Frustrated with Facebook ads and throwing your money down the drain? Are you wondering how you can reach YOUR ideal clients without pulling your hair out?
Today, I’m honored to have my good friend (and amazing business mentor) Karen Pattock share a free step-by-step training that reveals an often-overlooked, but critical (and free) tool that you are probably missing. Without the use of this free tool, it’s very likely your Facebook ads will flop (or your results will be less than stellar).
Karen is one of my top people to turn to for Facebook marketing, so I knew I HAD to have her as guest to share her wisdom with you. She went a step further and put together an entire training for you, so read on for more info on that too.
Be prepared to be blown away!
Are you someone that has tried paid advertising on Facebook and once your campaign ended it felt like you flushed your money down the toilet?
I’ll be honest… Facebook is making millions of dollars in advertising money from people that don’t see any results.
But, I can’t really blame Facebook and neither should you.
The truth is there are also thousands of examples of companies and small business owners that are getting amazing results from their advertising efforts on Facebook.
The difference between those that are frustrated because they didn’t get results and those that are seeing tremendous results is a simple thing called RESEARCH.
Luckily there is a tremendous tool built right into the Facebook platform that allows you to do the research. It’s called ‘Audience Insights’.
Audience Insights lets you tap into the kind of research that puts you exactly where your ideal clients are on Facebook.
Today, I’m sharing a step-by-step video training that teaches you how to use Audience Insights in your business.
This video ‘how-to’ training breaks down the following:
- What the Audience Insights tool is and why it’s important to your online marketing strategy, (even if you aren’t planning on paid adverting right away)
- A demonstration of the Audience Insights tool inside my Ads Dashboard using three variations of searches: Weight Loss Health Coach, Fitness Professional, and Paleo Diet Health Coach
- How to maximize the results of your research by not only applying it to your paid advertising strategy but also to your day-to-day posting strategy to increase engagement and get more eyes on your offers.
I encourage you to first watch the training all the way through to the end. Then watch it a second time and test it for yourself as I walk you through it all step by step.
No matter where you are in your business, how successful you’ve been to date, or what your experience has been in the past with Facebook, the information you learn today will be extremely influential in reaching your ideal clients and turning them into paying customers.
Watch the training by >> CLICKING HERE. <<
P.S. WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE OTHER FREE MARKETING TOOLS ON FACEBOOK?
Marketing your business becomes a whole lot easier when you have a system and let’s face it… the inside scoop never hurts.
To teach you the ‘inside scoop’ about Facebook marketing and how to set up the free marketing tools offered inside the Facebook platform I am offering a $50.00 discount on my Harness the Power of Facebook Marketing program to you because you’re part of Kathleen’s tribe.
There’s no need to continue to post without being seen by your ideal client.
There’s no reason to make offers to grow your email list and all you hear are crickets.
And there’s no reason to try to figure it out on your own when I’ve demonstrated how to maximize your exposure on Facebook with the free marketing tools available.
To discover more about the program and get access to the $50.00 discount, just >> CLICK HERE <<
In the spirit of full disclosure, this post includes an affiliate link, which means that I may receive a commission if you decide to make a purchase. I only recommend products & systems that I use and love myself, so I know you’ll be in good hands.
I recently posed a question in my Health Coach Peer Support Group to find out who was interested in learning more about doing Facebook Live for their business.
The response was overwhelming, so I decided to do a live stream inside of the group to share some of what I’ve learned over the past few months. I shared a few tips and strategies for how to get the most out of the platform, and also learn what mistakes to avoid (because I’ve made a few).
You can request to join our awesome group HERE to watch the recording (certified health coaches, nutritionists and certified fitness professionals only).
What IS Facebook Live anyway?
Good question! Facebook Live allows you to broadcast a live streaming video from your Facebook profile, page, or group. The nice thing about Facebook Live is that your video is saved until you decide to delete it (unlike Periscope where your video is deleted after 24 hours). Once your live stream is over, it will be saved and stored under your “Videos” tab for easy access.
NOTE: You can also export your live stream recording to repurpose for other uses (upload to YouTube, trainings, podcast episodes and more).
As you may already know, Facebook Live is only available from your smartphone or tablet (not from desktop or laptop, without using 3rd party software). I like to use my iPad since the text on my smartphone is getting a little too small for me, but use whichever one works best for you. When you go to enter a status update on Facebook, one of the options is “Live Video,” and it’s as easy as that.
I’m going to break it down for you in this post, so you can have a flawless and professional live streaming experience to build your audience, your email list, and your business.
First, let’s start with some of the benefits of using Facebook Live.
- More of your fans and followers will see your live stream because Facebook pushes live video into the newsfeed a lot more than your other posts. (I recently saw a health coach that has just 150 Facebook fans, but her live stream reached over 1,100 within 24 hours – IMPRESSIVE!)
- You get to be seen as an authority or expert in your field.
- People get to know you on a more personal level – when they see you on video, it’s the closest thing to meeting you in person so they can get a sense of your personality.
- You can use it as part of a promotion strategy – before and during a program launch.
I know it can feel a bit scary at first – there’s just something about hitting that “go live” button that can give you major butterflies. But I have some tips that will help with that too, so be sure to read the entire post.
The best way to practice live streaming is by creating your own Facebook group to use as your test group. This will be your “lab” where you can try things out, see what you like, and what works for you. You can test the lighting, the sound and your messaging without going live in front of an audience right from the start. This is what I did and it was incredibly helpful! To start a group, just make sure you set it to closed or secret, then you’ll have to add one person before you can open your group (I always nominate my husband for this). Then you are ready to go.
It’s important to use Facebook Live mostly for “giving,” and on occasion you can promote a paid program or service. Use the 80/20 rule for guidance (where 80% of the time you are just providing value and/or sending people to a blog post or opt-in, then 20% of the time you can mention a promotion).
Facebook Live can be utilized from your profile page, your business page, and Facebook groups. Today, I’m going to focus mostly on using it for your Facebook business page, but most of the same things can apply to your Facebook group if you have one.
Here we go! Follow these steps and you will be using Facebook Live like a pro in no time:
1. Pretend you’re speaking to ONE person – not a room full of people. Imagine there is just one person on the other side of your screen – your ideal client or a good friend. This not only helps you to be more relatable, but it will also help calm your nerves.
2. Know your goal ahead of time. Before you go live, know your end goal. Is your FB Live video for education purposes, and then you will send viewers to one of your blog posts for more information? Maybe you want to send them to an opt-in to build your email list, or perhaps it’s going to be part of an upcoming launch.
If you are using live streaming as part of your launch strategy, you can start planting seeds by sharing a little of what will be covered in your program. Then at the end, tell them where to go for more information. Include a url in the comments so there will be a clickable link to make it easy (for example: Click here for your free copy of “XYZ”.)
3. Know your topic ahead of time so you can stay on track and not lose focus. Do you want to teach something, demonstrate something (cooking tips, for example), share an experience, or something else perhaps? Keep notes handy to refer to when needed. I like to keep my notes on my computer screen in Evernote so I can glance over there when needed (Word is also helpful for this).
If you’re doing a live Q & A, get questions on the topic ahead of time. You can either use these questions to kick off the live stream, or have them on hand in case your viewers don’t ask questions, then you’ll have some ready to answer.
4. When you first go live, tell people what you are going to talk about and introduce yourself. Don’t assume people know who you are. Especially if you repurpose the video for something else, or use it as a Facebook ad later, it’s important that you introduce yourself.
5. After you introduce yourself and let people know what you’re going to talk about, ask people to type hello in the comments below or click the like or love emoji so you know they are with you. This makes it more interactive, and if you do this from your FB page, the likes and comments will show up in their friends’ newsfeed, so you may get more people over on your page just from doing that.
6. As you share your content or tips, be sure to smile and look at the camera most of the time. Remember you’re just talking to one person, and when you look at your camera your viewers will feel as though you are talking right to them. Ask a question or two along the way to get feedback in the comments section. Questions like “What do you think about that?” “What questions do you have?” “What’s your biggest challenge with XYZ?”
Plan on 5-15 minutes for your first few live streams, then test to see what length of time seems to work the best for you and your audience. If you get a lot of interaction, and you go longer, that’s great too.
7. End with a call to action. I mentioned earlier that it’s important to know your goal ahead of time. This is another place where this comes into play. What action do you want people to take at the end of your broadcast?
Some ideas include…
- An invitation to download a free guide or checklist
- Joining your free FB group (if you have one)
- Sign up for your free challenge
- Sign up for a program or get on your waiting list
- Find out more details in one of your blog posts
You can also ask people to post questions in the comments, and pick the most relevant ones to answer. Thank people for joining you and let them know you look forward to seeing them next time.
Don’t get too hung up on the extra tech tools that are out there – you don’t need much at all as you get started.
Consider getting an inexpensive stand for your phone or tablet so you can position it where you want it. You don’t have to get anything fancy to start out so test things and see what you might need. If your lighting isn’t good, there are inexpensive clip-on lights or you can get a diva ring light (all available on Amazon).
Just use what you have first then see if you need anything else to improve the quality.
A few final tips…
- Put a do not disturb sign on your door to prevent people from ringing the bell.
- Turn off your home phone.
- Put animals away so they don’t disturb you.
- If you have young children, have someone there to keep them busy.
- Be in a quiet space with the door closed.
With a little practice and planning, you will be on your way to rocking your live streams. Let me know how it goes.
I’m rooting for you!
Join our AMAZING, free mastermind group just for certified health coaches and certified fit pros.
Have you ever felt frustrated that your potential customers aren’t taking action like you want them to? Do you feel like you’re delivering valuable content, posting on social media, but you’re not seeing the results you hoped for? If so, it could be that you need to look at your call to action.
What Is a Call To Action?
A call to action is a phrase, or even a paragraph instructing your audience of the action that you want them to take. In order for a call to action to be effective, it must be both specific and actionable. You don’t want to be vague when creating a call to action. Your audience should be crystal clear about the action that you want them to take. You should also make it easy (totally obvious) for them to follow through and take action.
Sometimes a call to action will include a hyperlink within the text of your content. Other times, it may be more effective to insert a clickable button so that it stands out from the rest of the content. No matter how it is designed, it should be clear what action you want your audience to take at a glance.
In order for a call to action to be effective, you also need to be clear about what your audience should expect once they take action. Adding a clear value proposition will not only make your call to action more likely to convert, but will also help set expectations for your audience.
For example, many people fall into the trap of using the phrase “Click Here,” as their call to action. While it may be clear what action you want them to take, it is not compelling, and does not provide a clear value proposition. Your audience has no idea what to expect after they click on the link or button.
A more effective call to action might say, “Download Your Free E-guide.” It still lets your audience know what action you want them to take, while also clearly defining expectations of what they will receive once they take action.
Where to Use a Call to Action
There are nearly limitless possibilities of where you can use a call to action. Think of all the various platforms you use to communicate with your audience. Any time you are communicating with your audience, you should have a call to action instructing them in what you want them to do next. Below is a list of places where you may want to include a call to action. While it is not an exhaustive list, it should help you to get started brainstorming.
Blog posts are a popular way to deliver valuable content to your audience, and establish yourself as an expert in your field. Use a call to action within your post to link to another related post on your blog. You can also use a call to action to lead people to an opt-in to help grow your email list.
Social media posts
Social media can be a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal if used correctly. Rather than simply posting at random, your posts should all be designed with a purpose. Tell people what to do and why they should do it. An example would be adding a link that states “click here for your free guide” at the end of a post showing why the guide would benefit them.
Opt-ins and landing pages
In many cases, an effective call to action will lead directly to a landing page. The landing page should be set up as part of your sales funnel so that it provides additional information, while only giving one option to move forward. A well designed landing page will have a call to action incorporated into it, leading your audience to take the next step. It should be designed so that it is obvious where they should click to take the next step.
You can also use a call to action to encourage people to receive your opt-in. This will help to grow your email list, while giving your audience access to additional valuable content.
Your sales page should be designed so that it is very obvious how your audience can purchase your products or services. Incorporate a “Buy Now” button in more than one place on your sales page to make it easy for them to make a purchase. You want to include a ‘buy now’ button near the bottom so people don’t have to scroll back up to find it (make it super easy for them to take action).
Videos or live broadcasts
Videos can be an effective marketing tool because they make it easy for people to connect with you on a personal level. At the end of your video, what should people do? Your call to action could be to download a new free guide, or checklist, or it could be to join your private Facebook group, or enroll in your new program. Include both verbal, as well as text instructions on screen to help your audience know what the next steps they should take are.
Improve Your Business with Effective Calls to Action
No matter how large or small your business currently is, an effective call to action can help you convert your audience to paying customers. You can use a call to action to grow your business, and effectively move people through your sales funnel. Improve your call to action, and watch your business grow.
Come join us! If you’re a certified health coach, nutritionist or certified fit pro, join us over in our private Facebook group to brainstorm, share ideas, and get support to build your business.
Hope to see you there!
Social media marketing can seem a bit elusive and confusing sometimes. Everywhere you turn there seems to be another expert telling you what you need to do to in order to succeed at social media. It can be difficult to cut through the noise and get to the heart of how you should really spend your time and efforts. Social media alone isn’t going to bring you clients. Rather it should be part of an overall strategy to get new leads which will then result in getting new clients.
Social Media as a Marketing Tool
When you are using social media, it can be tempting to get caught up in the numbers. As business owners, we sometimes obsess over our follower count, the number of likes on our posts, and the number of comments we get. We worry about algorithm changes, and how many of our followers are even seeing our posts. We agonize over whether paid advertising is worthwhile, or if we should just work harder to try to gain organic traffic.
While a lot of fans, followers, likes and comments are great, the ultimate goal should always be to add value, and get people on your email list. You don’t own your social media followers, and they can be gone at any moment, so you want to get them on your email list to stay in touch.
Here’s the bottom line; Posting on social media will not grow your business unless you have a strategy. There are plenty of health coaches who have great social media profiles, yet are struggling to gain clients. They are the perfect example of why you don’t want social media to be the only method of communication you use. Social media is one part of the strategy – and you always want to be thinking about how you can invite people in to get to know you more to see the solution you have to offer.
Some of your post posts will share valuable tips, important updates or recipes, etc., and that’s great. But be sure you are also including a way for people to get on your email list. Some online marketing experts recommend that approximately 20% of your posts should lead people to a free offer where they can opt-in.
For tips (and copy and paste scripts) for building your email list, see this post – How to Double or Triple Your List-Building Results
Social Media as Part of Your Sales Funnel
Sales funnels are an important strategy in any successful business. Very rarely will anyone purchase your services the first time they hear about them. It often takes multiple exposures to your business before they make the decision to purchase. Think of a funnel where social media is at the top. You use your social media posts to persuade your followers to sign up for your free offer. When they sign up for your free offer, they agree to be added to your email list.
So, the steps in your sales funnel are:
- Social Media Post
- Free Offer and Subscription to Email List
- Email Campaign to Educate and Promote Your Services
You’ll want to design a series of automated emails that go out to all new subscribers to your email list. The purpose of these emails is to add value and establish trust with your new subscribers. You can also let them know about the programs you offer, and how they can solve a problem your subscribers may be facing.
Just be careful not to focus too much on the hard sell. The key is to provide value. When you provide valuable information for free, you establish yourself as an expert, and set the expectation that if they become your client, you’ll be able to help them overcome the challenges they may be facing.
Once they are on your email list, they are part of your warm market – you are no longer a stranger. When you get people on your email list, you get to stay in touch with them on a more personal level. After the initial series of welcome emails, you should have a regular schedule of emails so your subscribers know when to expect the next email in their inbox. Decide if your schedule will be once a week or something else. Whatever you decide, be sure to stay consistent. This consistency will help to build your relationship with your subscribers, and will ultimately lead to more of them becoming clients.
Social media can be an extremely powerful tool for marketing your business. When used properly, it can encourage your followers to sign up for your email list, and ultimately convert to clients. By providing value in your posts, and a clear call to action, you can take the first step toward developing a relationship with potential clients and grow your business.
Have you joined our free mastermind group for health coaches yet? If you are a certified health coach or certified fitness professional, come on over and join the fun! Be a part of something amazing!
CLICK HERE to join us!
How do you begin to market your health coaching business when you don’t have an email list?
Whether you attended IIN (The Institute for Integrative Nutrition) or another certification program, you probably know you need to have a list of ideal clients that you can stay in contact with, provide value to, and occasionally offer your services to. But where do you start if you’re at zero? If this is where you are right now, I have good news – this post is just for YOU!
We ALL start out with ZERO people on our email list, so if this is you, no worries – I’ve got your back. I wish I knew all of this when I was first starting out – but I didn’t. I learned things little by little, and implemented strategies step by step.
Today, I’m sharing 10 AWESOME tips so you can start marketing your programs even if you don’t have an email list yet.
Ready?? It will be helpful to read through this, then decide which one or two strategies you want to implement first.
Download your copy of this post HERE so you’ll have a handy checklist to refer back to over and over again.
First, it goes without saying that you want to put email list building at the very TOP of your list of priorities (I’ll sprinkle in some ideas about how to do this too). Once you have a system in place, you can put it on autopilot which can generate leads for you 24/7 – sweet!
Let’s dive in so you can become a lean, mean marketing machine!
1. In-Person Workshops
In-person workshops can help establish you as an expert and build trust with your audience quickly. Since you are speaking live, you have the opportunity to interact with your audience and create instant rapport. Take the time to answer their questions, and engage them in the process since this will help them to connect with you.
Be sure to collect email addresses of your workshop attendees. This gives you the opportunity to follow up with people after the event, and continue to provide valuable content. It also makes it more likely that they will purchase from you in the future. A great tool for managing and promoting live events is EventBrite (it’s free to use if your event is free).
Like in-person workshops, webinars also help build authority and trust. Additionally, they are a low-cost way to raise brand awareness. When you are just starting out in your business, webinars allow you to provide high value information to potential clients at minimal cost.
Webinars work as a list-builder at the same time as a promotional tool. When people sign up for your webinar they are also consenting to being added to your email list. They receive high quality content for free, and you gain a new email subscriber.
You’ll want to promote your webinar on social media, and run a Facebook ad to have people sign up. If you have an email list, you will want to let your subscribers know (and encourage them to share the link with their friends).
3. Include Opt-ins with your Blog Posts
Another method to grow your email list is to create detailed, high-value blog posts about relevant topics, and include an opt-in to a relevant freebie within the blog post. Never worry about ‘giving away’ too much information – you want your blog posts to be so awesome that after people read it they feel like they got a lot out of it, and want to learn more from you. Include specific, actionable tips or strategies they can easily implement.
Include an image to make your opt-in standout. It should be an eye-catching, but simple design.
Be sure to include a clear call to action, so readers know exactly what you want them to do.
Note: You can also use a popup opt-in plugin on your website (in addition to having an opt-in on your home page and side bar).
Once you have your blog post ready, post a link to it on social media, along with a blurb about why people would want to read it (what’s in it for them?). You want to share your blog post a few times a month. Social media scheduling apps are great for this since you can pretty much set it and forget it. I love Edgar for this, but Hootsuite is another option (and it’s free).
4. Retarget Your Website Visitors
Imagine being able to capture the information from people that visit your website, so you can show them your free offer again (and eventually invite them to your program). Sometimes people intend to sign up for your offer, but they get distracted and forget. By using the Facebook retargeting pixel, you can put your Facebook ad in front of the people that have been to your website – this will be more of a warm market since they are at least familiar with who you are. They are likely to forget though, unless you remind them.
You’ll be able to create a “custom audience” of your website visitors so you can show your ad to them. This will be a semi-warm market since they have already seen at least one of your blog posts or offers already. Ads that are targeted to custom audiences usually cost less than other audiences that you target, so this is a huge plus!
To find out how to set this up, check out this blog post or Google “How to install Facebook pixel” for instructions. You can have your web developer take care of this for you if you don’t want to hassle with it.
Using this strategy will allow you to build a highly targeted list around the clock. Part of this strategy is sending traffic to your website via promoting your blog posts, free offers (opt-ins), and anything else you have on your website that you are sending traffic to.
5. Run Facebook Ads to Your Blog Post
Include an opt-in within your blog post. The opt-in must be relevant to the blog topic. For example, if your blog post is about how to do a pantry makeover in 5 easy steps, your relevant free opt-in could be a helpful checklist or cheat sheet of ideas for stocking a healthy pantry. You wouldn’t want to have your free offer be something like “How to De-Stress with a 5-Minute Meditation” because the two topics are completely unrelated in this instance.
People that are reading your blog about a healthy pantry makeover are interested in that topic, so create something they can get in exchange for giving you their email address. Once you have determined which post you would like to promote, run a Facebook ad to direct people to your blog post. You want to choose to optimize for “clicks to website” as your goal which will cost you less than “conversions.” I use this strategy, and it works very well (and it’s very cost effective).
6. Run Facebook Ads to Your Free Opt-In
Similar to running a Facebook ad to promote a blog post, you can also run an ad to promote your opt-in. This will allow you to get in front of a much large audience than just your Facebook followers. To do this, you will need to create a landing page where people can enter their email address in exchange for your freebie. Leadpages is a popular landing page program, but you can choose any program like Instapage or even create a new page on your website. Once you have designed your landing page, create a Facebook ad to promote your opt-in, and link your ad to the landing page instead of a blog post.
7. Ask People to Share Your Free Offer
Who do you know that can help promote your free offer to their email list and social media followers? If you are a health coach, do you know a fitness professional or someone else that can get the word out about your free offer? Maybe you can do this in exchange for helping to promote something for them. What friends do you know that can help promote your free offer? Make a list, and start contacting people.
8. Host Your Own Facebook Group
Hosting your own free Facebook group can be a fantastic way to establish yourself as an authority, and gain new clients. Facebook groups allow you to present valuable content to your members without the organic reach concerns of Facebook fan pages. My first few clients came as a result of the Facebook group I had at the time.
Since your Facebook fans see very few of your posts, hosting a Facebook group allows you to really connect with people in a more personal and powerful way.
Experiment with different types of content, such as article links, photos, videos of you, and infographics. Use the engagement rates for each post to determine what type of content resonates most with your audience.
On occasion, you can promote one of your programs or services (no more than once per quarter).
Facebook groups are easy to set up, and they can be a fantastic way to build a close-knit community that will get to know, like and trust you. For detailed information on starting your own Facebook group, click HERE.
9. Run a Contest
Use a program like contestdomination.com to create a contest where you give away a certain number of free enrollments into your online coaching program in exchange for people sharing the contest on social media. This can expand your reach, help you find out who is interested in your program, and it will build your email list at the same time!
10. Go Live!
Livestreaming with Facebook Live or Periscope is a great way to get in front of people to share helpful tips that they’ll appreciate. Keep your livestreams to under 10 minutes to make them easy to watch. At the end of your broadcast, include a call to action about signing up for your free offer or direct them to sign up for your program (and how the program will help them – keep it short and sweet). For more about how to use Facebook Live for your business (including what mistakes to avoid), check out this post.
No matter where you are in your list-building plan, the best time to take action and begin to actively grow your list is NOW. Pick one strategy at a time and watch as your list begins to grow. Whether you have no list, or just a small list, you can begin to gain traction and develop an audience full of prospective clients.
Grab your FREE guide here so you can refer back to it again and again as you implement your plan of action.
Note: This post contains affiliate links which means if you purchase a recommended product, I may earn a commission. I only recommend products and programs I believe in and/or use myself. Use your own due diligence to determine what’s right for you.
If you’re on Facebook, chances are you belong to a few groups (maybe even a few dozen!).
Themes of Facebook groups range anywhere from new moms, to menopause, to industry-specific markets (like health coaches and fitness professionals) to – well, you name it. If you can think of it, there is probably a Facebook group for it. These groups can be a phenomenal way to create a community of support and build your business and your tribe.
Facebook groups can be a great way to attract new clients when done the right way. The best news of all – it’s a FREE marketing tool right at your fingertips that GUARANTEES you’ll reach all of your members (unlike Facebook Pages where it’s harder and harder to reach your followers).
I started my first Facebook group back in 2010 (before all the cool kids were doing it, LOL). I understood the power of having a community of like-minded people that shared similar goals. I also knew that people needed accountability with their health and fitness goals. Setting up a Facebook group just made so much sense to me as a logical way to bring people together.
I started out running different challenges in my groups throughout the year, and my first few clients came as a result of having that group.
Back in 2010, I didn’t really market the group all that much (I was still new at figuring everything out) but we had a solid, active and engaged group. Most of all, it was fun – both for the members and for me! I’ve learned a LOT over the last 6 years, and I’ve run multiple, thriving Facebook groups since then so I wanted to share some helpful tips to help you fast track your success.
In this post, I’m unleashing my top tips for creating your own thriving Facebook Group that will help you grow your business.
Don’t worry about taking notes or remembering all the details – I created a FREE download for you!
CLICK HERE to get your copy of this post so you can reference it again and again as you set up your own group.
First, let’s look at some of the benefits of hosting your own Facebook group.
When you have your own online community, you get to:
– Establish yourself as an authority and/or expert in your particular niche
– Build trust and affinity with your audience
– Create an amazing online community that will appreciate you and spread the word about what you do – raving fans
– Gain invaluable insights as to where people need help the most (this will help you to fine-tune your programs and your marketing message (when you know what people want, you can give it to them, and they will pay you for it)
– Grow your email list
– Gain new clients, and/or participants for your group programs
Here are a few of my top tips (18 to be exact!) to help you start your own awesome Facebook community to attract new clients.
1. Know your intention and your outcome. What are your goals? Why do you want to start a group?
2. What do you want your group to be about? Who is it for? What will the focus be? Be specific so that you attract the right audience. Brainstorm some ideas.
3. Pick a name for your group – something that reflects what the group is about, the benefits it offers, and something that also reflects your personality.
4. Create an image that represents your group. Include the name of the group, as well as your name (as the host). The image dimensions are currently 801 x 250 pixels. You can create something pretty snazzy by using Canva.com. If you have a good photo of yourself, you can include that, or you can use an image from a stock photo site, and add text using picmonkey.com.
5. Create a custom url for your group (Facebook will assign you a long, random url, but you can customize yours). Click >>HERE<< for instructions on doing this. In order to start your group, you need to add one person, so ask a friend or family member if it’s okay to add them to get things going (you can remove them after you have other people join). I always volunteer my husband for this 😉
6. Kick off with an event like a free challenge to generate excitement and participation. Encourage people to invite their friends. 5-7 days is the perfect length of time for a free challenge.
7. Pin an opt-in to the top of your group. Include a “gotta have it” freebie that your audience would find extremely valuable. The follow-up emails (autoresponder sequence) should only provide value, no selling. You can refer to other blog posts on your site within some of the follow-up emails (this sends people to your website to learn more about you, and what you offer) but this is not a sales pitch. Since these people will be on your email list, they will now be in the loop about any special promotions you have going on during the year.
8. Make sure your group is set to ‘closed’, not public. Many people aren’t comfortable posting in Facebook groups when they know their comments will show up in their friend’s news feed (as is the case with public groups).
9. Pick theme days to make it fun, at least 3 days a week. Post motivational images and quotes once or twice a week (the WordSwag app is great for creating these). If you aren’t sure what to post to get engagement after an event like a challenge, check out this awesome program that comes with a full year’s worth of Facebook group posts for health and fitness professionals.
10. Set your rules, and stick to them. For example, You may decide on a “No advertising or marketing” policy in the group (by members).
11. Welcome people to your group by tagging them in a friendly greeting to let them know you’re happy to have them there. Tag several people in one post so your group isn’t full of streams of welcome messages. Once your group gains momentum, and you have over 1,000 people in your group, you may not be able to keep up with tagging everyone, but it’s nice to do it when you can.
12. Provide a training, workshop (webinar), or livestream for the group from time to time. Members will get to know you even more and vice versa.
13. It’s your group, but you aren’t the only one that can provide support and help. Other group members will jump in too, and this is where the community feel comes in.
14. Quality over quantity – don’t get hung up on the number of people in your group. It’s way more important to have a cohesive group of people that are supportive of one another than it is to have a huge group. Your group will grow organically. I don’t recommend adding people to the group without their permission (it’s possible to do this, but it’s more likely that you’ll end up with a lot of people in the group that don’t participate or interact).
15. Screen people as best you can before you add them (have a VA do this for you if possible). Make sure they are a real person and not a spammer.
16. To keep the group active, you will need to be in the group most days (but decide which days this will be ahead of time – Monday – Friday, perhaps) to answer questions.
Offering prizes can be a good way to keep your group engaged, especially if it’s a short-term program (30-60 days). The important thing to keep in mind is that you need to offer prizes you know people in your group would want. For example: If you are doing a 30-Day Challenge, like the Fit and Healthy Jump Start, great ideas for prizes include: A pedometer, cookbook, journal, body fat caliper and tape measure, resistance bands, and workout DVDs (or yoga DVDs). Let people choose the prize they want to make it fun. You can find these items on sale under $10 at places like Target, Walmart, Marshall’s, T.J. Maxx, etc.
17. Promote your group to get members. Once you have your group, you’re going to want to promote it on a regular basis to keep it growing.
- Post about your group on all of your social media sites, and explain the benefits of joining. Post on each platform a couple of times a week. Posts that include images tend to get more reach, so include an image with these posts (the image can either be the header image in your FB group, or something else that represents what your group is about)
- Use the power of Facebook Live to invite people to your group. One of your calls to action at the end of your live streams can include inviting people to join your free group.
- Include a link to your group in your blog posts and your newsletter emails, with a blurb about what the group is about and who the it’s for (what they’ll get out of it).
- Run a Facebook ads to promote your group. When inviting people, remember to include what your group is about, who it’s for, and what they will get out of it. Don’t just say “Join my group” – you need to explain WHY they should join – what’s in it for them?
Do NOT, I repeat – Do NOT add people to your group without their permission. This drives me batty, coocoo bananas, when it happens. People don’t like being added to a group without being asked first, and there’s no sense in having people in your group that don’t care about being there because they won’t read the posts or interact (so, what’s the point, right). Pinky swear to me that you won’t do this, okay? 🙂
18. Be engaged in your group so that people follow your lead. Provide helpful tips, support and motivation, and be REAL. People will feel more comfortable posting in your group if they know you are genuine and not “perfect.”
Remember that this is not a coaching program, but more of a place for people to connect with you, and see you as a leader and an expert. You can offer general tips, but when people need more specific help, you can recommend that they set up a free consultation with you so you can see if you can help them.
What to know up front…
- It takes some time to manage a group, so if you don’t have extra time, this might not be the best strategy for you. Once your group gets going, you can have someone help you as an admin of the group if needed.
- Having a Facebook PAGE for your business is important too. A Facebook group is not a substitute to having a Facebook page; it’s just another effective strategy.
- Only start a Facebook group if you think you will enjoy it. I genuinely LOVE my FB groups, but if this doesn’t appeal to you, don’t do it, or else you won’t enjoy it.
- Always be a giver – within reason. If there are some people that are taking up a lot of time with more personal questions, you can let them know it would be best to set up a free strategy session to address their particular needs. This isn’t a session to offer free advice, but to determine where the person is struggling the most, and to see if they might be a good fit for you as a client. (Need ideas for this? Download your FREE Discovery Session Guide >>HERE<<).
- Set days and times when you will be in the group so you aren’t spending countless hours a day fielding questions.
- Be firm with enforcing the rules you have set up for your group (remove anyone that isn’t following the rules after one reminder to them – via PM). Any haters need to be removed immediately – This is your group, you call the shots.
- Include a policy description and a disclaimer that reflects the tone and intent of the group. You can upload this as a PDF in the files section of the group. It’s a good idea to include your disclaimer at the bottom of your group description that states something along that lines that the information shared in the group is for general education purposes only and is not intended to treat, cure or prevent any disease. Participation in the group does not constitute a client/coach relationship. Group members are advised to check with their doctor before making any changes to their diet or exercise routine.
- If you think people are being sneaky by promoting themselves in a roundabout way, feel free to remove them from the group.
Remember: Your group is for forming relationships, not for ‘selling’. People that know, like and trust you, will be drawn to you and your solutions. You can occasionally promote a program you are running (every 3-4 months is fine), but do not sell on a regular basis. People will be turned off and they will leave (can’t blame them).
Look at other Facebook groups for inspiration, and take note of what you like and do not like about certain groups.
Now, go start your own group and let me know how it goes! Not sure how to start a group, click here for step-by-step instructions.
Want a copy of this blog post for easy reference? Grab your free copy of the guide >> HERE <<
Speaking of Facebook groups, be sure to join the AWESOME Facebook group I have to help certified health coaches accelerate their business >>HERE<<