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Keep control of your domain, site, online identities, and log-ins

Keep control of your domain, site, online identities, and log-ins

Far too regularly, here’s how things go when we start-up with a new client. Everyone is excited to get started… so we ask for access to their site, their social media, their hosting, or all of the above - depending on what we’ll be doing. Sadly, the typical reply, “let me track that down.”

Sometimes it’s a quick process, they simply have to connect with their IT guy or a colleague. But more often than not this one simple request kicks off days, weeks, or months of struggling to find or regain access to accounts and services. Some are critical to their businesses but were set-up by someone long ago who has left the company, or by a supplier that’s not used any more. Often that former employee or vendor used their personal email to configure that service, and so the awkward process of emailing or calling these former associates begins – trying to regain access.

So here’s my one crucial bit of advice to new or start-up businesses everywhere

Hour one, of day one, first thing: Find a reputable “free” email provider such as Google’s gmail or Apple’s iCloud or some similar email service and set up an account that’s company based. That is, don’t use a personal account, like johnsmith1000@gmail.com – instead set up a new account such as mynewcompany@gmail.com or companyadmin@icloud.com. Then use this to start configuring your services. Make sure that the owner, partners, or IT department have access to this email account from the start and into the future.

Use this email to then acquire your domain and web hosting account and then immediately set up an admin@mycompanydomain.com (or similar) email account. It can be an actual account – or more typically a forwarding account – that can easily be configured to notify those within your organization who will need it. Then use this company account to set up your social media accounts, and simply use a different password for each social media profile. The use of the company gmail, icloud, or etc. and the admin@ email all but guarantees you’ll be able to maintain or regain access to any of your online accounts – now and in the future.

Lose an account password? No worries… choose the lost password feature and check your company gmail, icloud, or admin@ email to reset it. Doing this one thing can prevent losing access to domains, social profiles, or other services that are critical to your business.

Oh, and one other thing: Don’t rely on others to set up accounts for you – Or if you do, demand they immediately provide you the log-in info for each and every service they configure. And make sure they use your “company” style emails if they configure these services for you. Don’t want to add them as a forwarding recipient to your “company” email? Then set up another forwarding email specific to whatever service they’re working on. That is, if you offload your Twitter setup (which I advise against) you can configure a twitter@mycompanydomain.com account and have them use it when signing up. You can then forward just this one account specific email to them and to you. Always get copied on it too!

Already screwed up? Then spend the time to fix it now!

If you’re reading this and growing concerned that you don’t have this type of email setup – and don’t know what the password is for this account or that account – then get started, and get it fixed. Track down, reset, and collect all the missing information, and then go through each online service and configure it correctly – with your new gmail, iCloud, or admin@ email. Trust me, it’ll be worth the effort in the long run.

Sep 20, 2015
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