The importance of having a social media strategy

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A comprehensive social media strategy and usage guidelines are necessary to prevent abuse and potential problems that could adversely affect the company. A social media team should be assigned to handle communications through the various social media channels. Guidelines should be set up so that all employees can enjoy social media and use it. The social team would be responsible for distributing the content. This prevents employees from posting content that could harm the image of the company or even worse. With so many channels, a rogue post can spread fast and possibly do great harm to the company or its clients.

Having a social team means that content is filtered prior to posting so that any harmful content is “cleansed.” Employees should be encouraged to offer suggestions or even write content or supply photos/video. Employees are the company's best resource for content. They know what is happening with day-to-day operations and client relations. Therefore, a procedure of content submission should be implemented.

Personal posts outside company time should also be addressed. It must be stressed that what an employee posts privately is there for anyone to see. Guidelines are designed to prevent harmful content that could be linked back to the company. This isn't to say employees cannot post content, but the company should be considered by individuals before posting onto their private social media.

Social media in whatever form is a powerful tool, but like any tool, there are precautions that need to be stated and followed. Tools are only as good as the end-user's skill. Social media is here and evolving fast—sometimes faster than we would like—but that’s the age we live in. Having a social media strategy can help maintain a positive image and build upon another channel of exposure to the public.