I’ve mentioned before that whilst there are a range of different social media platforms that you can use to reach people, your number one priority when it comes to online marketing for your financial advice business should be to drive traffic to your website.
Because you own your site. You control it.
You don’t own your Facebook account – Facebook does. And if something goes wrong, you can lose it.
Don’t think it can happen to you? Read on.
Hacked on Instagram
I read an article in one of the weekend papers about a lady who had her Instagram account hacked.
Someone was able to access her account and changed her password, locking her out of the account. They then proceeded to post images and say things that were definitely not the sorts of things that she’d say.
Apparently she had around 30,000 followers – people who subscribed because she had a very photogenic child. She’d set up a mini-business around her Instagram account with designers sending her clothes etc for her daughter to model.
The hacker was able to gain access to all her private messages on the Instagram account, including details of her home address. Are you feeling a bit sick in the stomach yet?
She’d tried unsuccessfully to get Instagram to recognize her as the rightful account holder and was unable to regain access to her account.
There was a social media ‘expert’ quoted who suggested some things people could do to reduce the risk of this happening to them. Unfortunately the one most important thing you could do wasn’t mentioned – have strong passwords. I’ve done a blog post and video on this before and explained how important this is. If she had a strong password she may not have been hacked.
My Facebook Page Story
I had something interesting happen this past week. I went to post a couple of articles from this site onto my Facebook page and received an error message saying the content had been flagged as abusive by a Facebook user.
I was unable to post my content to my Facebook page. And it wasn’t abusive.
So I tried searching for ways to fix the problem. And what I discovered is that it’s very difficult to actually contact anyone in Facebook. You can post about your problem in their forum, but no-one actually answers.
There is a way to submit feedback to Facebook. I tried that twice and received no response other than a generic email saying thanks for your submission; we’ll take on board your feedback and probably won’t reply to you.
So I had this problem that I could post stuff from other sites to Facebook, but not anything from my site. And this meant that no-one else could post content from my site onto Facebook. Not good.
After a week of this I had a brainwave. I’d been doing some Facebook advertising and I did wonder if someone had flagged one of those ads as being spam which led to my website being flagged.
So I got in touch with the Facebook Advertising support. I discovered that when using this channel it’s actually quite easy to get hold of someone.
I simply told them the problem, asked them to review my site and said I wouldn’t do any more advertising until the problem was fixed.
A day later it was all sorted. They were very helpful
What I’ve Learnt
When you’re using a social media account, you lose a degree of control. In my case, I couldn’t get my account reviewed. In the Instagram case, the person lost her account.
When you own your website and domain name you’re in control.
By all means use social media as a way of driving traffic to your website. I do.
But don’t forgo having a website because you have a Facebook page. They’re not the same.
Make your website the hub of all your digital marketing activity.
Drive traffic to your site. Convert that traffic to email subscribers. Convert your email subscribers to prospects and then clients. Rinse and repeat.
What are your thoughts? Have you ever experienced something like this?