IBOA International

The Independent Business Owners Association International, Inc. (IBOAI) is the advocacy organization for North American Independent Business Owners (IBOs) affiliated with Amway®. The IBOAI advises Amway on every facet of the North American business, from products and promotions to operations and business guidelines. The IBOAI and Amway are dedicated to partnering for success with your input, support and participation.

Social media may be a new experience for you as an IBO. Even if you aren't new to social media, you may feel unsure about communicating in the environment as a business - that's OK, there's no one right way. The important thing is that you use social media in ways that make sense for you, in line with the strategies set up by your upline and your LOS.

Most social media sites have default privacy settings that protect the average user. We recommend that you use that as a base setting. If you want to be more cautious, you can restrict who sees your information, who interacts with you, and who can even connect with you. If you want to be more active, you can loosen the restrictions.

Remember that you represent not only yourself individually, but also your business, your upline, your LOS, and Amway. For that reason, a number of security and privacy precautions may be useful.

First, follow the Rules of Conduct and your upline social media strategy. While some lines of sponsorship are totally open about social media, others feel you should be very cautious and restrict access to your information.

Second, be careful with whom you connect. You could start with your upline and immediate downline. If it fits your strategy, add followers or friends once you review their profiles and verify them. Many wise social networkers review their connections periodically and weed out people they find aren't good associations.

Third, what you let others see on your site or profile is under your control. From photos and videos, to comments, to lists of your connections, just how much do strangers need to know about you? Adjust your privacy settings for a comfortable balance between ease-of-use and adequate privacy and security.

Give some thought at the outset about what your privacy and safety strategy should be, and follow it. If you set it adequately from the beginning, the consequences of being online should be minimal. It might be better to play it more conservative early and loosen the barriers later, than play it too open early and have to tighten the barriers later - after a problem.

Just as every home should have smoke detectors, every social networker should have Internet protectors. Arm your computer with an active firewall and up-to-date anti-spam, anti-phishing, anti-virus programs. Remember, also, that troublesome links can be just as damaging on social media sites as in e-mail messages - be cautious about what links you take!