Is your social media inspiring trust?

Brand trust is something that just doesn’t happen. It is a long term strategy that you must tend carefully and faithfully every day. What many CEO’s and small business owners don’t recognize is how their individual social media presence has a huge affect on how the brand is seen by potential customers and clients. In some recently published research released by BrandFog, it seems that the CEO’s social media performance has a direct and lasting impact on how a brand is seen and, in the end, trusted or not trusted. Below is some of their findings taken directly from their published report:

  • BRANDfog’s CEO, Social Media Leadership Survey surveyed several hundred employees of diverse companies, spanning in size from startups to Fortune 500 companies, and working at all levels of their respective organizations. Respondents representing a wide selection of industries, professions and regions were asked to answer questions pertaining to social media participation by their organization and executive leadership team. Respondents were also asked about their perception of other companies and brands, based on executive participation in social media channels.
  • 81% of respondents believe that CEOs who engage in social media are better equipped than their peers to lead companies in a web 2.0 world.
  • A large majority of the respondents believe that CEOs can use social media channels to improve engagement with multiple stakeholders across their organizations. Building better connections with customers topped the list at 89.3%, but engagement with employees (84.7%) and investors (66.3%) also came in very strong.
  • When asked what benefits C-Suite engagement in social media can lead to, 78% cited Better Communication and 71% stated Improved Brand Image as the biggest positive benefits.
  • The survey asked respondents to rate how important it is for CEOs to engage in social media and the response was overwhelmingly in favor of social engagement by business leaders. This is indicative of the rise of consumer expectations that CEOs become visible and accountable across social media channels.
  • 86% of respondents rated CEO social media engagement as either somewhat important, very important or mission critical. 82% of respondents were more likely or much more likely to trust a company whose CEO and leadership team engage with social media.

  • Our survey revealed that social media participation has a profound effect on a consumer’s willingness to buy from companies whose values and mission is articulated through social channels. This is a critical insight for brands looking to build brand loyalty with customers demonstrating values-based purchasing behavior.
  • 77% of respondents were more likely or much more likely to buy from a company whose values and mission are defined through CEO and executive leadership participation on social media.
  • 93% of respondents believe that CEO engagement in social media helps communicate company values,
    shape a company’s reputation, and grow and evolve corporate leadership in times of crisis.
  • What role can CEO participation in social media play in enhancing brand image? Our respondents were unequivocal in their response, with 94% stating that CEOs and other members of an organization’s executive leadership team do, in fact, enhance the brand image by participating on social media.
  • Attracting and retaining top talent in today’s competitive marketplace is a key priority of companies large and small. Our survey results indicated that social media participation can be a potential talent magnet. 78% of respondents would prefer to work for a company whose leadership is active on social media.

-Written by Kevin Sawyer