Building an Engaged Facebook Community that Loves You with Joanna Novelo

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Have you ever wondered how to grow your sales with Facebook groups? Facebook groups allow you to be your authentic self and show up each and every day to your followers. In this episode, Joanna Novelo will dive into Facebook groups, share why having quality of members is sometimes better than the amount of Facebook members, and how to engage with the people in your Facebook group. We also discussed how your involvement and engagement in your Facebook group can help grow your followers and lead to increased sales. 

With a life’s mission to invoke the same feelings that Walt Disney has for people….It’s certainly no surprise that Joanna Novelo wears a shining cape when it comes to bringing out the best in others. Joanna is an expert in community building and management as well as customer service, account management, CRM set up and management, and social media strategy. If Joanna could sum it all up in one sentence this is what she would say, “My fulfillment in life comes from seeing others transform, win, and I love being a part of that.” Her only flaw is that she feels responsible when people get thrown off their path: because, ultimately it’s imprinted in her DNA to make sure people have a good time.

Oh and did we mention that you considers herself an unofficial GIF consultant. Yea..we thought that was pretty cool too.

Connect with Joanna here: https://www.facebook.com/joanna.novelo.7

Grab our Ultimate Health Coaching Tool Kit complete with our top picks for platforms plus our sample contract and intake form: http://360healthbizpodcast.com

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Kendra Perry: Hey, hey, everyone. Welcome to another episode of the 360 Health Biz Podcast. I am your host, Kendra Perry, and sadly, I am without my lovely, beautiful cohost, Christine. Right now, she is with her little one. So, you guys are just going to have to hang out with me today, but luckily, I have a pretty awesome guest with us on today who I am really, really excited to hang out with. Our paths have kind of been crossing on and off over the past few years, and when it comes to building an online community, which is pretty important these days if you want to be successful in your health coaching business. She is the expert. I was actually in a Facebook group where she was the community manager. It was probably a couple years ago now, and I just remember her being so fun, so many GIFs, loved all the GIFs. She definitely was a GIF inspiration for me because, now, that's how I run my groups, with a ton of ridiculous GIFs, and just to give you guys a little bit more background on [Joanna 00:01:04], her life's mission is to invoke the same feeling that Walt Disney has for people.

Kendra Perry: It's certainly no surprise that Joanna wears a shining cape when it comes to bringing on the best of others. She is an expert in community building and management as well as customer service, account management, CRM setup and management, and social media strategy, so lots of great skills there. If Joanna could sum it up all in one sentence, this I what she'd say, "My fulfillment in life comes from seeing others transform, win, and I love being a part of that." Her only flaw is that she feels responsible when people get thrown off their path because, ultimately, it's imprinted in her DNA to make sure people have a good time. That is a fantastic bio, Joanna. Welcome. Thank you so much for being here.

Joanna: Thank you for having me, Kendra.

Kendra Perry: That is awesome, and right before we hopped on to record today, I was actually creeping on your Facebook group, and what I saw on your Facebook ... or not your Facebook group, your Facebook page, and what I saw was "GIF consultant." And I was like, "Yes. She totally is the GIF consultant. I love it." I love it.

Joanna: Yeah. I'm going to make it a real profession.

Kendra Perry: I think it needs to be a real profession. I love that you use so many GIFs, and you had so much humor when we were in the funnel playground together, and when I run my groups, we have a lot alike. I'm in the health coaching industry. So, we have a lot of really sick people who are in really dark places, and I like to keep the mood light, and once you kind of set the stage for [inaudible 00:02:28], everybody gets into it, right?

Joanna: They do.

Kendra Perry: Awesome. So, I would love if you could just tell me a little bit about how you ended up as a community manager expert, being kind of the expert in Facebook groups. I would love to know how you got from A to B.

Joanna: Yeah. So, it's really funny. A to B, actually, the vehicle that I used to get there was GIFs. So, it's a super funny story, and it started in the group that we were in together. So, I started out working for Lindsay Padilla, and she just gave me the space to do whatever I wanted in her business, and she was like, "Oh, does that sound good? Here take this course. Let's do this." So, I was kind of just hopping around, and she said, "Hey. So, we have this group called Funnel Playground, and we just need some help with it." And Emily Hirsh gave me the space to just play around and have fun in there, and it actually ended up being the thing that stuck, and so, it kind of just went one right after the other. I ended up being in someone else's group, and they asked me if I wanted to manage their community as well, and then, that one led to another, which led to another, and yeah.

Kendra Perry: And here you are.

Joanna: And here we are.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and I mean, I just love that because that membership with Emily and Lindsay was so fun, and I mean, that's definitely what they were doing for, but it was like marketing and funnels doesn't seem that fun, but it really was fun, and I just love the energy that you brought to that group. You were just on every post, commenting with something funny, with emojis, with GIFs, and it really kind of made maybe what would have been a dry topic just really funny and lots of laughs.

Joanna: Exactly. Yep.

Kendra Perry: Awesome. So, I want to start from the very beginning here because I actually get this question a lot. A lot of people seem to be confused between the difference between a Facebook page and a Facebook group. Can you just briefly explain the difference so we can kind of set the stage? And then, we'll hop into community and Facebook groups in a little more detail.

Joanna: Sure. So, this is just kind of how I picture it in my mind. A Facebook page is kind of like your billboard. It's like your advertisement. That's where people who are just coming in off of the sidewalk are seeing you, and then, they're finding out about you. The Facebook group is actually where they've come inside, and they've sat down.

Kendra Perry: Oh, okay. I like that.

Joanna: And then, that's where you get to have deeper conversations with them. So, it's kind of like stage one, just your advertising, and then, stage two is they're coming inside, they're having a seat, and they're opening up conversations.

Kendra Perry: Okay. Yeah. That's really cool. So, it would probably be pretty hard to get a lot of engagement or build a community just based off of your Facebook page, probably just wouldn't happen, hey?

Joanna: Yeah. If you're able to volleyball back and forth with conversations with people, they'll follow your page. They'll follow your group, and they will engage in both.

Kendra Perry: Okay. That's very cool. Okay. So, let's talk about some of the different types of Facebook groups because I know there's not just one type or maybe one reason why you would use one.

Joanna: Sure. Okay. So, there are several different types. I would say as far as purpose, it's split into two. It's either that you're promising to move someone from point A to point B, which is actually the overarching of any group, is you're supposed to connect for some reason. So, that's the overarching reason of any group, and then, there are some where it's like a program where you're moving from along this journey to get a desired result, or you're networking, and so, you're just in there to meet other people. And there's such a huge variety because it can be people who sell quilts. They're in there to network with other people. Whatever it is, it's just about connection. So, then, you get into what is the purpose of the group. How is it supposed to serve you? So, if you are launching a product, is it just a container there for you to build the buzz, to build the hype, and then, there's an endpoint for that, right? And then, they might move into a paid group.

Joanna: So, with each one of these types of groups, there's different rules, and there's different cultures and vibes that are going on in these communities, and so, oftentimes, what shapes it the most is how much of an investment they're putting into it. So, you might have a free group, which is where people are just coming to learn about you to open up conversations, and we'll get into this later, but a free group is, it's the starting point of everything and where the conversation ... You've been out on social media talking, and now, they come in, and they're like, "Okay. Yeah. Let's talk." So, the free group is a place for people to bridge that gap. Then, you might have a paid membership group, and then, you might have a premium mastermind type group. And then, there's other types of launches like JV Launches. If you're launching for someone else, there's totally different rules and things around that, and then, just giving somebody a place to connect. So, for some people, and this is cool. It's cool. Sometimes, there's secret societies, private groups, where they might curate 20 to 50 people, and they're just in there to connect with each other, right?

Kendra Perry: Awesome. Okay. That's awesome. I really love that. I love the idea of kind of you can almost move people through this journey of Facebook groups from off your page into your free into your mid-level membership, and then, maybe some, yeah, premium mastermind sort of thing. Okay. So, let's talk a little bit about free groups because I know a lot of our people, they want to get clients, and they're trying to come up with ways to build that trust, build that trust, build that like and trust factor with their people, and I do know a lot of them are trying to leverage Facebook groups, but a lot of people, I feel like the biggest thing, and you probably hear this all the time, too, is that how do I get engagement. And I had this experience when I had a free group, too. It was so hard to get that engagement, to get more than just me posting in the group, right? So, why do you think it's so hard to get engagement in a free group, and do you have any tips and tricks for how to maybe improve that?

Joanna: Oh, my gosh. Yes. So, all the pieces of the puzzle are right in front of you. It's just that maybe people don't know that, that's a piece of the puzzle or what they should be looking at. So, first of all, the tone that you use in your group is different from what you use on your social media. I also have this totally radical idea that people are killing themselves to create social media content and then giving the leftovers to their group when, actually, if they just went into their group and started conversations, the social media would come out of that, and social media gets the leftovers, not your group. So, your group is not responding because they got leftovers. It's the same thing that you posted out on your personal page, and it's the same thing you posted on Instagram. So, if I were actually to flip it, and I was in your community, and I contributed to that conversation, and I saw it happen in real time, and then, if I follow you on Instagram, I see that you listened to me, number one. You listened to me, and then, you took that, and then, you put it on your Instagram, you're shining a light on your community.

Joanna: So, you're creating a raving fan out of that, and then, you're showing people out on social media what they're missing inside of your group. And then, you're driving traffic to the group because, "Hey, that's a killer conversation that came out of there. I identify with that." And you know why they'll identify with it is because it came from one of their potential peers in your group. You didn't create it. It's not from your mouth. It's from the mouths of somebody else in the group. So, they'll identify with it. So, the biggest reason people aren't getting engagement is because they know that they're getting leftovers, which is just an easy switch. Just switch it, and that just comes down to creating conversations. So, Facebook gives you tools that help you to understand what people want to talk about and what people find interesting. So, the biggest thing you can use is ... You know when you're inside your group, and you can click on someone's profile, and then, it pulls up that running scorecard of all the things they commented on, all the things that they've liked? Do you know what I'm talking about?

Kendra Perry: Yep. Totally. Are you talking about the insights tool?

Joanna: No. So, it's actually if you're just inside the group in the discussion, if you were to click on someone's name, it would pull up, "Oh, this is when they joined. This is the last comment that they left." So, you can actually see. Facebook actually took all their activity and put it into a little scorecard that all you have to do is click on, and you can actually see what that person likes, literally.

Kendra Perry: Interesting.

Joanna: I can see the comments that they're liking, and if I can see a pattern there, I can create something out of that.

Kendra Perry: Oh, I love that. That is so personalized, which is so fantastic, and I love what you're saying about creating this conversation. The way to get people engaged is to create an actual conversation instead of just ... I think maybe a mistake people make is they're just trying to educate, but they're putting a post into a group that don't really drive conversation or ask people a question. There's no reason to engage. It's just like, "This is this, and this is why you should do this," and it's like, "Okay. Great. I got that. I don't need to say anything more." Right?

Joanna: Yeah. Yeah. And so, actually the easiest way to create content for your group is through sales conversations that you're having. So, the biggest objections that you're getting, you don't even have to create any of this content. You would just take your sales calls and be like, "What did they object about this?" And then, you go to the group, and you educate your group on why that's not a thing. So, then, you're slapping down your objections for the future, but you're also teaching them because that was something they came to the call, and they were misunderstood about, right?

Kendra Perry: Yeah.

Joanna: So, you take it back to the community. You teach them how to not be this person, and there's your content, and then, the conversation will take off from there.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. I love that. I think you can get so much content from sales calls, sometimes, just having Post-Its. I literally will post it, post it, post it. My company is just covered in Post-Its with all these questions that people ask, and not only is that great for your group, but it's great for everything. It's great for your sales copy, on your sales page. It's great for your email marketing, just seeing ... because there's going to be a lot of overlap, typically, with those questions that people are asking, right?

Joanna: Exactly. So, there's no reason to reinvent the wheel. Whatever reason people feel, and people will always say that free groups take the most time, and it's not. I mean, I would just put up a post about an objection I got in a sales call, and I would let the conversation develop out of that.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and I love that you bring that up because I hear that, too. It's so much work. It's like an extra social media platform, and definitely, I think people need to really embrace the repurposing of content idea across all platforms, right? We shouldn't be reinventing the wheel, but I love what you're saying about groups, or it can just be so simple, and you don't need to put this huge post with this beautiful graphic and all these hundreds of points on why something is helpful, but you could really just ask people a simple question that might relate to something that they're going through, and that's going to get way more engagement, right?

Joanna: Exactly. Yeah. Because if you're doing the other, you're preaching to them rather than asking them, "What do you want?"

Kendra Perry: Yeah. So, it's probably better to get more on their level, right? We don't want to be standing above them talking down to them. We want to be sitting on the exact same level with them, talking to them, person to person, like friends or acquaintances sort of thing.

Joanna: Yeah. So, some of the most successful group owners are the ones that are willing to get out and mingle.

Kendra Perry: Mingle. I love it.

Joanna: Yeah, which is why Lindsay does really well. She will always beat anyone in an organic form because she's down talking with the people.

Kendra Perry: Totally. Yeah, and I love that you say that because I was just at Social Media Marketing World, and definitely, one of the themes at that conference was like, "Talk to people. Have real conversations." If you want to try something new, ask people if they want it, and then, create it based off of the feedback that you get, which is so much of Lindsay's perspective. I love Lindsay, too. I'm in her Building a Better Beta course about courses, and it's so much about create based off of what people are telling you and what they're asking for, which is very simple but very genius, right?

Joanna: Yeah. It's very back to basics.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and I love that. It's kind of like that full circle of online marketing, right?

Joanna: Yeah.

Kendra Perry: Cool. Okay. So, I would love to know, do you have any strategies that you use for starting a Facebook group to maybe start it off on the right foot instead of kind of starting a group, having their be crickets, and then, sometimes, I'll see people just adding people in without their permission and just kind of forcing people into a group to try to make it happen. Is there a better way to kind of start that group off on the right foot so people are coming in engaged? Do you have any strategies for that?

Joanna: Yeah. So, it comes down to the purpose of your group because a lot of times, the purpose of the group is tied to how many members you're trying to recruit for it. If it's super high mastermind, you're obviously going to keep your numbers low. If you're trying to grow a free group, you're probably going to want to keep your numbers high. You're shooting for high numbers. Okay. So, that's the defining factor on how many members should I have because everyone always thinks, "As many as I can get." So, it depends on the purpose of what you're trying to do. So, everyone always thinks, for a free group, it's as many as I can get, and I'm a failure until I get at least 1000 members. For some reason, the gold standard is 1000 members like, "I've kind of made it when I hit 1000."

Joanna: So, the quality of the people that you add into your group is going to affect the quality of the output of the group. A lot of times, people, just for numbers, will add in the people that don't want to be there, and then, they're not engaging, and then, they're like, "Well, why is my group not engaging?" Well, they didn't come there to engage. They came there just to support you, and they didn't want to tell you no, but they don't have anything to contribute to the conversation. So, why would they? So, you need an avatar. So, this is what's hilarious about the whole thing. You're out in the sales funnel using this avatar. On Facebook ads, you created an avatar, and then, when you get to the group, which is where the money's at, right? Getting in there, face-to-face, and you accept anybody.

Kendra Perry: I see what you're saying. I see what you're saying.

Joanna: So, you have to stick to the avatar because you probably already, you have an avatar worksheet, right? So, you know this is the person that I'm looking for, but for some reason, when they show up in real life, like adding or requesting to join a group, people totally lose sight of what they're trying to do here. So, you have to stay in alignment. If you want people to have conversations in your group that mean something, not just basic conversation ... Do you like paperback, or do you like hardback books? Right? Real conversation. You need to stick to the avatar that you started with at the beginning of the funnel, and you're only letting those people in.

Kendra Perry: And so, how can you make sure you're only letting the right types of people into your group?

Joanna: So, you'll go to their profile, and you'll look at this is your avatar come to life. Do they fit the avatar? What things are they talking about? In the health space, are they sharing motivational stuff, or are they sharing memes? You'll see it on the profile, and if you don't, then you don't know what your avatar looks like, which means you need to practice looking at this is who I resonate with.

Kendra Perry: So, it sounds like before you even create a Facebook group, you need to ... and I mean, this comes down ... This is true for so many things. You need to have your ideal client. You need to figure out who that person is and who you're actually talking to. I feel like a lot of health professionals and newer health coaches, they're very resistant to niching down. I think there's a lot of fear around it, and I totally get it because I felt the same fear. You're worried about turning people away, but I really do believe the more specific you can be about who you're helping, the more successful you're going to be in the long run.

Joanna: So, if you're not specific with who you're helping, people don't know how to help you. The way that people who have niche down, the way they got ahead is because people knew how to help them. They knew how to send referrals because, now, I know exactly what you do. They know what things to recommend you for. They know where to tag you, and when you do five separate things, they tag you for nothing. You'd be surprised how much niching down cracks open a network for you.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. I agree, and I think in the end, I help women in their 30s and 40s dealing with fatigue and burnout, but I get dudes coming to me all the time. I have dude clients who just come to me, and they're like, "I know you help women and this, but I really like your videos," and I'm not going to turn them away necessarily. If I have room for a client, and they seem committed, then I'll work with them, right? It doesn't mean that you necessarily turning people away. People need to know how to find you because if you help everyone, really, I think your help no one.

Joanna: Exactly.

Kendra Perry: Cool. Very cool. And so, I feel like some of the maybe struggle that health coaches have specifically with building engagement in a group is that what we're, I guess, the topic that our group is going to be created around sometimes can be very person, right? And maybe people aren't always wanting to engage because they're embarrassed. Maybe they don't want to get on there on a post and talk about their heavy period or their menstrual cramps or their migraines or their loose poops or something like that. Do you have any tips for how to break through and get to those people and help them engage better when maybe there's a bit more of a sensitive topic at play?

Joanna: Yes. So, I want to tell these people that think their topic is so sensitive, nobody's ever going to talk about it that you're not special, and you're not the only one that thinks that because people who deal with groups around recovering alcoholics have the same thing. If you're a money mindset coach, it's the same thing. People don't want to talk about their money in front of other people. Groups about hormones, they get sensitive, and they, "I need to message them." So, this happens a lot, but conversation still happens. It still happens. So, it depends on ... So, conversation is a loaded word. You can have heavy conversation. You can have light conversation. So, when it comes to sensitive topics, we would probably want to have light conversation. Give them an option. So, with every post that we're putting out, we're giving them options because that's how they understand how you want them to respond back. Though, if I'm bringing up a heavy conversation, I will ask for a light response in return, so, "Who here has dah, dah, dah? Yes or no." They can participate, but they don't have to get in detail, and you gave them direction and permission to do that.

Joanna: If you have a light post that you want a heavy response on, so this gets a little tricky, but if you are trying to drive sales for something, you would want to move the conversation into messenger. So, that way, they are opening up, and you are having a sales conversation, removing roadblocks, and this is why it matters that in the group, you're taking these things out, and you're addressing them because then, you get less of these same problems in messenger, right? So, you have the conversation with them, and then, it gets to a point where you say, "I can help you with that." And then, it's a sales conversation. Otherwise, they're not allowed to keep messaging over and over again and getting more of your time. That is very [crosstalk 00:25:13].

Kendra Perry: Yeah. I feel like it's a fine line, right? Some people really do just want free information, whereas other people are serious about speaking with you about a potential working relationship together, and I guess you need to figure out where that fine line is and when to cut it off, and I think a big part of it is you need to be in control. You need to be a leader. You need to be standing in a position of power and not ... teaching people how you want them to engage in your group and being kind of like the knowledgeable leader and not just letting the group kind of create a mind of its own, right?

Joanna: Exactly. So, I work for [Brad Newman 00:25:52] who talks about ... So, this gets into a little bit of a sales conversation here, but it helps because this is where you would draw the line. There is a difference between helping someone, and then, there's a difference with letting them continue to tell their stories. So, their stories are what brought them to the call, and it's the story that's going to send them to your messenger. Do you allow them? And you'll see it clear as day now. Do you allow them to keep telling the story, or do you offer them the solution that they've been waiting for? And then, you take the story that you've been given, and then, you repurpose that within the group so that way, the other people that are telling themselves the stories are now hearing that message.

Kendra Perry: I really, really love that. That's awesome. Yeah. Because I guess we want people to share their stories, but we want them to want a solution, too. We don't want them to be in victim mode and people just not actually ... just wanted to dump stuff on you and not actually wanting a solution or to tell you why it's not possible for them to see success in whatever their issue is, right?

Joanna: Right. It's a disservice to them to not offer a solution.

Kendra Perry: Right. Very cool. Okay. So, let's talk a little bit about different types of ways to post into a group because I know there's all these cool group features that you can use, and what are some of your favorites?

Joanna: So, again, it will always come back to what is the type of group that you have, and we rattled off like seven or eight different types. So, it would depend on ... It's really cool. You can create this world based on the features that they give you, one being the marketplace where you got to set up units. You could also set up a marketplace, and that's where people would network and sell. So, you can really design whatever experience you want with the features they're giving. The most popular one is probably the units.

Kendra Perry: And is that relatively new? I first saw that in Lindsay's course, and I was like, "Wow. This is awesome."

Joanna: It's probably like a year and a half old.

Kendra Perry: Okay. So, I am behind the times.

Joanna: Yeah, and so, it's taken people a while to get used to it, to know how to navigate and to know that it's there or to look for it. So, people are catching on now. So, with units, if people are learning something from you, they're really cool. Also, if you want to map out a journey for them, you could do a first module with an introduction. So, let's say you're in a free group. With free groups, think about when you're added into one how confusing it is, and you have to learn all the posts are out of order, and you don't know who's who. So, units work really well to help organize like, "Hey, if you're new to me, start here," and you can link to your intro video. You can link to, "Here's my freebie if you haven't gotten it yet. Listen to my podcast." So, you would just make these posts, and then, just curate it under that first unit.

Joanna: It's also a really good chance to start linking to sales posts. So, that way, "Hey, I'm meeting you. I'm talking to you." And then, you progress them through. Okay. Some other things, I really love tags, but not all groups have tags. So, on your post, you can categorize things. So, if I'm looking for tomatoes, on the side, I can actually click on the tag called tomatoes, and then, all the posts that have been put up about tomatoes are tagged tomatoes. Facebook [crosstalk 00:29:52]-

Kendra Perry: So, when you say, did you mean in the little menu on the left side, you can have ... or where do tags specifically show up?

Joanna: They're on the right side.

Kendra Perry: The right side. Okay.

Joanna: Yeah. So, where it says invite members, they're usually right under there if you have it, and then, you'll see it on your post. It'll say "add topic" right under your name when you post. So, there's no rule that I know of for why do some groups have tags, why do some not.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Sometimes, when Facebook rolls things out, it happens really unevenly.

Joanna: It does. Yeah. They don't update previous groups. They just ... Yeah. They do what they want.

Kendra Perry: Okay. I have to see if my groups have that because I love that. Okay. What else?

Joanna: Yeah. The tags are fun, and it makes it really easy for you because if someone says, "Kendra, I'm looking for something on bone health," and then, you have a whole tag for that, all you do is say, hey, on the right side, click on it, and it'll pull up 20 posts.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. That's awesome.

Joanna: [crosstalk 00:30:54] organize for you. Yeah. So, I like going live in groups because even if you don't have everyone on there live, and most people don't show up live.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Very true.

Joanna: So, you got to get over it. If two people show up, so what? Most people catch the replay, and then, it happens over a couple of days. So, two hours later is not a good time to judge engagement. So, live versus video, what's the difference? It's energy, and they know that you just showed up to be yourself because you have to when you're live. When you're on video, you could always do multiple takes, and you get to choose the version that we get to see, but when you're live, it's you, and it's authentic, and if you made a mistake, so what? We're still rolling.

Kendra Perry: Funny things happen on live video all the time.

Joanna: Exactly. Yeah, but it's always a good shot of energy into the group, and it feels different from video. So, I would say go live at least once a week in your group because it just stirs things up, and when do you do it? It really doesn't matter. I mean, whenever because most people are going to catch the replay anyways.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Yeah, and I think video is just, it's so powerful these days, and that live video, too, because I think, yeah, another common theme that I hear in the marketing world is people are sick of perfect, curated content. They don't buy from brands. They buy from people, and people want to see your personality. That's how they connect to you. They want to be like, "Oh, wow. This girl's pretty funny. I could be friends with her. I feel like if we met up at a party, we would be instant friends." That's what you want people to feel, right?

Joanna: Yeah. A level of access, and groups give you a level of access that the other platforms don't.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and I feel like Facebook, with all their new changes rolling out, they are so much about wanting people to have conversations and wanting people to engage and have these meaningful conversations. I feel like that's really what they're pushing their platform towards. So, when you can create that in a group, it's going to do well in the algorithm as well.

Joanna: Yeah.

Kendra Perry: Do you ever use the poll feature? Do you recommend using that to get information from your group? Because that's one of my favorite tools.

Joanna: Yeah. So, polls are also an excellent option when you want to have those heavy conversations, and you just let people click A, B, or C.

Kendra Perry: I find when you do that, a lot of people will respond because it's easy to just check off a box. For my course I have going on right now, I want to know what do people want for support after the course ends, and I think have 60 people in the group, and 40 people responded, which is great. That's a pretty good representation of the entire group, right?

Joanna: It is. It's low involvement for them, but they can still have a voice. I would get creative with polls. I get creative with all the features just to see what can I do, but Brad, in his group, it's about sales. So, when people make sales, they'll ring the bell, and they ring this cowbell. So, we are having on Sunday a quarterly cowbell ceremony where we're honoring the ... We have five awards to give out to people in the group, and so, there's a reason behind it, but loudest cowbell ringer, that's the person that engages the most. So, we are rewarding that person for being so active. So, what we did is we set up five different polls, and we let people vote, and yeah, there were some people that had never engaged in the group that, because they could just click, that was their chance to just say, "Yeah. This is my voice. I'm voting for this one."

Kendra Perry: Very cool.

Joanna: So, if you use a variety of those tools, maybe those people that are so busy that don't have time to engage in your group, a poll allows them to chime in every now and then. Different features can work with different people. Sometimes, people are visual. Sometimes, they're audio. So, I would play with all of them and just get creative.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and see what people actually want, and I think I love the poll feature for just figuring out what should I be talking about, what topics are you interested in learning about, and then, it's like, "Great. I have the next three coaching call topics."

Joanna: Exactly. Yep.

Kendra Perry: And people may actually show up live.

Joanna: Yeah, and it was low effort by both parties.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and I love what you said too about just rewarding the engagement. In my paid membership group, I always run contests. We have monthly challenges that help them work towards a goal or create a habit to help them move towards their health goals, but the more they engaged, the more they'll get entered to win some contest. I love contests and that sort of thing, and so, that really ... I mean, Facebook loves that, right? You have lots of people engaging and posting and people supporting each other, and I feel like by doing that, people are just more likely to see your posts in their feed, right, if lots of people are engaging.

Joanna: They are, and there's another phenomenon behind that, which is that it measures time. So, with contests, it's super easy to follow a journey of one week or five days or however long it is because they can see it. They can see, "Oh, five days, we're on day three of five," versus when you're not in a contest, and the group is just open, and then, they just wander, right? So, challenges will always ... accountability. Time containers always do really, really well.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. I mean, I love it and super fun, and I think what's so cool about creating a community, too, is that you're the expert. Typically, in our industry, we're going to be having quasi health support groups where people are there to get supported, and you're there to support them, but when everyone else starts supporting each other, it's amazing, and that's one of my favorite things about my membership is when somebody goes on there, and they're having a hard day. They feel like crap or whatever, and they're venting. Like, I'll come on there later and see 50 comments of everyone supporting them and being like, "Hope you feel better. Do you want to talk? You can call me." And some people have actually met up in person who live in the same area. So, it's very cool how you can kind of be the connector of people, especially in the health industry. The biggest thing when you're sick is that it's very isolating. People feel very alone.

Joanna: So, this reminds me of this show I was watching yesterday about ... It was one of those experiments where they would give these kids one marshmallow, and if they could wait 10 minutes, they would get two marshmallows, and only one was able to actually make it, but then, he got two marshmallows, right? And so, this is when it comes ... This is exactly what people do with their Facebook groups. If you are willing to curate people that are involved, that are your avatar, that are your messenger to help you spread your message, you will get that second marshmallow, which is exactly what you just described. They take over the group for you, and then, you actually don't have to do anything. You can go live once a week, but you don't have to do any involvement because your people have found each other, and that was your only job in all of this, right, was to get them into one spot. They have found each other. They will entertain each other. It's kind of like a house party where everybody's happy, and you can slip away upstairs, and nobody notices the party still keeps going.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. I love that, and another thing I love to do, too, is just to you kind of get to know your group members, and you figure out who's an expert in what, and I have actually quite a few other health coaches in my group who just needed a health coach of their own, and I have one member who does a lot of mindset and tapping. And I mean, I'm not a woo woo person. I know nothing about that stuff. So, when people have questions about that or want to know more about that, I can always tag her, and she likes feeling like the expert, and she loves to just come on and give her two cents, and I think you can really utilize the expertise of your other members in a lot of ways as well to cut down the amount of work you have to do.

Joanna: Yep. And this is really the height that you want to reach in your group, is having those fans that are taking care of your group for you, and then, you are connecting them inside of your group. So, that way, your network and their network builds up together. This is what it's about.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. That's awesome. Do you have any suggestions for ... because I know some groups that I've seen out there get a little bit out of control. They kind of get overrun, and there's people posting promotional stuff in there, and it kind of starts leaving kind of the purpose of the group was originally built for. Do you have any tips for what you can do to prevent that from happening?

Joanna: Yeah. So, your group does require work. You can't walk away from it, and you have to stay true to what the purpose is and not let it stray because people will ... They will snatch it away really quick, especially if you have built a really large audience. They will try and just do anything to just get in front of them, even if the consequence is being deleted and removed. So, it comes down to curating the right members for your group. So, this is not only an advantage to you in finding the right members, but you're also protecting the people that you have already curated, and it's really selfish of people to think, "I have to hit this number no matter what it costs me or my community." A thousand members means nothing unless they're a thousand quality members that are your avatar and there to spread your message. So, a lot of times that happens because that's people's end goals, is just the numbers rather than focusing on bringing in the right people. So, if you have the right people ... and then, also, those raving fans we're talking about, they will shut those other people down if it starts getting out of control, and they'll say something.

Joanna: And also, the other thing is, sometimes, people just walk away because they're just tired. They're just tired of having to produce the content all the time. They're tired of having to be the face. They're tired of having to show up and provide. They maybe have let their boundaries down, and they let some people into messenger, and they're taking advantage of them, and then, they see the group as the source of that. So, they neglect it. I would say, and this typically happens with free groups, right? If it happens in paid groups, that's more of a culture fit for the member, but this is more about the free groups. So, you have to have a time container for yourself, and then, you have to relay that message to the people in the group. So, is this a pop-up group? Is this only here temporarily? Or is this open forever? If it's open forever, you have to show up. If you promise once a quarter, you have to show up once a quarter. If you promise once a month, show up once a month, but you have to show up. If you can't show up, show up to say you can't show up, and just shut the group [crosstalk 00:43:21].

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Okay.

Joanna: Breaking promises a lot is when people ... because your group goes on the back burner, and then, you're like, "Well, it was just a live in that group," and then, it just keeps getting brushed off, and then, you lose interest. They lose interest. If you're not in the group for a purpose, and you don't know the timeframe of it, which you should always know the timeframe of it, you will lose sight of everything, right? If I know this group is open for the next six months, I know what I need to plan for. If I'm just like, "Oh, I'll just grow it. I'll just grow it." I mean, that's people's strategy, like, "Just get more people in there."

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Kind of just like an afterthought in a way, hey?

Joanna: It is, yeah. So, if I'm getting ready for a launch, I have three months until launch. I know what I need to do three months before the launch. You always needs to have a focus for it.

Kendra Perry: Yeah, and another thing you said that popped out to me is being willing to protect the members who are in the group, and I guess not being afraid to kick people out when they don't fit in. I've done that in my membership group with somebody who was just bringing a lot of negative energy into the group, and I was like, "You know what? This doesn't fit. This is affecting the other members. So, unfortunately, this person has to go. I'll give them a refund, whatever." But I think you have to be willing to be the leader and realize when there's people who are damaging the community, right?

Joanna: Exactly.

Kendra Perry: Which isn't always easy, but sometimes, you've got to do it, right?

Joanna: You do. Yeah. Do you want to make one person happy or 75 people upset. This goes down to that.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Exactly, and when your people are in the group, and they're engaged, they see that, right? They see that this person is a virus or bringing everyone down, and they're just waiting for you to do the right thing and take that person out.

Joanna: Exactly. So, one thing that we haven't touched on yet was about energy, and I did want to touch on that because I know that-

Kendra Perry: Sure. Lets do it.

Joanna: ... your crowd will get what I'm saying. So, this touches on how they affect the energy of the group, but most of your success is going to come out of being able to identify your energy patterns in your group, which is also why you need to have a timeframe on it. So, if I'm getting ready to launch, I know that the energy needs to start ramping up. So, people will call this momentum. They'll call it high engagement. So, those are codewords for energy, and you can push it up. You can bring it down. You are like the ... It's an orchestra for you, and you're the conductor, and there's all these strategies out here that do this, right? They'll start drumming up attention for your business and stuff. So, what's fun about the group is it actually captures all the energy, and you can take it and just play with it, and that's why launch groups are so fun because it's just all this energy being shot into the group, and then, so, let's take a paid group, for example, that supports a course. Let's say a course. This'll be easy to illustrate. So, when I join a course, I'm so excited. And so, I would put posts up that I'd just tap into that, like, "Oh, my gosh. I'm so excited you're here. We're partying and everything."

Joanna: And then, will come some work, and then, I'll be like, "Oh, my gosh. Now falling behind. I'm falling behind," and then, now, I'm feeling bad, and now, I'm embarrassed. So, if you know ... and that's a very typical pattern of people buying courses, right? They get on this high from purchasing, and then, they realize there's work. [crosstalk 00:47:23]

Kendra Perry: Or they're either overwhelmed and ... totally.

Joanna: Yeah. It's more than what they thought it would be. It thought it was going to be more plug and play. So, they have all these emotions of having to deal with work. So, you can manipulate that ... manipulate, we'll use that very lightly ... by bringing it up, and you can say, "It was hard work when you signed up, and you knew that. Now, you're just mad because you actually have to do it." I would just put that in their faces like, "You knew this wasn't going to be easy, but you bought it anyways, and here we are. So, it's time to roll your sleeves up." So, then, you bring that back up, and then, they find it to be very intriguing because you look like a psychic like, "How did you know it was going to be hard?" So, you kind of just map out that whole journey. They'll think it's hard, and then, I'll bring that back up, and then, I'll get them some quick wins, and then, they're like, "Wow. Actually, you really know what you're talking about." And then, we just keep building on that momentum. So, that's energy. That's how it will move, especially if you have a launch where you have 100 people that came in at the same time, and they're all going through that. Everybody's excited. Everybody's coming back down. Everybody's like ... and then, it'll split.

Joanna: 50 percent will give an effort. 50 percent won't. So, if you start controlling those energy points, everyone will stay on the same page, the community is tighter, and your completion rate goes up, and then, you get retention, and then, people are willing, and then, all the things you said you could do is happening, and then, they're asking you what's next.

Kendra Perry: I love that. Yeah. Yeah, and I think it's just about being aware that, yeah, people especially in health, people are going to self-sabotage. They're going to fall off the wagon, and just telling them that, "Hey, I know that you feel off the wagon. I know that you ate that three pieces of chocolate cake, and now, you feel guilty, but that's okay. It's okay that you fell off the wagon. It's okay that you feel overwhelmed. Let's get you back up there. Let's get you back on the wagon." Because it tends to happen on a very specific point, especially with health. It's not like this linear progression of feeling better and better and better. It's very much a rollercoaster.

Joanna: Exactly, and everybody's seen that picture of success is not linear, and then, they show what success actually looks like. Everybody's saying that, but then, when it happens in real life, they can't make the connection that, that's what happened, that they just made the loop back, and then, they go up. So, it's inevitable. You will make mistakes, and so, if you give people space to say, "That's okay," and then, you tell them, "I was expecting you. I know that was going to happen anyways," they can forgive themselves much faster and just keep moving forward. So, when you see how the energy ... when you're trying to control the energy and everything, if you have someone that is behind you trying to control what you're doing by being negative or calling you out on things, there can only be one conductor here, and it has to be me. I'm the one that moves the energy in this group, not you.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Yeah. It's so true. You don't want to have everyone else doing it because then, it just gets confusing, and you lost control, and you want to keep whatever vibe you decided to have in that group. You want to keep that as much as possible. That's very cool. So, I love when you're talking about turning community members into clients by sort of you kind of direct them into messenger, and then, have the sales conversation on messenger. Is that your favorite way to kind of turn community members into clients, or do you have other ways that you recommend people try?

Joanna: Yeah. That's going to be what's going to open up your conversation because that's where they're going to admit things to you that they wouldn't say in front of the group, but the group, you're using it to open up and just kind of poke around. It's like the dentist when they're just picking around at the beginning to see what needs work and what doesn't, and then, they step into your office, and then, you have the real discussion. People are not going to just tell you everything right up front, but they can give you permission to come find out, and what you're looking for is permission. So, the group will actually act as a permission slip like, "Hey, I see that. I get that. Step into my office, and let's talk about it." And then, it's like, "Okay." I also think that your free group is like your best advertising machine. Besides it producing the content for you on your social media, you can just be there with them. It's like sitting at a table with them and just asking them, "What do you need? What bothers you? What do you need?" And then, you get to have that conversation on display, and it just works for you. Yeah, I'm sitting here giving my energy to 10 people, but at the same time, 500 are seeing it.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Yeah. I love that, and I feel like you've made, in this conversation we've had, you've made me feel that Facebook groups are much easier than I'd made them out to be.

Joanna: Yes, and everybody's like that because I mean, there's a scarcity thing to this, too, right? It has to be hard, so I can sell you my course, but it's the easiest out of all of them because all you have to do is just say, "What bothers you?" That's the easiest. So, I don't have to go on Instagram and research hashtags or create a graphic or any of that. I don't owe anybody anything but figuring out what's up.

Kendra Perry: Yep, and then, you can just add a fun GIF to it, right?

Joanna: Yeah.

Kendra Perry: Pretty much, every time I post to my group, yeah, there's no graphics. There's nothing curated. It's just the most random GIF that I can find, and people love it.

Joanna: Yes. So, with GIFs, GIFs are your biggest time-saving tool because I can connect with people. Let's say with both watch friends. If I know that I can connect with you and bond with you over Friends GIFs, I also, in a variety of Friends GIFs, can pick ... There's some where they're yelling. There's some where they're laughing. There's some where they're crying. So, I can pick the emotion, and I can match your emotion, and then, that also connected with you because we both love Friends, and then, it just looks funny.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Totally. I love the humor component of it because yeah, it's just so fun to get people to ... I love asking questions in my group like, "Tell me what you did this weekend with a GIF, or what did you want to be when you grew up with a GIF?" And then, it's hilarious, and people love it that you did that because they can just go down and see all these hilarious GIFs and try to guess what people are trying to say.

Joanna: And it's also a little alter ego. Sometimes, I pick GIFs of celebrities, like Jim Carrey, right? If I want to be exaggerating, I will pick a GIF from him, but he's like my alter ego.

Kendra Perry: So, you just use him all the time, or you could be like Beyonce and use all the Beyonce GIFs, right?

Joanna: Yep.

Kendra Perry: I love that. Yeah. I never really thought about that alter ego concept, but yeah, you could totally create that and have that energy into your group. Awesome. So, Joanna, where can people find out more about you if they want to dive deep into Facebook groups? I feel like you've provided us with so much great information. At the conference I was just recently at, I saw a talk on Facebook groups, and I was just like, "This isn't good at all." But what we just talked about in the past hour blew that out of the water. So, you are [crosstalk 00:56:05] so much good information. You should be talking at that conference next year.

Joanna: Let's just cut this out, and we'll send it to Social Media Marketing World.

Kendra Perry: Totally.

Joanna: [crosstalk 00:56:16]

Kendra Perry: [inaudible 00:56:16] for the conference.

Joanna: I love it. So, right now, I am calling home my business page, which is Experience Magic. So, I go live there. I do Magic Mondays [crosstalk 00:56:36].

Kendra Perry: Oh, I love it.

Joanna: So, on Mondays, I go live. So, I've been behind the scenes for a really long time, and so, I'm not really somebody that's able to be found yet. So, that would be the only spot to find me, but yeah, so, I have decided that this year, I've had a lot of people asking me ... They want to learn community. It's finally, after all this time, become a thing, and everybody wants to learn about it now. Yeah. So, I'm going to step out. It's nerve-racking. I get nervous seeing my face on camera, but got to do it, right?

Kendra Perry: Yeah. Totally, and I know we're both in Lindsay's course right now, and I think I saw one of your posts where you're like, "Ah, I'm so scared to come out from behind the scenes," because you have been still behind the scenes, but you have such a great method. I mean, you are such a great speaker, such a great teacher. I mean, you've got to get out there, girl.

Joanna: Yeah. Yeah. It's time.

Kendra Perry: Cool. So, it's Experiencing Magic is your Facebook page, and we'll be looking for you live every Monday for your Magic Mondays, and we'll be seeing more of you soon, a bit more of you soon, and I can't wait to learn more from you about communities. I'm going to go on your page and eat it up.

Joanna: Yes. [crosstalk 00:57:58] thank you again for having me today.

Kendra Perry: Yeah. No problem. It was so fun to hang out with you today. I really appreciate you being here, and thanks, everyone, for tuning in. We'll be back in a couple weeks, and I will be with my better half, Christine, next time, and guys, if you love this episode, and you love this content, let us know. Leave us a five star review on iTunes. That helps us get out in front of more people, and it just helps us know that you like what you're hearing and that you want us to create more episodes like this. So, thanks so much, everyone, and have a fantastic day.