***The Ariba Social Media Guidelines were revised on 3-8-11 and can now be found here***
If you are participating on the Ariba Exchange or other social media (blogs, discussion boards, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc), it’s important to understand the following Ariba guidelines. Our policies are not meant to discourage participation, but rather should serve as a code of conduct to protect you, Ariba, and our customers.
Generally we want to encourage employees to contribute and participate in meaningful ways since it will strengthen the Ariba’s online presence and help our customers. All employees who are representing the company in their commentary need to follow the guidelines described below.
- Be honest and transparent – We believe in transparency and openness. You should never contribute anonymously or under a pseudonym. As an employee, when you comment on the company in your posts you are considered a company spokesperson. It is a best practice to provide some biographical info about yourself on your blog, Twitter page, or anywhere else you will be discussing Ariba or our industry. Topics and responses to other comments should be written with the understanding that they will be read by people inside and outside the company, and possibly the news media.
- Be interesting – There is no point in contributing if the community doesn’t find it interesting and useful. The upside is that if you are contributing about industry best practices, feature details, or future enhancements and you know what you are talking about, these are already very interesting topics. Being interesting also comes from bringing your personality to the forefront. Contributors that use their own voice and let their self-expression shine through are the best contributors.
- Know your audience – Your audience should be the center of the focus, not you. Understand what they care about, why they are reading what you are writing, and what their interests are. The more you know about your audience, the better you can connect with them. And remember, the best way to know your audience is to listen to what they have to say.
- Be respectful – Always respect your audience. Do not engage in disputes. Do not use ethnic or racial slurs, personal insults, or obscenity in your community participation. If you are commenting on Ariba’s competitors, you must do so respectfully without ridiculing, defaming, or libeling them in any way.
- Quality matters – Use your spell-checker and check your work. If after publishing, you find you’ve made a mistake, be up front about it and correct it quickly but do so transparently by leaving a note about what was changed.
- Conversations are a two way street – If you have something to add to the conversation, by all means, speak up…after you’ve listened. This can be through blogging, commenting, contributing ideas, voting on content, posting/responding questions, or tweeting. When you start contributing remember to share the link love - when you see something interesting and relevant, link to it. This will do the community a service and will also generate links back to the community.
- Don’t share company or financial secrets – While we are very open and transparent in what we share, it is not ok to share company insider information. Here are some examples of what to not comment on or post about; Revenue or share price, deals, pricing, pending acquisitions, future product release dates, security and performance of our solutions, unannounced customers, industry rumors, growth by product line, vertical or region, or executive leadership. If you have any question about the appropriateness of a contribution, review it first with your manager.
- No forward looking statements – You need to be very careful not to make any forward looking statements. Do not make promises on future application functionality which may or may not be delivered.
- Don’t register channels without prior consent – While it is easy to spin up a new LinkedIn Group, Facebook page or Twitter feed you must run it through the social media team first. Once new channels are created they can quickly take on a life of their own on the Internet. Migration after the fact can be painful.
- If you’re not sure…ask or escalate – If you “hear” something online about Ariba, our solutions or industry that you believe should be noted or addressed by someone within Ariba other than yourself, please email your manager and Justin Fogarty, the community manager. The online world is a big place, so it’s up to everyone to keep their eyes open for relevant commentary from the community – both positive and negative – and inform others when we can learn or contribute to the conversation.
If you have any questions about what’s in bounds or out, please contact your manager and/or Justin Fogarty jfogarty[at]ariba.com