Facebook groups are all the rage. I feel like EVERY entrepreneur that I know has one a group that they run or are part of a few.
- Learn: Facebook groups are full of people with such diverse array of knowledge. There are people with similar skill sets as you and might be seen as your competitors, or you can look at them as people who might be able to informally or formally mentor you. You might learn different business strategies from somebody with different skills or a complementary field. Keep your mind open to what you might be able to gain from the body of knowledge. My pro tip here would be go in with an open mind, asking questions and offering your thoughts on other people’s post. You don’t want to be a lurker and you don’t want to be the devil’s advocate all the time.
- Be helpful: You know yourself well enough to know what your personality is, what you’re good at, and what you can offer. When entering in a new group, do NOT go in trying to sell your services. ACK! Get to know your hosts, learn about the rules of the group and how they operate. Comment on people’s posts and offer suggestions or helpful thoughts. Be encouraging, thoughtful, and honest. If you have a resource that you think would be helpful for somebody in the group, give freely of that resource. Don’t post something and say “PM me if you want more info,” just offer it in the comments (unless it’s against the rules of the group).
- Make friends: Connect with people in threads and message the ones who you feel like you connect with and ask to see if they’d like to meet you “offline” meaning, via phone or skype. You can learn more about them “in person” and cover more ground about where they live, who they really are, what they love about business, and most importantly, how you can support them. This last step of asking them how I can support them has been one of the most beneficial things in growing my business. When people know you better, they are willing to refer you, they are more likely to trust you, they are more than just a name on the screen. Leverage these in real life relationships to be more than just a facebook group buddy.
- Become the one they all tag: When you do #3, you are able to become the one they all tag in groups. When somebody asks the question of “I’m look to hire ____, who do you recommend?” Even if you don’t see it quickly enough to throw your hat in the ring, others who know you will tag you. When you can be known for something specific, it’s easier for people to say, “oh I know exactly who you need to talk to!” If you are vague about what services you offer or who you serve, you make it extremely difficult for people to connect those dots.
- Have your own: Once you feel like you have enough you want to say and you’re saying it differently than the group around you, it might be time to start your own group. It’s a TON of work, if you want it to be successful, engaging, and active, but it can also be rewarding, profitable and fun, too. You can become known as the expert in whatever the topic or philosophy of your group turns out to be. It’s a great way to cultivate a community of people who believe in similar things. My Heart Centered Biz Bosses group is just that. (You can read about it here and what we believe in)!
What are your favorite facebook groups and what do they do in them that makes you feel super engaged in them?