Social Media Policy Tip: Encourage Employee Advocacy

social media policy tips

This social media policy tip says when you’re developing a social media guidelines, it’s a good idea to use language that makes it safe for employees to use their personal accounts to drive engagement.

Consider this in tandem with lost productivity concerns and security risks.

A lawsuit filed by PhoneDog.com against Noah Kravitz for “misappropriation of trade secrets…” is prompting companies to update their corporate social media policy.

But if you do, you’re over emphasizing a possible worst case scenario.

Because if your company is going to be heard through social media, you’re going to need as much help as you can get.

You’re going to need your team members to be willing to use their personal social media accounts to engage with your branded online.

Good Social Media Policies Drive Advocacy

Reach is a factor engagement. So if you want to establish a far reaching social media presence, social media engagement is how you spread the word.

So when it comes to digital marketing on social media platforms, organization’s need professional and personal employee advocacy more than ever.

And you’re not going to get it by imposing ownership claims or an strict set of guidelines over their personal social media accounts,

So I don’t intend to make any substantial changes to my Social Media Policy Template because of it, and here’s why:

On social networks, crowds direct our attention. If it trends, it upends. And if it doesn’t, it just ends.

The nitty gritty is this:

Unless it’s from a hugely influential individual, what one person tweets usually matters only a little.

But what the crowd retweets is what matters the most.

Social gravity drive attention on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter.

An effective social media code of conduct policy protects the organization and its employees alike.

After all, why would your employees use social media to spread the corporate message if they think it’ll get them fired?

Imposing strict ownership requirements over an employee’s personal social media account doesn’t protect your brand.

It discourages team members from using social media on their employers behalf, which means they won’t be retweeting your message.

And in nowadays, you need retweets, Likes and Retweets to get noticed.

Online Employee Advocacy

So your social media policy tip is this:

Encourage Employee Participation.

Sree Sreenivasan, a professor at the Columbia Journalism School, who is paraphrased in a story about the incident by New York Times reporter John Biggs (@JohnBiggs) says it best:

…many industries had policies that required sales staff to leave their Rolodexes behind, but that these policies were as relevant to social media as Rolodexes are to the modern office. After all, social media accounts are, almost by definition, personal.

He also said that the average Twitter account had less clout than many might think.

On social networks, we crowd source news and information. If companies want to get noticed, they’ve got to get crowds talking. And in most cases, their employees are going to be easiest place to start.

Will this social media policy tip compel you to update your rules around how your employees use social?

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