Facebook groups are all the rage right now with businesses. But can I tell you a little secret? They have always been a huge focus within my own businesses and a huge secret to my success. In fact, I consistently used my Facebook group to bring in thousands of dollars a month in income for my business. I want to tell you why and show you how the same can be true for your business.
What is a Facebook group?
Facebook allows you to create groups or communities in addition to business pages. These groups create little areas online where people can gather together around something in common. These can be for support, for education, or around a brand or product. You can also link your group to your business page. In essence you as a brand or business can have a group that others can be a part of.
There are actually several types of Facebook groups you can run. You can teach people, you can offer services, you can offer supplies or product. All of these types can relate to your brand or your products that you offer.
Facebook is all about relationships. It’s about connecting with others and letting people get to know you. A Facebook group promotes community and brand awareness for your business, yes. But instead of only promoting your business, a group helps promote you. You are the face of your business.
Inside a group you can facilitate a deeper connection with your people. And what does that deeper connection result in? More sales. Loyal people. People who show up to buy whatever you have for sale.
Why I started a Facebook group?
Let’s get real here. When I started out, I didn’t have a website. I didn’t know anything about Etsy or Amazon Handmade. But I did know how to post on Facebook, so I decided to start a Facebook group for selling my product.
I am telling you the honest truth when I say that I started this group before selling in groups was cool. So you can only imagine all the changes I have seen with Facebook groups through the years. But the one thing that has never changed has been relationships.
A group is the best place to help you get to know your people and understand the psychology of a customer. These are key elements for any business owner to learn. And a Facebook group tends to simplify the process.
You learn quickly what your people want and how they work. In fact, group members can help you learn about the needs of a wider audience and you are going to need that knowledge as you grow, my friend.
How I Got the Idea to Sell in My Group
When I decided to start my group, I was seeing Instagram users consistently selling out on their Etsy pages by creating a restock in their shops that was exclusively promoted on Instagram. Literally these popular IG influencers would restock their Etsy shops and within minutes their Etsy pages would be sold out. It made me wonder, “Can I do this on Facebook too?”
The frenzy created around their restock was insane. I started out on my journey to create this exact same thing within a Facebook selling group and boy am I happy I did. It was a game changer for me.
What do you need to have a successful selling group?
I will be completely up front with you about how this was a success. I already had an engaged Facebook business page. If you don’t have an engaged Facebook page then that is honestly where you need to start.
Need help? Well GIRL get on our waitlist for our next date that the Creative Codebook Course opens up and we will get your page going!
But seriously you need a customer base before you start a selling group. It doesn’t have to be thousands of people. Engagement is more important than the number of people who like your page. Engagement means responding to your posts. People who are engaged are more likely to see your content. And they are more likely to buy. All you need is an engaged audience to make a selling group work.
What is the difference between a Facebook Page and a Facebook Group?
I get the question often, what is the difference between Facebook pages and groups. I know it can be confusing for many people who think they are the same thing, but the difference is simple. A page is like your professional business card to the world while a group is designed to facilitate relationships and build a frenzy around your product.
How did I start and run my group?
I started my group and made the announcement on my Facebook page that I was now going to be offering a monthly sale in my group. I told my page audience that they would be getting discounts in the group that weren’t available anywhere else. The twist? Well to get to buy the item for that discounted price, you had to be the first person to comment on the picture inside the sales in my group.
Some ideas I knew about my customers and all customers in general.
- Everyone loves a good deal.
- Everyone loves a good competition,
- Every one of my customers was loving my product.
With these three things in mind I went to work.
What was going to make my group engage with my product, with my posts and with me?
- I posted fun games.
- I posted teaser pics of the things I was working on.
- I let my people vote on what I should paint next or sayings to put on my product.
- I posted completed photos of the product they would get access to.
One fun thing I did that created great engagement within my group was allowing them to choose the next month’s theme. I would pick three themes and let them vote. Once the voting was over I would start creating around the theme that won the vote and my cycle would go all over again. My customers were regularly interacting with me and my products and the whole time I was priming them to be able to buy.
How did I grow sales in my group using Etsy?
My demand got to the point that I decided to try my group sale two times a month instead of just one. Then the demand was so high that I went to weekly sales. I would make 25-45 items every week and sell them. I was making great money. I continued to have sell out nights. But as you can imagine my mind was constantly trying to make something even bigger. How could I get even more sales from this? Was that even possible?
I decided to start my Etsy shop. At this point, I was making between 2-3 thousand dollars in my group every month from my sales. I had grown so big that I had even hired another painter to work with me to crank out all of these products. But now we were able to create more. I knew that I was ready for that next step. We were ready to grow.
This is the point where I feel like my business became a true business. And, hey! I was starting to feel like a boss! I continued with my restocks every week or every other week in my Facebook group, but what I did next is what really took my business to another level. And it’s something you could totally do to!
I held my restock in my group but then to drive traffic I would announce an offer of a few products that were popular for restock prices in my Etsy shop for 24 hours only. What did this do for my business?
Each week, I would get at least 10 to 15 additional orders. Honestly some weeks it was closer to 50 orders coming in from my Facebook group. This resulted in a Facebook group facilitating anywhere from 5-7K every single month for my business. I am not kidding. Every month.
Is this a model you think you would love? Can you see your business doing this?
The future is groups
Each year Facebook releases new changes designed to keep up with what users want and need. The focus on communities and groups is a big push right now. Some things in the works for group lovers are paid subscription groups, payment processing for products, stories in groups, more places where groups will be featured and suggested, and so much more. So many changes are happening with types of groups and the ease of the platform I can’t wait to see how it helps build a bigger frenzy around our businesses and our products.
The truth is that people come to Facebook for community and engagement and connection with others. They aren’t coming to Facebook to buy. But when we create community and engagement with them, they want to buy from us. They stand in line to buy from us. They become part of a tribe of fans. And it’s an amazing process to be a part of.
Some advice for those who want to add or grow groups as a strategy for their business:
- Focus on engagement. Remember people usually aren’t coming to Facebook to shop. They are coming to feel connected. Create content that connects with them and connects them to others.
- Focus on what your audience is asking for. They are your product development team. Listen to them and see what they respond to. Your group members are a little microcosm of your customers outside the group. They will help you hit top sellers if you pay attention to them.
- Always remember a group is only as strong as the community and with no interaction your group will fail. Talk back to your people. Respond to comments. Learn about them. And let them learn about you.
- Make it fun. Make it a place people want to be, make it a place that your brand will facilitate loyal customers because of you.
I used my Facebook groups to consistently make thousands of dollars a month in income. With some engagement and community focus this is something anyone can do with their business. I hope these strategies get your mind turning about the possibilities for your business. Groups are the place to be to develop that loyal, true blue, highly engaged following that your business needs.
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