From a business perspective, how can we channel engagement in Facebook groups with our own clients and their audiences?

Desert Homes DiscsI’ve been very fortunate to have been in full employment since 1980. 40 years of getting up each morning knowing I had a purpose.

The recent lockdown and subsequent loss of all our projects, meant I had more time than I knew what to do with. While I had ‘furloughed’ all the staff, the reality was there was very little care and maintenance required for the business. Some, but not enough to fill my day.

I have 2 main interests outside work, youth football coaching which has been abandoned for the foreseeable future, and music.

My musical talent is zero, however for over 50 years I have been listening to and collecting music, and it was to this interest I turned to keep my mind working.

I created a Facebook group called Desert Home Discs and invited a few friends to submit posts about tracks of music they liked  and / or would recommend. As with many Facebook posts I set the challenge on day 1 to have the track, band or album begin with the letter A.

30 days later, there are over 800 members in the group, posting over 10,000 times and counting. People are commenting on posts published by people they have never met, are never likely to meet and yet who share a common bond between the track, the band or a period in time when the music meant something to each of them.

From a business perspective, how can we channel similar engagement with our clients and their audiences?

It is obvious that it is audience led. I have given a framework to work within, following the alpahabetic tour, I hosted a 24 hour Musical-thon via Zoom where group members came and went throughout the 24 hours and met each other virtually. Never more than 15 at a time, however a tangible gain for everyone involved. We are now going through the decades and I have a ‘calendar’ of themes for the next few weeks and group members are already suggesting themes beyond 8 May.

Businesses need to think about this level of engagement and embrace it. It might be challenging, especially if criticsm is posted. However, a strength of conviction that the company is doing the right thing is more likely to be supported by the community if engagement is meaningful.

It’s certainly something Think Different Events will be looking at more closely in the weeks and months to come.