5 Social Media Policies That You Can Love

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I posted last week about How Your Social Media Policy Could Kill Your Culture. It was about the “control creep” that’s affecting some organisations as they try to protect themselves from a social media firestorm.

In this post I want to look at a few organisations whose policies and guidance acknowledge the risks but see far greater benefit in their colleagues being digitally active. Here are five of the approaches I like – together with a link to their policy or guidance. Hope you like them too.

1 – The Police Service

For my money no public service has embraced social media as well as the Police. If you doubt this I would recommend you subscribe to the excellent blog from Russell Webster – who frequently highlights best practice in police digital engagement Each authority has its own policy but I want to draw your attention to the superlative guide put together by Gordon Scobbie and his colleagues. Called Engage: Digital and Social Media Engagement For The Police Service it’s the very best demystification of the professional use of social media I have seen.

Best Bit:

I love the mythbusting that is incorporated into the guidance. Here’s an example:

Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 19.19.072 – Gap

Unfortunately the Gap guidance is not available for the public – but the main points are here. The policy itself is issued to all employees in a handy iPhone-size brochure. Entitled “OMG you will never guess what happened at work today!!” it’s written in an entirely conversational style.

Even the warnings are written as you would say them:

Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 20.55.11

Best Bit:

I love this bit of advice for when you realise you have posted something you shouldn’t have:

“If you !%@# up? Correct it immediately and be clear about what you’ve done to fix it.”

3 – Bromford Group

Look , I know I work for them. But even if I didn’t I would say that Bromford have one of the most enlightened approaches to social media around. Like Gap – the Bromford social media guidance is written in a very conversational style – and it sets out very clearly the difference between what it calls a business , sponsored and personal account.

Best Bit:

I love the fact the guidance is very visual. This is an inspired way to sum up your advice:

Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 19.37.01

4 – Kirklees Council

Kirklees treat social media really seriously. So seriously their policy and guidance has it’s own website. It’s jam packed full of advice , case studies , forums and useful tips. This is an organisation who who have applied a huge amount of thought to how they are going to support colleagues and stakeholders.

Best Bit:

I love the 3 Steps to Using Social Media. I think many organisations could learn from this Listen , Participate , Transform approach to going social:

Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 19.45.26

5 – Southwest Airlines

Southwest are masters in using digital to engage with customers and tell the story of their brand. I’ve never flown with them so I have no idea if the reality matches the sheer brilliance of their customer engagement. If you haven’t seen their community and , especially , their blog – you should have a look.

Their guidelines are more prescriptive than the others – but I like the way it’s just 8 points on one page in clear language.

Best Bit:

It’s straight-talking. I like this……

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These are five of my favourites – but which others have you seen? I’d love to hear…..

Published by

Paul Taylor

I’m a facilitator, innovator and designer. I work with organisations to identify problems and solve them in ways that combine creativity with practical implementation. I have a track record in project delivery and service change that crosses all disciplines and has resulted in millions of pounds in business benefits. This work has resulted in numerous acknowledgements and awards. In 2013 I established Bromford Lab as a new way for the organisation to embrace challenge and adopt a ‘fast fail’ approach to open innovation. Nearly everything the Lab works on is openly accessible at www.bromfordlab.com. I'm a regular contributor to forums , think-tanks , and research reports and a speaker or advisor at conferences and events.

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