I work with small businesses, non-profits, and individuals looking to improve their social media marketing and brand presence. In my first week working with a new client, here are the 4 areas I look to fix or improve upon.

Control Privacy Settings

It sounds obvious, but you need to be sure that your accounts and posts are visible to the right people. For most brands, that means making sure that everything is “Public”. For individuals, it means learning how to protect content meant only for “Friends and Family” while opening up specific aspects of your profile to “Public” view. Gaining mastery over the privacy settings can be a frustrating and confusing experience, but it is essential to protecting yourself so that you can put out the right image.

Use @Mentions

A commonly missed opportunity I see is brands who don’t @Mention other pages in their posts. @Mentions are important to use because they provide context for your audience while generating a notification seen by the owner of the page you are talking about. This gives them a chance to share or respond to your post.

On most social media platforms, you can link to another person or brand in your posts by typing the “@” symbol, followed by their username. As you start to type it out, the service will usually suggest the right page for you to select.

When crafting posts, be mindful of your usage of proper nouns. Look for appropriate cases where you can link those words or phrases to the associated page. Social media is meant to be… social, so find ways to interact with other pages.

Respond to Notifications

Many organizations struggle to manage the customer-service aspect of social media. There is often no formal definition over responsibility for accounts, leading to many missed opportunities which present themselves in the form of notifications.

Your account is typically notified whenever someone:

  • Likes or Shares a post.
  • Leaves a comment.
  • Sends you a Direct Message (DM).
  • @Mentions you in one of their own posts.

Unlike the traditional aspects of your business, social media is running 24/7 and that means that there is potential for a big marketing moment to happen at any time. Organizations who are most successful on social media have embraced the need for flexibility and quick thinking.

Initially, it is often necessary to simply verify that notifications are turned on and that they are flowing to the right person. I’ve dealt with too many organizations who had them turned off or flowing to an email inbox nobody checks to take this for granted. Once that is taken care of, you can improve upon your response protocol.

Bring “Insights” into Decision-Making

Social media marketing has an advantage that other aspects of business don’t, metrics (often called Insights by those companies). Social media services are tracking every user-behavior imaginable, and those that relate to your page are generally provided to you. It is critical that every decision is informed by the analytics provided by those Insights panels. Absolutely everything your organization does on social media can be optimized. There is evidence to inform even simple decisions such as “What time of day should the post go out?”.

Embrace the new tools at your disposal. Decisions don’t need to be made off of gut instinct or on a whim. The justification for any social marketing decision should come from the data.

Cybersecurity for HR Pros

Christina A. Danforth interviews our most recent instructor Michael Wilson about current cybersecurity threats. To learn more sign up for Cybersecurity for HR Professionals: http://www.hrjetpack.com/courses/cybersecurity-17

Posted by HR Jetpack on Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Christina Danforth of HR Jetpack invited me to join her this morning for a Facebook Live Chat about the WannaCry Ransomware. During our 15 minute conversation, I offered a bit of the history to explain where this malware came from. We also talked about what business leaders need to do to keep themselves safe and secure in these crazy times we live.

I apologize for the poor quality of the video. It seems that the audio and video weren’t got out of sync on their way through Facebook Live. Having said that, I do hope you will listen because I’m really happy with the amount of information we were able to share during the chat.

If you find this useful or informative then please check out my course on HR Jetpack: Cybersecurity 101 for HR Pros. It was developed with HR in mind, but the material is applicable to anyone who would like to be safer and more secure in their use of modern technology.

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Photo Credit: geralt via Pixabay

Beware of Fake Facebook Accounts

Not As They Seem

Recently I have helped several friends and colleagues deal with a scary Facebook scheme. The first email from them always starts with concern because their friends are getting friend requests from them on Facebook. It is a huge red flag because they are already connected as friends, and they sent no such requests. Many people assume, incorrectly, that their account has been hacked.

The real cause is often that someone (or an automated bot) has made a new account in that person’s name. They even copy the profile picture and banner photo. After closer inspection, the imposter’s account is clearly fake. It doesn’t display the history of posts, pictures, and other personal information. It is just a shell. The goal is simply to become friends with as many of your real friends as possible, presumably for data mining. Most people see a name and face in the friend request and accept it without questioning or investigating first.
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The Scam

On May 3rd, news started to break that there was a new kind of phishing attack aimed at Google users via Gmail and Google Drive/Docs. I first saw a report on the Google Docs phishing attack in a post on r/Google. The author detailed (with screenshots) how attackers attempted to get control of his Google account.

The scary part of this is that it abused existing Google systems to gain access to the accounts of anyone who clicked their way through the “Allow” screens thinking they were about to get to a document sent by a friend or colleague. It even bypassed login verification and 2-Factor Authentication mechanisms that may have been in place to protect the account. It is a reminder that many attacks aren’t really “hacks” so much as social engineering where the attacker tricks the victim into giving them exactly what they want.
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95 percent of assessments revealed employees were actively researching, installing or executing security or vulnerability testing tools in attempts to bypass corporate security.
Dtex Systems Insider Threat Intelligence Report

The data shows what we all know anecdotally; people get frustrated by web-browsing restrictions in the workplace. To avoid tracking and blocking software, employees are turning to VPNs, TOR, and other anonymity tools.
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