Looking for a way to get closer to your customers? Facebook groups are a powerful medium for product-based business to quickly grow the know, like and trust factor, perform market research, and make more money in your eCommerce business.
A lesser-used marketing strategy by product-based businesses, stand out from your competitors, build your personal brand and create a community of like-minded individuals who want everything you sell.
If you’re a member of the eCommerce Badassery Facebook group, you might have seen the live training where we talked about the power of facebook groups for product-based business and how to add high-ticket or digital offers to your product-based business.
If you haven’t seen that training it’s worth a watch and if you’re not already in the group, what are you waiting for? Get you booty in here!
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Why Facebook groups are so powerful
One of the most obvious reasons why Facebook groups are so powerful are because ultimately, people buy from people. This has become more and more evident throughout 2020 and people’s desire to support small business.
Aside from the fact that your content gets way more reach in a Facebook group than a Facebook fan page or even Instagram, it really gives you the opportunity to nurture your customers and allows them get to know you on a much deeper level than any other medium.
One of my favorite things that Facebook Ads expert Nicole mentioned in the training was how Facebook groups essentially work like retargeting ads, which we all know are much cheaper and more profitable than advertising to cold audiences.
It also allows you to build up your repeat customers, which we know is so important for product-based business. In case you haven’t heard this mind-blowing statistic, here it is again: it costs 5x time to acquire a new customer than it does to keep an existing one.
Having a Facebook group allows you to build your personal brand
When you’re in the group on a regular basis, showing up on live video, interacting with your people they become more and more invested in YOU. Which means that no matter what you end up creating, it becomes successful that much faster because it’s less about the product you’re selling and more about you.
Personally, I’m in a Facebook group for a product-based business. The creator is a jewelry brand who has since gone on to create multiple other product-based business and has even written a couple of books. Everything she creates takes off almost instantly because she’s created a community of like-minded women who are willing to buy whatever it is she sells. She’s crated a relationship with her people who all feel like they know her, they share her values and what she stands for. They’re happy to put more money in her pocket because they know that not only is it supporting her to bring more of her badassery to the world, but it supports the women she employs as well. It’s just really fucking powerful all around.
Use your Facebook group for market research
In addition to the community and just having a place to optimize your relationship with your customers, Facebook groups are super powerful for market research too.
You can get direct feedback from your customers, learn their language and figure out exactly what they want from you so you can create it for them. Before you release a new product or a line of products, you can test the market before you ever have to spend a dime on creating that product and ask them for feedback.
Of course, there are other ways to do this on social channels and even in email… but there’s something so much more intimate inside a Facebook group — it’s immediate feedback and conversation.
Ask new memebers questions
Another powerful feature of Facebook groups is your ability to ask questions when someone requests to join. When you join the eCommerce Badassery group for example, I ask what you’re struggling with the most in your eCommerce business and what you want to get out of the group, I ask you what eCommerce and email marketing platforms you use, and I offer a freebie so I can build my email list.
When those questions are answered, now I know exactly what type of content you want from me and it sparks ideas for podcast episodes, group trainings and posts etc. I get direct from my ideal client and I don’t have to guess. And… I’m still building my email list. Which you all need to be doing on a regular basis. Because Facebook can go away tomorrow and you don’t want to build your business on rented land.
Creating your Facebook group
You can go about creating your group in one of two ways:
- Create a group specific to your brand, like an insiders or VIP group
- Create a lifestyle group related to your product
A brand-specific group
The group I mentioned earlier is centred more around the brand itself. This can work really well if you already have a successful business with a large customer base because you already have a loyal customer base to market to and those people are likely to jump inside the group.
A lifestyle-specific group
However, if you’re just getting started, this a brand-specific type of group is likely going to be harder to grow organically because people won’t be searching for your brand specifically.
In that case you’ll want to attach your group to a lifestyle related to your brand and unique selling points or value propositions.
For instance, if you sell yoga gear and apparel, instead of creating a branded group, create a group for those who love yoga. Not only are you bringing together a community of like-minded people who all love yoga, you’re also bring together potential customers for your particular product.
If you sell baby products, then you can create a mom group or if your ideal customers are female entrepreneurs then you can create a group targeted at them.
What to share with your Facebook groups
Once you’ve got your group idea figured out, you have to think about what to share. As much as I know you want to, you can’t make it all about you and selling your product. This group is all about the members, building the relationship with them and giving value.
Go live once a week
Showing up weekly on live video is the best way to do this… and I know, at the time of this recording I haven’t gotten into that just yet — but it’s coming eCommerce friends!
Live video is such a powerful way to fast track relationship building. In episode 25 I talked about the importance of growing the know, like and trust factor, and live video will help you do that. If you’re afraid of showing up on live video like I was, I found it so much easier to do it in the group than on Instagram, because it feels so much more intimate and tight knit. It was a great place for me to get more comfortable and overcome my fear of being on video.
Repurpose your content across multiple platforms
I know you might be thinking, shit… you want me to create MORE content?! I realize that just the thought of that can be overwhelming but you don’t have to create brand new content for every platform. You can totally repurpose across all platforms. You may want to prioritize your group so they get everything first to make them feel more special and then break that content down over all the other channels.
For example, I had Nicole and Darlene come into the eCommerce Badassery Group to talk about how you can take advantage of Facebook groups for product-based businesses, which has been restructured into a podcast episode and now a blog.
If you do a live video training in your group, you can also repurpose that video later on YouTube or Instagram, wherever it is that you focus your marketing efforts.
Take quotes and tidbits that stand on their own and turn them into text posts for instagram, or do short snippets on stories. So while you may have to create a new post to match the correct medium and what works on each platform, you don't necessarily need a brand new idea.
Encourage group participation by making your content interactive
Let’s go back to the Yoga example. If you show up live each week and do a quick session using the products you sell, like your yoga mat and your cute workout apparel, now your audience is getting value and being exposed to your product all the time. While it’s not necessarily going to turn into a sale every single time, it’s that nurturing and being top of mind, so that when they’re ready to buy a new mat or new clothing, you’re the first person they think of.
Prioritize giving value over selling
Let’s say you’re ready to come out with new styles for the upcoming season. They’re already engaging with you week after week, so you can pop in there and ask them for feedback on the new products you’re creating. Take polls asking their favorite styles, plan a live launch event when the new products are ready for pre-sale or order, hold a live sale where they can actually purchase in the moment. You’ve got a group of fans that are ready and waiting for your awesome products.
The thing to keep in mind here, especially if you go the lifestyle route and fill your group with people who haven’t necessarily bought from you yet, is that while you don’t want to ALWAYS be selling to them, you do have to sell on a regular basis to make sure they know you actually sell stuff and that it is a part of the group culture. Otherwise it might be a shock and rub them the wrong way when you do.
At least once a week engage with them about your product in one way or another so they understand that it’s normal. And as long as you’re coming from a place of service and problem solving it won’t be icky. Using that yoga example again, you could always list out what you’re wearing in the description of your live video. You’re still giving them massive value by teaching then a new pose, or doing a mini-yoga session, but you’re tying it back to yourr product in a passive way.
How do you grow your group?
Now that I’ve convinced you that you need a Facebook group, how do you grow the damn thing?
First, that’s going to depend a little bit on which type of group you decide to have. If you move forward with a branded group, you’ll need to give your people a reason to join, something special and VIP. That might be early access to sales or the opportunity to help design new products for example.
Talk about it everywhere
Have a call out for it in your emails, add it to blog posts, have it printed on whatever inserts you put in your shipments, talk about it on social media — everywhere!
Run lead generation ads
If you’re going the lifestyle group route, all those previous strategies still apply, but you can also expect to get new members organically and you can even run lead generation ads specifically to grow the group.
The really cool thing about this, is that you can get leads for really cheap. While paying for a lead to a facebook group can feel like a waste of money, you want to remember the opportunity to nurture and monetize in such an intimate space. When you have a group of your IDEAL customers all gathered in one place, it’s going to be so much easier to convert them later on.
Not only are you paying less for leads, but you’re also making more money on each and every one of those people because when you do finally sell to them they’re already going to be a warm audience and they will more easily turn into repeat customers as well. It’s literally a win-win.
Next week we’re exploring other ways you can monetize your Facebook group with high-margin products. This is something most product-based business owners don’t think about, but it’s an easy way to raise your AOV and generate more revenue in your business. If you’re curious, go watch the video in the eCommerce Badassery Facebook group, it’s under unit 4.
Thanks again for spending your time with me today. I really appreciate you! Until next time, see you on the flip side.