Groups are good for some instances but for a national companies/non-profits you may consider a switching to a fan page.
I have been working with a client to get their groups switched over to pages. The process is frustrating to get everyone moved over and posting on the fan page but in the long run I believe extra engagement will be the reward.
A few points to answer that “Why do we need to change?” question:
- You can’t share photos or stories from a group (THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT)
- Group postings are not placed in the users feed, thus most do not get seen (THIS IS THE SECOND IMPORTANT)
- You can’t tag a group (mention it with a link in a posting on your personal page).
- Groups are not visible to unregistered people
- Groups are not indexed
- You will not be able to use a custom URL to promote it
- In a group you can’t tell what are official postings (they always come from a person)
- You can’t add plug-ins or apps on a group (for instance like gateway pages, calendars, etc)
- You can’t promote a group with ads
- There is a limit of the number of users you can have
- Also when a person likes a page they get instant access to post… for a group they have to ask and that will deter some.
- You can’t pin an import post to the top
- You can’t use the check-in feature
- You can’t set up third party tools to automatically post to your page (i.e. when you send out a newsletter it can put a post on your page)
If you are wanting to keep your posts more private and want control over your fans then yes you should stick with the group. If you want more engagement and sharing then switch to a fan page. In most cases I believe the extra work will be worth it in the end.
Have more reasons for or against? Post them in the comments.