Social Media Guideline - Office of College Advancement

Purpose of Ohlone College Social Media Policy

The Ohlone College Social Media Policy establishes guidelines for the use of social media accounts created by College employees for official business of the College. These guidelines will help to consistently portray, promote and protect the institution across all social network platforms, including but not limited to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Flickr, Snapchat and blogs. The aim is that all officially recognized College social media accounts feature a professional, unified and brand-appropriate appearance and that the messaging is the same as the College’s brand message. These guidelines provide a framework for most effective communication by departments, offices, clubs and athletic teams, while maintaining a coherent voice without stifling individual creativity.

The Ohlone College Social Media Policy is published by the College Advancement Office and to be reviewed/approved by College Council. For more information related to topics in the guide, contact the Director of College Advancement, at collegerelations@ohlone.edu.

Purpose of Ohlone College Social Media Accounts

Official Ohlone College social media accounts share the success story and promote the image of the College, serve as a news sharing and recruiting tool, and promote the mission and goals of the College.

Social Media Policy Standards

Account Approval and Setup

  1. All officially recognized Ohlone College social media accounts will be listed on the College website on the Social Media Directory web page.
  2. All officially recognized College social media accounts must be reviewed and approved by the Office of College Advancement through completion of the Official Ohlone College Social Media Account Application Form before the social media account is available to the public. If the website is publicly available before review and approval is sought, it must meet the requirements of Ohlone’s Social Media Policy.
  3. All officially recognized College social media accounts must be named after a department, office, club, or athletic team. They cannot be named after an individual, such as “RenegadesCoachJimSmith”. Be sure to identify Ohlone College as well as the individual department or program when creating a profile name or custom URL. Because profile names and URLs cannot be changed in some instances, it is recommended that page administrators request the approval of the Director of College Advancement, before creating a profile name or custom URL. Social media accounts of student organizations require the approval of the Office of Student Life.
  4. All officially recognized College social media accounts must have at least two responsible permanent employee administrators assigned. The individuals responsible for the account are required to use their “@ohlone.edu” email addresses to establish and maintain the accounts.
  5. Both administrators should have access to the current password. In addition, the department or division office should also know the account name and password.
  6. Should an employee administrator leave the College or no longer wish to be an administrator, his or her department, office, club or athletic team must designate another employee administrator and remove the previous employee’s permissions to the account. At that time, the password to the account can be changed and given to both account administrators.
  7. All officially recognized College social media accounts should submit their profile/cover/background image as part of the application to ensure the College’s branding standards are upheld.
  8. Many social networks have sections for more information, websites, favorite pages, and other ways to promote other links. Departments and programs should include links to their departmental website, the main college website, and the main college social media account on the same social network.
  9. Many social networks allow for the creation of a unique link (URL) for each social media account. If given the opportunity, departments and programs should create a unique URL for their profiles. When choosing a URL, make include the word “ohlone” and some identifying keywords of the department or program, such as “@ohlone-basketball” for Twitter.
  10. Consult the College’s Brand Style Guide for the use of official College logos, colors and fonts on officially recognized College social media accounts. The College’s logo and/or visual identity must not be used for personal social media accounts without permission from the College Advancement Office.

Social Media Account Management

  1. Employees representing the College on officially recognized College social media accounts are held responsible for what they post. When you publish on behalf of the College, exercise good judgment and common sense. Correct spelling and grammar are required.
  2. Students should not generate content or be given the password to the social media account. A student may be provided content to post on a site, but only when supervised.
  3. All social media posts should relate to the College or a topic in connection with the department, office, club or athletic team.
  4. Employees representing the College on officially recognized College social media accounts should consider their audience. Remember that your followers include current students, potential students, alumni, donors, the community at large, and current/past/future employees. Before you publish, make sure you aren’t alienating any of those groups.
  5. Employees representing the College on officially recognized College social media accounts must refrain from comments that can be interpreted as slurs, demeaning or inflammatory. Don’t post anything violating the principles and mission of the College, and don’t share any personal opinions, which could be perceived as the views of the College.
  6. One of the strengths of social media is immediacy. Employees representing the College on officially recognized College social media accounts should strive to respond to incoming comments, questions, and requests in a timely and courteous manner. People will test you to see if you are monitoring your site. Be responsive.
  7. Employees representing the College on officially recognized College social media accounts must respect copyrights and fair use. Always give people proper credit for their work, and make sure you have permission to use photos, videos, and text with attribution before you publish. Consult the College’s Style Guide for information about the use of photos.
  8. Employees representing the College on officially recognized College social media accounts must not disclose proprietary information or data, trade secrets, or other confidential non-public information of the College.
  9. Employees representing the College on officially recognized social media accounts must not violate any College policy, including but not limited to any policy prohibiting unlawful harassment or otherwise regarding equal employment opportunity or the privacy rights of other employees of the College.
  10. Inappropriate, offensive, injurious and illegal content on officially recognized College social media accounts may be removed by account administrators at the direction of the College Advancement Department. Violation of principles outlined in this policy may result in removal from the College’s Social Media Directory and shutting down of the social media account.
  11. For policies regarding employees’ personal use of social media, refer to Human Resources.

If there is any doubt about posting content on official Ohlone College social media accounts or for more information on creating and using official College social media accounts, contact the Director of College Advancement, at collegerelations@ohlone.edu.

Conclusion

Our goal in developing standards is to provide every program and every Ohlone representative with the necessary tools to maximize the opportunities available via social media. These standards reflect the big picture view of how to approach social media. Of course, implementation will require administrators to develop additional tactics to guide the day-to-day activities that will help you accomplish your goals.