If you want to advertise on Facebook and Instagram, of course you first need to have a business Page and administrative access.

But what happens if you lose access to the Page? For example, if someone sets it up for your business then leaves—and isn’t around to add someone else as an admin?

This happens all the time. In fact, I recently started working with a new client who had not been able to access their Facebook page—for three years!

They had tried in vain to get customer support from Facebook.

Sadly, people had messaged their businesses and engaged with their Page, and there was no way for them to respond. And naturally that meant they couldn’t advertise.

When they hired me, I too struggled to find any way to get support from Facebook. We both submitted numerous forms that went into the void with no response.

That’s when I discovered Facebook’s dirty secret.

On a whim, I decided to log into the account of another customer who was paying for ads. It was only then that multiple options to contact Facebook support appeared onscreen, including online chat.

I was able to connect with a kind person at Facebook who patiently listened to the issue that my other client had about not being able to access their Page. After several days of back-and-forth emails and having to submit documentation proving they owned their business, they were finally able to regain administrative access and start posting to their Page, responding to customers—and advertising!

The Facebook Business Catch-22

If you have a business that has lost administrative access to Facebook, the Catch-22 is that you won’t be able to find anyone to help you and therefore you can’t advertise on Facebook or Instagram until you do gain access.

Imagine how many millions of dollars Facebook loses because of this short-sighted stance on customer support. The cost for actually providing support to help people would be far less than the earned revenue Facebook would make from additional advertising revenue. (My client is now spending hundreds of dollars a month to drive traffic to their retail store.)

You won’t find the same level of overt customer service discrimination from Google or Apple—there are readily available ways of contacting their support teams. And you don’t have to prove you are a customer first.

Simon / Pixabay

Note: This first appeared on the Brand On! podcast.