An interesting report called the 2012 FORTUNE 500™ Social CEO Index was recently released by CEO.com. The purpose? To highlight the number of Fortune 500 (F500) leaders actively using social media for business purposes. The results were quite astounding. Amid graphs, statistics and research, it clearly depicted how top business leaders are missing out on lucrative online real estate by only making use of social channels like LinkedIn. Competitors of "lower rank" are actively promoting themselves within the social space, taking advantage of the more personal ways people are able to conduct business.
Laying the Foundation
After an intensive sorting process that lasted a month, the groundwork had been laid by CEO.com and accounts for socially active CEOs were verified. Accounts had to be active, have a decent amount of following and be managed by or on behalf of the CEO.
F500 CEOs who Tweet
It would appear that many of the F500 are oblivious to the existence of Twitter or perhaps don't see the benefit in tweeting, re-tweeting and following other users. Of the 498 CEOs whose social profiles were investigated for this report, only 19 of them have registered for Twitter. Of those 19:
• 5 have never tweeted
• 9 of these CEOs have tweeted within the last 100 days
• However, the overall Twitter usage for F500 CEOs has increased from 3.4% to 3.8% over the last year; signs that these businessmen and women could be shaping towards a more social future?
Did you know that those 19 CEOs form part of the 107 million Americans who are active on Twitter today?
Facebook and the F500 CEOs
Facebook - being the most popular in social media royalty - commands a bit more attention from the F500 CEOs. 38 CEOs have a Facebook account and form part of the 157,348,340 Americans who've signed up and created their own profiles on the platform. Of these 38 CEOs on Facebook:
• 25 have less than 100 friends
• 11 have more than 100, but less than 500 friends
• A mere 2 have more than 500 friends
LinkedIn is the Place for CEOs to be
Of all the social media platforms, LinkedIn is by far best received by the CEOs in question. For a less socially savvy person, it makes sense that this would be the social platform of choice as it approaches users from a business, career or industry-networking perspective. 129 F500 CEOs have LinkedIn profiles, but they're not being utilized for their full worth. Of these 129 CEOs:
• 32 do not have current details
• 76 have more than 10 connections, with 10 having over 500
• 53 have less than 10 connections
Who Didn't Forward the Memo?
There are further results relating to the F500 CEOs use (or lack thereof) of social media platforms. The results clearly state that these powerful business legends are somehow just not getting the social media memo. These CEOs are neglecting a crucial element to current successful business conduct, and it's one that's increasing daily in terms of potential, following and influence. In my mind, there are two reasons why this could be happening:
• F500 CEOs don't have time to devote to being "social"
• F500 CEOs haven't been properly educated as to the power of social media and how it can benefit business
In terms of the latter, time will hopefully provide the means to offering these business hotshots with the tools they need to get rolling in the social media sphere. With regards to the former, that's why there are specialists who offer social media marketing services for a living - to help humble F500 CEOs on their way to social media greatness!
Image courtesy of www.ceo.com