For Membership Site: Private Forum or Closed Facebook Group

15 replies

We are launching a membership site very soon and we want a way that will allow our users to communicate with each other. We are thinking a private forum using wishlist and simple press or a facebook closed group.

Pricepoint: $10/month
Estimated members: 500-1000

(I understand with a FB group, we will have to manually add/remove members.)

If we go with the forum, what is the best way to run it?

Is running a forum lots of work? I expect to bring in a few moderators to help out. I have never run a forum before and I want to make sure I am not taking on more than I can handle.

Thanks for the advice.
#closed #facebook #forum #group #membership #private #site
  • Profile picture of the author egyptik
    Hi Wildlifer,

    If I were you, I'd go with a forum. Why? Because it gives you much more controll than a Facebook group ever could. Stickies, catagories & design to name a few. It's just a lot easier to order all the information.

    Running a forum isn't very hard, but it takes some playing around to get to know how the system works.

    And, ofcourse, you need to put a lot of time in it, consistently, to keep the discussions going. Especially in the beginning.

    Hope this helps!

    - Jerre

    EDIT: Oh, one more thing to keep in mind: The search function in Facebook Groups sucks.. it only works on the posts that the user has loaded at that moment. They would have to scroll down for minutes to load all posts if they want to search through all of them. It just doesn't work efficiently..
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313003].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author GforceSage
    Wishlist/Simple Press allows you to use the entire internet to find perspective members.

    Facebook, though very large, will be somewhat more limited and have parts of your perspective customer base being people just looking for their long lost High School friends.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313041].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author James Fame
      Personally I have seen the success of small facebook groups, however the problem lies in the value of the information that stays visible to new members to the group.

      Facebook cons:
      - Your message gets pushed down, and most of the new members won't bother to scroll to the bottom.

      What I like about a forum is that you're able to manage it on your own. Threads that are valuable can be stickied for your new members. Value is important. But it is also important for it to be easily accessible.

      You can make modifications as you like. You can even integrate Facebook on your forum - just get a developer to help you with it.

      James Fame

      Fire me a pm if you have a question. I build businesses and provide consulting. I do not do finance/money/internet marketing niches. Fitness, self-improvement and various others are welcome.

      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313113].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author vtotheyouknow
    +1 for a forum. You have control over it. It's YOUR asset. Also, it projects more exclusivity than an FB group, and you can really build a nice community on your terms, especially with that many members. Good luck!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313176].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author zuberr
    I'd say forum too. I do run a FB group with more than 6000 members and I think you will find yourself restricted to do many things as opposed to your own forum. Plus, any member in a FB group can add other members to it, so it might become a big mess dealing with those unwanted members.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313333].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author egyptik
      Originally Posted by zuberr View Post

      Plus, any member in a FB group can add other members to it, so it might become a big mess dealing with those unwanted members.
      You can turn on Admin approval for new members of the group if you want to. But still, go with a forum!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313342].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author alvinchua91
    Definitely your private forum.. If Facebook ever shuts down one day, you would not be able to continue your business.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313397].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author sahi
    Private forum is the best option as you won't have to worry about your someone closing your facebook group and removing your account from facebook on some silly complaint.

    There are many good forum scripts available both paid and free. Have a look at them and choose the one which suits you best.

    Get your Brand mentions/Interviews in top magazines around the US & UK like Forbes, Harvard EDU, American Express, INC, Entrepreneur, LA weekly, and many more
    Email Me for more details and share your requirements.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313424].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author John Romaine
    I know of someone that had a Facebook group with over 40,000 members and it got flushed. He was literally beside himself.

    Private forum. All day.


    BS free SEO services, training and advice - SEO Point

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313497].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author bgray
    I'd go with a forum.....and I'd actually choose Google+ over FB if going outside.

    Hebrews 12:11

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313507].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author WillR
    A forum.

    1. It builds search engine traffic for you unlike a Facebook group.

    2. You own the content being created unlike in a Facebook group.

    Forums do take some time to manage but if it's a paid forum where only paid members are allowed, things will be easier. You will usually find with most forums there are a few people who love to hang out and help people and you can give them mod status to help run the forum for you.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8313508].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author wildlifer
    Thanks everyone.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8328948].message }}
  • I think private forum is really going to be the best thing for you. The best part about a forum, is that you can have a dedicated thread for each topic that you are reviewing with your members.

    For example, in my marketing course membership site, at the end of each module, I have it linked to our private forum so that if the member has any questions about the current module they are on they can go to the forum... See if their question has been answered already and if not, they can reach out to us at any point to find out what they were looking for!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8328965].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author PPC-Coach
    Private forum all the way and I'm very bias.

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[8329102].message }}

Trending Topics