Is CEO involvement in social media too risky?

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The study found that the vast majority of CEOs (97%) engaged with traditional and online channels. However, where social media/networking was concerned, 64% admitted to not using it.


Of the 36% who did engage via social media and networks, around a quarter (28%) did so using traditional techniques such as posting formal letters and corporate announcements. Less than 10% of the social CEOs used Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn or participated in external blogs.

Does the social media environment leave CEOs too exposed? Weber Shandwick‘s President of Digital Communications, Chris Perry, believes so. “It’s not surprising that chief executives are less inclined to participate in social media given the perceived risk and time commitment required to engage in two-way conversations,” he said.

However, despite the risks, Weber Shandwick’s chief reputation strategist and online reputation expert, Leslie Gaines-Ross, thinks CEOs should embrace the opportunity to engage with investors and customers alike. “With 1.96 billion Internet users around the world, CEOs should be where people are watching, reading, chatting and listening,” she said.



Kristina Knight is a freelance writer based in Ohio, United States. She began her career in radio and television broadcasting, focusing her energies on health and business reporting. After six years in the industry, Kristina branched out on her own. Since 2001, her articles have appeared in Family Delegate, Credit Union Business, and with Threshold Media.