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The Many Business Benefits of Having Your CEO on Social Media


Unless you have been on the planet Zog, you are probably aware of the Thai Football team and their coach that got stuck in the caves.

While Elon Musk was not in the end required to help he did get involved and sent some engineers.

All kicked off by this tweet.

We’ve talked before about CEOs should be on social media and they should, problem is that many people think that means the PR team will run it.  Now if @mabzmagz had tweeted your CEO would you PR team have picked it up and answered it?

Getting Somebody To Run Your Social Media is Like Me Taking Your Partner Out

No, I’m not pitching to run your CEO or any of your employees social media.  Me running your social media is a bit like if you are having problems in your relationship and me taking your wife or partner out. I doubt very much that would help (I’m sure your wife or partner would find me boring) but if there are problems in your relationship, you have to deal with it.  However much you might not want to.

I’ve contacted plenty of CEOs on social and not had an answer.  Not that I’ve tried to sell them things, I can understand them not answering a pitch, but asking them questions about their business.  That’s sloppy and I bet the PR agencies intern is running it and when a question comes in they just freeze.

If you look at Elon Musk’s twitter, it is nothing amazing, of course, he uses as a mouth piece of his business, which CEO wouldn’t.

If you were not aware, he also uses Twitter for Research and Development (R&D) and Customer service / Customer Experience (Cx).

The Tweet below, he took action and turned this compliant into a business benefit in 6 days as well as all the publicity surrounding his innovation.  Of course he wants to be know as an innovated company. There must be things you want to be known for.

Elon gets massive coverage from this for his company, far more than money could buy. This will sell him cars, it will get him investors, it will enable him to keep the investors he has, it will keep his stock price up.  These are all things that a CEO need to do and one of the quickest ways to do this is via social.

Note: People tell me CEOs don’t have time for social, you mean you don’t want to talk to 80% of the internet enable world and every single person who is a potential customer?  I’m sorry, but using social is by far the quickest, lowest cost and less time activity to do all of these things.

Businesses today are not just about “brand” or “marketing” or “selling”.  There is a rainbow of issues today spans climate change, “Me Too,” gender pay parity, immigration restrictions, animal rights, gun control, human trafficking, LGBTQ and much more.

That list would traditionally scare most PR and Marketing people and scare them so much that you say nothing or it comes out of a corporate mouth piece.  But you must take these issues on head on, in May 2016 Nicola Thorp says she was told to leave on her first day at PwC after refusing to wear shoes with a 2-4in heel.  This turned into a social media storm.

CEOs and the employees must be trained and become advocates on social media, this will impact sales, marketing, human resources.  It will enable you to sell more, get a stronger brand and enable you to switch your talent management from push to pull.  It will also enable you have to trained team that can be advocated and change the story.

Having your employees and CEO actively talking about the issues above can change people’s perception of your company.  Scary maybe, but I’m sorry you cannot have your head in the sand anymore as this story explains.

Social Media Listening

While the next map is slightly off topic as it does not relate to Twitter direct, but it does represent social media listening.  Fascinating how quickly social can turn on a brand – anyone with babies who are using formula milk, will be aware of the headache that one brand has been given in the last 24 hours.

Every CMO should be looking at social listening and how it can be embedded into an overall social selling strategy.

Why As a Business Leader You Can No Longer have a “Head in Sand” Social Media Policy

Related: Does Marketing Even Work Anymore?

At the Presidents Club annual fundraiser at London’s Dorchester Hotel in January 2018 waitresses were groped and propositioned by guests.  Social Media storm erupted and journalists and activists started targeting individuals that they suspected had been at the event. They targeted them by looking at their LinkedIn profiles and if they looked “white, male and stale” on social then it was suspected they would be a legitimate target and they were outed. Senior business leaders lost their jobs, all because they hadn’t spent a couple of hours updating their LinkedIn profiles.

I’m not for one, saying chasing after people like this is a good thing, in fact it’s pretty shoddy journalism but as Chairman Mao said “get your retaliation in first”.  People that are not at the social media party are setting themselves up.  As a friend of mine once said “I wouldn’t trust anybody not on social media, what is it they are trying to hide?”

Social Media is a Board / C-Suite issue and it needs to be understood and proactively driven by the the board (or the C-Suite in the US). Outsourcing social is been a step in a companies maturity and it now needs to be come in-house and driven proactively.  Social is natural way for humans to communicate, which is why so many people are on it in both their private lives and through work.  Social is also not just something for sales (though we are seeing 20 – 30% incremental revenues uplifts) it works right across the business, in Marketing, Customer Services, Human Resources, Research and Development (R&D), Supply Chain, Procurement etc etc.

Oh and it’s for CEOs and Business Leaders too!

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