Telegram is one of the most popular instant messaging apps, giving Facebook-owned WhatsApp healthy competition. The app offers almost all the features found in WhatsApp for effective communication.
Apart from direct chats with your contacts, you can join two types of communities on Telegram: Telegram Channels and Telegram Groups. They are similar to WhatsApp Groups and Broadcast Lists.
Take a look at what these are, how they differ from each other, and which one is best for you.
What Is a Telegram Channel?
A Telegram Channel allows you to broadcast your message to a large number of subscribers.
There are no limitations on how many people can join a Channel, but they cannot interact with each other.
Telegram Channel admins are the only ones with the right to post one-way messages.
What Is a Telegram Group?
A Telegram Group, on the other hand, is just like any other messaging app group.
All Group participants can communicate with each other in the Group and share multimedia files, while the admin holds the right to restrict member's interaction.
Types of Telegram Channels and Groups
Telegram Channels and Groups can both be public or private. As the name suggests, public Groups and Channels are easily accessible by searching their username in the search bar, while you can join private Groups and Channels only via an invite link.
Owners and admins are the only ones with access to the Group joining link.
Telegram Channels vs. Groups: 7 Differences
Now that you're familiar with Telegram Channels and Groups, let's look at a few of their differences…
1. Accessing the Profiles of Your Fellow Members
Telegram Channels are more private when it comes to other members' information since you cannot see their profiles. Even if someone from your contact list belongs to the same Channel, you can't find out.
Telegram Groups, on the other hand, are more public in this regard. Whether or not someone is on your contacts list, you can easily access their profile.
You can interact with them in the Group and message them privately as well. However, it depends on the privacy settings on the account that you want to connect to.
2. Rights You Have as an Admin
As an admin of a Telegram Channel, you can post any message, add or remove any member from the Channel, and terminate the Channel at any time. Almost no interaction between members means that all you need to do is update your Channel regularly.
However, an increase in member interaction in the Telegram Group increases the workload for admins. You will have to manage spam properly, remove members breaking the rules, respond to members' requests in direct messages, and maintain a healthy environment within your Group.
Both Telegram Groups and Channels allow you to change your visibility from anonymous to your username and vice versa.
3. Access to Old Chat History
Every member of the Channel has had access to the whole Channel chat since its creation. In this way, new members can check past conversations and documents if they wish.
New members to Telegram Groups can also access old chats. However, the admin can choose to restrict access to prevent new users from accessing older messages.
4. Number of Members
Any Telegram Channel can have an unlimited number of participants, and members are called subscribers.
Initially, you can only have 200 members in a Telegram Group, but if you upgrade it to a supergroup, you can have up to 200000 members.
5. Determining the Engagement
Every message in a Telegram Channel has an eye button at the lower right corner showing how many subscribers have viewed it. Depending on the average message views and subscriber count, you can determine how active a community is.
This number is extremely important if you run a branded community and get regular promotional offers from companies and organizations.
As a Telegram Channel administrator, this number gives you a clear picture of your Channel's performance. Based on this metric, you can also plan the growth of your community.
On the other hand, it's hard to gauge the engagement of a Group as you cannot determine how many members are actively participating in discussion regularly.
6. Group Joining Notification and Silent Messages
All members are notified when someone joins a Telegram Group; joining a Telegram Channel remains secret and only Channel admins can see.
Telegram's Channel administrators can send silent messages to their subscribers, which isn't possible in Groups. Silent messages, as the name implies, are those received without any notification sound. It's handy for sending urgent messages to recipients who are in a different time zone without disturbing them.
Simply press the notification bell next to the message box in the Telegram Channel to send a silent message.
7. Getting Feedback
While you can receive feedback from your community via Telegram Groups, but there is no equivalent way to reach your community via Telegram Channels.
By discussing an idea with your Group members, you can fine-tune it, which is not possible with your Channel subscribers.
Best Ways to Use Telegram Groups and Channels
Telegram allows you to link your Telegram Channel to the Telegram Group directly.
Doing this will automatically post the messages to your Group when you post them on your Channel.
This way, you can have discussions with your audience, hear their feedback and enjoy the rest of the Telegram Groups features. Both Telegram Channels and Groups offer a range of features that streamline communication between family, friends, and colleagues.
A Telegram Group will be a good choice if you want to have a casual discussion with your community where everyone can share their opinion.
On the other hand, creating a Telegram Channel will serve your needs if you want to limit posting content to yourself.
Telegram Group or Channel? Which One Is Right for You?
Since you can interlink a Group with a Channel and restrict Group activity to make it a Channel, why not try out both to find out which one works best for your community?
Telegram keeps on evolving with time with amazing new features. If you are using an older version of Telegram, you should update it to try out the latest features.
Author: Shan Abdul
Source: Shan Abdul.” Telegram Channels vs. Telegram Groups: What’s the Difference?”. Retrieved From https://www.makeuseof.com/telegram-channels-vs-telegram-groups-difference/
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