As more businesses create custom Facebook pages to connect with fans, friends, and prospective customers, the dependence upon Facebook as a platform for communicating is growing by the day. Love it or hate it, Facebook is a good way to connect with people but I think deep down many businesses are aware of this paradox:
- We need Facebook so we don’t want to abandon it.
- We don’t control Facebook and they can do whatever they want.
We’ve come a long way from the days when companies had a single online presence and it was one they controlled completely. With Facebook, you give up the control for the opportunity to gain awareness or leads for your business. But happens when Facebook makes changes?
Case In Point: The August, 2010 Page Change
Back in August this point was made all too clear. Facebook decided to change the size of their pages and reduced the width of all fan pages from 760 pixels to 520 pixels wide. This means that the people who spent a lot of money (anywhere from a few hundred dollars to over $1,000) on a custom fan page had something that didn’t work right anymore.
Facebook announced these changes two weeks ahead of time so businesses wouldn’t be taken completely off guard, but the pain of changing was still very much there. It meant extra time, extra expense, and in some cases living with a broken Facebook page for a few days.
Getting Facebook Insurance
Facebook makes changes all the time so when you’re building anything on it you need to stay on top of the changes to understand whether they affect anything you’re doing. For this reason I think a company that has a custom Facebook tab should consider Facebook insurance. Here’s how you know if you have Facebook insurance or not:
- If your company has developers available who can update your custom pages, you have Facebook insurance.
- If you have an ongoing relationship with a freelance developer so that if something changes with Facebook there’s a plan in place to manage it, then you have Facebook insurance.
- If, however you’ve never talked to your freelance developer about what happens to your custom page(s) if Facebook makes a change, then you don’t have Facebook insurance. Likewise, if the person who created it for you doesn’t work for your company anymore, you don’t have Facebook insurance.
Having Facebook insurance means that you have already determined who will make changes when Facebook makes a change that will impact your page…because eventually they will. Whether it’s someone inside your company or finding someone outside your organization, Facebook has proven itself to be both valuable but ever changing, and therefore every smart business with a custom page needs Facebook insurance.
Where To Get Facebook Insurance
I only know of one company you can hire that offers Facebook insurance the way I’ve described here. I’m sure there are others, but Transparent Social Media offers Facebook site insurance, and they’re the only ones I know of doing this.
Facebook is a good tool for many businesses but they change with enough regularity that being prepared for the changes and expecting that sometime they’ll impact your business is a good precaution. Talk to your own developer or find one who can help you, but don’t keep working uninsured.