Growing and Leading a Facebook Group is a Team Sport
Today’s lessons learned post may be useful to you if you have a desire to grow a group and achieve measurable results that are aligned with your goals.
This project involves reflection, analysis, and discussion . It's one I completed as a way to complete the Level 5 Presentation Mastery Path within the Pathways training for Toastmasters International.
I’ve been a solopreneur for 20 years. I've always more comfortable running my own race than building and being responsible to a team. Over the last three months, I’ve moved forward with virtual team members to advance an important initiative in my business. My goal was to grow and lead a Facebook group that could serve as fertile ground from which to nurture and enroll new clients into my favorite tuition-based training program. The number of Facebook group members is important because it is in the Facebook group where I lead sales conversion events to create revenue in my business. In the online marketing world, it can be a bit of a numbers game. The more people in your ecosystem, the greater the sales you can welcome.
Since July of 2020, I have applied a lot of focus toward organic lead generation to grow my group. Podcast guesting, guest training spots, and leading my own trainings have been a huge emphasis for me. I’ve averaged two guest spots a week and sometimes more. I’ve also sought to be a contributor of quality content in the groups of others, and this has brought forth new leads for me.
I decided to engage a team member to support me in managing the group and another team member to grow the group through paid Facebook ads.
I also am part of a business incubator and have access to an accountability advisor who makes suggestions to elevate my results and suggest new ways to bring about those results that I may not have prior considered or implemented.
- When we started in July of 2020, there were 920 members in the group.
- Today – June 23, 2021, there are 2051 members in the group.
- The group has grown by 1131 new members in about 12 months or 84 new members a month, on average.
- We pay attention to the ENGAGEMENT numbers, too. Quality matters.
- Active Members Jan – June: 890 according to the engagement tab within Facebook.
- My goal is to take actions to increase engagement so that ENGAGED members number 1000 or more.
At any given time, it is said that 3% of an ideal audience is ready, able, and willing to invest in solutions to solve their problems. 3% of 1000 could be 30 sales during a conversion event. That would be a brilliant outcome. Results depend on many factors: offer delivery, confidence, conviction, meeting a need, having the right people in the group to benefit, and wanting results enough to follow up. The fortune is always in the follow up. Depending upon the tuition of the program being sold, there is the potential to make a good living.
- During the course of this project, I've been pleased about the sales that have resulted from training events, sales conversations, and launch events.
- During the course of this project, I have also up-leveled my offers and increased my prices.
- That has resulted in more of the right people enrolling in the Broadcast Your Brilliance Boot Camp.
In managing my virtual team, I’ve been clear in my communications, timely in responding to requests, and open-minded in applying team suggestions to enhance the overall effort. I’ve done my best to avoid false urgency in any communications and to treat people with kindness, clarity, and respect. My desire is to show up as the leader my team would be proud to support and to be the kind of client and human being I most want to attract.
Regular check In meetings with team members have been key in keeping things moving forward consistently and to pivot as necessary.
The team member who helps me run my Facebook group has been a great addition to my team. She welcomes each and every new member who asked to join the group, makes sure each is a good fit for the group, and TAGS new members in the posts that are most important for them to see as new members we want to invite to engage. She also plays triage and gets me involved when someone who is particularly interested in getting support raises his or her hand. Those folks are excellent prospects with whom to have an enrolling conversation. Together, we:
- Welcome new members daily.
- Send a direct message to every new member to see, hear, and celebrate their business, ask about their biggest challenge, and engage to see how best we can help.
- Recognize most engaged members.
- Are consistent with delivering quality content.
- Connect and care.
We have made it easy for members to book VIP chats with me by using a scheduling system called TimeTrade. Now anyone can visit www.getknowngetpaid.com/apply so I can subsequently make it easy to find a mutually convenient time to schedule a Zoom chat. While we’ve been working together a very short time, our communication is excellent. Using a combination of private messaging and email, we connect as needed, in a cordial way, and we are both open to new ideas to enhance the metrics we measure.
The team member who runs my Facebook ads is doing a good job. He operates from a different country and time zone, and English is not his first language. That can be challenging. However, with me writing the copy for the Facebook ads and his team actually running the Facebook ads on our behalf, we’ve noted some good results.
- When we started the FB advertising campaign in April, the FB ad specialist said the goal was cost per click of under $4.
- So far, our FB advertising campaign is working well. Lead flow is growing at a fair value. Here are some metrics from my Facebook Ads Manager:
373 Leads, 598 Clicks, CPC $2.99, 62.37% Conversion Rate
- These results are better than expected.
- The ads drive leads to an opt in page that delivers a free gift and also invites folks to join the group.
- Since June 2020, 1084 new humans have opted in to download the Bye-Bye Boring Bio Preview.
- The ‘thank you' page extends an invitation to join the Facebook group. New people join daily after answering our 3 entry questions.
Facebook can be glitchy. My ad account was shut down during the campaign, and some ads we submitted were rejected. This was stressful, especially since I was counting on leads to support a launch in progress. Taking a blameless problem solving approach and finding ways to deal with the frustration to work through the issues was a little problematic for us, and with candid conversation, we worked it out. Sometimes, folks just need to be heard so we can move on. We’ve done that.
My accountability advisor has suggested that I double down on direct messaging in the group to create greater connection. This has been a new behavior and it has proven effective though unfamiliar.
The most important audience for me to tune into is the group we've built. I regularly run polls and ask for feedback to make sure the content I provide is on target to meet member’s needs. For example:
- Do you gain value from attending live trainings I deliver in this Facebook Group?
- Are there topics you'd like to learn more about for future live trainings to meet specific gaps in your skill set?
- Got suggestions about how I can lead and serve the group more powerfully?
I take responses to heart and action.
Another metric I observe is the number of video views that the trainings I deliver welcome.
- 529 – Thanks for downloading the Bye Bye Boring Bio Preview – Invitation to join the FB Group!
- 394 – LinkedIn Training with Debra Mathias
- 324 – Podcast guesting for good and profit training for ACC group of Toastmasters International
- 278 – How to grow your Facebook group during a pandemic
- 210 – How to grow your high fee practice interview with David Newman
- 166 – Podcast guesting for good and profit masterclass May 2021
- 145 – Podcast dream guest training December 2020
- 125 – The art of making things happen with Steve Sims
- 114 – Interview Margy Feldhuhn of Interview Connections
My aim is for my videos to welcome 100 or more views within 30 days. Some are hot. Others are not. It's all a learning process.
- Blameless problem solving and showing up as the client, vendor, and leader you most want to attract are big ideas.
- What you measure gets treasured.
- If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.