Being one of the largest social media platforms globally, Facebook is a great tool to reach out to the masses. It gives you the ability to create pages or groups to meet and interact with similar minded people and form a community.
But what exactly are Facebook groups and pages? How are they different from each other, and which one should you make? Read on to find out.
Also read: How to make your Facebook account private? Privacy tips and tricks
What are Facebook pages?
A Facebook page is essentially a non-personal profile. It could be anything from an organisation to a small group of volunteers working on translating indie games to an NGO. The possibilities are endless, and if you’re looking to represent something other than your own self on the platform, you’re going to need a page.
Since they aren’t personal profiles, Facebook pages can be run by different people and can have other roles such as administrators and moderators to control the page’s activity and engagement,
Some of the major features of a Facebook page are as follows.
- Built to represent a brand or an organisation.
- Access to all sorts of analytical tools.
- Easy to gain more reach by boosting posts with money.
- Option reviews.
- Followers can talk to admins using messages.
- Verification feature to ensure the page’s legitimacy.
- Page’s posts are prioritised.
- Groups can be linked-to pages.
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What are Facebook groups?
Facebook groups are exactly what they sound like; they’re a place for like-minded people to share and discuss information, interests, common traits or just about anything. Exactly what a group does.
In a similar fashion to pages, you need a Facebook profile to make a group. However, unlike pages where your personal information is hidden behind the page itself, you’ll be marked as the administrator of a group you make, and people will be able to see your profile.
Major features of a group include the following.
- Ability to set group rules and monitor discussions.
- Moderating tools for admins.
- Built-in event calendar.
- Option short surveys fro people looking to join the group.
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What the difference?
The major differences between a page and a group lie in its purpose, analytics, and privacy controls.
In layman terms, a page’s purpose is to represent a brand or an organisation and connect and/or engage with a target audience in mind. In doing so, the page prioritises the vision and voice of the page itself.
On the other hand, a group is a place or hub, if you may, to discuss ideas, information, common interests, traits and whatnot.
It solely exists for discussion and interaction among the group’s members. Posts from all members populate the group’s main tab.
Aforementioned, people will be able to see who made and runs a group. However, if you’re making a page, you represent the page, and no-one gets to know who the admins or the moderators are.
People can still engage with what the page says or does by commenting on its posts, but the page takes the lead and controls what appears on the page itself. Even posts by the community are put together in a separate tab.
A page is also always public unless you explicitly unpublish or delete the page. What you can restrict, though, are things like who can post on your page, who can tag ou and whether or not you want your page to be geo-restricted, that is, not show up in certain countries or parts of the world.
Groups, however, have multiple levels of privacy. The admin can decide whether the group is open for all or requires verification or an invite to join. Secret or invite-only groups don’t even show up in Facebook search results which stands great for people concerned about their privacy online.
Lastly, analytics also are widely different between the two. Pages give admins insights on who visits their pages, audience demographics, post reach, engagement and such about anything else. You’ll need to understand what’s going on and boost your page’s visibility, reach and engagement.
Groups are once again like groups. They don’t have any analytical data available to admins whatsoever. All you get is basic information about the group members and a recent actions summary.
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Facebook Pages vs Groups – pros and cons
Here are a few pros and cons you get with either.
|Facebook Page||Ability to promote posts through Facebook.|
Ads can be targeted towards certain demographics.
The admins identity is hidden unless manually linked.
Detailed page analytics.
Ability to schedule posts.
|Pages and publicly visible and hence not great for private use.|
Easy for imposters to set up a page and impersonate a brand or organisation.
Page reach and engagement relies heavily on admin activity.
|Facebook Group||Greater control over member and post privacy.|
Ability to moderate discussion and set rules.
Ability to remove or ban users who violate rules.
|Limited reach and monetization of posts.|
Admin’s personal Facebook profile is publicly visible.
Moderation may become difficult in larger groups.
Also read: How to search Facebook without an account?
Facebook Page vs Groups: Which one should you pick?
The answer largely depends on what you’re trying to do online. If your goal is to reach out to the masses and represent a brand or an organisation, a Facebook page is the way to go.
Even if you’re a public figure, having a page is a great way to deflect your fanfare off of your personal Facebook profile.
On the other hand, if you want to set up a place where people can talk about ideas and discuss things, a group is the better option. It doesn’t necessarily have to be scientific breakthroughs or big startup ideas. A group can be as simple as linking members of a particular locality or even a family group.
You could use both a page and a group to amplify your organisation or persona’s reach and gave a group to discuss anything from feedback to information. If you run a website with the potential for user forums, a Facebook page is a great way to integrate it.
You would, of course, have to be the admin of both the page and the group to be able to link them, but the fact that you have to ability opens up a lot of possibilities.
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