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10 Important Guidelines for Employees on Social Media [Template]

Todd Defren

May 31, 2024

If you're a small or enterprise level business in today's world, it's a fact that your employees are on social media. Particular for younger employees, just starting their first "real" job out of college, they've never known a time when social media wasn't an ubiquitous part of life. And this can easily lead to inappropriate posting etiquette.

Whether innocent or not, when representing a business in any capacity, employees should have clear guidelines when it comes to posting on social media.

After all, you want your employees to be brand ambassadors, so giving them all the tools and empowerment you can will help boost your message in the best way.

Use the below as a template to follow when creating your internal social media guidelines. [Or access our free downloadable template here!]

Guidelines for Employees When Posting on Social Media

These guidelines apply to (COMPANY) employees or contractors who create, engage with and contribute to content pieces and marketing such as blogs, wikis, social networks, virtual worlds, or any other kind of Social Media. Whether you log into platforms like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, TikTok, or Medium; or comment on online forums, blogs, or media stories — these guidelines are for you.

While all (COMPANY) employees are welcome to participate in Social Media, we expect everyone who participates in online commentary to understand and to follow these simple but important guidelines. These rules might sound strict and contain a bit of legal-sounding jargon but please keep in mind that our overall goal is simple: to participate online in a respectful, relevant way that protects our reputation and of course follows the letter and spirit of the law.

  1. Be transparent. If you are writing about (COMPANY) or a competitor, use your real name, identify that you are an employee of (COMPANY), and be clear about your role. If you have a vested interest in what you are discussing, be the first to say so.
  2. Be truthful. Never represent yourself or (COMPANY) in a false or misleading way. All statements or claims made must be true and substantiated.
  3. Don't spam. Post meaningful, respectful comments on social media platforms — no spam and no remarks that are off-topic or offensive.
  4. Use good judgement. Exercise common sense when engaging with social media accounts. Ask permission before publishing potentially sensitive information based on conversations that were had internally.
  5. Familiarize yourself with the company privacy policy. Any external social media posts that mention people with the organization, products, or company-specific language and terms must not violate (COMPANY)’s privacy policy, confidentiality, or legal guidelines.
  6. Offer your perspective. We encourage you to provide unique and helpful perspectives within your area of expertise, on non-confidential activities at (COMPANY). These can lead to positive engaging conversations with customers or potential customers!
  7. Be courteous. When disagreeing with others’ opinions, keep it appropriate and civil. If you find yourself in a situation that looks as if it’s becoming antagonistic, do not get overly defensive and do not disengage abruptly. Try to remove yourself from the dialogue in a respectful way. Ask a manager for help if things escalate.
  8. Be diplomatic. If you want to write about the competition on social media, make sure you do so diplomatically. Make sure you have your facts straight before interacting on the topic of competitors. Before engaging, it is imperative to check with your manager to avoid commenting on anything related to legal matters, acquisitions, disputes, or any third parties (COMPANY) may be in litigation with.
  9. Don’t make a crisis worse. Never participate in social media when the topic being discussed may be considered a crisis situation. Even anonymous comments and content may be traced back to your or (COMPANY)’s IP address. Refer all social media activity and content around crisis topics to Legal and never engage with this content on behalf of (COMPANY).
  10. Protect your privacy. Be smart about protecting yourself, your privacy, and (COMPANY)’s confidential information and privacy policy on social media. What content you publish is widely accessible and will be around for a long time, so consider the content you post on each platform carefully. 

This article was written by Todd Defren from Business2Community and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.