If you’re like me, you don’t care for social media (that’s the polite way of saying it). However, as a business owner, you realize the need for social media as a means of increasing sales and brand awareness. The problem? You don’t like social media, so you are rarely on it, let alone have the time to spend on it while you run your business. The solution? Hire a Social Media Manager to take care of all aspects of your social media initiatives.
Below I give personal examples.
Just read or watch the news about all the hackings of multiple social media platforms. That creates some severe reservations about handing my passwords over to anyone.
Whether you hire a Social Media Management Agency or an individual contractor, they are going to need access to your Facebook Page and your LinkedIn page as well as other platforms. For brevity, I’m just looking at Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
NEVER allow your Facebook Business Page or LinkedIn Company Page to be created under anyone's personal account other than your own. The last agency I hired created both of those under the agency owner’s account. I became dissatisfied, and once I terminated their service, I lost ALL access to my pages. No matter how much they insist DO NOT DO IT! You’ll have to start over from scratch when you leave that agency!
No! And Yes! I know, what?
While security is at the forefront of social media, some platforms are coming around to the idea that many companies outsource their social media efforts. Moreover, they have ways of granting access without giving out your passwords.
Facebook: unless you want your social media manager to build your business page there is no reason to give them your password. You can do the minimum to start your page and then add the person as an administrator providing them full access to the page, or you can limit their control with different page roles. Occasionally the person will need to like the page to be added as an admin. However, they don’t have to be your friend on Facebook.
Here’s a quick guide for doing this.
LinkedIn: Making someone an administrator for a LinkedIn Company Page is much the same as Facebook. The person being added as an admin must be in your network of connections.
Here’s another resource.
Twitter: Unfortunately, Twitter does not provide options for adding administrators. You’ll have to give access with your password if you want someone to post and maintain it for your business.
Many Social Media Managers use tools like Hootsuite or Social Champ to schedule posts to multiple platforms at the same time. It’s possible for you to use these tools as well and connect all your social media accounts, so the manager only needs to sign in with their password. Of course, the cost is yours alone to bear. If taking this route, be warned that your social media management agency may not use or even want to use your scheduling tool. So, you might have to shop around to find someone willing to use it.
As mentioned above, when making someone an administrator of your pages, most of the scheduling tools will use that administrator's password (not yours) to sync up and allow scheduled posts.
There are also password manager tools. Some password managers randomly change passwords. Because of that, this might not be the best option. The scheduling tools mentioned earlier require social platform passwords to sync and post.
This section is not necessarily concerned with passwords, but it’s worth mentioning.
How the hell do you trust anyone these days? That’s a tough one. We live in a world now where someone can attack you online safely from their keyboard. Also, you are limited with what can be done about it.
An agency I hired some years back turned out to be ruthless. Their work was shoddy, and I could not see paying them for the low quality of work they delivered. When I fired them, they retaliated by smearing my company through bogus online reviews. How do I know this? The terrible reviews began immediately. And, none of the people posting had been customers of mine.
In some cases, the reviews can be removed, but in most cases, there is not a damn thing you can do about it. No one likes bad reviews, and that’s what most of these platforms assume: you want bad reviews removed. They're not too concerned about your story.
Keeping your business and information safe should be at the top of your list. Moreover, when you hire a Social Media Management Agency or individual, you should be even more cautious. The digital world has all sorts of malcontents who wouldn’t bat an eye to harm someone. It’s up to you to protect yourself.