Top CEOs Communicating Less On Social Media during Global Pandemic

Since the Covid-19 pandemic started to grip the world all those months ago, we have been talking here at EASTWEST – on our blog, our podcast, and with our clients – about the importance of getting the messaging right and about our Viral PR Mindset approach to PR in the COVID era.  This being;





Values Based





We also talk about the need to tell your story, to personalise it and to amplify it. These are the first 3 parts or our SPEAK|pr mastermind.


SPEAK|pr is, in full, Storify, Personalise, Engage, Amplify, and Know.


So I was surprised to read this week an article by Provoke media that said latest research from the ECCO international network of independent public relations agencies shows that CEOs have been less active on social media during this period, when compared to the same period last year.

The network’s annual analysis of CEOs’ social media habits, includes the top 20 companies in 15 countries, found that just 15% have a presence on Twitter – down from 17% last year – while only 31% are on LinkedIn, down 22% from the same time last year.


ECCO president Christian Kollmann said the findings were contrary to best practice which dictates that corporate communications – via social media and otherwise – during a crisis is paramount. 
He said: “Only those already active on social media before the crisis have been using these channels to interact with stakeholders during the last two months. Generally speaking, they are still very reluctant to communicate via Twitter and LinkedIn.”
The study found that CEOs in the United Arab Emirates are the most active on social media: they are almost twice as likely to appear on LinkedIn and Twitter than British bosses, where only four of the top 20 CEOs are active on Twitter and nine on LinkedIn.


France and the Netherlands follow closely in joint second place, as 20 out of each countries’ leading business figures have a presence on at least one of the two platforms. France also has the most active CEOs across the two platforms, with the group issuing a combined 483 posts in the last year (with 167, or 35%, published during Covid-19).


Oliver Foster, chief executive of UK agency Pagefield, a member of the ECCO network, said: “More than ever customers are looking for reassurance that their brands are behaving ethically and treating their employees well, so it’s perhaps surprising that more CEOs haven’t taken to social media in the past few months.”
And we agree now is the time for your brand to speak out an reassure your staff and customers as we navigate the uncertainties of the global pandemic.

You can read both the articles referred to in this post here Provoke and ECCO

Cover Photo by Kon Karampelas on Unsplash

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