Suck

GROWTH:

Why All Facebook Groups Eventually Suck

And Why It’s Always the Founder’s Fault

Source: pixabay.com

Facebook Groups are the only reason I am still on Facebook. And even that attraction is waning. It’s waning because I know the fate of every group I am in. Because it’s always the same. All Facebook groups eventually suck.

Here’s why:

Administration

We set out to create a Facebook Group with the best intentions. A small micro-community of like-minded thinkers. A group based on a certain subject, a local group, a private group with special privileges, a workplace option. They all start off being transformative.

Then, as founders, we realize that we bit off a little more than we can chew. The more people we let in (i.e. the more popular the group becomes), the more our duties as sole administrator grow. We thought the group would police itself, but it never does. Never. Ever.

To run an effective Facebook Group, you have to be a cold administrator who is on top of the goings-on inside the group at all times. This means time and attention, which is something that Facebook already is taking enough of.

Once the administration of a group is lost, so is the effectiveness of the group.

“Any administration foolish enough to call ketchup a vegetable cannot be expected to cut the mustard.”

— John Glenn

Overpopulation

Photo by Elena de Soto on Unsplash

Growth is supposed to be good. We want our kids to grow up. We want our businesses to grow. We want to grow as a person. But here’s the problem:

Facebook Groups die because of their growth.

Once the group is overpopulated you can’t even keep up with what is going on inside. And God help you if you keep notifications on for a large group. Your phone will be out of power by lunch.

The best Facebook Groups are masterminds. But even they get too big for their britches because everyone thinks scaling is good. It’s not. The best thing about a Facebook Group (for the members) is the privacy of membership. It’s a diversion from the slog that is our normal Facebook feed.

When the population inside a group is growing, the effectiveness and authenticity is shrinking.

One Bad Apple

That guy. He or she is in every group. They post snarky comments on everything, even in a new mother’s nursing forum. They probably tricked someone to get in the group in the first place (bad administration).

One bad apple creates that derisive dialogue that a group is supposed to avoid. And once it is left out of control, the goal is lost. I have climbed out of many Facebook groups because of one bad apple. I tried to alert the admin, but it fell on deaf ears.

Sometimes the one bad apple can actually be the creator. All groups are not created equal. Some are created with subterfuge. Beware of the crafty founder.

Spamming

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Many of these downsides go back to a lack of administration. But spamming is another that can take a group in an instant. As a group grows, the vetting process for who gets in lapses. Founders think “the more, the merrier.” Hell no.

The more in, the more spam.

The lady who has all of her group posts automated so she keeps posting her Buzzfeed share on the Community Swap page. The guy who keep pushing his business over and over again.

The group is supposed to be a spam-free zone. We hide inside a group to avoid the Facebook algorithm of horror. Once spamming takes places, it’s clear the jig is up.

Calls-to-Action

You know how I feel about calls-to-action, right?

How Your Call-to-Action Is Bastardizing Your Content

Once these are a primary motive of the group, it’s time to leave. If the group itself is a pyramid scheme, you can be sure there is no value to be had. Leave the calls-to-action to the email and allow the Facebook group to be a sale-free arena.

The Solution to All of Your Problems

  1. Limit the group from the start. Decide on a number. Personally, I think 50 is the absolute limit.
  2. Delete non-participants. Routinely go through and see who is in the group, but not adding value. Delete them. No content browsers necessary.
  3. Trim the a**clowns. When you see that guy or gal appear, delete them right away. It will never stop.
  4. Be an active participant in your group, the right way. Post polls, ask open-ended questions, provide value. Develop a dialogue by acting like a host. Remember, this was your idea.
  5. Make the group secret. If no one can find it, you won’t get Eric from Antarctica wanting to join your Portland Dads with Toddlers group.

“I continue to be drawn to clarity and simplicity. ‘Less is more’ remains my mantra.”

— Stephane Rolland

What’s your experience with Facebook Groups? At what stage do you think the value starts to wane? Let me know in the comments below.

If you liked this, you might also like this:

Stop Cross-Posting, Everyone Hates You For It

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Why All Facebook Groups Eventually Suck was originally published in Marketing And Growth Hacking on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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