HTC SOCIAL MEDIA GUIDELINES

TOP FOUR TAKEAWAYS WHEN WORKING WITH SOCIAL MEDIA

  • Post content on HTC's website first, then share the link on social media.
  • All content posted should relate directly to college business, programs and/or services.
  • Before you post anything, take a step back and look at it from a cutomers persepctive.
  • Each page should have at least 2 administrators that are HTC employees.

Introduction
Hennepin Technical College supports participation on social networks, as they provide the college community with an exciting, low-cost channel to share and exchange thoughts, ideas, news, events and experiences through discussions, postings, photos and videos.

The Marketing department has developed the following guidelines to ensure the most effective use of social media for the college’s external marketing and outreach efforts. HTC’s official website (hennepintech.edu) remains the central communications vehicle for many of its audiences and should not be neglected in favor of social networking. Rather, social networking should be used to enhance communications with the college's target audiences.

Departments and Other HTC Organizations
Hennepin Technical College departments or other college organizations wishing to develop a social media presence should contact the Marketing department before setting up any pages/accounts. This will ensure appropriate steps are taken when developing any social media page/account. In cases where pages already exist, please contact the Marketing department and provide links to the page(s).  Here is a current listing of known HTC social media.

Logo and titles
For titles of Facebook pages, we recommend using "Hennepin Technical College"  or "Hennepin Tech" for the first words, as appropriate, for consistency and best results in searches, for example:

  • Hennepin Technical College’s XXXX Department
  • Hennepin Tech XXXX Department
  • Hennepin Technical College Class of XXXX
  • Hennepin Tech Class of XXXX
  • Hennepin Technical College Student Senate
  • Hennepin Tech Floral Gallery

Links to official pages
Online administrators should connect their department or organization pages with the official Hennepin Technical College pages. For example, if the department or organization has a Twitter account, it should follow the official Hennepin Technical College Twitter account. If the department or organization has a Facebook page, it should add the official Hennepin Technical College page to its favorites.

Content development
All content should adhere to existing college and MnSCU policies, copyright laws, and the terms and conditions of the specific social media tools. All content should relate directly to college business, programs and/or services. Content placed by administrators should not promote individual opinions or causes that are not directly related to college purposes.

Updating and adding content
The success of any website depends on keeping the content fresh, interesting and unique. This is especially true in an organizational setting where outdated or stale sites can reflect poorly on the group and on the college as a whole. In addition, subscribers to Facebook pages and similar social networking sites are interested in receiving periodic updates — that's what gives your site value to them. While there are no hard and fast rules regarding how often content should be added or updated on such sites, site managers should be aware that the success of any site depends on an ongoing commitment to making updates and engaging with the user community.

Rights and responsibilities
Hennepin Technical College respects First Amendment rights and embraces free speech values. Our goal is to encourage free speech on college-affiliated social networking pages, as well as to promote community values and ideals.

In general, content is guided by the terms and conditions of the specific social media tools they are using; however, administrators should remove any comment or post deemed inappropriate due to harassing or threatening language, slander or profanity. It is the right of the administrator to block posts from users who violate this.

Most social networking sites establish guidelines in regard to language, posting of pictures and videos, and various other topics. Be sure to read the guidelines carefully, follow them strictly and report users who violate any terms or conditions.

Because social media sites are interactive tools, administrators should monitor pages closely and frequently to supervise user conduct. Any questionable conduct can be reported to the Marketing department. Please contact Marketing staff if you have a concern about content posted by the administrators of the college’s main social networking pages/accounts.

When posting on behalf of Hennepin Technical College:

  • Maintain confidentiality. Do not post confidential or proprietary information about Hennepin Technical College, its students, its alumni or your fellow employees. Use good ethical judgment and follow college policies and federal requirements, such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
  • Seek approval. Any messages that might act as the “voice” or position of the college or a college unit must be approved by the college or the director of the college unit or their delegate.
  • Do no harm. Let your Internet social networking do no harm to Hennepin Technical College or to yourself, whether you’re navigating those networks on the job or off.
  • Be accurate. Make sure you have all the facts before you post. It’s better to verify information with a source first than to have to post a correction or retraction later. Cite and link to your sources whenever possible to build credibility.
  • Be transparent. If you participate in or maintain a social media site on behalf of the college, clearly state your role and goals. Keep in mind that if you are posting with a college username, other users do not know you personally. They view what you post as coming from the college. Be careful and be respectful. What you say directly reflects on the college. Discuss with your supervisor the circumstances in which you are empowered to respond directly to users and when you may need approval
  • Be timely. Assign an administrator who can regularly monitor postings and content. Aim for standard times for postings and updates. The recommended minimum frequency is once to twice a week. But be sure not to overload your updates. Followers will stop paying attention if you overload them with information.
  • Be responsible. What you write is ultimately your responsibility. Participation in social computing on behalf of Hennepin Technical College is not a right but an opportunity, so please treat it seriously and with respect. If you want to participate on behalf of the college, be sure to abide by its standard practice guidelines.
  • Respect others. Users are free to discuss topics and disagree with one another, but please be respectful of others’ opinions. You are more likely to achieve your goals if you are constructive and respectful while discussing a bad experience or disagreeing with a concept or person.
  • Be a valued member. If you join a social network like Facebook or comment on someone’s blog, make sure you are contributing valuable insights. Post information about topics like HTC events or a book you’ve authored only when you are sure it will be of interest to readers. In some forums, self-promoting behavior is viewed negatively and can lead to you being banned from websites or groups.
  • Be thoughtful. If you have any questions about whether it is appropriate to write about certain kinds of material in your role as an Hennepin Technical College employee, ask your supervisor before you post.

Violation of campus policy
If activity on a social networking site is reported as violating campus policy, it will be investigated and handled according to the college disciplinary process.

Support for site managers
For more guidance or feedback on creating and maintaining social networking sites, please contact the Marketing department, who will guide you to the appropriate resource depending on your needs.



Last updated by jlaabs : 2015-07-27 08:07:51