The other day I was asked a question about the various groups I manage and why I had them all (I think the term "so many" came up in the discussion). This is my attempt at an answer to your questions about facebook groups, choices, administration, and other group management issues.
All About My Facebook Groups, Choices, Administration
I found groups to be a great way to meet others, start discussion, and share ideas and information. I have also found, however, that groups quickly get cuttered with spam and/or off-topic questions. Good posts, and important questions, often get lost in the mix.
As a result of some experimentation, I determined groups that focused on a single topic or theme worked best. Those who want to participate knew exactly what the group was about. There should be no confusion.
In my own experience in groups managed by many different people I found a range of rules and restrictions. Some were good, made for good reason, some were for the convenience of the administrator or group owner, and some seemed to have, as my dad would often say, "No rhyme or reason at all!"
I found many admins restricted or banned some or all of these:
- promotion of any kind
- personal links
- links of any kind
- affiliate offers or links
It Seemed A Little Strange
This seemed strange to me. Most of us participating, or wishing to participate, in many of the groups are business people or entrepreneurs of one kind or another. Promotion is part of what we do. Often a link to information or even a commercial offer would be the best solution to a problem or answer to a question.
When it comes to facebook groups, choices, administration, and all the things that come with these things, banning all these things simply makes the job of deciding which are or aren't OK easier for the the admin. Ban everything and you don't have to do anything!
Affiliate links often become spam when affiliates spread them anywhere and everywhere without consideration for their application. That makes the poster a spammer. It doesn't necessarily make the affiliate offer bad. A lot of great products, services, and solutions, are available through affiliate links.
I also notice some group admins who set the rule (or restriction), "NO PROMOTION!" and then promote, promote, promote, their own stuff. The group usually ends up being a self-promotion fest for one -- the admin -- as the rest of us quietly move on to better groups.
There Are Solutions
I found a more "open" approach, which allows for several things banned or restricted by most admins, actually worked better to encourage participation and sharing. A good group, with great participation, seldom descends into chaos. Spammers are reported by good users. I get to keep the group cleaned and the rest of the users keep it good.
By narrowing the focus of the group to a single topic, it is easy to see what belongs and what doesn't. By allowing the often banned self-promotion and links of all kinds including both commercial and affiliate offers, as long as they are on topic for the group, and on any day of the week, great offers of products and/or service get shared with the group members.
In my humble opinion (well, OK, perhaps not so humble when it comes to this topic) I believe this works better, is easier to manage, and results in a growing, active, groups where everyone can participate as they feel best.
To find a list of my limited rules, CLICK HERE.
To find a list of my various topical groups, CLICK HERE.