4 Coaching & Community Platforms That Put Facebook Groups to Shame
When you’re running a coaching or mentoring business, or you’ve built a paid community, connecting with your clients is one of the most crucial aspects of what you do. Of course, in today’s digital-first world, most of those connections happen online. As a result, lots of coaches turn to ye ol’ faithful Facebook, one of the OG social networks that can bring people together through their free Groups feature.
Facebook Groups: Not everything they’re cracked up to be
Business owners can create private, exclusive Facebook Groups where they can offer more chances to connect with their clients more often and facilitate a place where clients can connect with each other. Plus, it’s free, which is a price point anyone can get behind.
However, as more and more coaching and community platforms emerge, it’s clear that Facebook Groups isn’t really the steal we thought it was!
Even if you decide to keep your Facebook Group up and running after this, we hope you’ll reconsider thinking of it as your end-all-be-all solution. Why?
- It requires a ton of maintenance. Constantly adding and removing people, updating user permissions, monitoring and moderating comments – it’s a lot.
- It’s not as personalized. At the end of the day, you don’t have control over the platform. Sure, you can make small changes to make it look like your branding, but you’ll always be at the mercy of Facebook’s technology and platform updates, which we know aren’t always the greatest. And you can be shut down by a negative report or “flagged” content.
- It’s hard to offer personalized coaching and support. When you offer ‘exclusive’ access to your clients and customers, expectations are going to be pretty high. But meeting those expectations? That’s a different story. In just a matter of hours, your Facebook Group might ask dozens of questions, leave dozens of comments, and create dozens of threads that might go unnoticed due to the way the platform is organized.
With all that in mind, it’s hard not to wonder if you’re setting your clients (and yourself) up for disappointment when using Facebook Groups.
Luckily, there are lots of other coaching and community platforms out there to help you manage your groups, offer quality support, and maintain your sanity. Let’s check ‘em out!
Mighty Networks* is an awesome place to start for coaching communities. Why? Automations.
Once you add new members to your group (which you can set up with Zapier!), they’re automatically given access, and you can welcome them with any pre-created messages you want to share.
No more waiting to manually add people, sending them their resources, or creating dozens of individualized welcome emails with someone’s login info. It’s just automatic — and your new buyers will love how instant it is.
Here are some other Mighty Networks features we love:
- Personalized activity feeds for every member
- You can create different sections to help members navigate the community more easily
- Member profiles and categories
- Access member data, tap into analytics, and set benchmarks for engagement
Podia is another all-in-one platform that allows you to manage your digital products, courses, payment processing, email marketing, and communities in the same place. With customizable branding elements and flexible layouts, your community will be tailored to your brand and look good across any device. It’s also quite affordable for new membership or coaching offer creators.
Some other features we like include:
- One login to access your community and content
- Several privacy settings to make moderating your group easier
- Gain access to info like names, emails, and products so you can upsell and nurture community members
Kartra is another great platform to streamline your customer and client experience. Everything is managed within a portal where you can provide single-sign-on credentials for access and automatically greet them with welcome emails. Kartra also has amazing features like:
- Membership tiers
- Scheduled content drips (so you don’t have to manage your posts and resources manually!)
- Progress tracking to see how your customers are engaging with your content
Even better, your Kartra Membership can come together really easily with a drag-and-drop interface and tons of customizable templates to make your community on brand.
Finally, Kajabi* is an amazing platform for so many things, including automatic welcomes, log-ins, and access to courses. It even has email sequence features so you can share important information when you want without having to do it manually.
Another thing we love about Kajabi? You don’t have to deal with third-party integrations or manage a bunch of different tools. Everything happens in one place that’s easy to use, easy to navigate, and easy to moderate.
Here are a few other features we love:
- A mobile app for you and members to access your communities on the go
- You can create as many communities as you want with different levels of access (free vs. paid)
- Communities are private, so you won’t get bombarded with random requests to join
Facebook Groups used to be a good (and free) place to build communities, but in this day and age, you get what you pay for. If you’re gonna offer an exclusive community to your members, do them (and yourself) the favor by investing in a platform that’s actually going to encourage engagement and offer an unmatched experience for everyone. It’s an investment in your business and your clients that you won’t regret.
If you're ready to find your new platform now (yay!), you can check out Mighty Networks for free! Testing something out is always the right choice before you make an investment. And hey, you gotta start somewhere, right?
SCORE A FREE TRIAL TO MIGHTY NETWORKS*
You can also see our thoughts on the other platforms listed above, by checking out our recent platform features: How to Choose the Right Platform for Your Offer.