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Creating an Insights Analyst

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There is a role that may not exist in your company, but could be vital to your future success.  Fortunately, the great thing about this role is that you can fill it today, without paying a dime.  What is this magical role, you ask?  The Insights Analyst.

Now, I don’t want to mislead you by saying that getting a real analyst for your company’s data is going to be free or easy, but what we’re talking about here is a process that will help ensure you get consistent data out of the social platforms you are utilizing to boost your business.

You, the reader of this hilarious and informative blog post, are likely the owner or administrator of one or more Facebook Pages.  Through those Pages you run any number of social applications, promotions, and advertisements, and likely use at least one social media platform to help you in any or all of those areas.

In performing any of those actions, you’ve probably become familiar with the process of authenticating your Facebook account to a Facebook application specific to that platform. That allows the platform to act on your behalf for as long as your Facebook account is verified with it.

However, this raises a few problems.

First and foremost - how much do you trust that platform?  It’s unlikely that any of the well-known platforms are going to do anything nefarious with the permissions you’ve just granted, but plenty of people are uneasy about granting a full range of permissions to an application that you only want to have access to Insights data.

Second, you may be acting in a role for your company, granting an application access to one Page.  You’ll do this by granting access with your own Facebook account, which has access to that Page.  But if you happen to run a Facebook Page for your Pete Stringfellow tribute band comprised entirely of slightly-built men, the Petite Stringfellows, that Application now has full access to that Page as well.

Thirdly, and perhaps least known, when you change the password for your Facebook account, all of the applications that you’ve granted access to then lose that access.  Since there are a number of reasons to change your password regularly, and in an organization there may be different people granting access to different applications without knowing about this condition, it can cause a mire of lost of information and confusion about what the cause was.

Enter: the Insights Analyst.

Here’s what we’re going to do.  Go to Facebook and sign right the heck out.  Then click on the Sign Up button next to that familiar Facebook logo.  You’ll be presented with this screen.

Create a new Facebook account using an email address.  I recommend that this account be available to all members of your organization, so you may want to ask your systems administrator to create a new account for just this purpose.

(Sidenote:  For those wondering why my password has so many characters; it is because of this comic:

All credit in the world to http://www.xkcd.com/936/)

Complete the sign-up process, validate your email address, and then add yourself as a friend on that account.  Now you’re going to sign out again, log back in to your main account, accept your friend request, and navigate to the Page you are interested in connecting to a social media platform.

Click on Edit Page -> Edit Settings.  Then navigate to Admin Roles, and you’ll see a screen similar to the following.

Type in the name of your new best friend, the Insights Analyst, and select, you guessed it, “Insights Analyst” from the dropdown menu where it initially reads “Manager”.  This will grant your new Facebook Account just the permissions to read Insights data for this one page.  That means that any applications connected through this user are limited to those same permissions.

Save your changes and you are almost there.

Now you have a new Facebook account that can safely have “shared” access across your organization.  It doesn’t have access to any Pages other than the ones your organization runs, and it doesn’t have deeper access than you think any given application needs.  Now whenever you connect a social media platform to Facebook, make sure you are logged in as your Insights Analyst account and you won’t have to worry about giving out excessive permissions.  If you need a password change, you should have an easier time keeping track of which applications will need their connections renewed.

Enjoy the newfound sense of easy data integrity!

 

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