DO’S AND DON’TS OF FACEBOOK GROUPS FOR ENTREPRENEURS

Facebook groups for entrepreneurs have blown up in the last few years. There are literally hundreds of groups that were created for entrepreneurs who are looking to be part of a community and meet other like minded bosses. If you’re part of a Facebook group or thinking about joining one, there are a few pieces of etiquette that you should follow to ensure that you and the other members all have a great experience.

Do’s:

Do participate.
The whole point of joining a Facebook group for entrepreneurs is to be part of a community! If the group leader post’s a prompt topic or question, participate in the exercise and share your expertise! You’ll get much more out of the group if you participate than you will if you sit back in the shadows and never say anything. This doesn’t mean that you have to respond to every post or comment constantly, but I think it’s a great idea to make it a goal to comment once or twice a week.

Do give as much as you receive.
The more you give to the group, the more you’ll receive. If other members of the group notice that you participate often and offer up great advice and help, they’ll be more willing to help you out when you need it!

Do share your wins.
Did you get your first client? Have you finally rebranded your website after months of it being on your to-do list? If you’ve recently accomplished something that was a big hurdle for you, let the group know! These groups are a place to share your successes and celebrate the success of others. You never know, your triumph may inspire another entrepreneur to conquer something they’ve been hoping to do!  

Do ask for advice.
One of the aspects that I miss about working in an office setting with coworkers is that when I used to create something, there were people around to give me their opinion and critique my work. Now that I work for myself, that sort of productive criticism can be harder to come by. But that’s one of the best parts about these Facebook groups! If you are working on a new product or are trying to make a tough design decision, throw it out there to the group and see what sort of responses you get! One of the most common things I see people doing is posting surveys where they’ll ask which image the group likes best or which brand logo the group is most attracted too. It’s like having a focus group right at your fingertips!

Do be kind.
Putting yourself out there and receiving feedback from a group of your peers can be frightening. Keep this in mind when commenting and giving feedback to other people in the group. Be honest and constructive but not rude. These Facebook groups are supposed to be safe communities to express yourself, so only share well-intentioned and heartfelt comments.

Don’ts:

Don’t be rude.
This goes hand in hand with ‘Do be kind’ but it’s important so I’m going to say it again. If you’re going to give other group members feedback, always be kind-hearted and constructive but not rude. Follow the golden rule and treat other group members the way you’d like to be treated.

Don’t self-promote.
The point of an entrepreneur Facebook groups is not to promote yourself and try to poach clients. In fact, a lot of groups will kick you out if you are caught doing this. Groups are meant to be a place to give and get support, so leave the self-promotion at the door.

Don’t friend request people you don’t know. 
This has become one of my biggest pet peeves. A lot of entrepreneurs have started to treat their personal Facebook pages as business pages to promote their websites because the post reach is much greater than with an actual business page. Because of this, a lot of people will friend you so that their brand promotion is more likely to show up in your feed. If you have never actually interacted with someone, DO NOT send them a friend request. If you want to connect with them, send them an email, direct message them, or sign up for their mailing list, but don’t friend them.

Don’t post the same content in multiple groups.
Many entrepreneurs are in multiple of these groups with the expectation that they’ll have a different experience in each one. If you’re in more than one group, don’t post the same exact content in all of them. Chances are there are other people who are also in more than one of those groups and they don’t want to see the exact same content in multiple feeds.