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Facebook Groups and their uses

2nd August 2013

In the second of our guest blogs, Chloe talks about Facebook groups and how you might use them.

Chloe is currently with Cosmic for a four-week placement to finish off her second year at university. She's studying Communication and Media in Bournemouth at the moment and hoping to get a job in social media, or online somewhere once she finishes her course.

Whilst Advertising on Facebook is becoming more popular for small businesses and more pages are being created too, there is another Facebook feature that could be utilised in your business.

After being on Facebook for over 5 years now, the novelty has sort of worn off. I’ve recorded a lot of my teenage life on my Facebook profile, liked an awful lot of pages, and spent a lot of time liking, commenting and sharing photos and statuses. Now though my uses for Facebook have become a lot more limited.

Facebook GroupMy main use for Facebook now is Facebook Groups. Groups allow you to fence off some of your friends where you can all interact and share thoughts and ideas. I’m in a group for my University seminar, one for my shared house and one for my friends at home. I can plan nights out with my friends whilst I’m at home and also sort out my house bills at University from 70 miles away.

The group for my University seminar is perhaps the most applicable to businesses. In my case, my friends and I use this group to discuss assignments, share useful articles and organise group work. It gives us a way to be all sat in our rooms writing essays but still get that support of your friends without the distracting chatting.

For business you could use Groups as a sort of ‘online focus group’. It can become a space to discuss ideas that you’re not completely sure of yet, or test the waters with a new product. It’s a great way to get feedback and spark new ideas. They could also be used for companies with several offices, this time as more like a ‘digital noticeboard’.

I could really see publishers or branding and marketing companies doing well using these features. The discussion elements would be great for gaining immediate and varied feedback. You could advertise places for contributors on the main Facebook page for the company and this could allow for greater feedback than more traditional ways. The plus is also that feedback can come at a more laboured rate if you need it too. Written feedback allows the contributors to really form their responses well rather than just making a snap decision.

Facebook is an easy to use and accessible resource making it great for businesses to interact with their customers. Businesses on Facebook are bound to enjoy the premium features available but there’s no reason for you not to utilise these free ones too.