How to get kicked out of a Facebook group

How to get kicked out of a Facebook group

Many people like to get a fresh start in January by cleaning up and clearing things out.

Some make room for holiday gifts and purchases by donating, recycling, or tossing things they don’t wear or use anymore.

Others unsubscribe from email lists that no longer have value.

And still others vow to reduce the number of Facebook groups they participate in so they have more time for other activities.

If you need to spend less time in online discussions, here are 13 ways to ensure you get kicked out of a few groups. As a group moderator, I guarantee they will work.

1. Don’t read the group rules.

Rules are for everybody else, right?

“I don’t like it when people come straight into a group with an agenda and don’t read the group rules,” says Heather Townsend, author of The Go-To Expert  and co-moderator of the Self-Publishing and Book Marketing group.

In that group, as soon as you post something that’s against the rules, you’re g-o-n-e before you have a chance to see that five people reported you to the moderators.

This leads naturally to the next surefire way to get removed:

2. Preface your post with: “Delete if not allowed.”

Easy enough. We’ll delete both you and your post quickly.

3. Be blatantly self-promotional.

“I’m annoyed when members engage in self-promotion, whether it’s in a group that I manage or in someone else’s group. It’s inappropriate, especially within a group that someone else is running,” says Marcia Turner, who runs two members-only groups for the Association of Ghostwriters and belongs to several others.

Some groups allow it, some don’t. If you want to get kicked out, don’t check the rules first before posting your sales pitch.

4. Be subtly self-promotional.

You know who you are in those groups that ban promotional posts.

YOU: “I’ve just created a course that I think is perfect for you guys, but I’m not sure what to call it. What do you think of these options?”

YOU the next day: “Thanks so much for helping me with the course title! Here’s what I ended up with — and here’s the link where you can check it out! You guys rock! XOXO”

MODERATOR: “Buh-bye.”

facebook groups 2

5. Always be a taker; never a giver.

Ask for help or advice, but don’t help anyone out or share useful information. You’re busy, right?

We notice.

6. Never say “thank you.”

This grab-and-go approach gets you escorted to the virtual door quickly in any group I manage.

It’s easy! Ask lots of questions, grab the answers offered by group members, and solve your problem without bothering to thank the people who helped.

It might take you awhile to establish this rude pattern, but it will get noticed. And you’ll be gone.

7. Ask for opinions, then argue with everyone who responds.

“It’s annoying when they ask for help, then argue with the person who gave feedback they don’t like,” says Townsend.

Be sure to respond with comments that include, “You don’t understand,” “My situation is different,” and “It’s too late to change that.”

8. Confuse the group with Google.

Here’s the best way to do this: Join a group dedicated to your new favorite interest, topic X, then post, “Hi! I’m new to this group. I don’t know anything about topic X. What can you tell me?”

Many members know at least a little about topic X before joining and now use the group to learn more about a specific aspect of it, talk about a topic they enjoy discussing, or get ideas.

If you want to leave, though, admit that you haven’t done any research on your own, but are looking forward to having everyone in the group share everything they’ve learned with you.

Google it

Photo by Evan Dennis on Unsplash

9. Hijack the thread.

“For example, someone asks, ‘What one marketing technique has been most effective in 2017?’ and a member responds, ‘Whatever you do, don’t follow Jane Doe’s advice. I bought her system and although it promised to show me how to do X, Y, and Z, it didn’t work,’ — and X, Y, and Z have nothing do with marketing,” says Turner.

Another popular hijacking strategy involves interrupting the discussion to ask a completely unrelated question.

But don’t do this just once or twice. Do it regularly if you want to be removed.

10. Be sure to add “and go!” when you ask for advice.

This is important because many group members yearn to say, “How high?” when another says, “Jump!”

Well, not really — and that’s why it will get you removed if you do it repeatedly.

11. Share information from a private group outside the group.

Especially if you use it to make yourself look better-informed than the average bear.

“In many cases, people in the group paid for access to useful information like that and having it become public knowledge reduces the value of that group membership,” says Turner, referring to groups that are part of training programs.

12. Offer bad advice with great confidence.

Why know what you’re talking about when you can just fake it?

Moderators often have significant topic expertise, so they can spot posers pretty quickly. When misinformation threatens to harm group members, posers will have be escorted to the door.

Facebook groups 3

13. Bully people.

At first, I thought the bully in the Build Book Buzz group might be having a few bad days. When the nastiness continued and a favorite member left  because of it, I had to act and ban the bully.

Fortunately, the member who felt forced out returned when I apologized for waiting too long to take action.

I learned from that experience.

Other group moderators also have zero tolerance for bullying, so when you’re ready to be shown the door, just verbally abuse one or two people.

How to remain in your favorite group

Trying just one of these tricks on occasion is not a deal-breaker. So, if you want to get removed from a group, you’ll have to do several of them frequently. That will help you establish a pattern that’s hard to overlook.

What’s the best way to stay in a group and possibly get invited to be a moderator? Apply what you learned in kindergarten:

  • Say please and thank you.
  • Be nice to others.
  • Be helpful.

If you want to do this while discussing book marketing topics, we’d love to have you in the Build Book Buzz Facebook group. It’s a great group of smart people who are willing to share what they’ve learned. Join us!

What group behavior bothers you? What behavior makes you applaud? Please tell us in a comment!

Get more helpful free book marketing information in the “Build Book Buzz” e-mail newsletter.

Sandra Beckwith is an award-winning former publicist who now teaches authors how to market their books. Three groups have recognized her site as an outstanding resource for authors, so you know her advice is author-tested.

Download Sandra’s free “Top 5 Free Book Promotion Resources” and you’ll also receive the free weekly “Build Book Buzz” newsletter loaded with book marketing tips and advice.

19 Responses to How to get kicked out of a Facebook group
  1. Dagny
    January 17, 2018 | 10:28 am

    I clicked on the link and I’m not in the group so either I was never in it and don’t remember or I got kicked out at some point and did not notice!

  2. walter stoffel
    January 17, 2018 | 12:34 pm

    As fate would have it I just got banned from Facebook(not any particular group)minutes ago. This morning I sent a post to about 15 dog-themed groups.An hour later, I sent a link to a video about a dog that saved a girl’s life. Nothing advertising my book, no link to my web site.
    I can only guess it was the volume of postings that snagged me? Any other possibilities. I know I’ll never get an answer from Facebook

    • Sandra Beckwith
      January 17, 2018 | 12:49 pm

      Uh-oh. I suspect it’s the mass posting, but that’s just a guess. What a pain.


    • Kathy Steinemann
      January 17, 2018 | 6:54 pm

      I’ve had it happen to me too, Walter. I haven’t been able to figure out the magic number. Some days I can post to ten groups, all posts worded differently, and other days Facebook gets annoyed at five.

      As soon as the system sends you a message that says your post looks like spam, stop posting. Go to the link they provide and tell them it’s not spam. They should reinstate it if it doesn’t violate their community guidelines.

      Important: Don’t post to any more groups until the following day, or they’ll ban you for several days.

      • Sandra Beckwith
        January 17, 2018 | 7:15 pm

        Great advice, Kathy. Thanks!


  3. Lif
    January 17, 2018 | 4:12 pm

    Not sure what “10. Be sure to add “and go!” when you ask for advice” means. Could you explain? Thanks.

    • Sandra Beckwith
      January 17, 2018 | 4:27 pm

      Sometimes people add that to a request for help, as in: “What’s your favorite slow cooker recipe? And go!”


      • Cat Jordan
        January 18, 2018 | 3:39 am

        Oh my goodness, I hate that so much. I see it on regular posts in my feed too.

        • Sandra Beckwith
          January 18, 2018 | 9:57 am

          I do, too, Cat! I never do “go” in response — how about you?


  4. Karen
    January 17, 2018 | 4:46 pm

    Hi, Sandy! Good article. When I was first learning (and needing) to promote my book, I struggled with interacting in FB groups because, of course, I wanted to promote. As I’ve become more involved in some of the groups, I discovered the real value is in the connections I make, the friendships that have blossomed, the advice I received, etc.

    • Sandra Beckwith
      January 17, 2018 | 4:53 pm

      Hey Karen, you must have figured it out because you’ve done a great job promoting your book!

      One of the problems with authors in particular is that there are A LOT of groups where you just drop in a link to your book’s sales page and run — with the expectation that readers will see it and buy. They don’t, and they don’t, but that’s another discussion…. What’s relevant here is that too many authors think all groups are “drop & run” groups and don’t realize that there’s this whole other “discussion” category.

      Thanks for stopping by!


      • Cathryn Wellner
        January 17, 2018 | 8:52 pm

        I’m a big fan of Facebook and Instagram (glad you joined, Sandra – good to see your posts on IG). The drop & run that can get us banned on FB is equally annoying anywhere in the social media sphere.

        • Sandra Beckwith
          January 17, 2018 | 11:18 pm

          I’ve been on Instagram 4 years. How about you?

          Some FB groups for authors and books are set up specifically for that drop & run approach, but none that I’m involved with. I agree — it’s a useless tactic no matter what the platform.


  5. Dana Michaels
    January 19, 2018 | 8:49 pm

    Thanks, Sandy… Good post. I especially love your final point. All those things we should have learned in kindergarten… I wonder why so many people didn’t. (sigh)
    Thank you for sharing so much of your expertise with those of us who are trying to learn it all while working full-time day jobs and writing books.

    • Sandra Beckwith
      January 19, 2018 | 9:05 pm

      You’re welcome, Dana. And thanks for the kind words. I try!

      I don’t know how so many of you fit it all in and do it so well, and yet, you do! Keep it up.


  6. Nancy
    January 24, 2018 | 10:51 am

    Thank you! I especially like the one about self-promotion. It’s difficult within a group I’m in not to talk about my book or page. I’m there to offer help and insights and very occasionally, to ask a question, and I’m considered an expert on the topic. Thus, I’ll say “my book” or “I wrote a blog piece on this that goes into greater detail, but basically….” and let the other person ask for more.

    I disagree on thread hijacking. I encourage it on my page, and will start a new thread on a topic that is taking off. This worked well in some community pages I was in. Some of the most creative people are nonlinear in their thinking, and I like them to feel welcome.

    • Sandra Beckwith
      January 24, 2018 | 12:32 pm

      Thanks for your insights, Nancy. Re. thread hijacking, I have 2 thoughts. One is that the hijacker is asking a question that deserves attention that it won’t get. That’s because in many cases, people who can help aren’t reading the thread because they’re not interested in the designated topic. Instead of starting a new discussion myself, I encourage the off-topic poster to start a new discussion to make sure their voice gets heard. I like that you do it for them — I just prefer to let the individual take the lead. The second is that in some situations, the hijacker takes the discussion in a whole ‘nother direction, with the result being that the original poster’s issue gets completely lost. That’s not fair to the person who started the discussion.


  7. Donna Freedman
    February 20, 2018 | 4:06 pm

    My favorite FB group gaffe is when someone was asked not to promote his work on that particular day but rather to wait for a “share your stuff” day.

    He argued with her, saying it was NOT promotion. (Hint: It was.)

    Later, dude.

    In one group I’m in, whenever people ask a question about promotion, agents, editing, the color of the sky or whatever, there’s this one guy who always always ALWAYS manages to work in the fact that he’s not a “selfie,” i.e., a self-published author but rather one with a REAL publishers (although he never says which publisher and seems to be posting under a pseudonym).

    Good for you. You’ve got a publisher. You’re also insufferable.

    Besides, one of the hardest-working writers I know, who has in fact been on The New York Times best-seller list, has opted to go the self-publishing route. It is no longer the sole province of people who have no other options.

    I enjoyed this article and have bookmarked your site.

    • Sandra Beckwith
      February 20, 2018 | 5:10 pm

      Donna, I love your perspective. Thank you! This is great feedback. Regarding self- vs traditional publishing, it’s not as black and white as some might think. This makes me think I should create some kind of matrix that helps people decide what might make the most sense for their situation. Thanks for the idea!

      And please come back and comment again!


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