+ Social Media: By The Numbers
Number of active social media users: 3.4 Billion
Number of Internet users: 4.2 Billion
Total worldwide population: 7.7 Billion
Average time spent on social media: 116 minutes per day
Average number of social media accounts per person:
Social media users grew by 320 million between
September 2017 and October 2018
That equates to one new social media user every 10
Number of Users by
Social Media Channel
2.271 billion users
1.5 billion users
1 billion users
900 million users
562 million users
326 million users
186 million users
+ Customers & employees use social media, so you can’t
Your customers expect you to be active online and available to answer
any questions they have and your employees are already visiting social
channels on a daily basis. 47% of employees now use social networks
to connect with customers.
Protecting Your Brand
Unfortunately, in a world where everyone is
connected, one poorly timed, or poorly worded
message could destroy your brand reputation.
Failing to provide proper guidance to your staff
concerning their social media presence puts your
entire company at risk.
+ The Wild West
While Pew Research Center suggests that 74% of
adults are on social media, it also indicates that 73% of
companies lack a social media policy.
Keep in Mind:
Disclosing confidential or proprietary information
Failure to credit sources of text and imagery
Industry-specific rules to follow (law as an example)
Phishing scams and ransomware attacks (passwords / multi-
Legal Risks / Security Risks
When crafting your company’s social media policy,
keep in mind any potential risks.
Basic Ethics Commonsense
If you can’t do it offline, you can’t do it online.
While we wish this worked/was enough, different
people have different barometers and you want
one solid barometer for what is ok in your
You do that by having a formalized policy
employees are required to sign as part of their
A social media policy is your business code of conduct, letting people in
your organization know how to act on social media. It is a compilation of
rules, regulations, and roles that will streamline how your business and its
employees use these platforms.
+ A well-crafted social media policy:
Enumerates what your company defines as social media.
Is not just a list of DON’T’S – also includes DO’S.
Defends against security risks and legal issues, including
Protects your brand by ensuring that whenever someone
interacts with your company online, either via a company
channel or an employee’s individual channel, they get the
same consistent experience. This develops a reliable,
trustworthy digital identity for your company that matches
who you are offline IRL.
+ It also….
Empowers your staff via employee advocacy without
putting your brand credibility at risk. A plan is a critical
advocacy tool, giving your people the guidance they
need to accurately represent your organization online.
Leads generated through an employee convert up to 7
times more, meaning it’s profitable to have your company
on social media.
LinkedIn research shows that employees get twice the
click-through rate for branded content that a company
page would get for the same post.
A well-crafted social media policy
answers these questions:
Who can speak on behalf of the business on social
What can those speakers say and
what can they not say?
What voice do I use? (etiquette)
What are the consequences if I
do something wrong?
How do I respond to negativity?
When can I tag/mention company accounts and other
+ Examples of Large Corporate
Social Media Policy Language
What You Should Do:
Disclose Your Affiliation: If you talk about work related
matters that are within your area of job responsibility you must
disclose your affiliation with the company.
State That It’s YOUR Opinion: When commenting on the
business. Unless authorized to speak on behalf of the
company, you must state that the views expressed are your
own. Hourly employees should not speak on behalf of the
company when they are off the clock.
Understand: that no material posted on
social media is entirely private, and
should be considered public and
Understand: and accept any legal or
professional liability that accrues from
posting on any social media platforms.
What You Should Never Disclose:
The Numbers: Non-public financial or operational information.
This includes strategies, forecasts, and most anything with a
dollar-figure attached to it. If it’s not already public information,
it’s not your job to make it so.
Personal Information: Never share personal information
about our customers, clients, or other employees.
Anything that belongs to someone
else: Stick to posting your own
creations. Don’t post illegally shared
music, copyrighted publications, and
logos or other images that are
+ But What About Employees’
Regardless of whether your
staff members are actively
speaking for you, the world will
always see them as a reflection
of your brand.
If your employees are acting
questionably online, this raises
suspicion about your business
Get fired (and it’s embarrassing
to lose your job for something
that’s so easily avoided)
Get the company in legal
trouble with customers or
Cost the company the ability to
get and keep customers and/or
Cause a public relations
Reflection on Company Consequences for Employees
Protect the brand, protect yourself.
Follow These Rules for Successful
Social Media Management
Keep imagery in line with company brand
Remember to check the source of any imagery
you use, and attribute as needed.
Be careful using trending hashtags to increase
engagement because you may not understand
what they really mean.
Sharing or retweeting is great for engagement,
but verify the original source before doing so.
+ Check Your Photos
American Apparel shared a photo for July 4th meaning to show smoke in
the sky after fireworks. Instead, someone uploaded a photo of the smoke
after the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded.
+ Check the Hashtag First:
#WhyIStayed was trending on Twitter for conversations about domestic
violence and why people stayed in abusive relationships. DiGiorno Pizza
did not do their research first and spent hours apologizing.
+ Check Sources Before Sharing on
Often your competitors will have content that is relevant to your business.
Make sure you check the source of content before sharing it, though… no
need to advertise for a direct competitor!
Final Thoughts and Tips
Utilize social listening to get ahead of potential issues
Have a crisis response plan and be ready to respond
within one hour
Employee opinions carry weight, which can work both
Always proofread your content before sharing it on social
media for business. It’s also good to have a second pair
of eyes check over your posts for accidental errors.
Automation can help as much as it can hurt
If possible, run your words past others outside your
business before sharing on social so you can make sure
it comes off as intended.