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Developing a Social Media Policy For Your Business
Stacey E. Burke
+
Introduction
+ 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:
5.54
Social media users grew by 320 million between
September 2017 and October 2018
That equates to one new social media user every 10
seconds
+
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
avoid it.
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.
+
The Risks of Social Media
+
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-
factor authentication)
 Crisis response
Legal Risks / Security Risks
When crafting your company’s social media policy,
keep in mind any potential risks.
+
What Is A Company Social
Media Policy?
+
Basic Ethics Commonsense
If you can’t do it offline, you can’t do it online.
+
However…..
 While we wish this worked/was enough, different
people have different barometers and you want
one solid barometer for what is ok in your
company.
 You do that by having a formalized policy
employees are required to sign as part of their
employment agreement.
+ Definition:
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
privacy issues.
 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
media?
 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
companies’ accounts?
+ Examples of Large Corporate
Social Media Policy Language
That Work
+
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
permanent.
 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
trademarked.
+ But What About Employees’
Personal Accounts?
 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
too.
 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
investors
 Cost the company the ability to
get and keep customers and/or
employees
 Cause a public relations
incident
Reflection on Company Consequences for Employees
+ REMEMBER!!
Protect the brand, protect yourself.
+
Why Checking Everything is
Important
+
Follow These Rules for Successful
Social Media Management
 Keep imagery in line with company brand
standards.
 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
Your Channels
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
ways
 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.
+
Connect with Stacey:
 Facebook: @MarketingLawyers
 Twitter: @staceyeburke
 Instagram: @MarketingLawyers
 LinkedIn: /company/stacey-e-burke-p-c
 Website: www.staceyeburke.com
 My e-newsletter: http://bit.ly/StaceyMail

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Developing a Social Media Policy For Your Business

  • 1. + Developing a Social Media Policy For Your Business Stacey E. Burke
  • 3. + 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: 5.54 Social media users grew by 320 million between September 2017 and October 2018 That equates to one new social media user every 10 seconds
  • 4. + 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
  • 5. + Customers & employees use social media, so you can’t avoid it. 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.
  • 6. + The Risks of Social Media
  • 7. + 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.
  • 8. + 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.
  • 9. + 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- factor authentication)  Crisis response Legal Risks / Security Risks When crafting your company’s social media policy, keep in mind any potential risks.
  • 10. + What Is A Company Social Media Policy?
  • 11. + Basic Ethics Commonsense If you can’t do it offline, you can’t do it online.
  • 12. + However…..  While we wish this worked/was enough, different people have different barometers and you want one solid barometer for what is ok in your company.  You do that by having a formalized policy employees are required to sign as part of their employment agreement.
  • 13. + Definition: 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.
  • 14. + 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 privacy issues.  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.
  • 15. + 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.
  • 16. + A well-crafted social media policy answers these questions:  Who can speak on behalf of the business on social media?  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 companies’ accounts?
  • 17. + Examples of Large Corporate Social Media Policy Language That Work
  • 18. + 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 permanent.  Understand: and accept any legal or professional liability that accrues from posting on any social media platforms.
  • 19. + 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 trademarked.
  • 20. + But What About Employees’ Personal Accounts?  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 too.  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 investors  Cost the company the ability to get and keep customers and/or employees  Cause a public relations incident Reflection on Company Consequences for Employees
  • 21. + REMEMBER!! Protect the brand, protect yourself.
  • 23. + Follow These Rules for Successful Social Media Management  Keep imagery in line with company brand standards.  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.
  • 24. + 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.
  • 25. + 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.
  • 26. + Check Sources Before Sharing on Your Channels 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!
  • 27. + 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 ways  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.
  • 28. + Connect with Stacey:  Facebook: @MarketingLawyers  Twitter: @staceyeburke  Instagram: @MarketingLawyers  LinkedIn: /company/stacey-e-burke-p-c  Website: www.staceyeburke.com  My e-newsletter: http://bit.ly/StaceyMail