Facebook Personal vs Groups vs Pages

The basic form of Facebook interaction comes from having your personal profile, with which you can post content such as photos, links and status updates, interact with other people, brands and communities. However, it is possible to use Facebook to engage a wider audience by using groups and pages.

A Page is just like a personal profile but is designed for a business, entity or organisation to interact with their target audience. The administrator manages the page from behind-the-scenes and generally is not personally identifiable. Pages are generally public and searchable so its information and posts can be seen by anyone on facebook. An individual (or indeed another Page) can connect with a Page by “liking” it and there is no limit to the number of people who can like a Page. The Page communicates by posting content onto its timeline which then appears in the News Feed of those who like it. Likers can also post content onto the Page’s timeline, thereby creating two-way communication with the public.

The Page can utilise pretty much the full gamut of applications and functions of a personal page. It can:

  • List informaton such as opening hours, contact details, services and price lists

  • Post updates on its timeline

  • Create its own applications

  • Track growth and activity

Many businesses are chosing to have their Facebook Page as their primary website, as it has many of the features of a traditional website but with the addition of being interactive. GP related Pages might include private practices, regional training providers, colleges or faculties, educational programs, other health services etc.

On the other hand, Groups are designed to be spaces for people with shared interests to be able to communicate with one other. A Group has a finite number of members and generally works best with smaller numbers of people who know each other. A Group’s administrator posts under his or her own name, rather that as a separate entity. A Group can be public (anyone can see the group and its posts), closed (anyone can see the group but only members can see posts) or secret (only those that are specifically invited can see the group and its posts). New group members must be added or approved by existing members.

Groups don’t have access to as many features as Pages but members can:

  • Upload photos to shared photo album

  • Create and edit shared documents

  • Create events

  • Engage in discussions

Examples of GP related Groups could include doctors from a certain geographical area, registrars from a particular region, study groups / journal clubs and doctors with similar special interests.