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Ultimately who owns your Facebook Business Page?

Facebook Pages are all the rage and with good reason: Every business that deals with people needs one because Facebook is where the people are!

Problem is most small to medium-sized business owners are busy, don’t have the time and would simply prefer to have someone else do it for them.

Facebook “experts” everywhere are offering to help create with the ‘difficult’ task of creating Facebook Pages for busy professionals who want them.

Fact is, a basic Facebook Page is very easy to create and sometimes you’ll hear someone say “sure, I can do it for you,” but before you let them, here are a few pointers to ensure that your Facebook Page is the property of your business.

Ffacebook brand pages

Now there was a time when this was major no-no. At that time the creator of a Facebook Page could never be removed as an administrator. Simply, whichever employee uses his or her personal Facebook account to create the company Facebook Page would forever have access to it. Even if that employee left the company. Even if you fired that employee for gross negligence or criminal activity — like illegal use or abuse of your Facebook Page.

Luckily that has all changed and now page creators can be deleted as administrators. This is true, however, only if the Page creator adds someone new as an admin. Thus, it should be company policy that whoever creates a company Facebook page must immediately add a second administrator as soon as a Page is created. If that doesn’t happen, a Page creator will control your company Facebook Page forever

All this jargon?

For those confused by the nomenclature

  • a Facebook Profile is the account used by a person
  • Facebook Page is the account used by a brand or business.

The distinction is made because multiple people (Profiles) can work for or administer a single business or brand (Page).

What was the Fan page thing?

Ah yes, one of the most common questions we get. This is simply the OLD name for a Facebook Page. It came out of a MySpace like thought that bands and singers had public pages for their FANS to.

So simply, they used to be Fan pages, but then Facebook in their wisdom decided that “fan”  didn’t really describe the relationship customers had with their brands and companies. More than be a “fan” they though you could “like” it a lot better. So they really only swapped the “Become a Fan” buttons for “like” buttons on brand pages.

The Page Creator has the Power (initially!)

Facebook Pages must be created though an existing Facebook Profile. The profile that creates the account will initially have primarily administrative control over the Fan Page forever. So what does that mean? It means that any person made with administrator role has indefinite control over the operation and destiny of your Facebook Page.

I know you may be thinking: What could Possibly go wrong? Well here are a few examples:

The Upset Employee

So you have an employee who’s a Facebook ‘expert’ and they offer to create the Facebook Page for your business and even manage it. Well, six months from now, there is a slow economy or something else that forces you to lay them off or fire them and they decide to delete your Page and all the 800 people “like” your company page you’ve generated and you have no legal discourse.

The friend or associate who claims to be a ‘Facebook expert’

Expert? First of all, there really is no such thing as a Social Media or Facebook ‘expert’. Event he guys and girls that we all see as ‘experts’ themselves claim not to be!

Second, similar to the upset employee, friends often have disagreements that lead to ended friendships. You never want to be pessimistic about friendships, you have to be realistic as a business owner and know that you have to be prepared for the worst and in this situation, it isn’t much to ask a friend to give you primary control of what’s already yours.

Other stuff…

What if the person who owns your account gets flagged for spam? What if their account gets deleted or they delete the account themselves? Consider all these factors considered when creating your Facebook Page and make your final decision to be that the page will be created in your name through your profile OR get ownership in writing!

Facebook Page Admin Roles – Who, What & Why?

Page admins can have 5 different roles, each with different abilities. Only managers can change what kind of admin someone is. All admins are managers by default.

Here is a great article by Natalie Alaimo about the different roles! Read full article here.

“For a very long time Facebook users have been waiting for Facebook to provide them with different levels of page administrators. It used to be that the original page creator couldn’t be deleted as a page admin, and thankfully that has been changed. Until that change came about, any admin could delete any other admin – which, as you can imagine, caused some issues when businesses didn’t go exactly as planned.”

Claim what’s yours!

So what to do? For sure have someone else build your Facebook Page, but have a written condition that you are set as an administrator from the start.

Always have at least two admin on your page

That way if something was to happen to your personal profile someone else can still access your page. Using this reasoning, we recommend having two Manager roles, and as many of the other levels as is required. There is no official word on what happens if a page doesn’t have any Managers (or a Manager) who can’t access the page, however we assume that a Content Creator can’t be automatically upgraded. Therefore it’s important that you have at least two Managers. A Manager should be someone; you trust (ie partner, business partner, sibling), follows the Facebook rules and a person you aren’t likely to have a falling out with (which could get nasty).

These changes are a great step in assisting business owners with the security of their Facebook page.

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