4 Steps to Facebook Privacy

Did you know that you can select what groups of people can view different parts of your Facebook profile? By using listing and customized settings, you can help keep your professional life and personal life separate.

At a recent event, I ran into several people who expressed apprehension when it comes to getting involved in Facebook professionally. What if the wrong person sees the wrong thing? How can I keep my personal and professional life separate? While, it’s not possible to plan for every contingency, there are ways to ensure that your information is protected. Here are a steps you can take to sure you have good Facebook hygiene.

1)    Set Lists. Before we even talk about privacy settings, make lists of your different kinds of friends. For example, my lists are: Personal Friends, Family, Co-Workers, NCRA Networking, and ASAE Networking. Be sure to create at least one list for people you only want to interact with professionally.  By making these lists, you will enable yourself to create personal privacy settings. Too create a list:

  • a.    From your “Home” tab, click on the “Friends” link on the right hand menu.
  • b.    Then, click the “Edit Friends” button that appears at the top of the page.
  • c.    Click “Create List” at the top of the next page.
  • d.    Enter the name of your list and select the people who belong to that category.

2)   Use Customized Privacy Settings. Once you have created your lists, you are now ready to customize your privacy settings. Based on the lists you created, you can allow different levels of access to different groups of people. To do this:

  • a.    Click on the “Account” button in the upper right-hand corner of your Facebook homepage and scroll down to “Privacy Settings.” You will then see a basic matrix of what parts of your profile are available to the public as well as different general groups of people.
  • b.   Click on the “Customize Settings” link at the bottom of the chart.
  • c.    You will then see each element of your profile listed with a drop down menu. You may use the default settings “friends, friends of friends, etc.” Or, you may choose to allow only certain lists view this information. Click on the drop-down menu, and scroll to “custom.”
  • d.    You will then see an option to make this section of your profile visible to only certain groups. To select a specific list you created in section 1, simply type in the name of the list. Once you have done this, only the people you selected to be members of this list will see this information.
  • e.    If you only want to hide information from specific people, you can list them out individually in the “hide this from” section. However, I have found it easier to simply use listing.

3)    When someone friends you, add them to a list. When you create a new friendship on Facebook, you have the option to add them to one of your pre-created lists. Once you have this system in place, you can vet all new contacts and add them to their appropriate location.

4)    Use Common Sense. Just because you’ve created these lists, doesn’t mean that you now have a blank check to post photos of yourself doing tequila shooters without anyone knowing. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but my philosophy is never to post anything that I wouldn’t mind either my boss or grandmother seeing.

My only disclaimer with any of these steps is that Facebook has a tendency to change its layout from time to time, so the exact order of these steps may change. However, they are usually found in the same general area.


5 Ways to Track Your Social Media ROI

Are you tracking your return?

What information will help you determine if your campaign is effective?

Today, I was sent an article in which one writer argues that tracking your number of “interactions” on social media platforms will not yield an actual return of investment (ROI) for your business. According to the author, likes, re-tweets, follow-backs, and posts are only anecdotal in nature and really don’t do anything to improve your overall revenue goals.

While I agree that tracking tangible returns is important, I disagree that developing increased involvement within your community isn’t a worthwhile activity. Online communities have many moving parts, and I feel that tracking only one aspect of your involvement is a mistake.

When creating a social media plan, include a way to measure all of your metrics. Here are 5 ways to do just that.

1.) Find out how many interactions you get per month. An interaction can be anything from a “like” to a re-tweet. While some interactions may not have a direct impact on your revenue, the time you spend building this community will have long-term positive affects on your business relationships. Social media creates a unique opportunity to create heightened trust between you and your client/customer. The higher number of interactions you have, the more likely you will see a payoff when it counts.

2.) Track your direct ROI from posts designed to increase revenue. When you make a post that is designed to illicit a transaction, track your sales for the next 24 – 48 hours from the post. For example, if you are providing an educational training, see if there is a registration spike that correlates with your tweet or Facebook post. If there is, you are doing something right.

3.) Survey your existing customers. Periodically survey new or existing clients and customers to find out where they heard about your services. If none of them mention your social media sites, your may be talking to yourself on your outposts.

4.) Track what isn’t working. Some material and tactics will turn off your audience. When I first starting using Facebook for a professional purpose, I noticed that if I posted to our page more than once per week, I would start to see spikes in unsubscribed users to our feed. As a result, I made it a point to not post to our page with too much frequency unless I had a good reason. Doing this decreased the spikes. Knowing what doesn’t work can sometimes be just as useful as knowing what does work.

5.) Periodically review your overall return. In general, most of us are already asking the question “is my effort worth my investment?” If you are putting a large amount of time and energy into your outposts, and you aren’t seeing any positive gains, it might be time to re-evaluate your strategy. However, if you are seeing increased networking opportunities, or better yet, an increased revenue stream, the time you are putting into your campaign may be well worth the effort.