A friend of mine, a local artist whose work I love, got hacked a few years back and lost control of their Instagram account. Their follower count was in the thousands. As a marketing consultant, it caused me physical pain that they had to start from scratch. Every so often I would poke around to find a way for them to regain access.
Well, this morning a real live Facebook support person told me they could not help us because the Instagram account in question was a personal account and not a business account.
Aggravating, to say the least. (Yes, they do mention the length of time too, but I bet your bottom dollar a business account would have been recovered ages ago.)
SO here is some advice for anyone who uses social media to promote their work. Doesn’t matter what kind of work. These are things I recommend you do to make sure social media services will take you seriously when things go wrong.
- Convert all of your accounts that you use to promote your work into business accounts. (Instructions for the most popular sites will be below.)
- Consider separating your personal from your promotion. It may seem like it is a pain in the neck to have two accounts but most apps now allow you to log in to multiple accounts and switch back and forth between them.
- For the love of Baby Yoda, use different passwords for each site. That way if one account gets hacked, they only have access to that ONE account.
I recommend using a password service like Lastpass to generate annoyingly complicated passwords AND keep track of them all. It’s free and there is even a free phone app now. It’s just a little clunky but totally worth it.
- Go to your profile and tap the 3 lines/menu icon in the upper right corner.
- Tap Settings.
- Tap Account.
- Tap Switch to Professional Account.
- Tap Business.
- If you’d like, you can follow the steps to connect your professional account to a Facebook Page associated with your business. This step is optional and will make it easier to use all of the features available for businesses across the Facebook family of apps. At this time, only one Facebook Page can be connected to your professional account.
- Add details, like your business category and contact information.
- Tap Done.
- If you haven’t done so already, create a Facebook page for your work. Yes, even if you’re a performer who communicates with fans directly. Facebook will even let you convert your current account to a page, basically copying your profile and adding your friends as fans.
- Once you’ve set that up, add 2 or 3 people to the page as admins. If you lose access to your Facebook account, this will ensure someone still has access to your page content.
The next few steps may feel excessive but this will allow you to contact a real live support person if something goes wrong. People who might actually give Facebook money are the most likely to receive actual tech support.
- Create a business manager account using the instructions HERE
- THEN create an advertising account using these instructions HERE
I recommend using pay pal as the payment method so your card number is not stored in the Facebook database. Either way you won’t get charged unless you actually create an ad.
- Create an ads account using the instructions HERE
As with Facebook, this will give you access to advanced support and you won’t get charged unless you create an ad.
Other social media services that have business/advertising accounts:
- TikTok (No you’re not too old to be on TikTok)
Let me know in the comments if you want me to add instructions for those or any other services I’ve missed.