Social media is an important aspect of any business’ marketing strategy, but, as you may be aware, it takes a while to build a dedicated following. However, not taking the initial precautions to keep your accounts safe could have detrimental impacts on the overall success of your business.
Although this can be a frightening concept, taking extra care that you are well-protected should keep your social media accounts safe and secure. So, what do you need to be aware of, and how can you stay safe in the social media world?
Here are a few useful tips that you should be putting into effect if you haven’t done so already:
1. Choose a strong password
Today, when it’s so easy to hack any account, simply using “password” as your password isn’t going to cut it.
A strong password should contain a variety of numbers, letters, and symbols to make it hard to guess, but not too hard to forget. It’s also bad practice to use the same password for each social account you have: If one account gets hacked, you want to ensure your other accounts aren’t compromised, either. Also, be sure to change your password fairly often, so former employees or outsiders who may have your login details are locked out for good.
Password thieves can wreak havoc, like changing your password to lock you and your employees out of your accounts, so make sure you choose strong passwords for each of your social media accounts. If you find yourself struggling to come up with one, use a password generator to create one for you.
2. Educate your employees
If you’re going to be introducing social media to your marketing campaign, all employees should undergo at least a basic level of training on social media protection. They should be made aware of a few factors that could put your social accounts at risk, such as:* Clicking on advertisements* Sharing passwords with outsiders of the company* Engaging with suspicious posts* Accepting friend requests from strangers * Using public Wi-Fi when out and about or on personal devices while conducting work-related business.
If you’re a business owner little social media experience and are unsure of how to properly train your employees, consider hiring a web marketing agency to help handle your accounts securely.
One such agency, Max Your Web, offers training courses on things like social media safety, and regularly publishes useful, insightful blog post on industry topics—like this recent post about social media—which can help business owners stay up to date.
3. Create and implement a social media policy
In addition to creating secure passwords for each account and training your employees on safe social media use, you should also create a formal social media policy to guide how your employees conduct themselves online as it’s related to work, like what kind of information they share publicly. While it’s important to give them enough creative space to create engaging and interesting posts, it’s important that revealing private or sensitive information about the company be prohibited.
Other information your social media policy should encompass includes a protocol for what to do in the event that an employee or your business’s social media accounts have been hacked, as well as how to avoid potential threats.
4. Use two-factor authentication
Another important step to take to keep your social media accounts safe is to use two-factor authentication to help ensure every person signing into your account is legitimate. Whenever an employee logs in from a new or unrecognized device, they will then be asked to enter a unique pin code into the login page, which is usually sent to the account owner via email or text. This is an effective way of alerting staff members that an unknown user is potentially trying to hack into the accounts.
Some social media sites already ensure two-factor authentication is in place, but in most cases, it may have to be manually set up.
5. Share personal information cautiously
You may think it a good idea to share your entire work history and professional experiences on LinkedIn (which is good for telling potential clients, applicants, and business partners to know more about you and your business), but the reality is you’re basically sharing this information with the entire world.
Another unfortunate reality is that hackers can use every bit of information you share to create a false persona. Once your information has been released and used, it’s very hard to regain control of the damage that has been caused to you and your business.
Social media is hugely beneficial for gaining recognition for your brand, as well as being able to communicate effectively with customers, yet, there are also many complications that come alongside social media marketing when it comes to safety and protection. Ensure your accounts stay safe by following these tips.
Chester Avey has over a decade of experience in business growth management. He enjoys sharing his knowledge with other like-minded professionals through his writing. Find out what else Chester has been up to on Twitter: @Chester15611376.