Facebook pages versus Groups

When should you use a FB Group?  When should you use a page?

According to FB, a GROUP is ideal for  ‘shared’ interests – e.g. Reading, Writing, Running…

And Pages work well if you are promoting YOURSELF or some product/entity – that would not be a COMMON interest.

So – I disagree with Facebook’s simple definitions above.

For e.g. – what if you have a BLOG about a COMMON interest – say a Running Blog. Now – should you create a PAGE (since it is YOUR blog posts that are on display) – or should you create a GROUP (since there is a COMMON interest – running)?

The Essential Question to Ask Yourself

Do you want the content (on display on your page/group) to be PRIMARILY YOURS? Or are you okay with other people adding content / uploading pics/videos ?

That is the key question.  If only YOUR content needs to appear, then you want to go with a FB PAGE. The page assures that only YOU (and other page admins) can post content.

In the scenario above (YOUR blog, YOUR content), the answer is that you would most likely do a PAGE – and not a group!

The Advantages of Groups – Organic Growth

So we know the one drawback of doing a group – EVERY MEMBER of the group can post to it. This may work well if you have a group for local garage sales – for example.

So, what is the advantage of a group?

For one thing, the GROWTH of a group is organic – that is – groups rely on other people referring more people to join your group. Chances are – you do not have any ‘fake’ members – only those with a genuine interest in your group would submit a join request .

With each member promoting the group to other non-members (who, in turn end up promoting to others), the growth of a group can be exponential.

It is easier to have 10,000 group members – than it is to get 10,000 page likes.

Summary

Choosing between a Facebook Group and a Facebook Page is tricky. To me, the primary driver is ‘who gets to post content?’.  If YOU are the primary content publisher, create a FB page (you can add a handful of other contributors as admins if you like).

If you mainly rely on others to contribute (e.g. local bake sale, local garage sale), then you should consider a Facebook Group. Groups have the added advantage of growing faster and more organically than Pages.

Of course, with FB, all these boundaries are blurred. People who JOIN GROUPS – are not necessarily interested in your group – they just joined because they thought it sounded cool. People how LIKE your pages – don’t necessarily even READ your page – they do a quick, not-fully-present LIKE – and will probably never return to view anything on your page.

Still, the ‘who is going to contribute ?’ question can help you decide the best option for your Facebook presence.

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Anuj Varma – who has written posts on Anuj Varma, Technology Architect.


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