10 Social Media Guidelines for Employees in 2023

It doesn’t matter what trade you’re in, each fashionable enterprise wants to have social media tips.

Social media tips lay out the perfect social practices for your staff. In some circumstances, these guidelines are required by regulation or for legal protection. However finally, the aim of those tips is to empower staff with the knowledge they should make the proper selections on social media, each for themselves, and for the corporate.

That is true even when your organization doesn’t have a social media presence but. Whether or not you’ve gotten an official Twitter account or Instagram profile or not, you’d higher imagine your staff are on the market on the web, chatting up a storm.

This text will overview:

  • The distinction between a social media coverage and social media tips
  • Actual-life examples from different manufacturers
  • The way to use our free social media tips template to create your personal set of tips

What are social media guidelines?

Social media guidelines are suggestions for how employees of a company should represent themselves and the company on their personal social media accounts.

Think of social media guidelines as an employee manual for social media best practices.

They should outline how to behave on social media in a way that’s positive and healthy for the company, employees, and customers alike. Social guidelines may include etiquette tips, useful instruments, and hyperlinks to essential sources.

Importantly, we actually don’t advocate prohibiting staff from utilizing social, or limiting them from speaking about your organization in any respect. It’s not an excellent look to police or censor your workforce members’ social presence: discuss a morale killer, and say goodbye to any natural ambassador alternatives.

Social media tips, it must be famous, are completely different out of your firm’s social media coverage. They’re additionally distinct out of your social media type information.

A social media policy is a complete doc that describes in element how the corporate and its staff use social media. These insurance policies are meant to guard a model from authorized threat, and keep its repute on social media. The place a social media coverage lays out the foundations and repercussions for breaking them, social media tips are extra instructive.

A social media style guide, in the meantime, defines the model voice, model visuals, and different essential advertising and marketing components. It’s usually utilized by the content material creators in a company to make sure that their posts are “on model”.

Yet another distinction: social media tips are additionally completely different from group tips, which set the foundations for public engagement together with your account or group.

Wish to be taught extra? Take Hootsuite Academy’s free course Implementing Social Media Governance Within your Organization.

Why are social media tips essential?

Each single worker (sure, together with Maurice in accounting) is a possible on-line model ambassador. Sharing social media tips is your probability to offer the entire workforce with instruments to assist them hype you up positively, inclusively, and respectfully.

Use social media tips to:

  • Empower your staff to have interaction positively on their private social accounts
  • Educate on social media finest practices
  • Encourage staff to observe your official accounts or use official hashtags
  • Distribute your organization’s social media strategy
  • Introduce staff to useful third-party instruments and sources, corresponding to Hootsuite’s social media dashboard or Hootsuite Academy coaching
  • Shield your staff from social harassment
  • Safeguard your organization from cybersecurity dangers
  • Make clear what info is OK to share, and what’s a violation of confidentiality
  • Increase your model’s repute on social media

Whereas social media tips are normally crafted to share with staff, anybody else you’re working with can profit from these finest practices too — assume company companions, advertising and marketing companies, or influencers.

In case you don’t create finest practices round how your organization is represented or mentioned on social media, issues can spiral out of control fast. And on the flipside, an absence of social media tips can also forestall you from benefiting from worker content material. An enthusiastic workforce member, armed with social tips and feeling assured about what they’re allowed to say, can turn out to be a strong ambassador for your model.

10 social media tips for staff

Right here’s a rundown of core sections it’s best to embrace in your social media tips. However in fact, whereas these particulars are widespread, go forward and tailor any a part of this to suit your model: in any case each trade is completely different.

The truth is, each firm is completely different… so earlier than you lock in any laborious and quick guidelines, you may need to test in together with your workforce. Your staff may need particular questions or issues that might be useful to handle in your grasp doc.

1. Official accounts

Determine your organization’s official social media channels, and encourage staff to observe. This isn’t simply an opportunity to achieve a couple of extra followers: it’s a superb alternative to demo to staff how your model presents itself on social media.

You may also need to establish particular hashtags, too, if these are a core a part of your social technique.

In some circumstances, corporations both enable or require sure staff to run brand-affiliated social accounts. If that’s one thing your enterprise does, it is a good place in your social tips to clarify how a workforce member can (or can’t) be approved for their very own branded account.

2. Disclosure and transparency

In case your workforce members are proudly figuring out on their social accounts that they work for your organization, it’s a good suggestion to ask them to make clear that they’re creating social media posts on behalf of themselves, not your model. Including a disclosure to their social profile or bio that “All opinions expressed are my very own” (or related) helps make it clear that these usually are not official viewpoints.

That being stated, in the event that they’re going to debate company-related issues on social, it’s truly required by regulation that they establish themselves as an worker. This one’s a rule, not a pleasant suggestion. The truth is, in the US, the Federal Trade Commission requires the identification to happen in the related submit. Simply noting it in a bio will not be sufficient.


An instance of a Google worker’s Twitter bio

3. Privateness

It by no means hurts to remind your workforce that confidential firm info is confidential off the clock, too. Whether or not non-public information about coworkers, monetary disclosures, upcoming merchandise, non-public communications, analysis and growth intel, or different delicate info, make clear that privateness and confidentiality must be revered throughout all social media platforms.

4. Cyber security

Cyber hacks and threats aren’t any joke. Even when your staff are vigilant about phishing scams and the like, it by no means hurts to overview cyber-safety fundamentals, particularly when you gather details about prospects or purchasers.

Cyber security first!

A fast refresh of cyber safety 101:

  • Select robust passwords
  • Use a special password for each social account
  • Don’t use the identical passwords for your company accounts
  • Use two-factor (or multi-factor) authentication to login to social networks
  • Restrict the private {and professional} info you share
  • Use private credentials for private accounts
  • Be sure your Web connection is safe
  • Don’t obtain or click on on suspicious content material
  • Solely activate geolocation providers on apps when essential
  • Observe secure shopping

5. Harassment

Guidelines generally remind employees to be sort on social media. However past selling positivity, companies must also clarify that they don’t tolerate any type of social media harassment.

On the flip facet of that is a chance to offer your staff with assist ought to they expertise harassment. Define your policy for dealing with trolls or bullies, whether or not it’s to report them, ignore them, or block or ban them.

Inform folks the way to report points they might have seen or skilled. If assist is required, inform staff how and the place they’ll get it.

Offering protocol and instruments goes to assist your workforce nip issues in the bud earlier than it grows right into a full-blown social media crisis.

6. Inclusivity

It’s essential for each employer and model to advertise inclusivity on and off social media. Encouraging your staff to do the identical is a technique to present that you simply care about them, too.

Inclusivity tips might embrace:

  • Use inclusive pronouns (they/them/theirs/of us)
  • Present descriptive captions for pictures
  • Be considerate about illustration
  • Don’t make assumptions about gender, race, expertise, or skill
  • Keep away from gender or race-specific emojis
  • Be at liberty to share your most popular pronouns
  • Use title case for hashtags (this makes them extra legible for display screen readers_
  • Use various imagery and icons. This consists of stock imagery, emojis, and branded visuals.
  • Report and take away any feedback deemed sexist, racist, ableist, ageist, homophobic, or hateful to any group or individual
  • Make textual content accessible, utilizing plain language and accessible to folks studying English as a second language or these with studying disabilities

Find more inclusivity resources here.

7. Authorized Issues

Your social tips can embrace a reminder to staff to respect mental property, copyright, logos, and different related legal guidelines. When in doubt, the rule of thumb is comparatively easy: if it’s not yours, and also you don’t have permission, don’t submit it. Straightforward!

8. Do’s and don’ts

In fact, when you might need to get into element with the earlier sections, making a quick-to-reference listing of do’s and don’ts is an opportunity to spell issues out tremendous clearly.

For instance…

  • DO listing the corporate as your employer in your social media bio (when you want to)
  • DON’T interact with rivals in an inappropriate manner
  • DO share firm social media posts, occasions, and tales
  • DON’T share firm secrets and techniques or confidential info of your colleagues
  • DO categorical your personal opinion — simply be sure that it’s clear you’re not talking on behalf of the corporate
  • DON’T touch upon authorized issues pertaining to the corporate
  • DO report harassment you’ve skilled or seen
  • DON’T interact with trolls, detrimental protection or feedback

9. Useful sources

You might want to embrace hyperlinks to useful sources all through your guideline doc, otherwise you may need to listing in a separate part. Wherever you place them, it’s a good suggestion to hyperlink to your social media coverage, social media type information, and group tips, so everybody has this information at their fingertips.

Different hyperlinks you may need to embrace might be:

If your organization presents social media resources, what higher place than your social media tips to make everybody conscious of them? Whether or not its tools or training from Hootsuite, or stipends for social media lessons, empower the people who work for you to place their finest foot (ft?) ahead on social.

For example, might we advocate Hootsuite Amplify? It’s an effective way to search out vetted content material to share and improve your private model.

10. Contact Info and Date

Be sure you additionally add info the place questions will be despatched. Which may be a selected individual, a discussion board or Slack channel, or an e-mail tackle.

You must also point out when your tips have been most lately up to date.

Social media tips examples

Trying for actual world examples of social media tips? We’ve assembled a couple of sources of inspiration.

The Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District outlines suggestions for finest practices clearly and concisely. “Freedom of speech should be exercised responsibly,” the web page reminds readers. “These suggestions present a roadmap for constructive, respectful, and productive use of social networking websites.”

Intel Social Media Guidelines

Intel makes each effort to guarantee staff that they’re not right here to censor or police their on-line conduct. “We belief you,” the rules say, each explicitly and implicitly. Proper off the highest, Intel is evident about its needs: Be Upfront, Give attention to the Good, and Use Your Finest Judgement.

Stanford University Communications Social Media Guidelines

Stanford University (yep, the identical establishment Fb founder Mark Zuckerberg dropped out of) has social media tips which can be fairly dense, however present plenty of sources and context for customers. In case your social media tips are this thorough, it might be a good suggestion to overview the important thing takeaways together with your workforce in a workshop or seminar to ensure the main points aren’t skimmed over.

Bloomberg School of Nursing University of Toronto respect and accuracy

Bloomberg School of Nursing at the University of Toronto has a really concise, bullet-point listing of tips which can be straightforward to digest at a look. It’s an excellent reminder that the way you design your tips will help with comprehension, whether or not it’s an internet web page, a PDF or a brochure.

Sharp News social media standards accountability

Keep in mind that your tips will be as lengthy or as a quick as you would like. Sharp News, for instance, solely has 4 tips for social media use.

International Olympic Committee social and digital guidelines Beijing 2022

The Olympic Committee stored its social media tips to at least one web page for the Beijing Olympics — albeit a fairly dense one. Leaning on the “do’s” and “don’ts” makes it clear at a look what is suitable and what’s frowned upon.

Nordstrom employee guidelines social media and blogging

As a result of Nordstrom is an organization that offers with customer support and privateness is essential, its social media tips are closely targeted on defending prospects. Your personal trade can have its personal particular sensitivities, so modify your tips to suit your particular downside areas (or alternatives!).

Social media tips template

We’ve distilled all these scorching suggestions into one free downloadable template. It’s only a easy Google doc and fairly straightforward to make use of.

Merely make a replica and begin plugging in your suggestions to information your workforce to social media greatness.

Social media guidelines free downloadable template

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