As explained by Facebook:
“Last year we piloted Mentorship, and by bringing it to groups, people in existing communities can now connect and get one-on-one support through a guided program.”
Facebook says that more than 200 million of its users are members of groups they consider to be “meaningful,” which provides a great opportunity for those groups to facilitate such connections.
The program has already been producing results:
“For example, two mothers in Mama Dragons, a group meant to empower and support mothers with LGBTQIA children, are helping each other navigate the journey of raising a transgender child. Also, a woman was paired with a mentor from Soap-making and Business Coaching who has helped her take her love for making soap from a hobby to a business.”
To utilize the option, Group admins will first need to create a mentorship program for their members. Admins can choose from a variety of templates for their program, including career advancement, skill development, or encouragement and support.
Once created, members can then sign up to be matched with a mentor, or register themselves as a mentee. Group admins will then pair people together as they see fit.
Each mentorship stream comes with a program (middle screenshot above) which guides users through the process. Once connected, they can interact with each other on Facebook or within Messenger, with all communications between a mentor and mentee only visible to the pair.
It’s another way for Facebook to add more connection capacity to groups. Given the wide usage of groups to enhance community connection, Facebook’s been working on various ways to enhance group communication, and make them an even bigger element in the platform’s mission to ‘bring the world closer together’.
While News Feed algorithms can lead to filter bubbles, and News Feeds themselves can be infiltrated by fake news, groups, which are moderated by real people, are more difficult to pollute, which could make them a more viable option for Facebook to focus on in order to benefit smaller communities.
Mentorships provide another tool on this front – and for businesses, they could also enable brands to provide new opportunities to advocates by pairing beginners with expert users as identified within their affiliated groups.
There’s a range of ways the tools could be used – worth considering in your process.