Social Media Safety Tips for Businesses

By on August 11, 2015

Your business needs every advantage that it can get when it comes to an online presence (which is becoming increasingly important, if not vital), and social media is one of the easiest ways to do that. Yet whether you are starting up or trying to improve your methods, there are always security risks that could damage your business’ reputation.

Here are a few tips that your business can use to make their presence on social media safer:

Have Clear Policies

Whatever your business is utilizing social media for, it needs to have clear guidelines about what is acceptable and what isn’t so your employees know what their boundaries are. While only your company’s leaders can decide what is best for your particular company, it is obviously best to consider the reputation of the company along with any potential gains attained through certain policies.

The most important part is to be clear and consistent with relevant employees about these policies. Don’t hand them a two-hundred page document detailing every last step, as the odds are they won’t read it. Instead, be concise, and correct employees if it seems as though they might be getting away from the message. They’ll quickly gain a handle on things and all you will need to do is a review every couple of months to make sure everything is going well.

Consolidate and Manage

Something that may help your business’ safety when it comes to social media is to consolidate the accounts and focus everything from only a couple of devices. You could even have a social media dedicated smartphone if your company has the budget. If you have a few employees working on social media perhaps they should be kept in the same or adjacent offices. Anything that will make it so that your company’s goals and focus come together easier will be well worth a short term investment.

There are also apps such as Hootsuite that you can use to consolidate accounts on a single device, and you should ask your employees to take a day to experiment with which setups work best for optimal results.

Use a VPN

Under no circumstances do you want the social media accounts of your business to fall into the hands of a hacker or other cybercriminals. While in the office, those accounts are probably as safe as any other with the security setup your business has. There might be times, however, where the social media account will be updated elsewhere, probably on a public network. This is where the problem lies, as public networks are hunting grounds for hackers look to intercept data over an unprotected network so that they can gain access to your username and password to either cause havoc on your business’ accounts or hold them for ransom.

The best way to defend yourself from such problems is to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN). A VPN is a service that will connect your devices (or those of company employees) to an offsite secure server via an encrypted connection, allowing them to safely use their social media accounts for the company wherever they happen to be. Your employees will also be able to access restricted websites in other countries, allowing them to stay up to date even if they are travelling for business.

There are multiple options out there, so in order to figure out which are the best for your social media needs, you will likely want to read some reviews on the subject.

Double Check Everything

Whenever your company has a social media presence, it is likely one or two people doing all of the work. With only one or two people writing all of your posts, their voice will come through as the company’s, for good or for ill. You need to ask those employees to be self-aware and double check before they click the “submit” or “share” button. Posts can be deleted, but anything too problematic or extreme will be captured by a screenshot and shared over the internet, crippling the reputation of the business as a whole. You might be able to fire the employee in question and send out an apology, but by then, the damage will already be done.

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Thank you for reading, and I hope you find these tips to be useful when you set up or reorganize how you reach out to your customers.

I’m so excited to be writing this article for Social Media Impact! They’ve been my favorite website for social media business tips ever since I read this article on engaging your Twitter audience.

About Cassie Phillips

Cassie Phillips is a writer and blogger who focuses on new technological solutions for businesses, internet security and privacy, and social media tips. She enjoys having the opportunity to reach new audiences and share important information with readers.
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