Social Media Policy
Emory & Henry’s Office of Marketing and Communications has created Social Media Guidelines to help in your creation and management of various social media accounts. These guidelines are essential for all Emory & Henry employees to know who have social media responsibilities.
In the guidelines, you will find:
- New account creation checklist
- Roles and the working relations with Emory & Henry Director of Marketing (DM) who manages Social Media
- Platform specific posting tips and analysis
- How to best transfer rights between users
- List of hashtags used throughout the college community
Please read through these guidelines and contact the Marketing Director (MD) within the Office of Marketing and Communications with questions, concerns or ideas. Thank you for considering these guidelines in your work as an Emory & Henry representative on Social Media platforms.
Emory & Henry Guidelines for Social Media applies strictly to all Emory & Henry faculty, staff and student employees and interns who create or contribute to blogs, wikis, social networks, virtual worlds, or any other kind of social media as part of institutional responsibilities. Social media is a great way to express the Emory & Henry mission and values and highlight the work of faculty, staff and students.
Emory & Henry defines social media as any place or space you interact with your audience digitally. Examples include but are not limited to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Blogs, comment sections, Private Messaging and Chat windows.
- Note that although these guidelines cover the appropriate use of social media by individuals authorized to speak for Emory & Henry, the use of social media by other employees remains subject to Emory & Henry Human Resources’ policiecs governing employee conduct. (See Human Resources Policies 102.3 and 102.4) Social media is a gateway to the Emory & Henry community and not the only place we want our constituents to interact with us. Posts should include a trackback to an Emory & Henry webpage, content piece or other media mention as much as possible.
- For a complete list of Emory & Henry’s official and sanctioned social media accounts, visit the Social Media Directory page at https://www.ehc.edu/communications/social-media/index.php
- Please review the college’s online social media listing and help us keep it accurate and up to date with all accounts. URL is www.ehc.edu/social for the short URL.
Personal Conduct on Official Emory & Henry Accounts
Consider social media communications like a personal conversation in a very public place. Assume everything you write will be public and that nothing is ever truly deleted.
- Respond to questions courteously and identify yourself by name and position at the end of the response.
- Verify everything you see on social media before reporting/reposting/retweeting.
- Attribute everything that is not original to you or to Emory & Henry.
- Contact the college’s DM for further questions or assistance. If you identify yourself in anyway as an employee of Emory & Henry on personal social media, everything you say, write or do can and will be viewed in light of your connection with the College. For this reason, many employees choose to have two separate individual accounts: one for business and one for personal views. If you choose this route, the business account must clearly state your job title and Emory & Henry while your personal account should not.
- Representation of your personal opinions as being endorsed by the College or any of its organizations is strictly prohibited. You may not use the Emory & Henry name to promote any opinion, product, cause or political candidate. Use your non-college affiliated personal page for these types of postings. Be advised that social media posts can be aggregated by multiple platforms other than your account, such as college apps and multiple website widgets.
- Social Media is never a place for the discussion of internal issues such as personnel matters involving colleagues, institutional decisions, confidential records or transcripts. Posting course content must be approved by the course’s professor and DM.
- Several employees may have access to multiple accounts on the same social media platform. For example, one person may have access to the Emory & Henry generic, admissions and the individual’s personal Twitter profile. In this instance, always double check to make sure you are signed in to the correct account before posting the message.
Creating any social media account requires approval from the Marketing and Communications Office. Any creation of extensions or add-ons to an existing account must also be approved by the Marketing and Communications Office. Examples include but are not limited to photo filters, GPS location points and video pre-rolls.
- Yearly audits of all Emory & Henry affiliated accounts will be conducted by the DM and Office of Marketing and Communications to ensure active use and post quality.
- The DM is responsible for disseminating information on new strategies and technologies to admins as they become available via internal communication tools and in-service presentations.
- Please review the College’s online social media listing and help us keep it accurate and up to date with all accounts. URL is www.ehc.edu/social for the short URL.
New Account/Reactivation of Old Account Checklist
1. Obtain written permission from DM to create any social media account.
2. Identify a primary manager for the social media account.
- It is important to have at least one dedicated employee whose job responsibilities include overseeing the day-today operation of the account, so that the account does not become inactive or inaccessible.
- This individual should also identify back-up personnel with account access.
- Students shall not have sole responsibility of an account. If a student will be posting on your account’s behalf, all posts must first be approved by the social media account’s primary manager.
3. Give additional admin access and login credentials to the DM or other Marketing and Communications Office administrator.
4. Develop content strategy that includes types of posts and frequency with the DM.
5. Create the account with approved college images and/or color schemes with the DM.
- Establish a consistent naming convention across all of your social media accounts. Avoid the use of dashes, underscores or special characters.
- When choosing a username, you should always add “EmoryHenry” or EH before your department or organization. On most platforms you cannot rename an account after the first time.
Transfer of Administrative Rights
Emory & Henry understands that social media accounts may outlast employee tenure or affiliation with the College. Before the administrator’s final day at Emory & Henry, they must state in writing they are transferring over any passwords or account access to the other administrators and what those passwords are. They must also sign a document verifying the transfer and agreeing to relinquish posting rights and other duties as the account manager as part of the Office of Human Resources offboarding process. (See Transfer of Rights document at end of guidelines)
Blocking and deleting users/content
Before any actions are undertaken by the account administrator, contact the DM to discuss if the user needs to be dealt with and what needs to be said in any correspondence.
- All social media platforms operate on a “Two Strikes and You’re Out” policy.
- The first instance a user posts abusive, racial or offensive content the account administrator must first remove the user’s posts then send a written warning via a private direct message explaining why the posts have been removed. Also, clearly state if the actions occur again they will be blocked from interaction.
- If the user repeats the same actions of offensive posting, then remove their posts, block the user from interaction with your account and send them a private direct message explaining the block.
- Reinstatement will be reviewed on an individual basis with the DM and account admins.
Third Party Content Approval
- Whenever possible, only post Emory & Henry created and owned content to any social media platform. Linking to a third party content item is acceptable as long as you attribute the work to the originator and provide additional text from Emory & Henry in the posting.
- In the event there is content from a non-Emory & Henry entity that you wish to direct-post onto your social media account, such as photos from a member of the public, you must contact the creator and acquire written permission to use the piece.
- If there are multiple identifiable people in the content item you must receive written approval from everyone before using.
- Cross-promote accounts to drive users from one to another. Most people are engaged in multiple social media platforms so this will help create network of people engaged with Emory & Henry.
Platform Specific Guidelines/Techniques
Hashtags are search terms preceded by a # symbol. Using a hashtag helps catalogue content and facilitate easier searching for posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The same hashtag can be used across these three platforms. Discuss options with the DM before creating a brand new hashtag in order to coordinate college wide.
● List of currently used hashtags by Emory & Henry and related groups #GoWasps – #emoryandhenry #StingersUp – #Collegesthatchangelives – #featurefriday – #KellyLibrary – #EHLove – #EHstudents – #Semesteratrail – #Emorybornemorybred #featurefriday – #Scholarships – #Transfers – #Lyceum – #jointheswarm – #bestvalueschool –
● National/regional hashtags allow our content to be incorporated with a larger collection of items. Please use only when relevant to post. #swvaforum #Growth4VA #Swva #Liberalarts #RNtoBSN
Posting content to Facebook authorizes Facebook to make copies of that content and use it for any purpose. Therefore, use only direct-post text, photos and videos copyrighted and owned by Emory & Henry. This protects the College from a third party copyright owner claiming infringement.
- Linking to a third party content item is acceptable. Provide your own text in the Status Box with the autogenerated preview.
- Focus on relevant, high quality content useful to a targeted audience such as interesting visuals, link posts and original video uploaded directly to Facebook. A link with the automatic preview and original text will have a higher reach than any other type of link. Posing open ended questions can help elicit comments and shares. Shorter posts are best.
- Make sure to monitor your site often and respond to comments and direct messages in a timely manner, including your name and job title with the response. Use discretion and good judgment in monitoring feedback and comments from your fans. Please report any concerns to the DM immediately.
- Post precisely three to five times per day with key times at 8 a.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. On weekends, post a minimum of once in the afternoon each day.
- Spacing your Tweets out rather than posting all at once is more effective.
- Use a link shortener like Bitly to create short links rather than having a long URL using most of the character limit. Visit https://bitly.com/ and paste the original URL into the text box at the upper right side. You should be automatically directed to a page with the shortened URL to copy and paste into your post.
- When a person or organization is mentioned in a content piece, try to find their Twitter handle before Tweeting, then insert their handle as their name in the Tweet. Double check to make sure you have the actual handle and not a parody account or similarly named organization. Ex. Make your resume consultation appointment with @ehccareers.
- Only use relevant hashtags to the subject of the content. Do not use more than two hashtags per Tweet if possible.
- Re-Tweeting those you follow and followers’ content builds connections and reciprocal working relationships. Adding your own comments to the Re-Tweet allows you to include original content without exhausting the character limit.
- Always thank a new follower of your account personally in a Tweet.
- Use the “hijacking the feed” technique as much as possible, in which your Tweet has an interesting photo with it instead of just text. This helps set yours apart from other Tweets users end up seeing.
- Work with the DM to implement Tweetdeck to help schedule posts and manage your account.
- Tweet at least three times per day with key times at noon and 5 p.m. RT at least two Tweets each day. On weekends Tweet a minimum of twice per day.
- Instagram offers the opportunity to share unique photos and videos about your department, organization or program. You can offer an insider perspective not generally seen.
- Decide on one or two identities or perspectives and post photos best fitting those angles. Do not post just to post. Examples of identity or perspective: behind the scenes of theatre productions, science department cool experiments, campus housing unique dorm features
- Post only the best shots of your subject, not every photo.
- Instagram has a number of filters to add to your photo offering unique effects. Use these filters and photo editing sparingly. Using too many adjustments distorts images to where content focus becomes the editing and not the subject.
- Tag your photos with as many relevant Instagram user IDs as you can by using the ‘Tag People’ function and search using their username or real name.
- Include the location of the photo and video whenever possible with the ‘Name This Location’ function and enter in an address or place name. If it was taken while on campus, use the default Emory & Henry address of 30461 Garnand Dr., Emory, VA 24327. Exception: Intermont Equestrian Center, Bartlett-Crowe Field Station and School of Health Sciences
- Post one photo or video per day between 3 and 5 p.m.
- Do not overtly promote Emory & Henry. Instead, post content supporting our College’s missions and extending our reach into the audience’s daily life. Example: instead of ads for new spirit apparel at the Merc, post alternative ways to wear spirit like upcycling old shirts into a quilt to use for tailgating.
- Pinterest is one of the most visual dependent platforms. Using lots of images keeps audiences engaged and informed.
- Allow for user-generated content to be added to your board. Engage with those members in a conversation about their pins and thank them for contributing.
- Post multiple content items at least every day, varying the subject matter, between 2 and 4 p.m.
- LinkedIn is a professional networking site. Posted content needs to reflect that.
- Emory & Henry organizations can use LinkedIn by creating groups to connect current students with alumni, to connect alumni with each other and to post job openings for paid positions and internships.
- Don’t focus on “selling” your organization or group. Rather, put the focus on the group and its members. Provide content appealing to them about career development or college opportunities and events.
- Carry on the conversations. Facilitate group discussions by posting useful information and prompts for future discussions.
- Offer industry insights as this is the #1 most searched for content within the site.
- Post daily during weekday business hours.
- Main account only, managed by Office of Marketing and Communications. The following is to be implemented only if another channel needs to be established, as decided by the Marketing and Communications Office.
- A Google Account is required to sign into YouTube. To create a new channel, this Google Account cannot be associated with another YouTube channel and only one YouTube channel per Google Account is allowed. It is recommended to use a generic account instead of an individual employee email account in case of employee turnover.
- Every uploaded video needs to have “Emory & Henry College,” “Emory” and “Virginia” in the keywords section of video description. After these three, add as many relevant keywords as needed pertaining to the video subject matter.
- Video titles should include some of the same keywords and phrases.
- Add video content, at a minimum, monthly. Keeping it fresh will keep people coming back and make your channel more likely to appear in searches.
Social Media Campaigns
- Any campaign or initiative involving social media needs to be discussed with the DM and Executive Director of Institutional Communications or Vice President of External Affairs to ensure goals align with the college’s general mission and values.
- All campaigns must have a Social Media Plan detailing deliverables and deadlines.
- Strategies can involve but are not limited to:
- Campaigns – ex. Ascend campaign
- Giveaways – ex. Tweet with our hashtag and be entered to win a t-shirt
- Incentives – ex. Tweet more than once with our hashtag for more entries
- Partnerships – ex. Internal and external; sharing posting duties of same messages
Form for Transfer of Social Media Admin Rights
Date: Social Media Account(s): I, (employee name)___________________________________, hereby return all social media account administrative rights to (department) ___________________________________ for all accounts listed above.
I have deleted myself or have been removed by another administrator from the page admins list and relinquish all duties associated with the administrative role. I have also given any usernames and passwords to the main account administrator and the Director of Marketing.
By signing and dating this document, I agree to all terms listed above, will not contest any of the process listed nor be part of any posting duties on the account unless specifically asked by an active account administrator or Director of Marketing.
Name (print) ________________________________
Admin Name (print) __________________________