How Two Brothas Who Don’t Know Each Other Worked Together to Create a Strong Black Professional Social Group on Facebook

fistbump In a few days from this writing, the Black Professionals Network Facebook group will hit a 50,000 member milestone. The group is probably only of a few that can actually claim to have a solid and qualified audience of black professionals where networking is done and business/sales are accomplished as a result. And I was a driver behind growing this in a positive direction, bringing my expertise and support to the table for the past year and a half. In this article I want to talk about how me and another brotha I never met worked together for the greater good of developing this Facebook group. When I first joined the Facebook group, it was around 17,000 and was full of the spammiest messages that I saw promoting multi-level marketing programs, affiliate links claiming they some entrepreneurs and people showing off money but their Facebook profile look broke and proletariat. And then I see black people posting messages like “are you broke and need extra income?” over and over again. And some people were posting this 10-20 times a day spamming this board hard. But in the timeline, I saw legitimate black businesses and operations trying to advertise but their message would be quickly drowned out in spam. spam Me and a few others decided to try our best to clean up and moderate the group and became admins helping the original creator who is a successful author. What we started to do was start removing and banning people who keep abusing the timeline off the group. You want to hear something funny? There was this cute puppy face sista who was spamming hard and I actually inboxed her saying what she was doing was hurting the whole group and other people after I banned her. Then we talked and I let her back on the group, she started spamming 20 times a day once again! I kicked her cute puppy face behind off the group for good – morale of the story is these spammers ain’t loyal! The admins of the group just went to total war by kicking and banning abusers. Some of the MLM cats were crying and whining about why they can’t post their message about “Do you need extra $600 bucks a month to pay bills?” and thought they were going to gang up on me. A lot of them was start dissing us and saying they leaving our group and then Facebook came in and did a purge of that Empower Network spammers and the Black Professionals Network group went down to about 14,000 for a low. I decided it was time for a new strategy and I devised a strategy to grow this Facebook group the right way. strat1 At first, the Facebook group was not moderated, anybody can post what they want. In addition, anybody can join the group and you got people who are definitely not black professionals joining and posting all kind of spam and garbage. So I created the following strategy to grow the blog: Anybody Can Join. We switched the joining of the group to being moderated where an admin has to approve the member. So that allowed us to stop the spammers before they can enter the door. When someone got some stupid middle name on their Facebook profile like Cindy MakinMLMCa$h Johnson, we ain’t letting her in the door, period. So we focused on letting in quality members and pretty much anybody who look normal was let in the group. Anybody Cannot Post. While we are somewhat liberal on who join the group, we strictly moderated the posting to the group. This is real work and I took up the responsibility to take care of this part. The other admins leave it alone because it is heavy work but I was able to streamline the system to make sure only the good posting get through. Anything that talks about making money or need more income is discarded. We only focus on posting what appear to be legitimate black professionals or black professional topics. So what happened is once we put moderation in place of the Facebook group, I had the haters and naysayers who wanted to post MLM and affiliate links disappear as if the group was going to fail. But what I focused on was the key good members of the group and worked to bring them to the forefront to be the ones that others can see using the Black Professionals Network group the way it supposed to be. So we allow only selected members who showed a good track record of posting and have a legitimate operation to post be able to post to the group without moderation or approval. This help create a base of solid members who see the benefit of having an audience to network with. After a few weeks, things appeared slow but the momentum just took off. We are doing 200 to 350 new members daily that are quality and screened to join. We receive hundreds of postings a day and I believe only 10% of them were being approved when I first started but over time, the bad posters and spammers started to wither off and now we having about 40% quality postings with a 60% reject rate which is good. So that means what you see on the group posting timeline, nothing but quality black professional messages where small business entrepreneurs, professionals, authors, graphic artists and more can publish and get attention. From 14,000 we went to 20,000 slowly, then we quickly went to 20,000 to 30,000 almost as twice as fast than the 14,000 to 20,000 journey. Then moving up to 30,000 then 40,000 and now we hitting the 50,000 mark. During this time, I have informed the group founder we were on track to hit 50,000 around June 15 and it look like we are going to reach that milestone this week. This is a big milestone because this is probably going to make us the biggest and most authentic black professional social network group. I’m not concerned about the numbers like these other cats – I’m concerned about the effectiveness. By focusing on quality back at 14,000 and staying focused on quality all the way up to 50,000 we created a Facebook group for brothas and sistas to market and communicate in an effective environment. strat2 Because we created an effective healthy environment for black professionals, if brothas and sistas want to take full advantage of the environment we created, they must come to the group with a level of professional and respect. Let’s go over from my experience what postings work and effective. Visual Marketing. No one should be posting a message to a group on text only – this is not the 20th century but the 21st century. Make sure all messages have a visual marketing image attached to the post. The biggest mistake I see is people attaching message with the Facebook privacy setting on and not set to Public resulting in an “Attachment Not Available”, make sure the privacy setting of the image is set to Public is you going to post the message to group. I mentioned this on the group and mostly everybody now post visual marketing messages that has an image and text below. Avoid Talking Money/Profits. One of the things about our group is I’m an accomplished technology person and the group owner is an accomplished author. So we are not impressed with those coming with messages talking about “make more money” because we understand we do what we do because we love what we do and dedicate ourselves to our profession. What I noticed over and over with the postings I monitor is it is always some struggling looking character posting up the promise of more money while the true accomplished members post up good advice and information to share. Leave the “make money/profit” commentary out of your marketing message and just focus on the business and show you have a passion for what you do. Don’t Try to Pitch. People be killing me posting up some “Are you looking for something nice to wear?” and they post a solution as if they read these marketing books and believed that nonsense. In the social media world, the only that matters is authenticity. You tell people that you are in business to sell a product and tell your story and be honest. If you are just starting out, say you are just starting out and don’t front wearing a suit acting like you been successful and in business for 25 years. Just be honest and upfront and don’t try to fool a group of 50,000 people with some cornball pitch message. Don’t Lead People On. There was this dude on Black Professional Networks who like asking questions. But when someone answered his question, he trying to lead them on with a fake conversation about his self-publishing help books. This is just like the sales pitch – don’t try to artificially have a conversation or a scripted conversation with people. It makes you look fake real quick. The only thing that works is honesty and authenticity and people respect that. Tell Your Story. What works is when you share your story on your business, showcase your products as if you are proud of what you are doing. This is what I seen work very effectively and also talk about the benefit but be genuine that you are running a business. When you tell your story, you become authentic and that is the only thing that work in social media. The biggest takeaway is how I can work with another brotha, the Facebook group founder and we work together without even knowing each other. The one thing I want to make sure all of you understand that yes, I do the daily grunt work but the group founder provides direction and leadership. When working in a team, you got to know where your strengths are and apply yourself instead of trying to be the one shining. It is not my goal to shine, I’m already shining outside of Facebook. And I know I’m capable of putting in the grunt work that is necessary and just do it. I know a lot of brothas who spend time trying to tear down, trying to doubt and looking for excuses why they can’t work with other brothas. But when brothas drop their worthless pride, bring integrity and work to the table and work collectively, we can make great things. With that said, I’m happy to announce two brothas worked together for nearly two years to help create Facebook largest social media group for black professionals to network called Black Professionals Network and I hope you join and find it a great resource and a place to view quality postings about us. https://www.facebook.com/groups/blackprofessionalsnetwork/

3 thoughts on “How Two Brothas Who Don’t Know Each Other Worked Together to Create a Strong Black Professional Social Group on Facebook

  1. That’s impressive to keep a group of around 50,000 focused. Spammers have killed a lot of good projects.

    1. Thanks. The one thing me and the other brotha do not do is self promote ourselves or call them “our audience” or “our group” like other cats be doing and stalling black progress looking out for themselves.

      We chose to be stewards to help maintain an environment for our people to showcase and network.

  2. I have been really looking into becoming an entrepreneur ..Googled and ran across your blog and reading every since..Definitely will request your fb group…need some help

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