When you create a Facebook group community, the tone and culture of your group will be determined and created by the person who first establishes it.
It is your responsibility and that of the other moderators to preserve its spirit and direction. Here are a few suggestions from experienced administrators to help you do just that.
Positivity and Consistency
When people join online communities, they want to share their opinions and knowledge in a positive environment. In order to maintain a supportive, safe platform, it is essential to set clear rules about expected behaviors in the earliest stages of building the group and consistently upholding them as you move forward.
When the leader takes the guidelines seriously, the rest of the group will as well. This will help you to maintain the atmosphere you have created for your online group.
Come One, Come All
Having a large number of members all at once isn’t necessarily a good thing. Seasoned administrators know that the foundation of a group’s tone and personality is reliant upon the earliest members of the group.
You want the people who come onboard to mesh with the culture you’re trying to establish. It’s okay to vet candidates before they’re invited to join the group.
Making the Connections
You will find that the most engaging people in the group can be invaluable assets. By connecting them to other members, you continue to build a supportive culture while creating strong and lasting relationships across the entire group.
And when conflicts in discussions emerge, people remain open to sharing their opinions and will respect and hear out those who might have different points-of-view. The dialogs won’t have a chilling effect on member participation.
Create More Groups
As more people join your group, it’s likely that their interests will begin to differ and diversify. It’s a natural phenomenon that can actually benefit everybody.
When you start to see inactivity from members who were previously engaged, don’t hesitate to form more groups that focus on their specific areas of interest. In order to maintain your community, you can connect each of these offshoots to your main group and keep relationships intact while broadening horizons.
One of the best ways to engage new members and put them at ease is to simply introduce yourself. A warm welcome is always encouraging, and when you ask few questions, people are more likely to open up. Have other members introduce themselves as well and provide information about the group’s recent discussions and activities.
Conscientious administrators will greet this new addition privately and express their appreciation for any contributions they decide to make. This kind of warmth and personalized welcome helps nurture the member as they join in discussions and get to know the other people in the group.
Enjoy Your Own Participation
Being the leader of a group can sometimes generate a distance between you and your members. Don’t forget to occasionally shed your moderator’s hat and enjoy participating as a member. This allows others a chance to interact with you.
If you want to engage people with a more personal touch, Facebook Live is a wonderful tool. It gives you the opportunity to articulate your convictions about different subjects personally, and your audience will quickly sense your enthusiasm. This in turn energizes other members.
What Do You Think
Nothing precipitates active conversations more than an open-ended question. The inclination to get involved differs from person to person.
Some members find it easy to come up with ideas and post them. Others might need encouragement or a prompt to get started. Polls, surveys, quizzes, and contests also help the less vocal individuals participate in discussions without having to post a word.
You Owe It to the Others to Enforce Your Rules
In order to maintain the type of culture and atmosphere you want for the group, you must be prepared and unafraid to enforce the rules you established. It demonstrates your leadership and emphasizes that you take the rules seriously.
If you allow one person to cross a line, other members might start to take liberties, and you will begin losing good members of the group. The last resort for addressing bad behavior is to remove the individual from the group, but it’s not something you’d like to do too often.
We’re always looking for tips on how to cultivate a group attitude of support and respect. If you have an idea, feel free to share it with us. And don’t forget to join Digital Boom Community Facebook Group.