For business people, this just the common sense – improving CEO reputation is inextricably linked to improved company reputation. Thus, as CEO reputations improve, so do the reputations of their companies.
As CEOs, because there no other business leader can so reliably provide information about a company’s prospects or promote corporate citizenry in a way that will so likely be listened to and acted upon by investors, employees, customers, regulators, media and others. Thus most of them are acutely aware that their offices provide unique platforms from which to communicate not just internally, but externally as well.
In the other words, to get your messages out and reach to all of your stakeholders, there no better spokesperson exists than the CEO.
With over 500 million people around the world on Facebook, also other social media platform like YouTube and Twitter etc, if CEOs wish to be heard and share their points of views, they need to become more comfortable with all the media options now available. Its the time for CEOs to take greater responsibility for openly and effectively communicating with their stakeholders.
But do you know the majority of CEOs from the world’s largest companies – 64 percent are not social, which means they are not engaging online with external stakeholders. According Weber Shandwick recent study.
What did Web Shandwick learn about the top CEOs sociability of the world?
* 97% communicated either through traditional or online channels
* 64% are NOT engaged through company websites or in social media
* 36% engaged through company websites or in social media
* 28% posted letter or message on company websites
* 18% incorporated video/podcast on company websites or YouTube channels
* 16% have a profile on Twitter (8%), Facebook (4%), MySpace (4%) or LinkedIn (4%)
* 12% were featured on their corporate video channels
The study also found 41% of those CEOs from the most admired of the 50 were more actively engaged online, 28% of those companies had mediocre reputations. So, where are these “engaged” CEOs actually engaging?
As you can see, there just 18% posting videos and podcasts and a measly 8% active on Twitter ! And, not a single CEO had a company-affiliated blog!!
In terms of how to socialize your CEO, Weber Shandwick recommends “six rules of the road” for CEOs to enhance their social reputation and interactivity:
* Identify best online practices of your peers and best-in-class social CEO communicators. Then establish and stretch your own comfort zone.
* Start with the fundamentals (e.g., online videos or photos). Inventory and aggregate existing executive communications for re-purposing online.
* Simulate or test-drive social media participation. Understand what you’re getting into before you go live. Start internally although recognize that internal employee communications spreads externally seamlessly.
* Decide upfront how much time you can commit to being Social. It can range from once a week to once a month to once a quarter or less often. Be your own best judge of what feels right.
* Craft a narrative that captures the attention of audiences that matter and humanizes your company’s reputation.
* Accept the fact that Getting Social needs to be part of your corporate reputation management program. Purposefully manage your social reputation as well as your corporate reputation.
In regarding to why CEOs should engage online. Gaines-Ross said “In this increasingly digital age, CEOs should embrace the value of connectivity with customers, talent and other important stakeholders online. With 1.96 billion Internet users around the world, CEOs should be where people are watching, reading, chatting and listening.”
Despite all of other saying, the study revealed that traditional media still remains the preferred outlet for CEO external communications, but the things that in changing now is – CEOs are slowly coupling their traditional media engagement with social networks and channels where they can reach more stakeholders and give their companies a much needed human face or connection.