With Facebook reaching the 900 million mark, there should be no surprise that it is a terrific tool to use in the quest for business exposure. Joining a Facebook group seems to make sense; it’s a great way to expose your brand and/or find a new business opportunities. With countless groups on the social network giant, you’ll want to use groups to virtually shake hands or exchange business cards with peers and prospects.
How do you join a Facebook group? To join a group, click Ask to Join Group at the upper right side of the group’s page. You can also be added to a group by a friend who is already a member. Since groups require admin approval for you to join, you may have to wait for an admin to confirm your request. Certain groups on Facebook are secret and will not appear in search results. You cannot request to join these; only being added by an existing member will give you access to these groups.
Now once you get into a group, there are certain things you should and should not do. You do not want to go about things the wrong way. Before you accept another group add-on, (or even launch a group of your very own) make sure you avoid the following Facebook group gaffes:
Don’t forget to read the rules. Well-run groups usually have house rules posted in the document section of groups, and for good reason. Rules help to ensure that the group is serving its intended purposes and prevents chaos. Reading (and adhering to) the group rules is about respecting your fellow group members, the admins and your own brand.
Don’t you dare post an ad. Would you attend a networking event, interrupt conversations and speeches to blurt out one of the following?
Like my page!
(Shoe) size 10 no longer available!
Vote for my neighbor’s baby!
Of course you wouldn’t. Yet, this form of shameless promotion is the norm in many groups. You’re not likely to receive the feedback you’re looking for with random posts like these.
Don’t harass group members.Just because someone “liked” your posted business advice, doesn’t mean you have the green light to post on their profile wall or send them a private message. These methods are considered spam, and as a business owner that’s not where you’d want your brand to be.
Don’t be a group bully. You know the type. The bully wants to do nothing more online than to take over a discussion, start a pointless debate or poke fun at ideas. There is no room for bullying in school and not in social media, either.
Don’t be a lurker.Join Facebook groups for a reason. If you bring nothing to the proverbial table, don’t take advantage of the information shared throughout the group. What is the point of joining a networking group on a “social“ network if you cannot bother typing a ‘hello’ once in a while?
Joining a Facebook group should lead to the right connections and customers. By avoiding these wrong moves, you’ll help to make these gathering places more welcoming for all.
Tyjuana Wilson is a freelance writer and consultant who provides to small business owners: articles, press releases, website/blog content, newsletter copy, and more. More importantly, she is also watching her 14-year-old diva, Tyra, grow before her eyes. Find Tyjuana online at
http://tyjuana-wilson.com and on LinkedIn.