Can you mix business with pleasure??

on Facebook?

Pictures of you at rest and play may not sit well with your business persona or colleagues and those playful pictures may have been fun at the time, but they could just as easily surface and bite you in the bum later in life.  You can change privacy levels to a degree but really just start again with a business one… let’s see what we can do…

Protect Your Personal Profile from Facebook Page

The only way you get to separate a fan page from any personal profile is with a completely different email login. This must be done with a brand new account without associating with any others with a completely separate (and never used on Facebook before) email address and after logging out.  Even better use a different browser… and keep it separate.. ie use Safari or Firefox for personal logins and IE or Chrome for business or they may merge!

DO NOT sign up for create profile whilst in a fan page!  WARNING – you CANNOT  separate a fan page from a personal profile with a different login. Here are some ideas on what you can do to tighten your profile visibility and manage contacts accordingly:


1  Hide Profile from Facebook Search
The highest level of security is to hide your profile completely from Facebook Search, shield off all possibilities for business contacts to find you via Friend Finder:

Go to Account > Privacy Settings > Basic Directory Information (View Settings) > Customize ‘search for me on Facebook’.

2  Select Unique Username or None for your Profile’s Vanity URL
So you cannot be found on Facebook Search, hide your name from business contacts who may still able to locate you via Username – ‘’. Do not set one for the profile or modify it if necessary. You only get one chance to edit your profile username so get it right and remember you cannot hide this in your settings:

Go to Account -> Account Settings -> Username -> Change username

3  Protect Profile Information from Public Viewing
You can hide from strangers. Modify as instructed by going through your Account -> Privacy Settings -> Basic Directory Information > View settings:

a. Hide your Friend List – To protect private contacts, close friends or family members, customise your Friend List to ‘Me Only’ or ‘Friends Only’.

b. Hide Your Education/Work; Hometown – Not really necessary for friends and stops it coming up in searches or accidently.

c. Hide Your Interests & Other Pages Joined – Delete or unlike the fan pages to remove your icon from that page  Info Tab -> Edit (Likes and Interests) -> Remove.

Or hide them from you in your Info tab.

d. Hide your Contact Information

 Go to Account -> Privacy Settings -> Sharing on Facebook -> Customize Settings-> Contact Information, set the visibility to ‘Friends’ or ‘Me Only’.

e. Hide your Birthday and other Personal Information

Check through the settings:  Go to Account -> Privacy Settings -> Sharing on Facebook -> Customize Settings-> Things I Share

And Info Tab -> Edit

4  Limit Contactability
Below options require you to be selective in whom you are friend-ing on your profile.

a. Send Friend Requests – The highest level of security is ‘Friends of Friends’. It is an option set to encourage friends to find one another. 

b. Send Messages – The highest level of security is ‘Friends Only’. Strangers won’t be able to contact you.

5  Limit the ability to be tagged or shared by friends
You cannot control what your friend is sharing, but you can avoid been tagged. This will prevent your profile link been exposed to public while making sure no videos or images are attached to your profile:

Go to Account -> Privacy Settings -> Sharing on Facebook -> Customize Settings -> Things Others Share

Your friend my still able to use status-tagging on you, at least you can remove the tag as soon as you found it on the wall:

6  Check and Remove Unnecessary Facebook Applications

Make it a regular habit to check on your Facebook Applications. Remove the game apps by clicking ‘x’ to avoid intrusion or hacking. Be skeptical in all games and quizzes sending your way. Ignore or block the apps for good so they won’t appear on you Wall posts.

Go to Privacy Settings -> Applications and Websites -> Edit Your Settings

a. Game & Application Activity – To prevent your recent activity been shown on the app’s dashboard, customize the visibility to ‘Only Me’.

b. Info accessible through your friends – You can set which information you allow to be shared by applications/games/websites when your friends use them. For the info you preset as ‘Everyone’ in the Privacy Setting, the app can automatically obtain the info unless you remove or turn off the platform applications.

c. Instant Personalization – Untick the checkbox if you do not want to be included in the relevant information shown to your friends when they land on Facebook partner websites and vice versa.

d. Public Search – This involves Public Search where things you have approved to be shared with ‘Everyone’ can show up on and off Facebook, this including showing a preview of your profile as search results (see below). Do not conflict this option with the ‘Facebook Search’ in Basic Directory Information, synchronize them both.

7 Avoid Tagging and Exposing your ‘Places’

Facebook has announced a new geotagging feature called ‘Places’. By allowing integrations with other location-based services such as Foursquare, Gowalla etc, it enables facebook friends to tag and check in for each other. Do you really want friends to say where you are?

Go to Account -> Privacy Settings -> Sharing on Facebook -> Customize Settings -> Things I Share, and look for below settings:

Go to Account -> Privacy Settings -> Sharing on Facebook -> Customize Settings -> Things Others Share

Now several practical ways you should know to avoid clashes between the two platforms:


Managing your Profile and Facebook Page


8  Separate your Business and Personal Contacts with Facebook Lists

A MUST if you have mixed both business and personal contacts in your ‘Friends’ list. Not just for the sake of following up easily in News Feed, but to better control over what’s to be shared to specific group of people when updating your Wall.  Group your contacts using the list facility and you can control what is being shown to them all. Go to and choose the create list section in the top left hand side
Account -> Edit Friends -> Lists -> Friends – Go through your list of friends and put them in lists.

9  Control Posting Visibility WITHIN the Profile via Share-ability

Facebook List enables you to hide sensitive information, friends and even real time Wall posts from appearing on some people’s news feeds. Use the Privacy setting in the Publisher as shown below, select who to block from the info or limiting the update to specific group of people only. For instance, if you about to post a personal update to real life friends, select the customise icon just under the post box and choose who you are sending to.  It is set to everyone usually.

i) Customize privacy settings to allow only listed ‘Friends’ to view it OR,

ii) Block list containing people you don’t want to see it:


10  Tighten Up Privacy Option for ‘Friends of Friends’
Be careful with ‘friends of friends’ because your business contacts may interact with them which may not be good for you.. restrict its visibility further via:

i) Custom Privacy: If the person is in your ‘Friend’ list.

ii) Block: If the person is not in your ‘Friend’ list:

Or if you can’t find the user via ‘Name’, just block from his/her profile instead:


11  Hide Wall Tab from Business Contacts Completely

Another alternative to separate business contacts from personal is by hiding Wall tab from them via ‘Things I Share –> Posts by me’. Thus only allowing close friends/family members to access your Wall tab.  Business contacts will be blocked from viewing your account activities and real time updates. You can still message to business contacts, showcasing them other necessary tabs on your profile without disclosing Wall posts.

12  Page Admin Can Only Represent Him/Herself Outside Business Page

Whenever a page admin tries to comment or post on other facebook accounts, all responses will be seen as coming from the admin’s personal profile that connects with the business page. If your business page has no profile, you won’t be able to comment or join any page at all. Therefore, if you are planning for external networking a personal profile is needed.


13  Network with other Fans or Pages via Status Tagging

Status Tagging can showcase your business page without giving your personal identity. But in order to tag, page admins need to ‘like’ another page with his/her personal profile beforehand (you can hide Liked Pages from Info tab). Even if your profile thumbnail may show in ‘People Who Like’ list, page admins won’t have access to your full profile thanks to the Facebook Privacy Settings. 

14  Assign a Sub Admin for Event Invitations

Sending personalised invitations to fans for page events can only be done via a personal profile. If you are not comfortable to expose your profile promote a trusted PR or collaborator for this task.

Extra Tips:

Use ‘custom privacy’ settings to target business contacts in your ‘Friend’ list.

Public Events – an event created from a Fan Page is already public – share it elsewhere so anyone can join only events created on a personal page are public

Update – regularly to keep interest.


15  Post updates to Personal Profile and Facebook Pages using automators like Hootsuite, Posterous, and…

Instead of switching between browsers, post to all or schedule for when you are busy.

16 ‘Share’ Fan Pages on your Page Profile

‘Share’ is another key influential option for personal profiles. A Fan Page can only do this by re-posting on a Wall and status tag but a Personal Page can not only update your status but also add an image from a url and use the @ tag.

17  Mobile Users: Update Business and Personal Profiles with Different Emails
For mobile users, a unique email will be given to each profile and business page RESPECTIVELY for updating/media file uploading purposes. Set the email correctly, DO NOT GET IT WRONG.
Facebook Page: Edit Page -> Mobile:

Personal Profile: go to this link -> look for ‘Upload via Email’:

18  Don’t post what you don’t want others to see…
Security settings are all well and good but it’s best to not post what you don’t want others to find. Moderate messages, photos, videos and status updates so you’ve got nothing to worry about.


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