Social Media Policies

I presented a webinar last week on Social Media and Donor Engagement and found myself talking alot about social media policies.

I think it's very important to have a social media policy in place, whether it's one page or twenty. A social media policy really helps you define how you are going to engage people on the web. Many nonprofits are afraid of getting on social media because it means that you are no longer in control of the message.

Maybe you aren't, but at least a good set of guidelines will ensure that you can direct the message to where you want it to be.

For example, rather than having to react in surprise to negative comments or views of your organization, guidelines help you handle any negative situation that arises. Since a situation on social media can change by the minute, it's important to have a plan so you can react in an appropriate way.

Some things to add to your policy:
  • Who's speaking on behalf of you? Are they able to respond to crises in a professional and speedy manner?
  • What is your position on certain issues?
  • How do you deal with comment moderation?
  • How much control do you have over someone's personal pages?

A good social media policy in place will ensure that any problems you have in the future can be addressed swiftly and correctly.


hans peter meyer said...

Other questions to add to the list:
- Why are you getting involved in social media?
- How do you think your organization will benefit? What are your concerns? What is the protocol for dealing with concerns?

My experience is that organizations and companies have many concerns/fears, but don't spend the time articulating them (which generally makes them less of a concern, once they're on the table and part of the organizational discussion). Also: social media goals - having a sense of direction and purpose means that your social media activity will be more than simply passively having a Facebook page, or having a blog that isn't being updated or read.

It's like showing up at a party: you don't have to have a 'goal' while you're there, but if you at least set yourself the goal of being engaged and engaging, you'll get more out of it. Many who go to the social media 'party' don't 'get it' because they don't have a purpose to become engaged.

inquitech said...

It’s a great tip on Do It yourself stuff. Thanks!
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