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  • Writer's pictureErika Andresen

These are The Days of Our Social Media Business Lives

Business Continuity isn't just for disasters and cyber events. Reliance on social media platforms can be tricky to your business operations and you need to think long and short term impacts. This goes from basic access, to the inner workings of the platforms, to politics and current events. First, think about how you access your social media. I'm going to take you real basic. You will need a smartphone or a laptop/desktop (I'm covering all possibilities for a reason, as dated as they are). Which means you need an internet connection or data on your phone plan. You also need an account on each of the platforms with a username and password. Now let me start taking away each of these items. You drop your phone in a sink of water. Do you have a laptop or desktop to use? Are the computers up to date with their security patches? You are preparing to do a Facebook live from your laptop. Your internet either goes out or has terrible service. Are you prepared to jump to your phone (with enough data on your plan) or do you have a LAN cable to go from your computer into the actual modem (it boosts the signal)? You are going to log in to do your Facebook live. Do remember your password? Did your password manager mess you up because you updated your password from your phone but you're using your laptop so it didn't update properly? Are you logging in with enough time to reset it or wait until you get done with lock-out waiting period because you got it wrong too many times? Second, there are a lot of businesses that exist as Facebook businesses only or primarily rely on Facebook while using other social media to advertise their business that exists on the Meta platform. Ever been in Facebook Jail? Never heard of it? You can be locked out of your business page for up to 21 days for intentionally or accidentally falling afoul of Community Standards and "suspicious activity." That includes behavior the AI thinks looks like spamming...which is an easy mistake with marketing campaigns. If you go into Facebook Jail, are you dead in the water or can you still manage to operate your business? If all of your contacts are stored on the platform, it will be hard to tell people what happened or communicate with them at all. By the way, this would be an example of crisis communications. Third, consider current events with the platforms you use. I'm looking at you, Twitter and TikTok! It is entirely possible that Twitter won't exist for much longer with Elon Musk at the helm. If tweeting is your preferred method of communication, have you started shopping around for an alternative? The demise of Twitter will also greatly impact emergency management services as the platform is used widely during disaster events to inform the public. The US government is close to banning TikTok. The Senate passed a bill that bans TikTok on government-owned devices Wednesday night. A new bill was introduced Tuesday to more broadly ban TikTok in the US. The heart of the matter is US user data privacy and it's potential for misuse by governments that are considered "foreign adversaries" (China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela).

So to wrap up:

1) Review the tools you need to access your business

2) Make sure you can operate your business offline

3) Think about alternatives to your current preferred methods

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