Social Media Marketing: The Purpose of a Social Media Policy

Social Media Policy
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Social media marketing continues to grow in use and having a social media policy is no longer an option, but rather a necessity to protect your company and your brand.

Your social media policy is a comprehensive document that is a starting point for a business.  It’s also people-oriented that addresses how employees should behave online as representatives of your organization.  It’s used to educate employees on using social media, both in a professional and personal manner.

  It also protects a company from misuse of social media channels and minimizes risk by being sure that everyone understands what is accepted and what is not.

Your social media policy should address the following:

  • The definition of social media as it’s seen in the organization. The definition should cover all social media platforms that are used now and also address social media channels that may develop in the future.
  • It should address the general strategy of social media within the company.  What is it used for?  How does the company envision social media being used throughout the organization?
  • It should address who is responsible for the social media channels as well as the implementation, mentoring and management of social media channels within the company.  It should also address the setting up of accounts and overall general use.
  • It should address prohibited behavior when it comes to employees and social media.  What is acceptable and what is not?  There should be no guessing when it comes to what’s acceptable and what is not.
  • Your social media policy should also address monitoring of employee social media activity, both on a professional and personal level.
  • Your social media policy is not complete without addressing confidentiality, privacy, accuracy and respect and fair use.
  • It would also be amiss without addressing what happens to an employee if they violate the social media policy.

    Once a social media policy is drafted you are still not finished, you must address the social media standards within the company.  What’s the look and feel of your social media channels? What is the ideal voice? How are issues handled?  What’s acceptable timeframe for a response?  Think of your social media standards as guidelines to how you want your personified in social media channels.

    Social Media Policy Templates

    You don’t have to start from scratch when it comes to your social media policy, there are several templates that are available that address the above items.  A few include: