AMY PORTERFIELD: Well hey there, Amy Porterfield here. Welcome back to another episode of The Online Marketing Made Easy Podcast. Thank you so very much for tuning in.
We have a lot to cover today but before we get there I have to tell you that this weekend my cocker spaniel, Gus, had surgery. He’s only four years old but he was running for the ball about a month ago and all of the sudden he started screaming bloody murder. He never does that.
His leg was kind of out to the side. It turns out he popped his hip out of the socket but in a really weird way. He had surgery yesterday and the vet said he’s never seen a weird injury like this in his lifetime.
Gus had to get a prosthetic ligament put in. It’s very weird. But the reason I’m bringing this up, I now have a new found respect and compassion for any pet owners out there who have ever had an injured animal.
Oh my goodness! After surgery Gus has to be confined to this little gate area I set up because he’s not allowed to walk on wood floors. My entire house is covered in wood floors.
We have a little patch of carpet, which is really just a rug, and poor little Gus has to be there for ten days. Shoot me now! He is miserable. He does not like to be confined and I hate to see him in there.
He just cocks his head and stares at me the whole time like, “Get me out of here or I’m going to go crazy.” It’s just miserable plus I’m so scared of the stitches coming out and all that stuff so I get it now.
If you’re a pet owner and you’ve been through this, my condolences. I understand how rough it is.
That was my weekend. We’re moving into the week and today’s episode is all about Facebook groups. But let me talk to you about why I’m bringing this topic up yet again.
In Episode #142, the first episode I did of 2017, I talked about making bold moves in your business. One of the seven bold moves I suggested was to create a Facebook group and build a community around a solid single topic and become the go-to source and leader in that community.
We talked about this in Episode #142 but I really didn’t get down to the details. Then I thought that Facebook groups just keep popping up: Why they’re working and why they’re so powerful. I’ve seen them in action so many times and I thought I needed to dissect this just a little bit more.
You guys know that my episodes are like mini trainings and that’s exactly what we’re doing today. But this is actually going to be a two parter. Here’s why. I see Facebook groups working in three really cool ways.
The first way is this community-building strategy. I’ve talked about it in an episode about a year ago with Jill and Josh Stanton when they were just starting their Facebook group around Screw The Nine To Five, their brand.
We talked about what they were doing to build this community. But I also think there is another side of Facebook groups we need to talk about. That is creating an exclusive Facebook group just for the paid members of your programs, products, and services.
That’s exactly how I use Facebook groups. I always offer an exclusive private Facebook group as a bonus to anybody who joins one of my three programs.
There is actually a third way you can start using Facebook groups and this one might surprise you because we don’t talk about it a lot. That is a pop-up Facebook group.
A pop-up Facebook group is basically a Facebook group you start that only lives on during a short period of time. A lot of times I have seen these pop-up groups work really effectively to offer massive value and build community before a promotion happens.
I think that’s a great way of giving back before you ask for people to take action to buy a program. But there are some things that work really well in pop-up groups.
What’s so cool about these pop-up groups is that they’re perfect if you don’t want them to live on because you know you can’t manage them over and over again week after week but you know you can offer immense value during a really specific period of time.
Since they are typically around a hyper-focused topic you can get into a lot of specific detail. These pop-up groups tend to be a lot smaller and that means they are more manageable and a lot more fun for those that are members of the groups because they get a lot of access to you.
Again, I see Facebook groups working right now in three ways:
- The community-building strategy where you cast a wide net,
- Creating a private exclusive smaller Facebook group for only those who purchase your program (they are paying customers who are getting extra support from you around the topic of your paid course), and
- Pop-up Facebook groups where they are only active for a very specific period of time and then they essentially go away.
There is value in all three of these strategies so here is the first thing I’m going to tell you, I’m going to go into detail in this episode around Facebook groups as part of a paid course that you’ve created.
I’m going to talk to you about why they work, do’s and don’ts, give insights about how I’ve used them, and also how to make sure that people are going to the group and are active in the group. Those are things you really need to know. I’m going to get into all of the specifics as a mini training today.
In a few weeks I’m doing part two where I am inviting Jill and Josh Stanton of ScrewTheNineToFive back on the show. The last time they were on the show they had just started the group and they had 5,000 people in the group.
That was amazing, in my opinion because I think that’s a lot of people. A year later they have 30,000+ people in their group. It’s highly engaged and has become an amazing lead machine and sales machine.
People are just obsessed with their brand and what they’re teaching and what they’re all about. I thought, okay, these guys are onto something bigger than they thought. I talked to Jill and she agreed. She said, “Oh my gosh, we’ve learned so much over the last year.”
They are doing things different than they did even a year ago and they would love to share with my community how they did it, what to do, and how you can get started. I thought it was a no brainer. Of course!
Today Part One is all about Facebook groups for a paid course. Part Two will be about building the community at a bigger scale and that’s more of an open group where you’re the leader.
But I also wanted to mention right here and right now the power of pop-up groups and the fact that I’m going to do one. I’m very excited about this. I did one last year right around the time B-School started to become a big conversation, right around the time Marie Forleo started to promote B-School.
For those of you who don’t know, B-School is a program that I have actually supported and encouraged my students to check out for almost eight years in a row now. It is an amazing business-building program all about online marketing.
It’s really for those heart-centered entrepreneurs that are about more than wanting to make money but they really want to make a difference in this world. I would think that’s a lot of people in my community.
Marie does an amazing program every year. It’s coming up. Last year I did a pop-up group that 7,000 people joined. I noticed it wasn’t really focused around B-School, which is the topic I wanted to talk about.
I noticed I attracted a lot of people that just wanted to learn strategies from me. That’s great but it’s not really the point of the group. So I decided I wasn’t going to give up. I’m going to do this better this next time.
I’ve started to really study what pop-up groups are about and what makes them so valuable to the members and what I could do to really show up better. This year we’re doing a pop-up group for B-School. It starts next week.
Anybody interested in learning more about B-School and seeing if this program is right for you should join. Again, I open it up next week. It’s called B-School Breakthroughs. It’s 30 days of getting into the details about B-School with me.
I’m going to talk to you about whether you’re right for the program. I will tell you what it’s about and what you’ll learn and whether you’re at the right stage of business. The coolest thing is that in this group I’m going to show up live doing mini trainings and doing live Q&As.
You are going to see me on video a lot in the next 30 days if you want to be a part of the B-School group.
Another thing, I’m calling it B-School Breakthroughs because I’m inviting some of the alumni who went through B-School with me over the last few years. They were a part of my bonus experience and got all of my bonuses.
They went through the program with me and they’re going to talk about their successes, their big wins, how long it took them to see success, and what they took advantage of the most inside B-School.
You will be hearing from more people than just me. I think it’s most exciting because I have been creating content for this 30-day pop-up group where I’m going to start sharing stuff I’ve never talked about before and I’m saving it just for this topic around building a business through the B-School program.
I’m really excited about it. It’s going to be something I’ve never done before because there are so many live video elements and so many mini trainings inside this group. I feel like I did it wrong last year, I’m changing things up and am going to do it right this time to really make it worth every minute of your time.
So, if you’re interested in seeing how I do a pop-up group right this time you just want to get on the list. I’m going to open up next week but it is invitation only. I’ve got to send you a special link to get in there so all you need to do is go to http:// www.amyporterfield.com/popup and sign up to get on the list.
Once I go live with the group next week I’ll send you a quick email and say, “We are open” and you can get in. I’m going to do a live video training on that very first day that the group opens so you definitely want to jump in there.
Again, I thought this was a perfect time to talk about my own pop-up group because if you want to see it in action and, hopefully I really make you proud with this, you can kind of see how I’m doing it.
The cool thing is when we go into Part Two talking about Facebook groups in Episode #149 with Jill and Josh Stanton it’s going to be the last episode of February I’m going to be reporting back to you my learnings and insights around the pop-up group that will be in full effect by then.
It’s really cool that you get to be a part of it in advance if you want and then I’m also going to be talking about it from a behind-the-scenes look when Jill and Josh come on the show because we will talk about popups and we will talk about the community-building strategies of the bigger Facebook groups like the one they have.
There are so many cool things in the works for you. I should have started with this but I’m going to tell you now, I feel this topic is a hot one, this is a topic we’ve got to talk about in terms of Facebook groups in general because we’ve all seen a huge decline in our Facebook business pages.
I post on there with a link to my latest blog post and an image from the blog post and I get hundreds of people looking at it. It’s just such a waste of time. We are definitely changing the way we post on our Facebook page this year and the one thing I’m focusing on are the Facebook Live sessions.
I feel the most important thing about having a Facebook business page is 1) Your ability to do Facebook Live to your audience. It’s a must and is why you definitely want a business page; and 2) To run Facebook ads.
In order to run Facebook ads you need to have your Facebook page active or you need to have one in general. With that I think those are the two most important reasons I have a Facebook page.
Beyond that, looking for more engagement, better conversations, more zeroing in on topics I know my audience wants to talk about, that’s where I think we need to be taking those conversations into Facebook groups. And that is why I am so fired up about this topic today.
Here’s what’s going to happen. I want to talk to you today about all of the things that make a Facebook group for a paid course wildly successful. I want to talk to you about
what having a private Facebook group for your course could do for your business, behind the scenes, what it really means.
I also want to talk about how to get people engaged in those groups. It’s a little bit different than it is inside the bigger communities we’re going to be talking about in Part Two. It is even different than what I might do in a pop-up group.
It’s more intimate and personal. I feel like the expectations on me are bigger inside these groups. But that’s okay because the payoff is so, so worth it.
Before we get there let’s hear a few quick words from our sponsor and then we’re diving in.
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To get your free, unrestricted trial all you need to do is go to www.freshbooks.com/amy and in the section where it says, “How Did You Hear About Us” just type in Online Marketing Made Easy. Enjoy!
Let’s get into the details.
I’ve been preaching for a while about the power of offering an exclusive private Facebook group for all of your students that pay to be a part of your program or online course.
I’ve been telling you about the power of this but what I realized is I haven’t really given you the details, the “how to” to make it really work. I want to do that today because there are some nuances that are different than any other type of Facebook group you would set up.
The fact that people paid to be a part of your course means they feel they’ve paid to be a part of this private Facebook group as well. And you know what happens when people pay for something…at least for me?
I have high expectations. I put some money down for this and I expect it to be good. Most of the time course creators offer the private Facebook group as a bonus but it doesn’t matter. It’s all part of the offer so you have people that feel this had better be good because they paid for it.
There is a little added pressure to that but don’t worry. I’m going to walk you through some “how to” so that you don’t feel the pressure but instead you think, “Holy cow, this is the best decision as a course creator I have ever made.”
Let’s dive in to the Facebook course group intensive. That’s what I’m calling this little mini training because we’re getting down to the details.
The first thing you want to do if you’re thinking about adding a private Facebook group to your paid course offer is decide if a private Facebook group is going to be right for you.
First I want to give you some really cool benefits of doing something like this. The first thing is that people get access to you. When you are selling a course, letting your potential students know they will get to ask you questions and you will go on the journey with them sometimes puts people right into the place of saying they are ready to buy.
That aspect of you being involved is usually, for a lot of people, all they need to know to say, “Where do I sign up?”
That’s probably the #1 reason why I do these groups. Early on, during the Q&A when I was selling my program, people would ask if they have access to me. They would ask what if they got stuck along the way.
The answer to that is the private Facebook group. If you’re looking at this from a marketing perspective on your side, one of the great selling points is that they will have access to you.
Beyond that they are going to get access to other people going through the program so that they do not feel stuck or don’t feel alone in any of the challenges.
I want you to pay attention to some of the things I’m saying because these are all different marketing benefits that you can actually mention on your sales page when you post that you’ve got a private Facebook group exclusively for students only.
You can say, “You get access to me. You get to be a part of a community of other people going through the group with you.” You also get to talk about exclusivity and that it’s a small group. People love small groups because they know they are going to be seen and heard a whole lot easier.
I’ll talk about the engagement side of things in a moment, meaning how you really get the group engaged and how to make sure you are not feeling totally overwhelmed as the leader. We’ll get into that because you can’t be in there every minute supporting everyone.
I just want you to know we’ll get there but I want you to know that offering yourself in a private Facebook group, in my opinion, is going to get you more sales.
You’re supporting people at a deeper level, you’re giving them access to each other as they go through the program, you’re answering questions in real time, but beyond all that I also see the value of these private Facebook groups living beyond just the moment that they go through your course.
When I create these private Facebook groups I tell my students they have lifetime access. As long as I’m creating this course and updating it and it’s part of my business model then the group will be thriving.
That means they might have already gone through the course but they’re staying in because I’m showing up regularly, I’m offering insight, and down the road if they feel like they’re getting stuck again they know they can always come back to me and get the support they need or just come back to the group and get the group’s support as well.
When people have been in your group for a while and have gone through your course but are still engaged you can start talking about future courses that you’re creating. You can talk about future promotions.
What I don’t do in my groups is I don’t sell a lot. I don’t make it a big pitch fest because I believe they paid a premium price to be in a group that’s not all about promoting. I’ve already promoted to them. They’ve already purchased.
I don’t make it a big pitch fest although once in a while I can let them know what I’m working on and if they’re interested I’ll give them a link to go check it out. But that’s about as salesy as I might get in a private group for my students. You can definitely mention things and that’s always valuable. I just don’t go for aggressive selling in the group.
Another thing, a huge benefit of creating these private Facebook groups for your students is that you learn a whole heck of a lot. This has happened to me so many times.
I’ve launched a brand new course, I put it out into the world, got a bunch of people to sign up for it, they get into the private Facebook group, they are going through the course, and in the first few weeks they ask me questions and I start to see a pattern of a few questions that keep popping up.
That pattern, if I pay close attention, speaks to me loudly. It says, “You need to fix this. They are confused about X, Y, or Z.” This happened with Webinars That Convert.
I came out with a program over a year ago and in the first few weeks people started to ask about formulas. They wanted to know if I could do the math with them.
They wanted to know how many people they needed to have on a webinar in order to convert and how many people need to sign up for the whole thing even if they don’t show up for a webinar and what percentage they were going to convert.
They wanted to know these formulas but I hadn’t thought about that for the course. So you can guess what I did. I sat down, created a brand new bonus two weeks into the program all about the formulas to get to a five-figure webinar success story.
There are a bunch of different formulas you can use. I put it all in a video and told everyone in the group that I had a brand new bonus, “thanks to you guys and your feedback, it’s waiting for you now.”
Now it’s a huge part of the course for anybody that joins. It’s already there. But I would have never learned that if I hadn’t paid attention to what my students were saying in the private Facebook group. You definitely learn a lot.
I also think these private Facebook groups for your students is a great place for inspiration. Not only do they want to ask you a bunch of questions about the content you’ve taught and areas where they’re getting stuck, they also usually need a lot of inspiration.
Seeing that other people are going through the same struggles is a big boost of inspiration, knowing they’re not alone. But I also come into the group on video, and we’ll talk about that in a moment. I’m always talking about, “Look, I know this might be an area where you get stuck,” or “right now you might be thinking” whatever it is.
I validate their concerns, challenges, and obstacles and talk to them about the fact that it’s so normal where they’re at and what they’re feeling. That inspiration from me goes a long way because I am their leader in that group.
I think these groups not only give solid recommendations, tips, and strategies, they can also give a whole bunch of inspiration and that’s just as powerful. Those are just a few things to think about if you’re thinking about creating a private Facebook for your students.
The next thing I want to talk to you about is the importance of getting help. If you’re just starting out you might have 20 to 30 people in your group. That’s manageable. That’s what it was like for me the first time I did this. I just had a few people. I don’t even know if I had 30 in my first private Facebook group.
I could manage that myself. Here’s something you need to know. Let’s say you had 100 people sign up for your course. I’m going to guess only about 70 of them will actually join the private Facebook group even if that.
I’m going to give you some tips in a moment to get more people into your group if they haven’t signed up yet. This is a private Facebook group so they need to request access into it and not everybody will.
Some people just don’t like Facebook groups but other people aren’t paying attention and you need to kind of put it in front of them a few times. I’ll help you do that in a moment.
Just know that not everybody is going to join your Facebook group and that’s okay. If you’re new at this it’s kind of a blessing so that you can have a smaller group that you can manage.
As your group starts to get bigger I want you to find a moderator. I want you to find somebody to support you inside your Facebook group. Any of you that are inside any of my paid Facebook groups know that I have Lindsay.
Lindsay is a God send. She has been amazing. I’ve mentioned this before but Lindsay was really vocal in one of my Facebook groups a long time ago. She was super helpful to everybody and really made herself known because of that.
She wasn’t doing it so I would notice her but I definitely noticed her because of it. So we started to talk and I hired her to do a small project I was working on where I knew she would be an expert. I loved her personality and just the way she communicated with me.
We worked well together so we took it one step further and I asked if she would come and moderate some of my groups. I paid her for that and now she’s a full-time employee of mine. She does more than just moderation but it’s a big piece of her job responsibilities and she does a great job with that.
The moderator, if your group gets bigger, becomes a huge piece of the puzzle. You want to introduce them to your group, you want to let people know this person is going to be supporting along with you.
I feel you should be a part of the group to some extent and we’re going to talk about that as well. But getting some extra help is always a good thing. I know a lot of people who have designated people as moderators and they do it for free. I think that’s really cool if they love your program and want to be a part of it. They want to be helpful and that’s awesome.
I don’t typically go that route because I make some requests on the person moderating. I want to give them some times that I want them in the group. I want them to be in there daily. I don’t want them to ever promote their own thing.
I feel if I pay them to be a moderate I can put some restrictions there but it’s not really fair to put tons of restrictions on someone that’s doing it for free or to give tons of expectations like to show up every day between these times. You get the point.
Before I got Lindsay into the group my VA would get into the group and would help me support. If you’re at a point that you do have a VA and are not ready to hire or find a moderator but you would like a little extra support in your group, by all means, ask your VA to help you.
My VA would get in there and monitor it to make sure nobody’s promoting, make sure nobody’s gone rogue (which sometimes happens), and just making sure people feel supported.
Once in while a hot topic will come up, this has happened to me if I recommend a tool inside my course and the tool is not working or their support is really poor, my group will definitely say, “Amy, this is not working for us.”
I then have to get in there and my VA gets in there and we diffuse the situation. I get on a call with the person who created the tool to talk about the issues. I tell my Facebook members that I followed up.
You’ve got to be careful of those flare ups that might happen in the group. They happen to everyone. So that’s why having a VA look over it, even if they’re not going to get actively involved in all the conversations, is a really good thing. That way you’re not tied to the group all the time.
That’s another thing I want to talk to you about. In my early days of having this private Facebook group for my students I felt I needed to be in there every single day and answer as many questions as I could because, as I started this conversation, there’s an expectation around my support because they paid to be in the program.
Early on I hated my Facebook groups. You guys, I literally hated going into them. It wasn’t because I hated the people in the group but because I felt I could never do enough to support everybody.
Around the time I started to hate it was luckily when Lindsay came on board. I also realized I have to set the expectations early on about my involvement in the group.
We’ve decided that I now only get into the group once a week. But I do so with hour- long live video sessions where I’m answering tons of questions. Not only is this helpful to people in the moment but it creates a video library of me answering tons and tons of questions.
In the freebie for today’s episode I’ll show you how we actually catalog those questions so people know if they should watch a video or not depending on the questions I answered. It’s pretty cool.
Yes, I have a freebie for this episode. It’s all about different ways that we’ve created engagement inside of private Facebook groups. You can get it at http:// www.amyporterfield.com/146download. I’ll talk about that even more so in a moment but you can text the phrase 146download to 33444 and grab it that way as well.
I want to make it clear to you, as the private Facebook owner, that when you are promoting the fact you have a private Facebook group you should make it known how you will engage.
I also want to mention that I am only active in two of my private Facebook groups for my courses. I have three courses: List-Builder’s Lab, Courses That Convert, and Webinars That Convert. But I’ve decided to put my time and energy and my live video sessions into my two most expensive programs, which I call my signature programs.
The good news is that Lindsay is really active inside List-Builder’s Lab. That program is a lot less expensive and is a lot less in-detail and less intense program. Because of that Lindsay is in there supporting people along the way.
I do it that way because of bandwidth. I only have so many hours in the week. I have all of these other projects I’m working on to support my community in general and I’ve decided for right now I’m going to jump into my two signature courses once a week with live video.
Down the road as I’m able to balance some things out a little better and to work some things out I’d love to be active in all three of my groups. Just know if you’re in List-Builder’s Lab that is definitely a goal of mine. I just need a little bit more time to work it out.
Because of that I make sure you all, inside List-Builder’s Lab private Facebook group, are supported with Lindsay and she knows the course really well.
That’s one more thing, when you do have a moderator you want to make sure the moderator really knows your course content. Lindsay has gone through all three of my courses and I think that should be a prerequisite for anybody, especially if you’re paying them to support a group that’s tied to a course, because they will be so much more valuable to the students because they’ve got to be able to speak the language, right?
I just wanted to make sure if you can find support it’s always good starting with a VA and moving into a moderator down the road. It’s always a good idea.
Now let’s move into Point #3. Point #1 was all about the benefits of a private Facebook group, Point #2 is all about supporting your members inside a private Facebook group, and Point #3 is all about the setup.
As I mentioned, I have a freebie and in the freebie I’m going to walk you through step by step how to set up a private Facebook group for your students only.
There are actually some specifics you need to know. I literally, in the freebie am going to walk you through step by step to click here, click there, do this, do that. That way you know you’ve set it up in a way that is really perfect for your students to get into the group but not anybody else who might want to just be a part of it.
As a team we’ve gotten really good with the settings of a Facebook group to make sure they work for exclusivity inside of a paid course. You definitely want to check that out and it will be included in the freebie at http://www.amyporterfield.com/ 146download .
One thing you need to know is there are three different privacy settings. You can have a public Facebook group, a closed Facebook group, and a secret Facebook group. I choose a closed Facebook group. Again, there are different settings you need to turn on and turn off and that’s what will be in the freebie. I wanted to point that out because I do think you have to set it up right.
The fourth point is this, it’s all about promoting your private Facebook group. The word promoting might be a little bit weird because I already said I don’t like to promote and sell inside my group. But you need to promote the group to your students because, remember, not everybody that signs up for your course is going to want to be a part of your private Facebook group.
I’ve been amazed that although I mention it as part of the offer and although I mention it in the first email when they get their login details to my program there are so many people that still ask how to get into the private Facebook group.
They even say they didn’t even know one existed. I don’t know how that happens when you feel you’ve over communicated but it does. It really matter if you feel you’ve done a good job or not, if people aren’t showing up then you’re wasting time inside that private Facebook group, especially if you’re going to be doing live video.
We know how much effort live video takes so we want as many people that are inside your course to come over to the private Facebook group as well. That reminds me, I forgot to mention one thing when I talked about benefits.
Over the years I’ve seen that my refunds dramatically decline when I have a private Facebook group. A lot of the time people will refund when they’re confused or feel they are not a part of the community or the course is not right for them or they just don’t feel like they’re getting any support in general.
A private Facebook group answers all of those questions and tackles all of those challenges. With a private Facebook group I think you can also see a decline in refunds from people that just need a little extra support. It is yet another reason to get them inside the group.
Here are a few things you can do to make sure you’re promoting it properly. Of course you’re mentioning it as part of your product offer. On all of my sales pages you will see a section where I talk about the private Facebook group. In addition it talk about it as part of the offer on my webinars.
Even before people buy they know there is a private Facebook group and if I’m going to be active in it they know that as well. It is really, really important.
The second thing is that when someone joins your program you send them a welcome email, the email that says, “Hey, so glad you’re part of the program. Here’s your login details, get started right away.”
I usually tell them, “The first thing I want you to do is join the private Facebook group. I link to the private Facebook group right there in the very first email.
With the settings I’m going to show you how to do in the freebie they need to click the link and request access to the private Facebook group. My VA will make sure to check the name to be sure they actually paid for the program and then let them in.
That’s another thing a VA could do or a moderator, whoever you have supporting you, checking to make sure anybody who requests to be part of your Facebook group has actually purchased your program.
It’s a little bit tedious but worth it because you’re promising the exclusivity and exclusivity helps you sell your program. So that’s just one step you want to pay attention to. But that’s how we do it. We put it in that very first email.
In addition to that, if I ever see a challenge where I feel people just aren’t getting inside the group, about a day or two later I’ll create a dedicated email all about the reason why the Facebook group is so very valuable.
If I’m going to do a Facebook live session in the group I might send an email the morning of and say, “Hey guys, I’m so glad you’re a part of this program. I’m doing my first Facebook live Q&A inside our brand spanking new private Facebook group. Click this link to request access and you can join me in my live session today.”
Give them a reason to get into it right away. Maybe that reason is that you’re going to do a live Q&A and they are more likely to pay attention and get into the group. Just one dedicated email could go a long way.
Another thing I do, throughout my course I’ll mention the private Facebook group. I’ll say, “Okay, if you are stuck you can jump into the private Facebook group and get support right away. Know that a community is waiting for you.”
One thing I love to do to kind of start the party off is to say, “Jump inside the private Facebook group and I want you to post your #1 goal related to XYZ.” If you tell them to jump into the group and do something that always encourages people to move on over there and take action.
That’s another thing you can do anytime throughout your course. You can say, “Alright, once you finish this jump inside the private Facebook group and do XYZ.” That’s another great way to get them into the group.
Another thing you can do is actually promote your private Facebook group with Facebook ads. There are two ways to do this. This is something that most people don’t talk about. The first thing you can do, during your promo, you can actually have one ad that spotlights the value of the private Facebook group bonus.
There are always bonuses in my offer so I might have one Facebook ad that’s dedicated to the bonus of the private Facebook group and why it’s so valuable. I’ll run that ad to anybody that hit my sales page or was on my webinar.
That’s one way you can run Facebook ads in advance. But another cool way, if you’re having challenges getting your students moved over into the group you can actually run a Facebook ad to all of your students who have not yet joined the group.
You can make a video and say, “Hey, I noticed you’re not yet a part of our private Facebook group. It’s for students only. That means you. I’d love for you to come join me. We’re doing something really cool today. Just click the link to request access and we’ll let you in right away.”
That’s all you have to say but if you’re struggling, a cool Facebook ad video just to those students who have not joined yet could go a long way. You’ve got to promote it. You definitely want to make it very easy for them to get inside the Facebook group.
When my support team starts to get questions that are kind of random, they will email support asking about a certain module and certain training, they will answer the question for them and then say, “Make sure to join the private Facebook group. This would be a great question to ask inside the group because not only may Amy actually answer it but there are a lot of people inside the group that will help you as well.”
My support often pushes my students over to the group as well.
The final tip I want to give you is about engagement. I’ve been teasing this throughout the entire episode but it’s important that once people are inside your private Facebook group that you offer a whole heck of a lot of engagement.
I have some really cool ways for you to do this but this is also where my freebie is really focused. The freebie I already mentioned is going to walk you through the settings to put the proper Facebook group together the right way. Also, even more so than that, even more exciting than that, I’ve collected examples of how to get engagement inside of a group.
I’ve taken examples from a few different Facebook groups so that you can see what could work inside of a group just for your students. Let me give you some ideas right away.
You often want to think of ways that will get people to engage but won’t always depend on you. Hopefully you will build a community where everyone will support each other. Gosh, I even say this. I’ll say, “I really am looking forward to all of you supporting each other because that’s what will make this a really special exclusive Facebook group.”
I’m always encouraging people to speak up and when people do speak up I thank them. In the comments I might say, “John, thank you so much for offering this insight to Jane. I think it was really valuable and I love seeing how you’re showing up here.”
I’ll really give people props when they do help other people. But here are a few other things you can do. The first thing, as you guys know, I said I do a weekly live Q&A session.
I really love doing these but something I didn’t tell you, a day before, about 24 hours before I go live, Lindsay posts something in the Facebook group reminding them I’m live tomorrow and at what time. She then asks for questions in advance.
Lindsay collects all of those questions and puts them into a Google doc. Here are two cool things about that: We have a Google doc that goes back a year now of all of the questions people have asked. If I’m ever in need of inspiration for creating new content these Google lists of tons of questions related to courses and webinars and everything in between (people use it as a free for all to ask all these questions about online marketing).
I can now see where my students are getting stuck, what they’re asking, and I have a great list to help me create new content in advance. That’s just a side note but it’s really cool.
What happens, because she collects the questions in advance, when I go live I have a list of questions in front of me that I’ve reviewed before I’ve gone live. I’ve deleted any that I think are so specific to one person that it’s not fair for the whole group to hear me talk about it.
I might ask Lindsay to address that question in another situation. I might ask her to reach out to the person and suggest XYZ. But I really try to focus on all of the questions that are real valuable for the group and also if I’m stuck and don’t know how to answer a question, especially if it’s really complicated and related to Facebook ads.
I’ll make a call. I usually call Rick Mulready and tell Rick I have a question about XYZ and tell him someone is asking about it in my group then ask him to help me understand. I just make sure I’m prepared to support.
That goes a long way in terms of prepping for the Q&A. That way they’re always really powerful. But let’s be honest, beyond me answering a bunch of questions in the Q&A my students get to see me every single week. I’m there for them and they get to know me more and feel connected to me.
That goes just as far as me answering their specific question. I think that connection is so important and the fact that they get to see me is so fantastic. And it’s real time! Once I get through all of the questions that were sent in advance I go into the comments.
If I have time and the hour’s not up I can answer some of the questions that were posted right there. I usually have about five to ten minutes to do so. Then I get to banter back with them a little bit and hear what they are talking about in the moment and that’s fun. That real-time component is really good.
Let’s say you’re not ready to do live video yet. I’ve done it where I will say I am “here for the next hour. Ask me any questions you have.” It’s not live video, I’m just typing it.
I will usually create a graphic that I will show you in the freebie. I will create a graphic that says, “Live Q&A, post your questions below.” I then stay there for the full hour or do 30 minutes if you have a small group. I just type in all of my answers.
Sometimes I use a tool like SnagIt where, if I want to show them something on the web, they will hear my voice but they will see my computer screen and I might be showing them an example.
I do this a lot when I want to help somebody with a sales page or an opt-in page, I’ll say, “See where you have ‘this’ button? I’d move it here,” or whatever that might be.
That leads me to the next thing. If you don’t want to do live video you can just do a Q&A where you are typing your responses in real time. But you can also do fun things like reviewing somebody’s website if that relates to your content.
You can review somebody’s meal plan for the week. A day in advance you can say (if this relates to your content), “I’m going to choose one person to review their meal
plan. Submit them below. I’m going to randomly choose one and tomorrow I will get on live video and review the plan.
If you don’t like live video you can record the video and just post it. That’s not as ideal but I get that we all have our limitations.
You can do reviews. Jasmine Star, inside of her Instagram private Facebook group, reviews different Instagram channels. I thought that was such a cool idea. She does this on a regular basis.
You can do Q&As, you can do reviews, you can just jump on and teach something. Not too long ago I jumped into my webinars group and talked about a challenge I’ve seen come up a lot lately. We dove into the challenge and talked about how to move past it.
That was my training I did for the week. It’s just something extra. They’ve got all the trainings inside their member’s area but I saw something come up a lot so I needed to address it to help them. That’s another beautiful thing with these private Facebook groups. You are creating customers for life.
There are so many other cool things you can do with engagement and that’s why I created the freebie. If you go to http://www.amyporterfield.com/146download or text the phrase 146download to 33444 you can get my freebie of the week.
I literally show you screen grabs of different ways to create engagement and I talk about why they’re so valuable. I think it’s a really cool freebie that you can use inside a private Facebook group for your students only or you can use these examples in the different type of Facebook group we’re going to talk about in a few weeks, the community-building strategy and the pop-up Facebook groups I talked about earlier.
You definitely have some options with engagement but I wanted to start with this freebie now and then you can use it across all three different ways to do Facebook groups.
Remember, this is Part One of a two-part mini training. In Episode #149, the last episode in February, I will have Jill and Josh Stanton on the show talking about how they went from 5,000 people in their Facebook group to 30,000.
When I was talking about this opportunity, someone on my team said, “Yeah, but 5,000 even seems big. 30,000 seems unattainable. What about the people that are just starting out who might just get a few hundred?”
I was telling one of my team members it’s a great point. Don’t let those numbers throw you off. I still want you to listen to Episode #149 when Jill and Josh come on. It’s not necessarily about the numbers but about the fact they’ve cracked the code on growing these Facebook groups.
The numbers don’t matter as much as the trajectory of going up in terms of attracting more people and building a bigger community. They are sharing things they’ve never shared on my show before. They’ve been on my show a few times but this is some new content we’re sharing. I’m excited to dive in there with them.
There are two more things I want to tell you. Remember I have the B-School Breakthroughs 30-day pop-up group starting next week. If you want to get on the list to get an invite go to http://www.amyporterfield.com/popup and I will definitely be leading by example.
I know many of you that will be in the pop-up group with me will be watching how I do this and how I take advantage of the opportunity to create community, add value, do mini trainings, do a lot of live video. I’m going to be very purposeful in how I support this group so you can see it done right.
Just know I know there is always a learning moment and I am definitely going to take advantage of that for you as well. If you’re at all interested in looking into B-School, I hope to see you in that group. I am hopefully going to keep it small enough and only attract people that are interested in that topic and that’s the beauty of a pop-up group.
I can’t wait to get it started. Get on the list and I’ll send you an invite.
The final thing is a word about our sponsor. As I mentioned in the beginning, I agreed to sing the praises of Fresh Books because they help freelancers get paid faster.
Not only are they the #1 cloud accounting software out there, they also help you get paid in just two clicks. That’s a big deal when you’re shuffling paperwork everywhere and are trying to get things organized.
To get your 30-day unrestricted, free trial go to http://www.freshbooks.com/amy and in the center where they ask how you heard about them type in Online Marketing Made Easy. I can’t wait for you to give Fresh Books a try.
Okay, I cannot wait to talk to you next week. I have a very, very special guest. I’m not going to tell you who it is. I want it to be a surprise but I’m going to give you a hint that the topic we chose to talk about is something I’ve never ever brought up here but I think is so powerful.
Tony Robbins always said that being an entrepreneur is 80% mindset and 20% mechanics. My show is pretty much about the mechanics, the how-to, the step-by- step action stuff. Next week I want to talk about mindset in a way that I’ve never talked about it before.
If you ever have those moments where you doubt yourself as an entrepreneur, where you’re struggling, where everything seems to be taking forever and you’re comparing yourself to other people or if things just aren’t going great and you are not feeling extremely confident in your abilities or in your business-building skills then you’ve got to listen to next week’s episode with my surprise special guest.
I cannot wait to deliver this episode to you. It’s Episode #147. It’s next week. I can’t wait to see you there. Have a wonderful week guys. I’ll talk to you soon. Bye for now.