I spend a lot of time on social media—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.—so, I get it. I understand how these platforms work; how the different mediums interact and what their usages are for. It becomes second nature to quickly check in to see what’s happening in any given slice of life.
Sometimes though, I forget that not everyone understands the workings of these platforms as well as myself. Wandering through settings on Facebook isn’t intuitive. Understanding what hashtags to use when on Instagram can be daunting for the uninitiated. And figuring out what to post on Twitter can be beyond many. Hence why people turn to me for help with their social media management. Last week, I was reminded of that.
The Ghost of a Facebook Admin
A new client is in the process of taking her company from a partnership to a solo-owned business. We met on the weekend to flesh out ideas for her new website, plus touched on her Facebook page. The website is getting an overhaul. The existing Facebook business page might have to as well, as an admin for the previous page seems to be non-existent. That is where we got stuck and my poor client became overwhelmed.
There have been no posts for two years. Anyone who may have had access to the page, denies being an admin. Someone suggested we needed a password to get in. Nope! I had to explain why that wasn’t possible; Facebook is made of people and even business pages have people behind them. There are no business accounts. Business pages are run by people who already have Facebook accounts. You can have as many people acting on behalf of the page behind the scenes, but those folks already have their own accounts and have been made admins/editors/analysts by an existing admin. And without knowing who the existing admin on a page is—or if there is an existing admin at all—that page is effectively dead.
So start fresh, someone suggested.
While that might have to be the case here, the problem arises that the present page will still continue to exist. Yes, there is a name change, but the location is still the same, as are many of the existing employees. In my head, confusion arises for anyone looking for the company online. And when you have potential for confusion, some people get snippy. Snarky even. It just happens. I would rather see the existing page shut down completely, versus putting a note up on the old page for people to click through to the new site. It just seems unprofessional. Not what I want for my client.
Enter the world of Facebook help pages. Lord, why do they have to be so hard?! While the Facebook app prides itself on being made up of individuals, there are virtually no people to talk to when it comes to trouble shooting issues that arise. You have to hope that you can find a question which has previously been asked, which is close to the issue you are facing. And that someone has answered it sufficiently to help you. There is no phone number to call. No chat window pops up with a helpful icon offering assistance. You are on your own to dig. And that hole can get real deep, real fast.
So I have done some research, but would love if anyone has some advice for me here. How does one shut down a page without being an admin? Is there a way to discover if a page even has a current admin on it? Am I missing a really easy step to solve my client’s dilemma? Help!