As an executive, you’re a leader in your company, often one of the public faces. Your employees, your affiliates, and your clients look to you when they want to know the company’s direction. It’s no wonder, then, that more CEOs and other company leaders have been expanding their presence on social media. “It is essential for CEOs to have an active presence on social media, not only to act as an ambassador for their business but also to strengthen their own personal brand and raise their profile as a thought leader within their industry,” Nancy Elgadi told CEO Magazine about the importance of the C-Suite social media presence.
While social media is important for an executive’s growth, there are right and wrong ways to approach what is still, for many executives, a new frontier. Let’s examine how you can create a strong social media presence that will elevate you and your enterprise.
Choose Your Platform Carefully
While you have several social media platforms to choose from, not every platform is going to meet your needs. As an executive, your time is valuable, and your social media time should work for you. Choose a platform that matches your goals and helps you reach your key demographics and goals. What are the strengths of different platforms?
LinkedIn – Ideal for business-to-business outreach and marketing
Facebook – Still the leading platform for reaching consumers
Instagram – Ideal for visual-based businesses and partnering with social media influencers
Twitter – Fast-paced with strong viral engagement and an easy place to share quick bits of information
TikTok – A wide demographic from youth through adults that features both viral engagement and strong potential for partnering with social media influencers
Ideally, you should choose one or two primary platforms where you will engage with the public on social media based on your overall goals. While your instinct may be to expand far, by focusing on only a couple of platforms, you give yourself time to build an authentic presence.
Establish Yourself as a Thought Leader
What three things in your business or industry do you possess strong expertise in? Even if you can name more things, choose three that are most important to your business and your social media goals. Create a blog where you can post about these topics regularly. Establish relationships with forums like Forbes to share your expertise as well. Share these efforts on your chosen social media platforms.
Meanwhile, find the most popular hashtags for your topics and follow them on social media. Find trending conversations and respond to what others post. I have worked with many clients who felt frustrated with their social media results until I asked them a simple question: Are you responding to others’ social media posts? As soon as they started conversing on social media, people began seeking out their profiles and following them.
By sharing your expertise and ideas on your blog, in guest articles, and on other social media posts, you establish yourself as someone not only knowledgeable but willing to share what you know with others.
Whatever your opinion is of Elon Musk – he is a polarizing figure – one thing is undeniable: his social media followers love him. He has put a human face to Tesla and established himself as a tech leader in part because of his often-quirky posts. You don’t have to emulate him, however, to have success humanizing yourself on social media. Responding organically to others is the first step. Finding memes and interesting articles to share on your social media is another way to add a human touch. Share ideas about current events. Share social media posts from others about issues you find important. What charities and non-profits do you work with? They most likely have a social media presence and would benefit from you sharing their posts.
Monitor Your Metrics with Purpose
The biggest mistake I see clients make with social media (after not actively engaging with others on platforms) is focusing on metrics with no clear idea of what those metrics mean for their goals. Yes, follower count is important. People liking a post helps more people see it. However, if your goal is to drive people to the website and no one clicks on the links you share, no amount of engagement matters. Before you become fixated on the numbers, define what your goals are and then look at what activities drive your goals.
When are you picking up new followers?
What kind of posts do people comment on or click like on?
What kinds of posts are driving people to click links?
Bring in an Expert
Doubtless, you realize now that everything I’ve talked about above takes a great deal of time. Building and maintaining a social media presence can be a full-time job in and of itself, especially if you’re just entering platforms. If you want to build a successful social media presence, bring in an expert or hire a social media team who can incorporate your goals and give you time to build authenticity into your presence.
Are You Looking for a Social Media Expert?
Whether you’re an executive or still making your rise to the C-Suite, I can help you create and streamline your social media. Contact me to find out how my expertise can help you build your social media brand.