In 2022, over 4.59 billion people were using social media worldwide, a number projected to increase to almost six billion in 2027. (Source: Statista) As the usage of social media continues to grow, so does the need for radio stations to have a social media policy in place.
What Is a Social Media Policy?
A social media policy is a document that clearly defines an organization’s expectations for social media use.
Most importantly, a social media policy exists to help protect your radio station brand and should encourage employees to share about the station.
Why Have a Social Media Policy?
By writing a social media policy for your radio station, you can delineate clear expectations for online interactions and social media engagement. Here are a few specific reasons why a radio station should have a social media policy:
- Brand Consistency: Ensuring that all staff members align their social media activities with the station’s brand and messaging, maintaining a consistent image.
- Content Quality: Guidelines can help maintain the quality and appropriateness of content shared by station employees, protecting the station’s reputation.
- Legal Compliance: Addressing legal issues such as copyright infringement, defamation, and privacy concerns to prevent legal troubles. (Hootsuite address social media compliance in this resource.)
- Crisis Management: Having a plan in place for responding to social media crises or negative situations to mitigate potential damage.
- Employee Guidance: Offering employees clear guidance on what is and isn’t acceptable on social media, reducing the risk of unintentional controversies.
Drafting a social media policy, especially at the rate technology moves, involves recognizing and respecting employees’ liberties while protecting the organization’s interests. – Forbes
What Should a Social Media Policy Include?
Here are a just a few of the general elements a social media policy should include:
- Purpose: Delineate the purpose of the policy and to whom it applies (and, include which social media platforms are covered).
- Guidelines for Personal Use: Provide guidelines for employees’ personal social media use, emphasizing the distinction between personal and professional posts.
- Brand Representation: Outline how employees should represent the radio station’s brand and values on social media platforms.
- Copyright and Intellectual Property: Educate employees about copyright laws and intellectual property rights and the need to respect these rights when posting content.
- Procedure for Conflict or Crisis. Designate someone your employees should reach out to for guidance in these situations.
(For more suggestions on what a social media policy should include, including template ideas, refer to Hootsuite‘s Social Media Policy for Employees.)
There are a lot of components involved in creating a social media policy for a radio station and as you work to protect your brand, it’s important to consult with legal counsel to make sure your policy complies with your state’s requirements. Also, keep in mind that an effective social media policy needs to be reviewed and updated on a regular basis.