Back when I first started doing Social Media for Business and creating Facebook Business Pages, you used to have to create the page and Facebook username using the personal profile of the business owner so that it was linked to that email log-in.
Things have moved on considerably since then but there is still a lot of out of date information topping any Google SERPs on the subject – most of it dating from 2009.
A Facebook username is the vanity url that you can claim to get rid of the hyphens and numbers in your Facebook page url. You can create one for a personal profile (becoming known as a timeline) or a business page.
Again, there have been huge changes here. Only a few months ago, you had to get 25 likes before you could claim your username for a Business Page so there were lots of scams and fiverr entries that would help your page to reach that magic figure before someone else got in and took the keyword friend url that will help your SEO efforts.
Claim Your Facebook Username
Today, you can claim your Facebook Username (also sometimes known as a vanity url) straightaway but Facebook does seem to limit the number that you are able to claim in any time period to try to prevent the greedy from snaffling all the best keyword terms.
However, Facebook reserves the right to take back a user name that has already been claimed at any time and for any reason so if someone is trying to play fast and loose with the system, it is possible to protect your brand.
Report an infringing Facebook user name
There is a procedure that you can follow if you believe that someone’s username has infringed your intellectual property or publicity rights.
As of November 2011, when you create a Facebook page for a business, you can create it using your own personal profile – providing you have the authority of the company concerned. Then you go into the admin section and add the names of representatives of the company so that they can also make changes to the page as an admin.
Providing you have three or four different admins, there should be no risk of losing control of the company Facebook page to a disgruntled ex-employee or social media manager – unless of course they decide to remove everyone before they walk off with their box of personal effects.
In an interesting twist whilst researching this article, we discovered that Facebook sends notifications to your personal profile to let you know that you have been added as an admin on a business page but not when you get removed. This could open up the door to problems in the future if someone gets fired and decides to hold the Facebook page to ransom.
Change Facebook Username
If you want to change your Facebook username for your personal profile, click on the drop down menu next to your name at the top right corner and select Account Settings. You will see the option to edit user name. You can only edit your username once.
Unfortunately, once you have confirmed your username for your Facebook Business Page it is fixed and you cannot change it or transfer it to another account. There is more information about this at the Facebook Help Centre.
So, there you have it, create it, claim it and change it for your Facebook Username.
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