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CEO as Brand? The Power of Executive Communications

October 20th, 2011 by Dale Jones

A Fortune magazine editor once observed:

“If you want to analyze a corporation, read its financial statements. If you want to plumb its soul, talk to its chief executive.”    



Companies spend fortunes establishing and promoting their brands, only to ignore one of the most profitable brand weapons in their arsenal: the CEO.

 Surveys show companies with a well known, positively regarded CEO perform better in the stock market.  However, it is very important for CEOs to be known by potential key stakeholders such as the media, employees, clients and the public for reasons beyond the price of a corporation’s stock. A positive CEO profile will improve morale, recruitment and sales.

Even though CEOs are themselves a brand, many companies waste this asset.

1. Communicating Knowledge

Knowledge is not effective unless it is communicated. The proper way of communicating is not only through speaking, but includes proper dress, body language, social etiquette, media relations, government relations and investor relations.  All of which sum up to public relations. The effective CEO needs to convey a command of strategy, and consistent vision to both internal and external audiences.

As a CEO, one must be able exude a consistent, credible persona to your stakeholders. This is achieved through appropriate, strategically timed publicity campaigns, commentaries, articles, interviews, public appearances, press conferences and so on.

Such communication is about bringing your values to life.

“40% of my time I communicate our company’s credo”

- Jim Burke, former Johnson & Johnson, CEO 

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Bury The Hatchet

October 4th, 2011 by Dale Jones

The phrase (idiom) “Bury the Hatchet” means to forget about arguments and disagreements . . .

It appears traditional media and social media are at war with one another and that’s not the answer. We need to move past the arguments and disagreements.

Some companies believe that just because social media answers some of their most pressing needs with regards to communication and marketing, that they should abandon traditional media. We all recognize the importance of harvesting a social media presence, but the biggest mistake we see in a company’s effort to implement a marketing strategy is their approach.

ArtistotleA well designed integrated marketing strategy should take note of Aristotle’s statement: “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” For optimum results, social media should be integrated with traditional media.

Social media has become an extremely important part of how businesses market their brand, products and services. Traditional media carries with it a great deal of credibility and although it may not create the same kind of buzz that social media creates, it is a very important contributor to the success of business. You must understand how to integrate social media with traditional media into your advertising, public relations and direct marketing campaigns.   

In order to succeed, you must be open to new ways of thinking about integrating your social media and traditional media.

If someone builds you the framework and a process for integrating your social and traditional media, you can apply it over and over again.

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