Developing Your Social Media Communication Policy
A social media communication policy is the “who, what, where, when, and how” of posting content to your Facebook, Twitter, or Google+ account. Its most important purpose is to establish boundaries. Before beginning a social media campaign, you should gather your team and review your goals and objectives.
Then you can answer the following questions:
- Who’s going to post content to your pages? You may choose to have one person in charge of delegating tasks, or you may all share in the responsibilities equally.
- What topics will your administrators cover? If you have multiple team members posting content to your page, you may decide to have them cover different topics depending on their background or area of expertise.
- When are they going to do this? You’ll want to post frequently and consistently, so it may be easier to set a schedule (such as Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays, for example).
- What will be the style or tone of the social media communication? Applying a consistent “personality” to the page is part of branding the organization. Communication on social media does not have to be formal for most businesses. In fact, a more colloquial tone may seem warmer.
- What is inappropriate for the page? What is defined here should be held as a standard both for the page users (your followers) and the administrators. Obviously, foul or discriminatory language should be deleted immediately. However, there may be other kinds of content that you flag as inappropriate. Is it okay to use a person’s last name, or copyrighted material from other pages? Can people post links?
- What happens (and who will deal with) negative feedback? Since social media is a two-way form of communication, it’s possible that someone may have something negative to say about your organization. While it may be tempting to just delete these posts, addressing the person directly shows respect and concern. Don’t be afraid to say that you are sorry, and to ask what you can do better next time.
Bob McUpstart: Well, I have to say that I didn’t like the workshop on Wednesday. You didn’t even cover what was listed on the flyer. BIG DISAPPOINTMENT!
Your Business: Hi Bob. Thanks for coming to the workshop. We’re sorry it didn’t meet your expectations. Is there something you would suggest we include next time? We’re always looking for ways to make our workshops better. Thank you!
- How often will your team meet to discuss and update the social media communication plan? A good communication plan leaves room for changes. It’s important to evaluate what strategies have and have not been successful, and to update the plan as needed.
Make it Easy for Yourself
- A fully customizable social media policy template appropriate for small or large businesses in either the public or private sector.
- Guidelines on how to adapt the policy to fit your business’s needs, and a few suggestions on its implementation
Great! You now have a social media communication policy for your business. Now the big question: What should you post to your page?
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