My name is Kori and I’m a blogger and a Facebook group junkie.
There are thousands of groups on Facebook related to blogging and some days it feels like I’m in all of them.
I’m not, of course, but I do think that I belong to too many.
But are all of those blogging group memberships worth it? Do I really need to belong to that many groups when there’s so much overlap?
I stopped counting how many groups I’m in. Not because the number overwhelms me but because I really just don’t have the time to figure that out. I can tell you that the majority of the groups are blogging related, some are entrepreneur related, and a small handful are autism related. I did manage to take back some of my Facebook time after deleting all games from my desktop and phone.
But there are still plenty of times that I’ll go on Facebook to check something and get sucked into the group dark hole.
That leads me to question- do I really need to be in all of those groups when they essentially have the same function?
So what keeps me in all of them? I’m really not sure. I could tell you that it’s for any number of reasons but it really boils down to one:
* Laziness and a lack of motivation to really trim down my groups.
What I should do is evaluate the groups, see which ones I’m really using and which ones are really of benefit to my blog… this is on a list of ‘blog to-do’ that also includes organizing my Pinterest boards and making covers for the boards, but that’s another post entirely.
But that’s Pinterest and this post is about Facebook.
Blogging Groups: Learning
I’ve mentioned before that I have a lot to learn as a blogger- and it’s very true. There’s a lot that I’ve learned but I think that the potential to learn, especially when it comes to blogging and social media, is nearly endless.
That’s where learning groups come in handy.
Some of my personal favorites are: Blog+Biz BFFs, Inspired Bloggers Network, and Courage to Earn.
While they all have relatively large membership numbers, I still feel comfortable asking any sort of question related to blogging. Sometimes it’s about a layout or monetizing or SEO… any number of things.
And one of the best things about these groups? They’re free. All you need is a Facebook account and you can request to become a member.
So are the learning groups worth it? Absolutely.
Blogging Groups: Networking/Sharing
As a blogger, I’m always looking for ways to get my content out there. Yes, I have my newsletter and yes, I’m on Bloglovin (which is just a really pretty RSS feed I think).. I’m working on Linky Parties (which will also be in another post) and I’m just now figuring out Triberr and how to use it effectively. And while I would love, eventually, for more of my traffic to come organically (which is really my ultimate goal), I also can’t discount the effectiveness (perhaps) of blogging groups.
With groups that are specifically for networking and social sharing- sometimes this can be troublesome. There might be a group that has a lot of members, but not a lot of participation. Or there might be a group that has decent participation but only has general requirements for sharing (ex. share a minimum of 5 posts or pin 3 posts). This then depends on the discretion of the remaining group members as to what they want to share and where.
On the flip side, there are groups that require complete reciprocation. And while this may also seem like a good thing- there can be some disadvantages here too. For example, you might not know if someone else is following through with a social share. Or maybe someone is sharing a post that you don’t agree with in some way or another.
Of course, I realize that there are also specialized groups based on blog niche. I belong to a few of those too. Sometimes I find these to be a bit more helpful, especially with comment threads because then I feel like the comment is more genuine. Not that you can’t get that from general blogging groups, of course.
The networking/sharing groups are always going to be a love/hate relationship for me. I’ve changed my strategy so that I’m more intentional about which groups I participate in regularly. I need to think about my own audience when it comes to what I share.
So are blogging groups really worth it?
Yes… and no.
If you’re joining a group to learn, that’s definitely good and I would encourage that. If you’re joining a group to build up a network and social shares on your post- go for it. That’s one of the reasons I went overboard joining groups. Be selective about the groups you join and if it doesn’t work out, leave the group. For the groups that do work, consider turning your notifications on. This might seem like a bit of a hassle, but at least that way, you won’t miss an important post.
But, if you’re joining a group just for self promotion and to be a selfish blogger? No. Then blogging groups aren’t worth it because people can see past that.
Blogging groups, just like almost everything related to blogging, is a trial and error process. Find which types of groups work for you and which types of groups you can really commit to on a daily or weekly basis. And if you find that a group isn’t working out for you- you can always leave. Blogging groups can be highly beneficial because you never know when another blogger is going through a similar issue. Being able to troubleshoot with another blogger or figuring out what’s worked for them could be a huge time saver.
When used sparingly or strategically, I think that blogging groups definitely have their time and place. It’s just a matter of figuring out a system that works best for you.