A recent study by Domo and CEO.com shows 68% of Fortune 500 CEOs have no social media presence. It’s not all bad news, increasingly CEOs are seeing the benefits to their business and are becoming Social CEOs.

Why should a CEO be on social media?

The Social CEO

The Social CEO

Because it’s good for business.

In fact, not being on social media can be harmful or give competitors an advantage. Traditional industries such as the accounting and taxi industries are being disrupted by digital (think Xero and Uber). Unless CEOs are online, it’ll be difficult to understand all the digital nuances to running a successful business.

Being on social affects your bottom line

Research shows that customers are more likely to buy from a company whose leadership team are active on social media because a Social CEO is more trustworthy and accessible. A Social CEO communicates to customers, omits transparency, and help a company improve their brand image.

It gives you a competitive edge

It used to be very difficult (and expensive) to gain valuable insight into your industry. Today, through ‘Social Listening’, CEOs are able gather invaluable market intelligence on their industry by being on social media. Not only can you monitor relevant online conversations, you can also track the activities of your competitors and act immediately on what’s happening (or not happening) in the industry.

Increased employee productivity through trust

78% of professionals say that they would prefer to work with a company whose leaders are on social. This is likely because staff are more inclined to trust CEOs who are open and transparent on social. A Social CEO allows staff to share company information, ask questions, or have their opinion heard. For employees to know that their boss has their finger on the digital pulse, affirms that their leader is ready for the challenges that digital brings. This rings especially true as millennials continue to enter the workforce, where they spend over 3 hours a day on social media. Consider this impact when 70% of the workforce will be millennials by 2025!

A Social CEO who gets results

Effective engagement online means you are able to build trust through meaningful conversations – whether they be with your customers or your staff. A great example of a Social CEO is Tangerine Bank CEO (formerly known as ING Direct) Peter Aceto. He believes social media allows him to be “at the dinner table of all

Peter Aceto engaging his staff on Twitter

Peter Aceto’s regular online engagement with staff

his customers”, engaging them in meaningful conversations such as answering questions about their personal finances. We can only assume his success as a Social CEO played a huge contributing role in securing Tangerine Bank as one of the top bank for customer satisfaction, this is a CEO who replies to tweets on Sundays. It’s also likely that his constant engagement with his staff played a role in his bank becoming one of Canada’s ‘most desired’ company to work for.

Get Social or put your brand at risk

Becoming a Social CEO is no longer a luxury, but a necessity. If you are not a Social CEO you are choosing to not invest in increasing trust in your brand, increase employee retention rates and stay on the pulse of your industry.

Being a Social CEO matters, but success won’t come overnight. It takes consistency to achieve results and success will depend on how you approach it.

Next week on our blog we’ll share how to get there. We also have a Google Hangout to walk you through the process and answer any questions you might have. Follow us on our social media (see links below!) to receive an update.

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