A Social Media Horror Story About Deleting & Reserving Profiles

Why You Should Never Delete a Social Media Profile

So, I have a social media horror story to tell you.

Unfortunately, it is my own.

Many years ago, like many solo entrepreneurs, I splashed my brand name on each and every social media platform I could possibly find. I was on Myspace, Livejournal, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, DeviantArt, Vine, you name it.

If a new one came around, I was on it like a kitten on a ball of yarn!

And like a kitten, I played with the sites until I got bored, leaving a string of dead profiles that ceased to get updated as my brand and product range improved and evolved.

After a few years, a search result for my brand name revealed a graveyard of profiles. A new fan of my brand would have no idea which ones to follow to get the latest updates on what I was up to, while old fans were left abandoned, wondering where I had gone.

This is a huge mistake I hope to encourage new business owners not to make when it comes to using social media for their brand name.

However, it gets worse. *grimaces*

A well-meaning I.T. friend of mine encouraged me to begin deleting the profiles I no longer used. I did so, and within a few months all the profiles I had owned in my brand name were taken by imposters using my brand name to sell their own whatever.

On the back of  my hard-earned SEO ranking, these imposters were now who my fans were finding on those social media platforms and *cringe* who their hashtags and @ mentions were referring to!

Russian porn agencies.

Adolescent gamers.

Posts of pet dogs.

Someone who did something so bad that it got them kicked off one site permanently, so that an ugly notice made it sound like it had been my activity that had done it!

I was horrified. My brand name was a made-up word; an original, unique creation of my own; there was no mistaking it had been usurped by these imposters.

I had learned my social media horror lesson well:







So, what should you do instead?

Instead of Deleting an Old Profile:

If you’ve been active on a platform but it has gone out of fashion or you’ve lost interest in using it, delete all your photos and posts if possible and leave a redirection note in case anyone looks for your brand on that platform. Something like this will do:

“{Brand} is no longer using {Platform}! Find us at {Platform} instead! Thank-you for looking for us!”

You want to delete all your photos because as your brand image and product range evolves, you don’t want your fans to see the old, stale version.

A Social Media Profile that Dies Without a Re-Direction Notice is as Bad as an Imposter Profile

Fans will assume your business has ceased to exist when you cease to post. Let them know where you are moving on to so that if they can continue to follow you on a new platform.

Always Reserve Your Brand Name on a New Platform

Always reserve your brand name on a new platform if you can, as soon as possible. This will prevent it being taken by an imposter and prevent a social media horror story of your own. You can find out which platforms are available for your brand by visiting this handy website.

Once you have reserved the profile, write in the bio or create one post telling people that it is an officially owned but inactive profile of your brand, in addition to the usual profile information.  Tell them to go to your website to find your active social media platforms.

Keep Your Social Media Activity Focused on Only 2-3 Platforms & Be Consistent

There are too many sites requiring too many updates and only one of you.

Unless you hire a manager to do it for you (why, hello there, I can help you with that!) I believe less is more–focus your efforts to excel on the 2-3 sites you enjoy the most, forget the rest, and, above all else, be consistent!  It is far better to excel at a few that to waffle on many.

Consistency is imperative for effective social media-I cannot stress this enough–so if you don’t enjoy it, you won’t be consistent and it will not take off. Don’t create your own social media horror story!

Don’t Create Profile Graveyards with Your Brand: Be Courteous To Your Fans and Exit Gracefully

Many times we create a profile graveyard because we believe we can ‘be everywhere’ when we simply are not capable–not on our own, at least. We over-commit ourselves, get busy with other business activities,  and quickly fall behind in updating our social media profiles.

Decide which platforms you like to use best or on which you are getting the best engagement from, and formally announce that you are ceasing activity on the old platforms.

Show your existing fans and those who might search for you on that platform the courtesy of your appreciation for their support by letting them know you have exited and where they can continue to follow you.

Don’t create your own social media horror story!

Finally, if you have narrowed your social media activity down to a few sites but are still feeling overwhelmed, consider hiring a social media manager to do it all for you! *waves hello*

I offer evaluations of your brand’s total social media presence, consultations to give you the road maps you need, or I can take over full management of your platforms, keeping them consistently updated and effectively engaging to meet your business goals.

See my services here.

Contact me at: netalluresocial@gmail.com

Social Media Managing Christine Rice





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