Social Media Meets Business Continuity

There's probably little doubt that employees everywhere are using social media at home and at work. What are they saying? Could it damage your business? If you're feeling on shaky ground with regard to how to control the situation, this week's articles could be of assistance, covering everything from the dangers of social media to developing a social media policy.

The major problem that businesses face with social media is control. (Item #1)   Whether employees use social media the right way or the wrong way is in no small part up to the executives who lead them. (Item #2)   New legal issues with social media arise daily. (Item #3)  

If you're developing a social media policy, these 10 tips should help. (Item #4)   You have to control social media usage, but you also need to know how to create value with it. (Item #5)   Make sure your social media activities don't violate federal and state securities laws. (Item #6)  

As always, we look forward to hearing your comments & insights regarding business continuity. If you have a topic you'd like us to cover, email me at [email protected].

Bob Mellinger, President
Attainium Corp

1. The danger of social networking to business

The major problem that businesses face with social media is control. Put simply, it's impossible to keep tabs on what people write and do across social networking sites, just as it's impossible to impose rules on what can be discussed on a walk to lunch. In some ways it's worse with the Internet, where it's not tricky to find a cloak of anonymity to hide behind, even if many choose not to. Thus, more and more firms are becoming, with some reason, worried about the threat that social networking is causing their businesses.

2. Social Media: The New Frontier of Corporate Reputation Management

Social media holds extraordinary promise for corporate reputation management, but it also holds great peril for corporate counsel who ignore it. Let's not forget that there are more than 310 Facebook members and 200 million bloggers in the world, plus more than 20 million Twitter users, two numbers that grow exponentially each year.

3. Legal Issues in Social Networking

Here's an opportunity to get your face and message out to a large audience at virtually no cost and with only as much time commitment as you are willing to make. In your enthusiasm to make the most of these networking tools, however, it is necessary to stay mindful of the legal ramifications of your actions. New legal issues with social networking seem to arise on a weekly, if not daily, basis.

4. Ten Must-Haves for Your Social Media Policy

There are generally two approaches to social media policy making. Some organizations handle social media in an evolutionary way. Other organizations, meanwhile, feel more comfortable establishing a clear policy from the outset. Whether you're writing your social media policy from the get-go, or letting it develop organically in reaction to situations as they arise, here are 10 things you should definitely consider. These 10 tips will help you steer clear of pitfalls and allow you to focus on what's important.

5. Social Media Usage Policies: Less Lawyering, More Encouraging

A social media policy is a must-have in virtually any organization, given the sheer newness of the idea. Too many firms approach social media as an exercise in risk management, creating policies that essentially discourage its use. Sure, the policies mitigate the risks of privacy breeches, productivity losses and reputation damage, but they also do little to encourage the use of social media to create value, to realize the opportunities for problem-solving, relationship-building, and reputation enhancement. Risk-oriented social media policies have the further effect of telling all employees--especially the wary late adopters--that social media is a scary place in which known risks outweigh potential benefits.

6. Ask the Expert: The Dangers of Raising Capital through Social Media

The use of social media for business, networking and personal purposes is increasing exponentially. Savvy entrepreneurs and businesses are using social media to market their products to a wider audience, drive traffic to their websites and increase sales. It's hardly surprising that many of those same individuals and companies are turning to social media to fulfill their funding needs. However, in doing so, they may be inadvertently violating federal and state securities laws and putting themselves in a difficult situation.

Quote of the Week:

"Social media is perhaps the most powerful communications platform of the future."
-- David Kenny and Jack Klues

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Attainium Corp
15110 Gaffney Circle
Gainesville, VA 20155