A while back I was dealing with two clients that were going through a rebranding. Part of this rebranding included not only changing their visual identity (logo, fonts used, brand colors, etc.), but also their naming identity. When going through a rebranding, there are many, many things to consider (way too many to touch on in this post), but the impact the rebranding will have on your social channels is a pretty significant.
As a digital marketing agency, we supported our clients needs as they related to rebranding their social channels. The renaming of Twitter handles (after researching and vetting naming conventions adhering to the 16 character limit) proved to be a pretty simple task. Changing a company page name on LinkedIn is pretty simple as well, but getting the vanity url that you want may require you to get in touch with the LinkedIn support team, but have no fear, LinkedIn has THE BEST support team and they get back to you super quick. All channels that are part of the Google network (YouTube, Google+) are fairly straight forward to make changes to, but you need to know who on your team is the main owner of the accounts (who set them up originally) because this person will need to verify the changes before they will be made. Facebook though…what a pain.
If you are changing your Facebook page name for the very first time and have less than 200 fans, then you should really have no problems – the process to make this change is pretty simple (see this detailed post from my friend @AmyPorterfield that goes through how to change your Facebook page name in this circumstance). But, if you are trying to change your Facebook page name post 200 fans AND have changed your page name once, maybe twice before…you may have to approach things a little differently. Facebook makes this SO hard to do and I really do not understand why. Now, don’t get me wrong, there is nothing more frustrating than a business changing their name every other month…this should not happen on a regular basis (if it does, there are other bigger issues going on and I would suggest not buying stock in the company). But, time and time again, businesses need to change their name to evolve and stay relevant in a very competitive marketplace. I mean Apple was once Apple Computer; Federal Express Corporation changed to Federal Express then to FedEx and Computer Associates, Inc. renamed to CA, Inc. and then to CA Technologies – oh and didn’t Facebook start as The Facebook? And these are just a very few examples..there are many other brands that have faced rebranding/renaming. I guess what I am trying to get at is, it happens and when it does, you need to be able to rebrand yourself across all channels and Facebook does not make this easy.
So, my solution. Call Facebook customer support. Oh wait, Facebook doesn’t have customer support. Really for an organization that is all about connecting people, they sure do their best to avoid connecting with people (try to find a tech support or customer service phone number or Twitter handle…not there). So here is what you need to do…you need to act as if you are going to be spending a good amount on Facebook advertising (proof that money talks). If you’re already advertising on Facebook when going through your rebrand, talk to your account rep about your need to chance your page name – they should be able to make that happen. The advertising team should understand that your brand is not going to run paid ads driving to their Facebook page (or outside of Facebook) if their Facebook page name is not their correct company name (see the disconnect this would present…not a great customer experience and a real brand fail). I recently took this route and actually got a very helpful Facebook advertising support person who assisted me (and gave me their direct email for any future needs which is money) and woala – page names were changed. The number to call: (877) 996-7430. Take note that these changes will not happen overnight…not even close. So, when you venture into a rebranding strategy, you may want to start the Facebook page name change process early.
Hope this information helps some of you out there. Please share this with others and let me know if you have found a simpler way to change a Facebook page name post 200 fans and after changing the name a couple times before. Tweet me at @Kristin_Bush.
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