WHAT WE LEARNED THIS WEEK: You can’t afford to ignore social media monitoring

You may have seen a finding from the Advertising Standards Board this week that comments on a company’s Facebook page actually constitute ads. That means if a user is posting something wrong, offensive or misleading to your page, you could be liable.

Now, this isn’t something that will pop up every day in your Facebook strategy, but it does underline a key lesson – you need to pay more attention to what’s going on in your social media profiles.

If you have users who are posting misleading, or even defamatory, comments, then you need to get on that straight away. Take them down as soon as you can.

It really comes down to investing more time and money in your social media. You ought to be spending more time monitoring these pages – otherwise you could find yourself in some trouble you never intended.

Multiple backups will never fail you

The biggest story in the tech world this week has been the incident surrounding a former Gizmodo writer and tech reporter who had his complete digital life hacked and destroyed.

A hacker gained access to his iCloud password – simply by calling up Apple tech support and convincing them he was legitimate – and then used that to wipe out his devices and access his Twitter account.

There are plenty of lessons to learn from this incident – but the fact you should continuously back up your data is among the most important.

It’s a message that’s repeated time and time again, and for good reason, as users find themselves without key data. In this case, photos and documents are lost forever.

Back up your data in the cloud, and then back it up again on another piece of media that isn’t connected to the internet. It may seem like too much work, but once you’ve been hacked, you won’t care.

Be prepared for older online users

This week the Sensis report into the online activity of Australians has found not only that more Australians are shopping online, but that more Australians aged over 65 are shopping online. In fact, they’re using social media as well.

While businesses may not think of over-65s as a key demographic, the report clearly spells out this is a growing market – especially with the ageing baby boomer generation. And that means you ought to be catering for them.

That doesn’t necessarily mean making every decision with one particular group in mind. It may just mean making sure your websites, including mobile sites, are easy enough for those aged over 65 to use.

Don’t block yourself out of a key demographic. Pay attention to online trends and note where you can pick up some new users.

Secrecy can sometimes be an advantage

There have been plenty of key secrets revealed during the Apple vs Samsung trial. And last week, we heard a bunch more when executives Phil Schiller and Scott Forstall took the stand.

But perhaps the most fascinating revelation is the sheer amount of security involved during the first days of the iPhone.

Staff were issued badges and could sometimes be scanned up to six or seven times before getting into work. Cameras were also used to make sure no one unauthorised could enter the workspace.

Now, there’s no reason you need to emulate this type of behaviour in your own business. But surely there’s a security lesson here. If you have critical data and plans in your own company, then you can never have too much security. After all, if things go bad, you’ll be thankful for it.


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