Whether you’re a small or large agency, you know that the possibility of a social media flub is real. Usually, it is the result of someone being careless or frivolous with their social media use. Playing fast and loose with clients’ social channels is not encouraged by anyone. Here are five tips for avoiding social media flubs for even the most veteran community manager:

1. Separate logins

This one is probably the simplest to implement. Create a separate login for all clients. Perhaps that means having one professional-use-only Facebook account with all the pages linked to it. Perhaps it is literally having to login to each individual Twitter account. Having to login separately to a client account simply makes you more aware of which handle you are on, which can decrease the margin for error across the board. When we see employees accidentally tweeting on a company handle, it could have probably been easily avoided by just taking that one extra step.

Using social channel management tools like Hootsuite is really convenient, but again, don’t mix clients on your dashboard. Instead, have one Hootsuite login per client. This can encompass multiple platforms, of course, but this also cuts down on the chances that you will tweet something for McDonald’s when you meant to tweet something for Payless. Diligence is the key.

2. Schedule like a pro

Scheduling into the future is not only helpful for time efficiency, but it can also help you reduce the chance of error. Simply allot specific times in the day when you will schedule content for each client. Don’t jump back and forth. Also, reviewing your content throughout the day will ensure that it is not only still relevant and timely, but that you have additional time to catch any mistakes, typos or erroneous information.

3. Link check

Nothing frustrates a user more than clicking on a broken link. In order to avoid this error, regularly check on social content to not only ensure that it was sent out properly, but that all links work. Don’t want to mess with your metrics? Simply roll over the link and it will reveal the destination URL at the bottom left of your webpage.

4. Implement social policy away from the office

Most employees know what is wrong and right to put on social media in the office (though you should clear up any confusion by having some written rules), but things might get hazy when on the go. Lots of employees love to use their mobile apps for quick updates. That’s great for personal handles but not for clients’. Using a mobile app is a bit too easy. You can accidentally tweet something from a business handle that you meant to tweet from a personal. Instead, only use your work computer to make changes. If there is a social emergency, login the old fashioned way on your phone’s browser. Don’t be tempted to save the information in an app.

5. The ever-changing password

This is just a great rule of thumb any way you slice it, but the fact is that many companies don’t change their passwords often enough. The fact is that changing your social passwords at least once a quarter will cut down on largely on the amount of errors that occur. Think of all the places you’ve ever entered your client’s password, and think of how many people may know it. Keeping a fresh, ever-changing password is just a good way to keep your information and your handles safe. If it’s a shared password across the company, be sure to change it every time a person leaves.

Even with these tips, it is possible that your company could experience a social media flub in the future. If it happens, it’s best to apologize and keep moving. However, hackers, spambots, careless employees, former employees, disgruntled fans, etc. can all be better controlled with these tips.

Do you have a way to keep your social channels safe that we haven’t mentioned here? Share it in the comments!