Facebook Group vs Stand Alone Forum

Discussion in 'Forum Software' started by fixer, Jul 15, 2018.

  1. esquire

    esquire Habitué

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    There is certainly potential for to make money on social media sites and it can be the better platform. It depends, e.g. as a "brand ambassador" or "social media influencer." If you can control a certain Facebook groups that have many members there is also the potential for making money there too although it's not in the same way as owning your own forum. That's usually why those who do social media marketing and the like (optimizing and creating content on the sites of others) are different from "webmasters" who deal with running their own site.

    People are people. They can be very enthusiastic proponents of what works for them and feel it is the better solution and makes them feel better about their choices. I enjoy hearing about all the different ways people have been able to make something work for them.
     
  2. fixer

    fixer I'm In My Prime

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    Just made over $200 in less then 3 hours peddling wares on a faceboook group. Im out of goods or could of made more
     
  3. Joel R

    Joel R Fan

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    Most of the benefits so far have been the benefits for owners: independence, control, analytics, ownership, etc. And while that's all nice, its not about making ourselves feel good - it's about which platform is better for users.

    I'd be curious to see what the perspectives and benefits are from the user perspective when comparing "just forums" to Facebook groups?
     
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  4. fixer

    fixer I'm In My Prime

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    09DF2F35-EC58-4E83-ABF0-EAEE365095EC.jpeg 86626062-3D06-4470-A56D-48E00A2B40F2.jpeg
     
  5. DrCornFlakes

    DrCornFlakes Aspirant

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    Well, if it's not good for me, I don't care if it's good for the users.
    It has to be good for me AND the users, in this order.
     
  6. Nev_Dull

    Nev_Dull Anachronism

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    That's the key issue. I suspect there is not a lot of crossover. Facebook users likely tend to stick to facebook groups while forum users tend to stick to forums. The ones who do use both are likely doing so because they have interest in the topics and content, regardless of the platform.
     
  7. fixer

    fixer I'm In My Prime

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    I do not know why this topic is even debatable, all you have to do is look at some of the forums who once was the place to be for various niches and then look at the last post in some of the sections ... all the users went to facebook groups in one way or another because the world went mobile and social media took over.

    The site I sold was making over 2g per mth in just google ads when I sold it, now its a wasteland and all the members are spread out across facebook groups. it's sad but true

    you will have to have a very special community to stand next to facebook and have a chance, your niche has to conflict with their standards or you have to offer something they don't a stand-alone forum fails to put you in a position to win vs facebook groups, nothing it does can it do better and anyone who says different has never been active in a Facebook group.

    it takes add-ons and hard work to get your site in a position to stay afloat, and when add-ons are the "ringer" it's only logical to use the forum software who #1 has the best and most feature-rich first-party add-ons and #2 reviews all add-ons to make sure they are safe for you to use. take your guess on which software that is
     
  8. Yappi

    Yappi Enthusiast

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    I'm sorry fixer, I just don't understand you. Your signature says:

    Have you registered your forum? - https://www.forumregister.com - The Online Community Directory

    But you have an obvious disdain for forums. Just not sure why you are here or why you are starting a site that caters to sites that you think are a waste of time. Maybe you could start a FacebookGroupsRegister.com. Might be more successful for you...
     
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  9. fixer

    fixer I'm In My Prime

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    just because im not a fan of Chihuahuas doesn't mean i dislike German Shepards.

    one is as worthless as a cat and the other would die for you

    forums who try to be something are everywhere and i want to spotlight them, them are the sites people will take the time to register because them sites mean a lot to the owners. as for the run of the mill standard forum with little to no activity them sites will die a slow death and the owners wont take 5 mins to even list on the register anyway

    i want to help passionate online community leaders by giving them as much exposure as i can
     
  10. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Adherent

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    I'm in the aquarium hobby, I have my own forum for a niche, and I manage a statewide group forum which also had a FB group, there is a lot of truth to that "some are only on FB" and "some will never go on FB" dichotomy.
     
  11. Lisa

    Lisa Chaotically Proportional

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    When cats evolve opposable thumbs, you'll be sorry you said that :p

    I don't run any forums these days. I do, however, have a number of extremely active FB groups.
     
  12. Nev_Dull

    Nev_Dull Anachronism

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    If it isn't worth discussing, what was the point of starting this thread?

    Your premise doesn't stand up. I know several restaurants and clubs that were once popular and have since closed. That doesn't mean restaurants and clubs are no longer viable. Forums have always waxed and waned. Sometimes the subject matter simply runs its course. Sometimes the forum changes hands or the owner/manager loses interest. And yes, more recently, sometimes a forum moves to a facebook group. That doesn't mean you can't start and run a successful forum or that forums are all disappearing in favour of FB groups. The very fact that we're having this discussion here belies that idea.

    Facebook, and social media in general, has become a convenient scapegoat for people looking for something to blame for their forums not flourishing. The "everyone's gone to facebook" defence has become something of a clarion call for failing forum managers.
     
  13. fixer

    fixer I'm In My Prime

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    I didnt start this thread, a staff member split it out of another thread, i had to rewrite the first post to make it somewhat coherent

    and i disagree with most of the rest of your post too but im ok with you being wrong so ill move on with the rest of my day thanks
     
  14. Joel R

    Joel R Fan

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    To get this discussion back on track, here are some things that I think FB does very well:

    - you're already registered on FB. To join a group is seamless. I had a user complain to me about all of my community's registration questions, from multiple security questions to custom fields, and it was a wake-up call. I revamped my registration to only the bare mininum, and use the Profile Completion progress bar in IPS to encourage them to fill out the rest once they're signed in.
    - you have everything in FB. It's not just a place to get status updates, you also get news, games, groups, chat, etc. Thats why I've been building out new features to help users 'hang out' on my site and simply spend more time. Anything to make my site 'stickier' to users while still pushing my core content.
    - FB pushes interesting and popular content and makes them immediately accessible. One thing that I think forums will need to fundamentally change is that our filtering and content display is truly horrific. Our content is hidden underneath layers and layers of categories, sub-categories, and boards. And then we usually display content chronologically, not whether it's popular or interesting (aka attactive to users). We need to find ways of pushing new, interesting, and visual content to the homepage.
     
  15. darnoldy

    darnoldy Curmudgeon

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    Couldn't agree more! For most forums, the "New Posts" page is a much-better home/landing page-- with all of the normal forums/categories stuff as just a sidebar menu.

    I have thought for a while that it would be helpful to allow members/users to prioritize the message section to meet their own interests. Of course. I have no idea how to do it.
     
  16. lopar

    lopar Aspirant

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    My members exactly hate that option. They say that categories are better, because newly added content is already grouped to them, while "New Posts" list works the same as Facebook newsfeed, where no one can find nothing, if forum activity is big enough.
     
  17. DrCornFlakes

    DrCornFlakes Aspirant

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    For years Facebook gave site owners a medium to acquire traffic.
    Site owners posted a new article on Facebook, and got thousands of visits to their sites.
    It was excellent, it had insane audience, it was free, what else could a site owner wanted?
    Same happened with brands - everyone advertised Facebook through their own Facebook pages.
    Same happened with media - newspapers, magazines, tvs, radios, everyone disregarded their own property to advertise Facebook.
    There were businesses that relied solely on Facebook - no site, only Facebook.

    The one metric that mattered was "reach". If you had 1 million fans, you reached 1 million people.
    That was good, free traffic, free eyes, huge audience.

    Then, Facebook decided that people were seeing too much stuff on their feed and created the feed algorithm.
    The "reach", the amount of people that saw your posts, slowly, begun to decrease (you shouldn't scare your prey).

    Those fan pages, those business pages, you know what reach they have today?
    1% to 5%.
    You want to have more reach? Pay for Promoted Posts.
    They advertised Facebook, they got people to only use Facebook and today, they have to pay to play.
    They thought they were getting the good stuff from Facebook, when it was the other way around.
    Today, if you want eyes on Facebook, if you want reach, you have to pay.

    It's the classic Bait-and-switch.
    What happened to fan pages, to business pages, to media pages, is happening today to Facebook Marketplace.
    Of course, Facebook doesn't tell you this.

    When will it happen to Facebook Groups? Don't know but, if you bring the users to Facebook, Facebook will keep them.
    And as more community managers move to Facebook, the more people won't leave Facebook.
    When you, as a community developer, are fully dependent on Facebook, remember this - you gave up your independence, you handed the bandit all the gold.
    If you want to roll the dices, if you think this is a good business model for you, go ahead.

    For me, it's not.
     
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  18. fixer

    fixer I'm In My Prime

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    this is brilliant and 100% truth
     
  19. Nev_Dull

    Nev_Dull Anachronism

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    Agreed. The greatest strength of forums, the ability to sustain long term, in-depth discussion of a single topic is often also it's greatest weakness when it comes to attracting new users. They don't want to have to read 15 pages of a thread to catch up, and using most forum searches quickly becomes an exercise in frustration.

    Adding filtering would be great but I don't see how that will work any better than the existing search. Filtering only works if the content is organized and classified which is still a very manual process. It might be simpler to start practicing good content curation. Moderators read much of the content. They can also be taught to develop summaries and promote popular content on the main page (or elsewhere).
     
  20. southernlady

    southernlady Coder/Designer

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    The main FB groups I am admin on all had ONE major complaint. Only one pinned post. FB kinda cured that recently with Announcements but they keep adjusting things and there is a limit to 10.

    It was because of the FB limitations back in 2013/2014 that my forum came to be. It was a great place to pin vital information, studies, and still have discussions of the material. Even now, rather than retype all the info already explained in a post on my forum, I'll link it. So do others. Its one of the top resources for much on the subject matter. It wasn't until last year, I put together a FB group as an extension of the forum. My forum already had a page for newsworthy information. My forum hasn't slowed down...it's a slow growth project. Our niche is very small.
     
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