ocial media policies are one component o a bigger picture. When you’re laying the groundwork or your social media eorts, it’s important to be very clear about your objectives, your strategy or achieving those objectives, and the role your sta and key volunteerscan play to help. That means working across departments tocoordinate eorts and to gure out how everyone’s work ts together. That also means inviting strategic thinking rom the sta and volunteers who will be actively engaged in socialmedia on behal o the organization. The most successuleorts break out o traditional silos and organizationalhierarchies to enable sta and volunteers to accomplish more together.
While dierent associations ace dierent types and levelso risk when engaging in social media, the steps to mitigate those risks tend to be airly similar. For any new program or service, conducting a risk assessment and mitigation prior tolaunch will help determine which issues need attention. A risk assessment consists o rst identiying your risks or exposures to harm, rom the mundane to the serious. The next step is to evaluate these risks in terms o how oten an event may occur versus the potential nancial eect i the risk happens.Ater the assessment o the possible requency and severity o an identied risk, you establish your priorities or mitigating the various exposures. You address the most severe andrequent events rst.
Once you understand your risk, you can develop techniquesor managing it. Many associations choose techniques like 1)avoiding certain platorms, 2) prohibiting some activities, or 3) limiting who can participate. While these techniques may be useul in the short term as you develop your objectivesand strategy, we would argue that all three techniques are anattempt to exert control when clarity would be better over the long term. Here are a ew methods that rely on clarity tomanage risk.
Adopting policies or sta and volunteers
Monitoring the social web so you know what peopleare saying
Providing education on legal issues like copyright andanti-trust
Providing education on social media principles
Updating insurance policies to provide coverage or your social media work
Once you’ve laid the groundwork, you’ll need to dig right in tothe social media policy basics.
LAYiNg THE gROUNDWORk
8 STEpS FOR BUiLDiNgSOCiAL MEDiA CApACiTY
Monitor the social web or discussionsabout your brand and industry.
Understand your objectives or usingsocial media.
Develop a social media strategy by prioritizing those objectives and applyingyour learning rom monitoring in step 1.
Assess and mitigate your risks—includeyour legal counsel and insuranceproessional in the discussion.
Make sure your insurance coverageis appropriate or your social mediaactivities.
Adopt the appropriate policies andguidelines.
Set up interdepartmental workfows or social media collaboration.
Educate your sta and volunteers.