Does your business tweet? Great! But what about your business leaders?
If you’ve ever spoken to your leadership about using Twitter — or if you are that leadership — you’ve probably encountered any number of protestations and roadblocks. Twitter is a time-sink. It’s frivolous. There are too many complaining customers and not enough advocates. It can’t be measured, so it doesn’t matter to the bottom line.
But the benefits of CEOs and other executives using Twitter can far outweigh the downsides, if done properly. Twitter can connect businesses to their customers on a more personal level than any other digital tool — and it is that personal connection that builds trust and loyalty.
1. Meet the press
Speaking one-on-one to the press can be a great way to network and make product or partnership announcements. And if your CEO is on Twitter, this process becomes a lot easier.
Many journalists use their own Twitter accounts to source stories and conduct research. They are always on the lookout for a good scoop. By connecting to the journalists covering your industry, your CEO will be able to form positive relationships with them. He or she can compliment them on a recent article, point them to industry news, and even offer to conduct an interview as an expert.
2. Plug in to what matters
With even 10 minutes every morning, your company’s leadership can quickly scan the latest news and thought pieces in your industry. They can search out who’s vocal about various topics, what news pieces seem to be garnering attention, and what their customers are interested in. Of course, great marketing teams in larger companies are likely already intensively using Twitter to conduct research, but by setting up their own accounts, CEOs can take a quick peek into the real-time conversations surrounding topics they’re interested in.
3. Perform crisis management
CEOs like AirAsia’s Tony Fernandes have led the way in terms of social media crisis management.
Your CEO can address issues during key crisis moments in an effort to inform and connect with the public. Of course, any crisis management needs to be done with tact and an understanding of the medium — you don’t want your CEO “angry tweeting” against a dissatisfied customer! But by tweeting transparently during a crisis, your leadership can show that they are unafraid to face challenges head on, and may even stop a crisis before it gets out of hand.
4. Become a thought leader
By tweeting his or her thoughts about your industry, company news and other related topics, your CEO can quickly shoot up the influence ranks to become a thought leader.
Many CEOs have distinguished themselves as not only business leaders, but influential members of a community willing to share knowledge and grow ideas. They are looked up to by their customers, partners, and even competitors. By using Twitter as the medium through which to share their thoughts, CEOs can show that they understand, and can respond to, industry news in real time.
5. Raise your brand’s profile
Last but not least, your CEO’s Twitter presence will do wonders for raising your brand’s profile, both on an offline. The more he or she interacts with other leaders and your business’ customers, the more visible your entire company will become. By tweeting regularly, a CEO can effectively “speed up” the process of building brand recognition and loyalty.
(Businessman on tablet image via Shutterstock)