Jitendra Chouksey is the founder of S.Q.U.A.T.S (https://www.squats.in/#/overview) and is pretty popular in the fitness circles, thanks to the huge community he has created and the huge following he has on SQUAT’s Facebook group. Remember, this is a closed FB group and the reach that he has seen, in less than two years, is entirely organic. JC, as he is fondly called, started the group in June 2015, which now has reached 1.7 lakh members. He has built a community around it, (note this point) which is guided by a set of rules, adhered religiously by members because of the kind of value the group offers. The group features at least 600-800 user-generated posts, these include fitness queries, posts on transformations, articles by fitness experts. All this points to the massive traffic the page registers at any given period.
Image : shutterstock
Here are a few of JC's advises on how to market business with an FB group:
- Quality of content: Communities thrive on content, if there's legit content it will attract users. What matters is how different is it from what's out there, how refined it is, ease of understanding, target audience-- all of this is significant.
- Vision: Does the community have a purpose or a larger vision? I believe if there's a larger vision, people tend to align and work towards it. Lack of vision forces people to live in a bubble.
- Driving force: You cannot run a community without setting up rules, principles, and walking the talk becomes something of utmost importance. If you want people to listen to you, better start making sense.
- People oriented: Communities are of the people, by the people and for the people. If there's no participation or due importance given to members of the community, they will not stay interested. Everyone needs something. I have a simple philosophy, if you want to achieve your dreams, just enable people to achieve theirs.
- Community building: Last but not the least, communities are the next big thing, unlike Facebook pages, the audience is more targeted. The crowd feels safe inside the closed group, make sure it stays that way. The way you handle the initial few hundred members will determine how you will handle thousands.
For a startup or a blogger who wants to talk about a business on a Facebook group, there is no better advice than from someone who has been there and done that. Let us see some of the ways in which you can market your business with an FB group.
Provide value to your customers:
Exclusivity always add that bit of intrigue and will make your customers feel special. Send email invites to your readers to be a part of the group. Curate and send them content that is of interest to them, which is not available elsewhere.
Providing a networking platform: I have been the beneficiary of FB groups where the interaction was mainly meant to network, exchange ideas and help each other out. Groups where the intent is super clear has lots of chances to grow super-fast and add high value as well.
Have an AMA with an influencer:
If you have influencers in the group who are willing to do an AMA (Ask Me Anything), use the chance to conduct one. Announce a week in advance to your group members about the AMA. Offer incentives for the best question, an e-book or a gift card. Collect feedback:
Your Facebook group should be your foremost medium for feedback. Openly discuss your ideas, their implementation and ask your best customers for opinions. Not only does it help you establish a good rapport, it allows you to directly collect feedback from potential customers.
Promote, but discretely:
Although you shouldn’t allow promotion on your group, you still want to ensure that people visit your website and are aware of your business offerings. Use the ‘Description’ option or better yet, write a pinned post about what the group stands for and as the founder of the group what do you have to offer. A little bit of Guerilla marketing here and there doesn't hurt your chances.