Social networks are very popular with both event planners and participants today. They allow participants to expand their connection with each other before, during, and after an event, while benefitting event marketers by broadening the event’s reach. Communication is greatly improved by use of social networks, and event producers and planners can leverage them to deliver excellent customer service while promoting their brand online.
These new benefits to your event do, however, pose new risks to the privacy and security of your event and your attendee management. On social networks you will often feel a loss of control over what is being said about you, your event, and your company or brand, a loss of privacy for both you and your attendees, and possible threats to the privacy and safety of your event information if you do not implement basic security measures.
Before you jump on the social network bandwagon, check out this list of things that you can do right now to make your event’s social network more secure.
1.) Jump off the bandwagon. Don’t embrace social networking just because everyone else is doing it. First define a strategy, execute it, and measure the results. If it’s working for you, and it is causing some benefit for your event, then you can adjust your plans as needed and carry on. But, if it’s not working, then don’t invest the time that is required to do social networking properly.
2.) Next, you need to adopt a social network policy. This should be a written policy, which doesn’t necessarily need to be long– in fact, a simple policy often works the best. The other members of your team and your organization need to understand what the social network policy is, both for internal and external systems.
3.) Use Google Alerts or another tool tomonitor your event, your organization, and your brand. Find out what is being said about you on the World Wide Web. This way, you can add your input to what is being said about you online, and if anyone has questions or concerns you can respond to them directly and clear up any confusion surrounding your event.
4.) Clean up your friends and followers lists. It doesn’t look good to have potential spammers and seedy characters as your friends.
5.) Make sure that you set your account so you approve your future friends and future follower requests. This will keep your lists clean in the future.
6.) You need to separate your personal and professional networks. In general, the personal networks look best on Facebook, and the professional networks on Linkedin.
7.) You should be monitoring your comments… Those of your own blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc. and use Google Alerts or another tool to monitor comments on other people’s blogs.
8.) Be sure that on your blog you keep your content and comments both professional and factual.
9.) Change your internal passwords now if you haven’t done so in the past three months.
10.) Keep your internal passwords separate from your external passwords so that you are using different passwords on your social networks. This way if someone manages to hack into your Twitter account, they don’t automatically gain access to your organization’s network.
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