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Proofpoint for Social Media: What is It & Why You Need It

Proofpoint for social media is the magic key to avoiding compliance issues for anyone managing social channels in a regulated industry.

Stacey McLachlan October 5, 2023
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Social media mistakes happen. Typos. Awkward phrasing. Angry-tweeting at MasterChef Junior contestants before remembering they’re children.

But if you work in a regulated industry, mis-wording something can have bigger consequences than just embarrassment. We’re talking fines, disciplinary suspensions, referrals to state authorities, or even total bars from your industry. If you want to stay out of hot water, an AI-backed compliance tool like Proofpoint is key.

So how do you stay out of hot water and consistently stay engaged with your social media audience?

One option is to create a compliance officer role at your company. But large companies may find that just leads to employee content stuck in an approval bottleneck for ages. And if you’re a smaller company, you might not have the resources to make that position happen at all.

But there’s another option: Proofpoint.

If you’re at all compliance curious, the AI-powered Proofpoint Social review tool offers a quick, convenient, effective (and totally customizable) way for those in regulated industries to practice due diligence as they Tweet up a storm.

Never heard of Proofpoint Social before? Time for a crash course. Here’s everything you need to know about creating a system so that your sensitive-industry team can post TikTok after TikTok with confidence that they are not breaking any laws.

Bonus: Get a free, customizable social media policy template to quickly and easily create guidelines for your company and employees.

What is Proofpoint for social media?

Proofpoint Social is compliance software that integrates with Hootsuite to automatically review social media posts and ensure they’re compliant with your specific industry regulations or other restrictions before they are published.

Connect Proofpoint to some or all of your company’s social accounts, and set up specific conditions to trigger warnings. Every draft will run through a pre-review before publication, and reject anything that doesn’t pass muster. And it all happens in just a few seconds: no compliance bottlenecks here.

This automatic screening process adds a layer of compliance and security to your team’s social media activity — which in turn, should bring your whole crew confidence.

supervision and compliance Twitter graph

You don’t need to be in a regulated industry to take advantage of Proofpoint for social media, though. Proofpoint can also be customized to review posts for your brand’s own unique standards, style, or policies.

That could mean…

  • Ensuring employees don’t swear or post inappropriate content on behalf of your brand
  • Avoiding criticism of notable clients
  • Preventing posts that guarantee investment performance

Learn more about setting up Proofpoint here.

Why is Proofpoint for social media important?

If you work in an industry like finance or insurance, for example, your social posts have greater weight than @JoAverage. Casually recommending a stock pick or enthusiastically supporting NFTs can have real-life financial consequences for consumers. That’s why sectors like these have regulatory bodies to watch social channels closely for compliance — to keep everyone ethical and accountable.

Ultimately, having watchdogs is for the greater good of the community. They exist to protect consumers, and that’s a positive thing! But if you’re a wealth advisor, insurance adjustor, or financial counsellor, the pressure to make sure you don’t say the wrong thing might just turn you off social media altogether. Spontaneity and authenticity can be tough to achieve if you’re sweating about accidentally endorsing a hedge fund.

With software like Proofpoint, however, you can ensure your employees post social media content that is compliant with your industry while also avoiding the bottlenecks that come with having a compliance officer manually double-check every single one of your posts.

Benefits of having Proofpoint for social media

The AI-powered Proofpoint feature is designed to help companies in heavily regulated industries. So the biggest benefit, really, is keeping your team out of trouble.

You’ll avoid compliance violations

If you’re in an industry with regulations, Proofpoint can help you ensure all your social media content is playing by the rules.

For instance, if you’re a stockbroker, you can set up Proofpoint to review your social media to ensure you’re not breaking any of the regulations set out by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). That way, if you innocently compose a tweet about a cool new stock you just bought (an endorsement that’s definitely against FINRA policy), Proofpoint will catch this conflict of interest before it goes live to the public.

Read more about how to stay compliant on social media (and Hootsuite’s other compliance features).

You’ll learn to correct common mistakes

For Hootsuite Enterprise customers, Proofpoint’s predictive compliance feature can help you catch mistakes as you’re writing them. (We live in the future, get used to it.)

predictive compliance features scans text for issues such as profanity

Proofpoint’s AI will scan your text for violations in real time as you’re composing your social media posts and alert you in the moment. By correcting errors as you go, you’ll start to better internalize the restrictions, and the process will go even smoother in the future.

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You can define your own rules for your content

The benefits of Proofpoint go beyond industries with regulatory bodies or sensitive matters. Any company with a social media policy can use Proofpoint to double-check the appropriateness of social content before it goes live.

For example, you could set up Proofpoint to flag instances of profanity so that your enthusiastic but foul-mouthed new account manager doesn’t celebrate your new product launch with a few F-bombs.

…or you can use pre-existing rules

For companies that are looking to adhere to regulations from governing bodies, Proofpoint offers a selection of preconfigured rules from acronym-and-rule-rich organizations like FINRA, NIPAA, SEC, FFIEC, and others. That means setup can be quick and easy.

Posts won’t be delayed

With predictive compliance, your posts will be updated and corrected in real-time, but Proofpoint’s standardized Hootsuite integration just takes a few seconds to accept or reject your posts. No more waiting around for Colleen, the Compliance Officer, to email you back with her notes on your proposed LinkedIn update.

You’ll have easy proof of attempted compliance in the event of an audit

Okay, this benefit isn’t super fun, but it’s important. If your industry regulator comes around looking for proof you’ve at least made an effort to be compliant, you’ll have all the documentation you need in one place. (We’ve heard horror stories of financial companies printing off years and years of emails to prove their Tweets were properly vetted. Don’t let it happen to you.)

What can you do with Proofpoint in Hootsuite?

It’s probably clear at this point just what a helpful tool Proofpoint Social can be, whatever industry you’re in — from the financial sector to healthcare…even to dollhouse-furniture manufacturing.

For those in more seriously regulated industries, using Proofpoint mitigates the risks associated with social media content; for industries with looser standards, it’s still incredibly helpful as an extra layer of protection against inappropriate content. Companies can use Proofpoint in Hootsuite to:

Check social media posts against standards set by industry regulator

If your business is required to follow a regulator’s specific set of rules, you can use one of Proofpoint Social’s preconfigured settings. Whether it’s FINRA or the FTC you’re aiming to please, this Hootsuite integration is ready to help. (Psst: Read more about social media and financial services here.)

Use predictive compliance to catch guideline violations as you’re writing them

No need to wait until you’ve penned the perfect Tweet only to find out that you’ve broken six different rules. Predictive compliance in Hootsuite will flag issues in real-time so you can correct on-the-go.

Encourage your team to confidently act as social media ambassadors for your brand

Good news: you don’t have to lay awake at night, fearful that one of your 2,000 financial advisors is going to accidentally post an Instagram Story that gets you a $2 million fine. Proofpoint sets checks and balances to keep inappropriate content offline so that you can trust your team to practice safe social selling.

Define your own rules about what is and isn’t appropriate for your content

You can use Proofpoint for more than just protecting your company against violations. Set up Hootsuite with your own unique social media guidelines to keep any and all social media users on the same page with tone and content

Automate your social media approval workflow

Not that we want to put anybody out of a job, but having Proofpoint review and approve social media content frees up the human beings in your office to do the fun, creative work — or tackle more serious compliance challenges. After all, compliance officers know the work never ends.

Ready to make social media approvals and industry compliance a breeze? Take Proofpoint for Hootsuite for a spin.

Manage your social media presence safely and securely with Hootsuite. Get your and your employees’ posts on any major social network checked by Proofpoint without leaving your dashboard. 

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By Stacey McLachlan

Stacey McLachlan is an award-winning writer and editor from Vancouver with more than a decade of experience working for print and digital publications.

She is editor-at-large for Western Living and Vancouver Magazine, author of the National Magazine Award-nominated 'City Informer' column, and a regular contributor to Dwell. Her previous work covers a wide range of topics, from SEO-focused thought-leadership to profiles of mushroom foragers, but her specialties include design, people, social media strategy, and humor.

You can usually find her at the beach, or cleaning sand out of her bag.

Read more by Stacey McLachlan

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