As an admin of a Facebook Group, you may find yourself with a great number of things to do in order to grow your Facebook Group. The new technology and the rise of automation among digital marketing and the online medium, may put you in the need or make you want to use a Facebook Groups Auto Poster.
Automation among social media platforms is used quite often: from tools that help you schedule your social media posts, to various tools that ease the managing of posting various content (thanking new followers, adding new leads into a list, answering to inquiries etc.). Though, I have to mention from the beginning, automation or scheduling the posts too often, is not advised. I said this in the last article. You shouldn’t automate all of your posts, especially in a Facebook Group, where people come together in order to genuinely communicate and engage; automating can make them think you are not involved, and this is something that definitely doesn’t help to grow a Facebook Group.
Still, automating your posts or using some integrations can be useful sometimes, as it can help you organize things, and clear your schedule. You’ll then have more time to create valuable content for your Facebook Group posts, to engage with your members through comments and reactions, and to analyze your Group Insights (in order to better understand your community, and to be able to change your strategies if necessary).
Let’s get into it and let me present you some Facebook Group Integrations and Auto Poster tools.
Facebook Groups Integrations
One of the great things you probably didn’t know are integrations. What are integrations? Basically, they are connections made between various tools or apps, that automate your work flow. A quick example: you posted a Facebook Ad and you want to gather all the new lead in a spreadsheet. But this can take a while, especially if your Ad is doing well. One of the integrations you could use is connecting the Facebook Ads to a Google Sheet, thus automating this process. Quite a nice work flow to have!
The integrations that I found to be very reliable are the Zapier ones. Through them I found some integrations that work with Facebook Groups:
- Optix App + Facebook Groups
- Eventable + Facebook Groups
- The Open Mic + Facebook Groups
- Instagram + Facebook Groups
- Facebook Groups + Clockwork SMS
- Facebook Groups + Otixo
Optix App + Facebook Groups Integration
Freelancers have to do it on their own, that is why they are freelancers. Sometimes they struggle finding the perfect space to work. At home can be crowded, at the café can be noisy, at the library they can’t stay too much. So what can they do? Freelancers can rent a work space. There are several websites that offer precisely this kind of service – renting a work space. I’m not sure if this is common everywhere in the world, but USA has had this need and has made it into a great business opportunity.
If you are interested in finding websites that help you rent a work space, Google “rent a work space”, and you’ll see the following websites: WeWork, LiquidSpace, Desksnearme, and many more. The first one that appears in the search results is ShareDesk. It’s basically like AirBnb, but for work spaces!
They also developed a platform called Optix. Optix, as they say, it’s great for managing multiple coworking spaces and it’s for both members and managers.
As I’ve said in the previous article you can have a Facebook Group for almost everything you want. So picture this: you have a venue that you can rent for freelancers to work in. You’ve just created a Facebook Group, so that you’ll be able to keep in touch with your clients in a more “face-to-face” way. Don’t forget this:
Facebook Groups are great for genuine communication.
OK, so you also have an account on Optix. You want to know exactly who’s a new user, and you want to welcome them in your Facebook Group. Thanks to Zapier, you can!
You just have to integrate your Facebook Group to your Optix account, and every time a new user is added to your Optix account, Zapier will trigger a post in your Facebook Group. Don’t need to worry about finding the new group members that are also in Optix; you just have to wait for this Facebook Group integration to do its job, and then check the comments to that post and interact with your new members.
Still, you have to know that this integration will create a post every time you add a new user to your Optix account, separately. So this is good in case you are managing a small to medium Facebook Group, and a small/medium venue; otherwise, it can get a bit cluttered.
Eventable + Facebook Group Integration
Nowadays, customers are being bombarded with ads, with messages, with everything related to promotion. You, as a company, really have to step up and be different from the others, (at east the ones from your niche) in order to stay in the front line.
One of the smart things to do now is to create a Facebook Group, not just to promote yourself or your company (remember, only promotion is not advised), but also to communicate with your clients, to reach potential customers and to grow your company.
Facebook Groups are a great tool that helps you know better your customers.
Another marketing channel that is pretty interesting is the one that Eventable is using: Calendars. Yes, you read right. Calendars are a part of many people’s lives. With so much information going on, they have to use a schedule, otherwise they may forget about meetings, appointments, and others. Just to give you an example: if you have a store sale, you can remind your customers about it, making them act quickly (of course, only if they opt-in for this notification). It goes for every event you may think of: sports, fashion, movies, festivals etc.
How does this work for a Facebook Group? Well if you have an account on Eventable and you create an event, you can use the Zapier integration created for this: creating an event in Eventable will automatically post about the event in your Facebook Group. Your Facebook Group members will basically be the first to find out about your new events! This is a great plus that you can present to your future group members.
The Open Mic + Facebook Groups
Translators and Interpreters have their own place, too, don’t you worry! You can find them, and many articles on this blogging platform. You can write about pretty much everything, and many of the articles have a personal story-like feeling.
[ In one of my articles I mentioned that is a great idea to share and discuss about various topics in your Facebook Group. Pick a day and create a thread where you post various articles. ]
If you own a Facebook Group intended for Bloggers or for Translators, integrating the group with The Open Mic, can be a useful and great idea. Zapier will post in your Facebook Group every time a new article is added on The Open Mic; it is RSS based. In this way, you’ll constantly have posts and content for your Facebook Group. Just keep in mind that you should pay attention to all of the new posts, and comment them, in order to engage with your Facebook community.
Instagram + Facebook Groups
OK, so almost everybody knows about Instagram. Some have a business profile, some have a personal profile. If you own a business or you want to promote yourself as a freelancer, then you should use the Business Instagram Profile, as it gives you more insights about how your profile is viewed, details about your audience, and how your content is performing.
Instagram lets you choose to share your new photos to Facebook, Twitter, or other social media accounts. But what if you own a Facebook Group for Photographers (an obvious one), or a Facebook Group for Food Lovers, or any Facebook Group where you can add beautiful Instagram shots, what do you do? You choose the Zapier integration that automatically posts your new Instagram photos to your selected Facebook Group, and only there!
This is quite convenient as otherwise you’d have to save the photo from Instagram, go into your Facebook Group and post it again there. It’s time consuming, and you know that. For some, it can be a burden.
Therefore, this type of automation is really useful. Post your beautiful shots on Instagram, and then just go into your Facebook Group to see them there, also. Should you sit back and relax? No! Comment on the new photos, never let them just be. Your community can see that photo on Instagram, they don’t really need to see it on your Facebook Group, too.
[ Of course, there will be some members of your Facebook Group that don’t have an Instagram account, a situation where this integration can come in-handy; all of your followers will see your photos’ content, you don’t have to make the use Instagram. ]
Coming back to what I was saying, your FB Group members don’t really need to see your Instagram shots in the group, too, as they already follow you on Instagram. BUT in the group you can, and you must comment on the new photo posts. Explain more the idea you had right before you captured the moment. Post a before photo, just to let people know how you edited the shot, and maybe tell them why you chose to edit it. If I sit and think more about this type of content, I can see its potential more and more. I just get excited imagining, so let me point out some ideas:
- A fashion Instagram account plus a Facebook Group for Beauty or for Clothes, means that you can integrate and automate your photos, so that later you can ask people about their opinion on the specific outfit, ask them what would they have done differently, if they like the color combination, and so much more;
- A food Instagram account plus a Facebook Group for Food Lovers or for Cooking, means that you can later explain your community what ingredients where used for that recipe, where did you eat that meal, ask the how they would recreate it, ask them to guess the recipe, and so on;
- A books related Instagram account plus a Facebook Group for Readers. Just one photo of a book from Instagram can lead to a great discussion about the theme of that book, the characters, the plot, the cover, the style etc.
- A technology Instagram account plus a Facebook Group for Tech, leads to discussions about tech conferences you’ve been or you’ve posted about, new products.
- And many, many more.
Yes, you can post directly on your Facebook Group, but if you already have an Instagram account (or you plan to have one)? Why not combine these two and make your life easier? Instagram photos are really appealing, and you can give people (who are in your group or who want to be) the chance to discuss about them more. They can’t do that on Instagram, as it’s not desktop-friendly and you really can’t start a discussion in the Instagram comments section.
Also, this Instagram and Facebook Groups integration it’s a great help, because you can also compare what people on Instagram say (who may not be in your group), to what your community says. It can be a fun and interesting thing to do. AND you can post to every photo something like “if you want to share your ideas about this photo, or share/find other ideas related to [insert topic], join our Facebook Group” – great promotion tool!
These next two Zapier integration go the other way around. The last 4 where automating the process from other apps to Facebook Groups. The next ones are automating the flow from Facebook Groups to other apps.
Facebook Groups + Clockwork SMS
Now this is an integration that works as a notification. Clockwork SMS is a text message SMS API that you can use for both sending text messages, as well as receiving. It works with and API and you can connect it to whatever app you want. Here are some features:
Clockwork SMS is using UK numbers, they do allow international text messages, but they won’t accept account from some locations. If your location is not in their database, you’ll get the message “Sorry, Clockwork SMS is not available in your area”. That’s a bummer, but for the available areas, it’s really a good service.
You pay as you go, meaning that if you are only sending 10 text messages, then you’ll only pay for those. The prices are various, going to as little as 2 pennies per SMS.
Feel free to test is out and read more about this service, here.
This Zap is great because if you’re travelling, you’d still get a message every time someone posts something in your Facebook Group. Therefore, you won’t miss a thing! You have to have a Facebook Group, and a Clockwork SMS account and API.
Facebook Groups + Otixo
Otixo is a platform for managing work flows for organizations and teams. It has a chat for internal purposes, but also for communicating with external clients. You can connect with most of the cloud and storage services, in order to access your documents and to work on them with your team members. Collaboration is one of the main purposes of this work space. It’s great for organizing and keeping your teams all together.
Zapier developed a few Facebook Groups integrations with Otixo:
- daily/weekly/monthly notifications for new posts.
You can get Otixo notifications for you and your team whenever new photos, videos, events or posts are added to your Facebook Group. You can also choose the integration that notifies you through Otixo for new posts, but it will be a daily, weekly or monthly notification.
With this Zap you won’t be needing to leave your Otixo work space to check the news related to your Facebook Group.
Also, this Zap works for both a company that owns a Facebook Group for promotion and keeping in touch with its clients, and a company that decided to create a Facebook Group just for their organization, for fun. Either way, notifications will come in a single place, keeping your work organized and tidy.
Facebook Groups Auto Poster or Automation Tools
Post automations are different from integrations, as they require your input more. Automating posts in Facebook Groups is (in this case) about writing multiple posts in one day (or just one, whatever your work behavior is) and then scheduling them with the help of some tools. It’s a common thing to do in social media, as they help marketers organize their time and work much better. They just create content that has value, but as their time is limited, they choose to schedule this content throughout the week or the month.
Some of the best social media marketing automation tools I found are Buffer, Hootsuite, Agora Pulse, PostCron, and many more.
For Facebook Groups, as they are, let’s say, more private, you need different tools. Some of the ones that I found and that have good reviews are:
- Facebook itself
I’m going to present a few details about each of them, so that you’ll know other ways you can use these platforms. You don’t want a separate platform just for auto posting in Facebook Groups, right?
Social Pilot – paid platform
Social Pilot over paid plans, starting from $8.33/month. They have a lot of features that can make you think “I should really pay for that plan”. You can:
- bulk schedule;
- check social media analytics (not only for Facebook, but also for Pinterest, Twitter and LinkedIn);
- use a social media calendar;
- enjoy a content curator, that lets you find content ideas, evergreen posts; make use of categories like Business, Travel, Marketing, Music, Fashion, Tech.
- and many other features such as Teams & Collaboration, RSS feed automation, browser extension.
It is user-friendly, and many say that they have a great support team.
Pilot Poster – free platform
This is a free cloud based platform that I chose to present, because they have a bunch of great features:
- Add multiple Facebook accounts;
- Post to multiple Facebook Groups. Great if you own two or more groups and you want to share some news with all of your communities;
- Sort your groups by categories, and keeping everything fully organized;
- Schedule your posts;
- Auto repeat posts.
You can also view insights related to your posts, all in one dashboard. It may seem that this platform is mostly designed for those that are members of various Facebook Groups, that want to post in all of them at once. Though I believe you, as an owner of a Facebook Group, can make good use of it.
PostCron – semi-free platform
PostCron has pricing plans that start at $9/month, for 10 social media accounts. And the price goes up the more social media account you add.
But it is free for up to 10 social media accounts, therefore it is great for small organizations, companies or for freelancers.
The main features, besides scheduling your posts, are that you can:
- add a watermark to your photos, automatically*;
- bulk upload*;
- see past posts*.
*You have to pay for these features.
Facebook Groups Scheduler
As in Facebook Pages, you can also schedule your group posts. It is a relatively new feature for Facebook Groups. If you don’t use this auto poster thing that often, or you don’t want to create another account on some of the platform above, Facebook has your back.
Just go into your Facebook Group, write whatever you want to write and hit schedule post. You can schedule posts up to 2 months in advance. For those of you that want to stick to the basics, you can just use Facebook’s schedule feature. If you’re thinking of making some changes, pick one that is an auto poster for Facebook Groups, too.
While your time is precious, and you want to make the most out of it, I say this once again: don’t over use auto posters or integrations that automate posts into your Facebook Groups. I read on Quora this:
“It is important that you prioritize building relationships over automating your brand voice, which aligns with your high-value content.”
and I totally agree. Use automation and integrations when you need them, but don’t rely on them to help you grow your Facebook Group. YOU are the only one that can to that, with your own hands, heart, and mind.