If you’ve created an account on Facebook, this is your profile. It’s where you share your interests and photos with friends you’ve connected with. To have a page or a group, you need to have created a profile first. Profiles have more restrictions on who can see your posts. Because of this, we wouldn’t recommend setting up a profile for your church. To view the content, the person would need to request to become the church’s ‘friend’ which may stop people from investigating further.
If you’ve set up a Facebook account just to manage a page or a group but you don’t want people to find your account, make sure you’ve filled in your privacy settings correctly. Find out more on Facebook's Help Centre.
Pages are open for all to see and have plenty of other features and functionality which make them perfect for churches to use. You can create a page through your profile account but people visiting the page won’t be able to see your profile unless you want them to.
Not only can you post videos, images, polls and notes (blogs) on the page, Facebook provides you with advanced metrics on how the posts are performing and the demographics of your audience which helps you to produce more relevant content for them.
Pages also have a helpful ‘About’ section which means your church can provide contact information, links to other social networks and your website (or A Church Near You page) and tell people a little bit about what kind of church you are.
It’s recommended that each church in the benefice has an individual page. This helps people to easily find their local church and be provided with more relevant information to them, though you can share one post across other pages easily.
Don’t forget to make sure you have at least three administrators for your page. The admin can add and remove people from editing the page and if you only have one and something happens to that person, you will lose editing access to the page. There are plenty of other settings and permissions which are important to set up before you start posting. Find out more on the Help Centre.
Groups are designed for small community or interest groups to communicate with each other. Though they might seem ideal for churches, they are more closed off than pages which again makes them less welcoming to newcomers. It can feel like you need to be part of the club already to join the group. Smaller groups inside a church might make use of groups however, such as the youth group, parents and toddlers or choir group as a way of easily passing on news and information.