Starting a new business is an exciting venture, so you want to make sure you’re able to put as much time as you can into it. There’s so much to do! Creating a website, choosing a domain, starting a social media account and setting up your email to name just a few.
But we often fall victim to letting our work life bleed into our home life. That’s a tricky balance to strike, especially when you’re the business owner.
The most common issue with this is allowing your personal life and opinions to cross with your professional online accounts. So, here’s a few things to look out for.
Your personal life is private
As part of your business’ website, you may include an ‘About’ section. On your socials, you could have a post around ‘Meet the owner’ or ‘Get to know’. Of course, these are all perfectly fine to do. So many businesses do this. But where you have to be careful is oversharing.
Your potential customers don’t need to know that you had a sandwich for lunch, or that you and your partner went to Hawaii over the summer. If it’s not relevant to your business, don’t post it. The only time that posting your lunch, holiday destination or personal hobbies would make sense on your business profile is if it’s for networking (e.g. giving a shoutout to another business, or someone you’re working with), giving backstory to your business history, or to link to your experience in the industry.
However, here’s where the tricky bit starts. You want to maintain a professional appearance while still coming across as a human. This is completely possible, you just have to put a limit on what you share. Otherwise it not only affects your business, but also can become a cybersecurity risk.
If potential customers see you posting holiday pictures every weekend, they may not take you seriously, or may not trust that you have their best interests at heart when it comes to products and services. Of course, it’s perfectly fine to do this, but for your friends and family on your personal profile.
Leave opinions at the door
Do you have particularly strong opinions about certain topics? Great! Just don’t post them on your business accounts. You want to attract the right audience and draw in as many people as possible when starting a business, so don’t isolate or offend with opinions that people might not agree with. Like with the previous point, if it’s not relevant to your business, think again before hitting post.
If you’re posting your personal opinions on topics that could be deemed controversial on your personal profiles, make sure this can’t be linked back to your business. Use different usernames and make sure your personal account doesn’t display your full name. It’s so easy for a stranger to do a quick search and find out way more information about you than you’d like to be shared.
Watch your language
Decide early on what your tone of voice is and stick to that. If you’re a company promoting club events and your target audience is young people, you’ll likely adopt a casual approach. But a mortgage advisor might be a little more formal.
Your brand voice is vital to forming a trust and bond between you and your customers. If you’re keeping things professional in one post, then using slang terms in another, people are going to get confused. And if your professional voice is different from your ordinary one, consider again whether your own profiles can be linked to your business. It’s common to put on a front for customers and change the way we speak or certain aspects of our personalities. So keep things consistent and don’t show customers a side you don’t want them to see.
What’s your message?
On the same lines as watching language and tone of voice, keep your messaging consistent. This is where your personal account might come in handy.
If you run an events management company who does a lot of clubbing nights, you might want to promote that on your personal socials as well to bring in a larger audience. But if you have something like a mortgage advisor business, a private personal account might be a better idea to maintain that professionalism.
Choose when you start your business whether your personal account would add to your brand message or hinder it. And if it would help, make sure you’re keeping things safe with the information you share. Since the dawn of the internet, we’ve been taught to be careful how much we post online.
Watch what you share
It’s become almost a joke how easy it is to find information about a person online. And it takes so little effort. If you have your full name anywhere on your profile, where you’re from, or your date of birth, someone could find out so much more about you and link you to other social platforms. Straight away they’ll have your personal interests, home town, and possibly even family ties.
Making your personal account private, having different usernames or not using your own face in your personal profile picture is a good way to distance yourself from your business. It’s not just about maintaining professionalism. It’s about keeping yourself safe too.
Get an email that sets you and your business apart
Getting emails about work while you’re chilling out at home is never fun. And separating personal life from your business is impossible if you use the same email address for both. Plus it poses a security risk if someone gets a hold of your data.
But don’t panic! You can solve this by getting a business email with Email Hosting. Use your own domain name in your email, and with our own Email Hosting you get access on the go and can make sure your customers emails get to the right place with multiple addresses. Plus you’ll get antivirus protection, 2x 2GB mailboxes and 2x email addresses.