Our society is continuously inundated with information through an ever-growing field of tools and mediums. As a corporate or government leader, it can be hard to know which channels are most effective and how to get your message across. Customers, media and other key audiences are demanding direct access to corporate and government leaders, and communication from the top has become increasingly scrutinized. We’ve got examples of the best tools for executives to make sure you—and your brand—are understood.
Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are great options for leaders and executives to directly engage with new, broader audiences. A recent a Public Relations Global Network Survey discovered that journalists regularly peruse a CEO’s social media presence—LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook—before an interview. Other studies have shown that CEO engagement on social media helps drive consumer spending and create brand loyalists. Executive presence on social media may be the last thing in the world a CEO has time for, but check out these examples before you write it off:
-President Obama generated more than 50,000 tweets last week with his #AskPOTUS Twitter chat. The initial response was so overwhelming that it took one hour before his first response.
-Mashable CEO Pete Cashmore used a selfie stick to give viewers an inside look of SXSW with Meerkat broadcasts.
-NASA and the United States Air Force used Periscope to interview Astronaut Terry Virtz upon his return from the International Space Station.
-Former Governor Perry previewed his 2016 campaign bid on Snapchat.
-Elon Musk teased out new Tesla product lines on Twitter and stocks jumped.
-Intel CEO Brian Krzanich opted for a Reddit AMA, but came under criticism for avoiding top two questions regarding the NSA.
-Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg brought tears to our eyes with a post about her late husband.
-DFW Airport has been hosting #AskDFWExec Twitter chats to connect AvGeeks everywhere with a sampling of their executive leadership. Watch for EVP Ken Buchanan on July 10.
Opinion editorials in local, business and trade media publications are a great way to put the leader or company’s message on the record. Strategically placed editorials can impact public opinion before an election or vote. It can also be a great way to highlight and raise awareness on different issues. See some of my favorite examples below:
-McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook’s Chicago Tribune Op-ed, “Why we're raising wages”
-Former first lady and founder of Taking Care of Texas Laura Bush’s column in The Dallas Morning News, “Conservation can start in your own garden”
-Levi Strauss & Co. CEO Charles Bergh Forbes Op-ed, “Do the world a favor n’ wash your jeans every 10 wears”
You can also consider speaking engagements or conferences where there will be industry leaders, rising experts and respected media. A speaking circuit of handpicked events can be an effective way to get your message heard and confer with influencers. Participating in these types of events also positions your executive or executive team as the trusted industry leader and expert.
Last month, the LPR team helped place ConocoPhillips’ Chief Technology Officer Ram Shenoy as a keynote at the University of Colorado-Denver’s Energy Moving Forward forum.
Clear and effective communication is crucial to the success of any leader. Much more goes into a CEO media orientation and preparation, but exploring these tools can help set your business leader apart from the crowds.
What are some techniques or stories you’ve seen or used when working with c-level clients?
Be sure to check back with us for Communications from the Top: Effective CEO Messaging.