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Moderation Tips to Avoid a Toxic Community



Many Facebook Group administrators are experiencing growth. Without proper moderation, a community can easily slip into becoming toxic. Here are some tips for avoiding common mistakes.

I have been moderating communities since 2003, both my own communities as an administrator  and as a moderator at WebmasterWorld.  I have quite a bit of experience with communities, including learning from my own mistakes.

These are a few insights I learned from over fifteen years as an admin and a moderator.

Treat Members with Respect

Rule #1 for moderating a community is to never humiliate a member or make them feel remorse for participating.  One of the worst things a moderator can do is to belittle a member.

The other day I saw an inexperienced moderator call a member “an ass” for questioning a moderator for posting an unsubstantiated rumor about a company.

As an impartial observer, what I saw is that the member questioned the wisdom of spreading an unsubstantiated rumor about a company without citing an authoritative source or any other documentary evidence.

The reason why calling that member an “ass” was not a good response is because it violates the first rule of moderation which is to embarrass a member.

A second reason why it’s not a good response is because a moderator should never be afraid of being questioned.  Being open to criticism makes a moderator a better community leader because it helps them grow. It also teaches them to be gracious, which helps make the moderator and the community popular.

Rather than calling the member an “ass,” the moderator could have responded by acknowledging that the member raised a fair point and learning something from the exchange.


Moderators Set the Tone

Community moderators are leaders and set the temperature of the forum. Community members will take their cue from how the moderators behave themselves and model their behavior on the mods.

If the entire moderator team is on board with the rules of behavior, whether it’s a Facebook group or a traditional forum, the rest of the community will follow along with the behaviors modeled by the moderator team.

Ideally, community admins should think of the kind of community they want to host then have their moderator team model that behavior. No amount of rules will shape the tone of the community as effectively as the moderator’s example.

Define the Tone of the Community

It’s important to define the tone of the community early on. Create a document outlining what kind of community you wish to build.

The tone of the community can then be encouraged in a Terms of Service, which outlines what members can or cannot say in exchange for the privilege of being a member of the community.

Changing the Tone of a Community is Nearly Impossible

Many forum admins make the mistake early on of taking a hands-off approach in order to grow the community.

Anyone who’s read Lord of the Flies knows what happens next: The members turn the community into a dystopian nightmare no advertiser would want to touch.

Once rudeness and casual cruelty enters the community’s DNA it is next to impossible to rein it back in. Attempting to do so generally sparks a rebellion that almost always leads to the founding of competing communities.


While those communities eventually burn out the original community is sometimes left limping along.

Moderation Means Service

Without proper training, some moderators tend to heavy handed moderating. It’s a quirk of human nature that I’ve observed many times.

I’ve always advised my moderators that they are not policing the community. They are serving the community. Their role is that of a servant, not of a police.

As a moderator it is their role to encourage community, good vibes, encourage discussion and upholding the terms of service.

Moderation with a Light Touch

Community members take offense at being moderated. Editing a member’s post or deleting it altogether should be viewed as an action of last resort.

Ideally, the terms of service and moderator behavior should be steering how members behave in a community.

Depending on the tone of your community and what you want it to be, minor infractions should be dealt with in a polite manner by private message. This way one can avoid embarrassing a member.

Communities Should be Fun

Most of all, a community should be fun. The word community is defined as a feeling of fellowship with others who share the same interests. And the word fellowship is defined as friendly association with others.


In general, the moderation policies of a community should encourage those qualities of fellowship in order to ensure a good experience for the members.

And if the goal of the community is to earn advertising revenue, then a community founded on fellowship makes it a better place for advertising, as no business wishes to advertise on a community that allows racism and other foul commentary, and Google AdSense may disable ads on pages that feature negative commentary.

To recap, respect your community members, encourage the moderators to lead by example and have a plan in place for cultivating the kind of community you wish to create.


5 Effective Ways to Run Facebook Ads A/B Tests




Facebook Ads A/B Tests or split tests help them try different versions of ads with various campaign elements. This process helps them arrive at the best version for the organization’s target. 

A/B Tests offer a vast pool of resources to try out various versions. You may get caught up and lose your way to arriving at the best version in a limited time. To better understand this topic you can read the Facebook ad testing guide. Here are five effective ways to run Facebook Ads A/B Tests-

1) Start with the minimal number of variables

This approach will help you analyze the impact of a variable much better. The lesser the variables, the better will be the relevant results and more conclusive. Once you have various versions, you will need to run them through the A/B Significance Test to determine if the test results are valid.

2) The second way is to select the correct structure. 

There are two structures in A/B tests. One is a single ad test, and the other is multiple single variation ad sets. All the variations will go under one ad set in the first structure. Each variation will be under a separate ad set in the second one. Out of the two, the second one works out to be better and gives better results.

3) Use of spreadsheets is important to stay organized. 


These spreadsheets help collect and analyze data to get meaningful insights and arrive at data-backed decisions.

4) Do target advertising and set realistic time goals. 

One approach is to choose an entirely new set of audiences. Also, the data pool should be vast and not the same as some existing campaigns. The reason for choosing a different audience is that Facebook may mix up your ads and give contaminated output. 

Another approach to choosing the right audience is to pick geography. It works better, especially when you have business in a particular region.   

It’s also essential to set a realistic timeline for your testing. Facebook suggests one should run a test for at least four days, but you can choose to run the test for up to 30 days.   

5) Set an ideal budget. 

The concept of a perfect budget is subjective. But, you can fix it yourself, or Facebook can do that for you based on your testing data. A large part of the test budget is spent on avoiding audience duplication. If the same audience sees variations, it could affect the test results.

Besides these top five effective ideas, you will need to take a few more action points to make the testing process efficient. Make sure you put the website’s domain link and not the landing page link in the ad, as that doesn’t look good. Put appropriate Call To Action Button, such as ‘Learn More,’ ‘Buy Now,’ etc. It’s also important to see how your ad is coming across on various electronic gadgets- mobile, tablets, etc.


Another strategy that works is trying to engage the customer. You may add social engagement buttons such as ‘Like’ or ‘Comment.’ Use high-resolution images as they work better with the customers. Low-quality, highly edited images are often not liked and trusted by the consumers.

You can learn more about the audience behavior patterns with A/B test results. Conducting these tests on Facebook streamlines the entire process and makes it smooth for you. With the test results, advertisers and marketers can work on the creatives they need to utilize.

To sum it up, you can run an effective A/B test campaign within the specified budget. You don’t need to spend massive amounts to get your advertisement right. You’ll make the correct assumptions about the performance of variations with a good understanding of business and consumers.

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