Signposting on Social Media

Title: Signposting on Social Media

It’s common for our social media moderators to encounter members of the public who are in distress and unsure where to seek help. Appropriate signposting is a crucial aspect of what we do. 

Moderators must use their skills to ensure people feel safe, feel heard, and are directed to the most appropriate places to help support them further.  This aspect of the job can be challenging but, with the right processes and strategies in place, you can make signposting on social media more effective. 

Getting the basics right

Social AF works with our charity partners to utilise existing frameworks and processes and share our expertise to add suggestions for any additional responses. 

Things which we ask for are: 

  • Details of their charity’s support services, including an overview of who can access them,
  • Information on any approved partners for things their cause does not cover. For example, research charities are unlikely to run a bereavement helpline, and yet this is something supporters who are engaged with their cause may be experiencing.
  • A bank of responses to use as a resource to craft personal replies which include approved signposting and an agreed process for any follow-ups, 
  • An escalation process/contact for any crisis comments outside of standard working hours. 

Things you can do

The first thing to do is review the above list and think about what gaps you have. What haven’t you considered? If you were to win the lottery and leave your job, do you have the answers and signposts there for someone to pick up and run with? Or would they be starting everything from scratch?


  • Mental health problems and bereavement impact all of our charity partners, regardless of the cause. Not all charities are equipped to help their supporters directly. Do your research and find a charity you could proudly recommend should someone divulge that they’re struggling with their mental health. The same goes for supporters who may be grieving. 
  • If you don’t have an answer bank for social media, create one. Carve out some time to think about what you get asked and draft a reply, or take some time to go through your feed to discover FAQs. Be honest about what you’d struggle to respond to, and work with colleagues to come up with solutions. 
  • Make sure you have processes to protect your team. Agree on timetables so the load is shared and think about the different ways you may be able to provide support. 

Now we’ve reviewed some aspects of laying the foundations, here are our top tips for helping ensure you’re effectively moderating on social media:

Top tips

Provide a timely response using an appropriate tone

If a group member is opening up about something they’re going through, make sure you’re able to respond in good time. Social AF moderates between 9 am-9 pm, seven days a week and has both a moderator and a Team Leader reviewing activity across the whole day. This means anything urgent will get addressed promptly.  

We are huge fans of GIFs in our Facebook challenge groups, but they are not appropriate for signposting on organic social media channels. Make sure your tone reflects and the language is appropriate. 

Signpost, don’t give advice

By having a well-thought-out, approved answer bank for signposting scenarios, you are not starting a response from scratch. A moderator’s role should be to signpost and not give advice. You need to be mindful that other people can read that interaction too. Ensure your signpost matches the concern and urgency and direct people to the most appropriate place. 

Consider where you’re signposting to & have a clear escalation process

We understand the drive to maintain focus on your charity and cause, however, your signposting processes must take into consideration who is best placed to help your supporter.
Make sure you have a clear and consistent escalation process, so everyone understands who should be notified and when a participant may be at serious risk of harm. The contacts listed must be people who will also be reachable should this situation arise. 

Turn off commenting/hide where appropriate

Sometimes comments can include well-meaning advice that might not be welcome, be incorrect or could potentially put the original poster at risk. Don’t be afraid to control the narrative and turn off comments or hide where necessary. This also means 

Look after yourself

Listening to and supporting people with their well-being can be difficult and emotionally challenging. Do take steps to look after yourself too. 

If you would like to find out more about our signposting processes, pulling together your answer bank or need additional support with your Social Media Moderation, we’re here to help. You can contact us here –

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