Getting Started: Social Media Policies For Your Company

Is your organization looking to get started with “this social media thing?” If so, alongside the thinking you should be doing about culture and top-level support, organizational policies should be one of the things you think about first.

Next week I’m delivering a workshop on “Building A Solid Foundation: Social Media Policies, Best Practices And Ethics For Your Organization” at a conference in Ottawa. Thanks to this, social media policies are at the top of my mind right now.

What will you do when someone “talks” to your representatives online? How will you decide whether and how to respond? What if an employee goes rogue and starts posting confidential information online?

Social media moves quickly, and Google has a long memory. A lack of preparation for events like these can mean a slow response, an escalation of issues, and perhaps even lasting damage.

How should you approach this initial thinking?

We recommend two types of policies – internal and external.

Internal Policies

  • Blogging policy
  • Outbound commenting policy
  • General employee guidelines

Public Policies

  • Comment policy
  • Engagement policy

Over the next couple of posts I’ll take a look at each of these policies in turn, the kind of things you should think about and the kind of things they should cover. Sometimes these things may be covered by your existing employee guidelines; other times you may need to come up with new approaches.

Don’t worry; it’s not that complicated. It just needs a little thought.

If you’ve been around the blog with these tools, am I missing anything in terms of policy types? Which social media policies have you found the most useful?

Dave Fleet
Managing Director and Head of Global Digital Crisis at Edelman. Husband and dad of two. Cycling nut; bookworm; videogamer; Britnadian. Opinions are mine, not my employer's.