I have been invited to a couple of private Facebook groups based on my experience and skills. I was under the impression that one was for blowing off steam (a correct assumption) with others who could empathize with certain situations. The other was for developing marketing strategies… or so I thought.

A friend developed this strategy group, and her idea is sound. She wants people with experience in a specific niche to discuss and share and help each other with marketing ideas, strategies, and foster healthy discussions. I have found, however, this is not what is happening in the group.

Yesterday, I found myself defending copywriters in general because I was told that a copywriter cannot possibly write knowledgeably about someone or a business without personally – physically – experiencing that person or business. That a copywriter cannot find the right tone or capture the nuances. That person was, of course, selling his own services as a motivational speaker who believes every business owner should write their own copy.

Here’s the thing. Some business owners are great at what they do, but cannot put it into words. Or they put it into words so complicated that no potential or current client is going to read it. Even worse, many of them have no clue what content to include.

I felt it necessary to point out my position. I was insulted that this person insinuated that I only “chat” with a client before creating website content. He has no more idea of my process than I have of his. I posted about collaboration; he countered with patronizing put-downs.

After finding this person to be simply motivated by love of argument and self-promotion as well as being “liked” by people who should know the value of a good copywriting collaboration, I quit the group. I had been recruited to assist people, not defend myself or my profession. I calmly let the group admin know that I simply did not feel my presence in the group was going to be mutually beneficial. I wish her luck and hope her group finds its footing and moves forward to more productive conversations.

What groups do you belong to? Are they serving a purpose or are they a source of stress or aggravation? If you are in a group that has the same 10 people posting (out of 500) all the time, are you benefiting from that association? I can’t answer these for you, but I suggest that, if you belong to a group that is business related, you evaluate your position and the value of the group to you and your business. Personally, I’m doing some spring cleaning.