Cool New Marketing Technologies: Caught and Served

Developing Corporate Social Media Guidelines

A critical element for any organization going through the process of formalizing its social media strategy is the definition and communication of guidelines. It’s essential that anyone affiliated with your organization who is involved in creating user generated content (either in an official or personal capacity) understand the policies associated with posting content online.

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During the development of Cramer’s social media guidelines, we underscored that employees have no obligation to use their social networks to promote Cramer. The guidelines are meant primarily for employees who make the decision to highlight their affiliation with their employer while protecting any proprietary client work.

Policies are rarely fun, so we also felt it was important to focus on what employees can and should do when posting content online. We wanted to keep it simple and make it clear that employees are ultimately accountable for the content that they share.

Here’s what we came up with.

  1. If you choose to identify yourself as a representative of the organization, ensure your profile and related content are consistent with how you wish to present yourself to colleagues and clients. In other words, don’t use your Facebook account to promote upcoming company-related events if you also use it to post last weekend’s drunken party pictures
  2. Protect confidential & proprietary information. Client-related information should not be posted without the express permission of the client
  3. Respect copyrights and fair use. Give credit where credit is due.
  4. You are responsible for what you post online. Be authentic & open, and avoid placing anything on the Internet that you wouldn’t want your parents, spouse, colleagues, employer, clients, etc. to see.

What do you think? Feel free to borrow what we’ve drafted to incorporate into your own corporate social media guidelines. If you’re in need of additional inspiration, here are a couple posts that helped shape the direction of our social media policies.

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