July 26, 2011

Marketing Research Chart: Regulating employee use of social media for marketing purposes

SUMMARY: This week’s chart looks at the implementation of social media policies across organizations. We asked marketers to share the status of their social media policy for employees representing their brand online.

According to the survey results of more than 3,300 marketers, when it comes to written policies, the responses split closely between companies that executed a formal policy and those that did not feel it was necessary.
by Sergio Balegno, Director of Research

Organizations need a policy to regulate social media use, but do they have one?

Q. What is the status of a policy to regulate the use of social media by employees representing your organization?

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A good social media policy encourages employees to take part in promoting their brand online, while serving as a safeguard against tarnishing the organization’s reputation, or exposing proprietary assets. Yet, only one quarter of organizations have written and implemented a social media policy.

We found the larger an organization, the more likely it is to have a written social media policy in place. This is a double-edged sword because larger organizations are also more likely to have legal departments, and as such, draft a social media policy that may impede sharing any type of information, which could discourage employee participation.

From the viewpoint of industry, one of the most surprising sectors is software or software as a service. It is startling because this sector has a risky combination of software engineers or developers who are privy to the company’s proprietary secrets and are inherently likely to participate in technical forums where they may be inadvertently discussing proprietary information with their peers at other organizations.

For additional research data and insights about social media marketing, download and read the free Executive Summary from the MarketingSherpa 2011 Social Media Marketing Benchmark Report.

And to receive more data and insights each week, subscribe to our complimentary Marketing Research Chart of the Week newsletter.

Useful links related to this chart

Webinar Replay -- Strategic Social Media Marketing: Get your business or agency started with an ROI-based approach

Members Library -- Marketing Research Chart: Firms continue to substantially increase social marketing budgets

Members Library -- Marketing Research Chart: CMO confidence in social media's ability to produce ROI

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