Historically, managing social media accounts for business has been challenging when it comes to maintaining a separation between your personal and professional online persona and providing secure access to the necessary account managers. However, with the rise of social media solutions for businesses, most social platforms have recognized the need for agencies and businesses to be able to access company profiles via logins and accounts that are not only more safe and secure but also separate from personal profiles. Google, Facebook and Pinterest are just a few channels that have catered to this need — among other social media business needs — by offering accounts specifically for businesses.
Today, we’re going to take a look at Facebook Business Manager. Let’s get down to business!
A brief history
Before the rise of social media business accounts, marketing managers were forced to use their personal accounts to access and manage business profiles. The process was often muddy and confusing, prompting marketing managers to create shared logins or “gray accounts” as a workaround. Facebook eventually addressed this issue by creating Business Accounts (not to be confused with Facebook pages) for individuals who only wanted to use the site to administer Facebook pages and their ad campaigns. Unfortunately, business accounts had very limited functionality, including reduced visibility of the news feed, no search and limits with how you could interact with other people on Facebook, so marketing managers once again resorted to using shared or gray accounts.
What’s a gray account?
A gray account, sometimes called a business account, is a shared login that does not have a real user profile. Some advertisers use or previously used gray accounts to manage multiple Facebook ad accounts, pages or to use Facebook’s APIs. While there are some benefits to using a gray account, like the ability to manage your Page separately from your personal profile, Facebook is about building relationships, and gray accounts do not allow you interact with others. Facebook soon realized that Business Accounts were not an optimal solution to the problem and has been systematically removing these accounts since late 2014. Thus, Facebook now requires page managers using these accounts to either add their personal profile as an admin to the Page or transition to Facebook Business Manager.
Business Manager to the rescue
In April 2014, Facebook introduced Business Manager, a self-service solution for managing access to pages and ad accounts, making it a perfect solution for agencies and large brands that need to give access to multiple people. Business Manager lets marketing managers more securely share and control access to their ad accounts, pages and other assets on Facebook.
Business Manager can help you organize and manage all of your ad accounts and pages in one place and offers the following benefits:
● One centralized dashboard: Use Business Manager to see and manage all your Facebook pages and ad accounts.
● Connected to your work email: Invite people to join your Business Manager using their work email instead of personal email. (Note: Facebook still requires you to log in with your personal account to verify your identity.)
● No more friend requests: Give people in your Business Manager access to pages and ad accounts without sharing usernames, passwords or having to friend request coworkers, clients and partners.
● Security and peace of mind: Clearly see who has access to your pages and ad accounts and easily remove or change who has permission to access your pages and ad accounts.
● No out-of-pocket investment: Facebook Business Manager is absolutely free to use.
Who should use Facebook Business Manager?
Facebook recommends using Business Manager to manage your company’s presence on Facebook if you have multiple ad accounts, have more than three pages, have multiple people who work on your Facebook presence, or if you work with a partner, such as an agency or media company. If you meet any of the above requirements and are looking for a more advanced tool to streamline your workflow, you should transition to Facebook Business Manager. However, if you’re a small business owner with only one Facebook page or ad account, the increased complexity might be more of a hindrance than help to your social media marketing strategy.
How to upgrade to Facebook Business Manager
Upgrading to Facebook Business Manager is easy. Go to business.facebook.com and click “Get Started.” But first, here are a few things you’ll need:
● A personal Facebook account to confirm your identity
● A Facebook page to use as your primary account page
● (Optional) A Facebook page you want to move to Business Manager
● (Optional) The names and work email addresses of the people you’d like to add to your business
Learn more about Business Manager basics by visiting Facebook’s help center. Still have questions about whether Business Manager is right for your business? Drop me a line.