Social Media Compliance is the process of ensuring that social accounts adhere with company policies and procedures, as well as the laws and regulations that govern your industry. While all companies monitor compliance to some degree for corporate policies and standards, companies in regulated industries must adhere to government regulations regarding use of social media and digital marketing. Regulatory compliance is crucial not only for corporate digital properties, but also for the digital properties of employees.
Businesses that are able to achieve compliance across their social media channels may enjoy a number of benefits such as:
Social media compliance allows businesses to create a wide array of social media accounts with strong branding and uniform messaging. Compliance also helps eliminate inconsistencies, errors, or sensitive information that may exist on social media accounts. And social media compliance helps mitigate against both internal and external threats to brand security.
Creating a checklist of compliance criteria for each type of social account that relates to your company is a great way to start working toward social media compliance. Several types of common accounts are: corporate accounts, employee accounts, partner accounts, community accounts, sponsorship accounts, etc. Also, be sure to include social network generated pages (such as Facebook Place Pages) in your compliance process.
When conducting a compliance review, it is important to fully understand all guidelines, rules, regulations, and policies that will shape your corporate definition of “social media compliance”. Some of the items to consider in this process include:
This is just the beginning. Creating –– and implementing –– a social media compliance plan at a large corporation requires several distinct phases and coordination between corporate marketing, HR, Legal, Compliance, Risk, Sales, and then local management of accounts for retail outlets, branches, offices, etc.
In order to manage a successful social media compliance program, a best-in-class process follows these steps:
There are industries that have specific laws and regulations for using social media to communicate with consumers. The key industries that need to adhere to externally regulated compliance standards include: Financial (including Mortgage companies), Healthcare, Pharmaceutical, and Alcoholic Beverage. To see the specific U.S. requirements attached to each industry, take a look at our Regulations and Laws page in our resources.
Companies need to be aware of their responsibility for the compliance of employee accounts –– as well as corporate accounts. For example, a financial company can be fined for any non-compliant actions of their mortgage loan officers' and financial analysts' social accounts. To emphasize a point: companies can be held accountable for the information displayed by their employees on social media.
In addition to employee accounts, companies must be able to monitor the following pages to ensure social media compliance:
Creating a criteria checklist of the necessary items required in social media use is essential. The mortgage industry, for example, has a significant criteria list since they are not only governed by the FFIEC, but by each state's regulations as well. To help, we have created a Mortgage Compliance Checklist which will get you started.
Brandle GRC Module is designed to search for your compliance criteria and send you alerts when accounts fail. You can pull reports on compliance status on all social accounts or a subset for robust reporting.
It's our goal to make your compliance job easier! See Brandle GRC here.
This white paper highlights the required industry regulations and how to develop a sound social media governance program.
This white paper by Brandle® highlights how an automated system outperforms a manual web and social media audit.
At Brandle, we help companies implement social media compliance plans to gain a focused and controlled model of their digital presence. With the Brandle Presence Manager, global companies can gain better control over their social media presence, as well as improved oversight of other organizations and people who associate themselves with their brand. All of these online points-of-presence are customer touch points that add, or subtract, from brand reputation.
If you are interested in learning the steps to create a best-in-class social media compliance program, contact us today to set up a demo and gain control of your brand presence!