Belfast Telegraph

10 ways to protect your company on social media

At Ulster Bank, we recently launched our Boost initiative to support small business growth.

We had some great speakers at the launch event, including digital marketing consultant Emma Gribben. She talked about social media crisis management.

For context, she told us that the UN estimates 6 billion people have access to a mobile device and there are 2.7 billion active social media users. 60% of the people who use social media actively leave reviews, give feedback and make comments on brands and companies online.

This provides clear opportunities but it also creates risk.

Here are 10 things Emma suggests you do to ensure your company protects itself on social media.

1. Understand the kind of crises you could face

For instance, a rogue employee taking to Twitter, a data breach within your organisation, a product recall, or service outages due to weather. What crises are most likely in your industry and for your company and how do you prepare for them?

2. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best

Be prepared for things that could happen out of the blue. Your plan for these won’t be able to focus on the specifics of every crisis. But it should deal with who looks after it, what the roles are and how, broadly speaking, your team should react.

3. Listen and pre-empt

Do not underestimate the importance of listening to what your customers are saying. Invest in a social media listening tool so that you can hear the conversations that are happening around your brand amongst customers. Identify sentiment, track any issues that are coming through, and pre-empt potential crises.

4. Respond in an appropriate timeframe

Does your organisation operate around the clock and will your customers expect you to respond around the clock? Make sure you are able to respond in a timely manner.

5. Have a measured response

You don’t necessarily need to go into full crisis mode. Some situations can be dealt with by simply taking the customer to another channel to continue the conversation. If you misjudge your response it could exacerbate the problem.

6. Know who has access to your channels and what levels of access they have

Do former employees or interns still have access to your channels? This could be a significant risk. Do an audit and revoke any access that shouldn’t be there.

7. Understand what users have access to do on your channels

If you have reviews, check-ins and comments enabled on your Facebook page, understand that they can’t be deleted.

8. Understand the kind of threats to security that are out there from apps and software

Apply the latest updates and security to your channels, devices and networks to protect yourself against potential hacks. This includes ensuring you have secure passwords.

9. Do a social media crisis simulation

Sit down and map some crisis situations that could occur and try to replicate them in a scenario that makes them as live as possible. You can put your plan into action, see how your team reacts, and identify areas where you need to develop your social media crisis management plan.

10. Develop policies, guidelines and procedures so that not only your communications team, but the wider organisation has visibility of and understands what to do in a crisis situation.

It is also really useful for new people who join your organisation.

These are just some of the things that you can do to protect your company on social media. We hope you find these pointers useful.

We’ll be running lots more Ulster Bank Boost events to help you and your business. Find our more at: digital.ulsterbank.co.uk/business/boost

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From Belfast Telegraph