Social media has been a vital tool for online brands to generate engagement from relevant audiences. Since social media is accessible and free, everyone can post whatever they want on social media platforms. 

However, not all engagement will result in a boost for your online presence. If you sift through all published content, some may be classified as harmful content that can damage your online brand. Without knowledge of social media content moderation best practices, your online community may be at risk. 

Engaging with your online community members is one thing. Moderating whether their published content provides value is another. In this blog article, we revealed the list of content moderation best practices you should follow to maintain a healthier online community against the threat of harmful content. 

Must-Follow Content Moderation Best Practices for a Healthier Online Community

1. Establish clear community guidelines.

Every online brand needs clearly defined community guidelines to encourage users to engage positively, respectfully, and inclusively. 

If you're unsure how to write your community guidelines, consider your followers, your brand personality, and the content you post on your page. The rule of thumb is that your guidelines should weed out unwanted content that could damage your brand reputation. 

However, be careful not to establish guidelines that restrict free expression and encourage prejudices among content moderators. Most importantly, your guidelines shouldn't sound overly professional or full of legal jargon. Instead, get your brand message across by using easy to understand language.

Major brands have made their guidelines available online to underline the kind of community they aim to foster. For instance, BBC Sport announced publicly on several social media sites that they will:

  • Block commenters who post hateful messages
  • Send the worst cases to the appropriate authorities
  • Make an effort to keep their accounts respectable
  • Keep expanding the scope of their coverage of women's sports, as well as the problems and debates around sports equality

2. Identify sanctions for breaching community guidelines

Once your online community guidelines have been established, you must have clear actions for what to do when you encounter content that breaches those guidelines. This set of sanctions will help your backend team understand what needs to be reported and what has to be removed.

When user-generated content (UGC) seems harmful to your brand, there are several ways you can mitigate its risks. For example: 

  • Removal of content
  • Editing of content
  • Temporarily suspending a user from engaging with your pages
  • Permanently blocking a user from accessing your pages

Content moderation best practices also include assigning various moderation tasks to specific people. Who is in charge of responding to negative comments? Who will remove malicious content in the comment section? Who will suspend or block trolls from accessing your pages? To manage your social media effectively, ensure everyone on your team knows their responsibilities.

3. Reward positive behavior from loyal customers

In addition to providing examples of inappropriate behavior, your community guidelines should also provide examples of appropriate behavior. Look for ways to reward users who engage with your brand and add value to boost your online presence. 

Did you know that you can save up to five times on costs by keeping an existing customer than by acquiring a new one? By rewarding customers, you can increase revenue while cutting costs on acquiring new customers for your business.

One way of rewarding loyal customers is by giving away exclusive deals. For example, you can give your most active customers a special coupon code, which they can use on purchases from your online store. 

4. Allow users to flag down inappropriate contents

Counting on your community's members to flag down anything that is either illegal or violates your community guidelines is known as "reactive moderation." Many online brands use reactive moderation because human and automated methods may sometimes fail. 

When social media users see content they believe to be improper on the community platform, they are ultimately accountable for reporting it. Each piece of user-generated content typically has a reporting button that, when used, alerts the moderator team so that it can be reviewed and, if necessary, removed, per the established community guidelines.

The key benefit of this type of moderation is that it can grow your community without placing an additional burden on your resources or costs for moderation. In addition, it values your followers' judgments when assessing what other community members share.

5. Respond to negative reviews accordingly

Negative reviews can impact the confidence and trust customers have for your business. Nevertheless, it doesn’t mean you have to delete all negative reviews circulating around your platforms. Deleting negative reviews is not among the content moderation best practices you should follow. It may indicate that you’re not addressing your customer’s dissatisfaction with your business. 

Some negative reviews may come from trolls, but if it's worded politely from a relevant customer, you should address it and value their feedback. If you have addressed the issue, potential customers who stumble upon a bad review are more likely to purchase from you. 

When receiving negative reviews, you should respond immediately and reassure the customer that you’re looking into the review, much like you would with a support ticket, instead of deleting or disregarding it. As a result, the review might change to a positive 5-star and publicly showcases your customer experience commitment.

6. Moderate all types of content

It’s necessary to filter all forms of content, whether you are running an online marketplace, social networking platform, dating site, or any other platform. This is essential to ensure that visitors to your pages have a positive experience and have access to engaging content.

Apart from text moderation, your social media content moderation team should also be capable of moderating visual and audio content. Regardless of the content type, content moderation must be executed to promote a secure and inclusive user experience across all social media platforms.

7. Implement the best automated content moderation tools

Content moderation best practices also include using AI tools for faster, easier moderation of all forms of content on your websites, online forums, and social media platforms. It has built-in moderation features, such as real-time voice transcription, text moderation, audio moderation, and image moderation.

Tools for content moderation can be used in various ways to curate, organize, filter, and categorize content that users see online. To find anything that suits your content moderation methods, you'll need to understand what type of content your brand invests in. 

For example, if your online brand focuses on generating visual content, you may need a tool for image recognition. Images with harmful objects, like weapons, can be recognized by image recognition tools, which can then determine whether the photo should be flagged for human review or not based on user experience and risk considerations.

8. Have a dedicated team of content moderators

Your AI-based content moderation tools are just as good as your content moderation team. You won’t achieve a safe space for all your users if you only rely on tools without the support of a human moderator. 

While AI tools are faster at regulating content than human content moderators, they cannot analyze human speech with multiple meanings. For instance, a satirical comment on your product can be inadvertently accepted by the moderation tool due to its positive language.

Your brand must have a team of social media content moderators as part of your content moderation best practices. Not only do content moderators help you remove unwanted content, but they can also generate and retain higher engagement on your social channels. Your customer inquiries are handled professionally with care and empathy. This will result in positive brand perception and customer loyalty. 

Boost Content Moderation by Outsourcing Customer Care to the Philippines

If your online presence and customer base are rapidly growing, you need to start outsourcing customer care to ensure that your content moderation stays as efficient as possible.  

ManilaPros is the top choice when it comes to getting five-star customer care for retailers. We're a full-service company that transform your customer interactions into memorable experiences through customer service Pros who have undergone rigorous on-brand training and certification.  

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