Creating an Audience in Your Niche Through a Facebook Group
I still believe one of the best ways to create community and build an audience with those in your niche is through a Facebook Group.
Finding your niche is an early step for any business. If you’re in construction, maybe you want to focus on kitchens and bathrooms. If you’re running a marketing agency, perhaps you want to help tech startups. Either way, the idea is that you narrow your focus or pick a niche and then become an expert in that niche in an attempt to gain customers and dominate a subset of the market.
In order to establish yourself as an expert, you need to start developing content. Blogs, articles, and newsletters are great, especially when they also boost your SEO. But I believe that Facebook groups are a great way to build an audience, establish yourself as an expert, and be an influencer in the conversation. Part of building an audience is creating a community.
When creating a Facebook group, you want to develop community and host conversations. Getting people to dialogue with one another in Facebook groups is an art form in and of itself that needs to be developed over time. Don’t be discouraged if you put things out there and no one engages. Building community doesn’t happen overnight.
Here are some examples of effective Facebook Groups and how you can create dialogue and community:
Example 1: A book publisher
A startup book publisher wants to generate new business. She realizes that one is more blessed to give than to receive. She creates a Facebook Group for aspiring writers. Now, how is she going to find these writers? Perhaps she invites new clients to be a part of the group, messages writers on LinkedIn, Facebook, and other Facebook groups inviting them to join the group as she believes they have a lot to contribute. A few people start to join. She starts by asking new members to introduce themselves. Every week she posts a video and asks for people to comment.
Example 2: A local construction company
A local construction company does not have a problem with reaching customers. They have a different problem altogether: reaching subcontractors! Not being able to find subcontractors is preventing them from being able to scale their company to the level they would like to be at. What does the owner do? He creates a Facebook group for general contractors, electricians, plumbers, and other professionals of the trades to join from his local county. Over the course of a few months, he gets 50 people to join the group, most of which are owners of other companies looking for subcontractors but also subcontractors looking for more work. He introduces new members to the group and encourages others to share their needs. He’s reached a level of influence, even among contractors and other professionals in construction in his region by starting this group.
These are simply two examples, but the opportunities are endless. Of course, Facebook is not the only social media platform with groups. However, I believe that Facebook is more capable of reaching local community members than another social media channel such as LinkedIn, or a communication tool like Slack.
The best thing that you can do is…try! Step out. If you fail, then at least you’ve tried another potential avenue or channel, found that it wasn’t your thing and now can shift focus. The truth is that you can potentially reach hundreds and thousands of people through a quality and engaging Facebook.