How to Protect your Brand’s Social Media Account

We’ve all been a witness to worst-case scenarios. They explode in a brand’s face, appearing in embarrassing headlines, all over the internet –– from social media marketing websites, to major newspapers. In their wake, a brand’s reputation can be grievously hurt and their social media team humiliated. These stories don’t just serve as comedy (or tragedy), they also serve to remind us of the importance of how your brand handles internal access and general damage control.

How to Protect your Brand’s Social Media Account

The infamous story of the music brand HMV’s Twitter fiasco, when a disgruntled employee Tweeted about his upcoming dismissal from the company’s public Twitter account, reached all corners of the social media world. Or perhaps you may have heard of the US Airways accidental pornographic tweet; not one of the finest moments for the brand. These stories are, sadly, very well-known, and there are plenty of them circling the net. Needless to say that all of them could have been easily avoided.

But how, you ask? If you have a large company with a difficult social presence (many employees, or many social media accounts or channels), you will probably have a lot of hands in the kitchen. All it takes is one misclick somewhere in your organization, and all hell can break loose. And as we’ve seen before, it only takes one Tweet to create a sprawling social media crisis. That’s why it’s essential to have a way to approve posts and accommodate a decision-making hierarchy for your social media management. That means you will need an enterprise publishing tool with sophisticated rights management.

Previously, we’ve talked about the best way to deal with a social media crisis. But the best protection is always prevention. If you want to avoid these problems entirely, then organize your social media management through an enterprise publishing tool. With these tools, you can establish a chain-of-command for post approval. That way–one person’s ill-considered post can be edited and vetted by others on the team before it makes it onto the web.

There are two types of publishing tools: the ones that can only publish in multiple networks, and the ones that have workflow integrated. Obviously, the first one doesn’t help you here, so you’ll have to focus on the second type of tool.

Now, of course, controlling every tweet is the nightmare of every social media manager, but at the same time brands should request what we call “shadowed publishing”. This means that every acting person is shadowed by another one. You are not adding layer, just a controlled mechanism. It’s simple and fast, and the entire process can be (and has to be) done in a few minutes, or in batches. Here’s how: In the settings of your social media publishing tool, you can assign specific roles and rights to team members, controlling what they can edit and publish for each social media channel; and what they can alter within your whole social media account.

With the social media shadowing control put in place, you can rest easy about the likelihood of your brand being featured in Mashable, or another large media site, as another example of social media management gone wrong. With several eyes looking at each post before it is published, there is little chance that anything damaging or egregious will reach the judging eyes of the internet community.

If you’re interested in a CMS publishing tool for your brand, check out our own Builder platform. Along with the ability to schedule and control your content workflow in one easy dashboard, it also offers easy-to-use rights management, so that social media crises are prevented before they can even occur. Want more information? Contact us at, or apply for a free trial on our website.

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