CAC 40 leaders top the ranking of the most influential CEOs on social media in Europe
- FTI Consulting publishes the new edition of its report studying the activity on social media of theCEOs of the CAC 40, FTSE 100 and DAX 40.
- In 2021, more than half of European CEOs were active on at least one social media.
- Four CAC 40 executives are in the Top 10 of the European CEOs whose posts create the mostinteractions: Paul Hudson (Sanofi), Luca de Meo (Renault), Alexandre Ricard (Pernod Ricard) andThomas Buberl (AXA).
Paris, June 29, 2022 — FTI Consulting (NYSE: FCN) today unveils the second edition of its annual study on the activity of CAC 40, FTSE 100 and DAX 40 executives on social media: Leading from the Front: The Social CEO Goes Mainstream. For the second year in a row, specialists at FTI Consulting collected and analysed all of the activity on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook of the 180 executives of the leading French, British and German stock indices, i.e. more than 6,600 publications.
European leaders increasingly present on LinkedIn
More than half of French, English and German executives (52%) were active on at least one social media among Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn or Twitter in 2021 – up from 41% (versus 2020). This proportion even rose to 85% for executives who took office during the year. Among all the platforms, LinkedIn remains the favorite one: 96% of the executives studied have an active account(versus 90% in 2020). In the meantime, Twitter use has fallen by 14 points compared to 2020, with only 35% of executives in the three main indices using it in 2021 compared to 49% in 2020. These choices can be notably explained by the levels of engagement observed on LinkedIn, which were three times higher than those of Twitter in 2021 (average level of engagement per follower of 2.98, versus 0.81 for Twitter).
Particularly aware of the benefits of digital campaigns for their external communications, CAC 40 executives are more present on social media than their European counterparts: 70% of CAC 40 CEOs were present on at least one of the platforms (+2 percentage points since 2020), compared to 60% for the DAX 40 (+7 pp) and 41% for the United Kingdom (+15 pp).
Lauren Unger, Senior Director of Digital at FTI Consulting Strategic Communications in Paris, states: “Listed company executives have embraced the full potential of social media and are using it at an increasing rate, both for consumer communications and specialized audiences such as investors and analysts. With new appointments, we see an increase in the number of ‘digital savvy’ leaders, especially in France.”
Paul Hudson and Luca de Meo top Europe's ranking of most influent CEOs
The Top 10 European leaders with the highest level of commitment puts 4 French leaders in the spotlight. Thus Paul Hudson (Sanofi) and Luca de Meo (Renault) respectively occupy the 1st and 2nd positions. They are followed by Alexandre Ricard (Pernod Ricard) and Thomas Buberl (AXA), in 9th and 10th positions.
The study also highlights uneven performance between the top and bottom of the ranking. Paul Hudson and Luca de Meo for example took advantage of the major transformation challenges of global pharmaceutical and automotive industries in a post-Covid context. These topical themes aroused wide interest among the general public.
It should be noted that a high volume of publications does not guarantee a high level of engagement. For example, Jean-Pascal Tricoire (Schneider Electric) publishes 17 publications per month on average but does not appear in the Top 10 of French executives with a high level of engagement per publication, despite his 4th position in the Top 10 of European executives with the most followers across all platforms (288,956 followers).
Lauren Unger adds: “Although LinkedIn leads the way in terms of the digital presence of European leaders, Instagram generates the highest average level of engagement. Our study clearly notes a low presence of CEOs on this platform however (8%). There is then an opportunity for leaders who want to convey strong messages to more engaged audiences. The main difficulty remains to create a discourse and content that remain authentic.”
ESG: a major topic in CEO posts, but generating low engagement
An analysis of the topics covered in the digital publications identified 9 main topics in the European leaders’ communications: climate change, energy transition, health (including content related to the Covid-19 pandemic), financial performance, corporate stakeholders (customers, clients and employees), the future of mobility, diversity and inclusion, investments made and product communication, and supply chain issues.
In line with public concerns and media debates, the topics most present on the social media of executives were energy transition (17% of posts), climate change (16%) and health (15%). More than half of the executives surveyed (52%) have posted content on climate change at least once in 2021.
Lauren Unger concludes: “Despite the high volume of content on climate change, the analysis shows that these posts have a relatively low level of engagement. This highlights that investing in ESG topics does not guarantee more interaction. From this perspective, to improve engagement on this topic, executives should consider a content strategy that outlines how their commitments fit into each segment of the company's business and have a concrete impact on stakeholders”.
To find the full report: https://fticommunications.com/leading-from-the-front-the-social-ceo-goes-mainstream/
The survey covers publicly available data on the accounts created on behalf of CHIEF Executive Officers (sometimes Chief Executive Officers depending on the governance structures in force over the period under review) of CAC 40, FTSE 100 and DAX 40 companies on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
The executives whose profiles were analyzed were in place during the research as of January 1, 2022.
FTI Consulting’s analysis covered all 6,669 publications posted online between January 1, 2021 and November 30, 2021. For information, retweets and private messages were not included in the study sample. The term “presence” was used when at least one publication had been made on at least one of the platforms over the period studied.
The study recorded the level of commitments received for all 6,669 publications.
- For LinkedIn, the levels recorded were based on reactions and comments.
- For Twitter the recorded levels consisted of retweets, “likes” and comments.
- For Instagram, the levels of engagement were made up of likes and comments.
- For Facebook, the levels of engagement were made up of likes and comments.
All types of engagements were weighted equally (a retweet and a comment on LinkedIn were given the same value of “engagement”).
Throughout the research, applied methodology suggested that more engagement was preferable to less commitment, without analysing whether that commitment was positive or negative in terms of feeling. While likes and retweets are generally considered positive performance indicators, comments can sometimes be negative
The themes of the content were analyzed through the collection of all the published content, exploited from a processing technique called the Leuven community detection algorithm.
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