So it’s International Quit Facebook Day. I’ll be interested to read tomorrow how many people actually quit; I’m sure it’ll be in the news somewhere. Or someone will tweet it. Here’s the news so far.
Key advice: be sensible what you put on Facebook. Carefully look at your settings to see how much information you’re giving out. For example, don’t be daft and display your full date of birth and the town you were born in. Identity thieves may love you for it, but do you really want their love? (And if you’re worried that the folk at Facebook themselves might do something nasty with your identity, cross your fingers behind your back and type in a different date of birth to your actual one. Not nice, I know, but we all have a ton of information out there in the ether these days; protect it as you can.)
If in doubt, click the options which give out the least information to the world, and keep your wider profile visible only to your friends (and even then, do think about just how much info you want to give out). As with LinkedIn, it’s a good idea to only allow people you actually know to befriend you, or possibly friends of people you trust, if you are concerned about your privacy and identity. Yes, that might mean you don’t have 567 friends – you might only have 80 – but they are people you actually know.
If you’re a business person and you’re using your personal Facebook account for business, be sensible about what images you load up. Nobody wants to see you drunk and disorderly at a party. It might have been fun at the time, but it could influence the way future clients think about you. You have less control about the tags other people put on their photos, but you can control your own account as you like.
Realistically, if you’re going to use Facebook for business, start a business page. Keep it businesslike. Attract fans. Direct your clients to it. Make it a separate identity to your own Facebook personal page.
Facebook is growing in popularity as a business tool. I don’t, at this point, use it for my own company but I do maintain a business page for one of my clients. It’s another way to advertise your products and services for free using viral marketing.
Oh, and think about this: Facebook has received a ton of publicity this month. Even if it wasn’t all good, it’s the name that’s on everyone’s lips, or fingertips.