Sometimes with social media, it’s easy to forget your social channels represent your brand. It’s especially important to be mindful of this when it comes to politics.

With the General Election just around the corner, should your business get political online?

Why shouldn’t I voice my opinion?Should your business get political

When voicing your opinion online it goes without saying that not everyone will agree with you. With online business channels, this means you could effectively alienate a certain section of audience who may have converted into sales further down the line.

Brands continue to come under fire for their business decisions, opinions and in some cases insensitive advertisement campaigns, causing a boycott of their products or services as well as a slurry of bad reviews and negative press. Where a major brand could probably weather this sort of storm, it could easily spell the demise of a small business’s hard-earned reputation.

Should I just ignore politics then?

Let’s face it politics is hard to ignore. Especially as what happens in politics tends to affect business and industry.

Areas such as new legislation, changes to tax laws and regulation will directly affect how you do business so sharing any changes or developments with your audience is a great way to improve engagement and keep your audience informed. However, it’s important to only share from reliable and factual resources rather than rumour or hearsay, and of course, only what you feel your audience would benefit from knowing.

Things you need to ask yourself before posting that status:

Is the issue divisive?

If the answer is yes then think very carefully before posting. Can what you’re about to post be taken the wrong way? Keep it as neutral as possible when approaching a divisive subject. Also asking your audience for their thoughts on a divisive issue could be akin to opening the floodgates and inviting rather nasty and unhelpful comments.

Can it be backed up with a reliable resource?

You are of course able to express your concerns. With the ongoing process of Brexit, there are an infinite number of blogs and press interviews with business owners discussing the implications of the whole thing. However, as a business, you’ll be expected to back up your claims and concerns with proof. Using a factual source of information and not rumour will always benefit you as well as your audience. Be sure to do your research first.

The golden rule: Would you want your mother to see it?

If the answer to this is no then you should absolutely not post that status. This is a great rule of thumb for social media. If you’re not happy to read the content to your mother then it’s not fit for your business’s social media channels.

Have you seen examples of businesses getting political that haven’t ended well? Let us know in the comments or on our Twitter and Facebook.

Phil is the Digital Account Manager for Team Organic. With a background in business banking and a passion for Social Media he takes his job seriously with a cheeky smile on his face!