Pro-Business or Common Citizen?: An Analysis of an Indian Woman CEO's Tweets

Pro-Business or Common Citizen?: An Analysis of an Indian Woman CEO's Tweets

Ashish K. Rathore (Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, New Delhi, India), Nikhil Tuli (Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, New Delhi, India) and P. Vigneswara Ilavarasan (Department of Management Studies, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, New Delhi, India)
DOI: 10.4018/IJVCSN.2016010102
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Abstract

This paper examines the social media content of a woman Indian chief executive officer (CEO) in her communication in the public space. The active involvement of CEO in communication activities influences the business effectiveness, performance, and standing of the business headed by her. The emerging social media has become an essential strategic tool from “buzz word” with more popularity among businesses and creates great opportunities for communication efforts both for corporate and personal use of CEO. For this study, Tweets posted on Twitter, a micro-blogging social media platform, by an Indian woman CEO are used for analysis. Rstudio and Nvivo were used for tweets extraction and analysis. The findings show the various themes in CEO's communication which are categorized in different sectors. The tweets are limited to business sector; it also includes the personal (feelings and status updates), political views and social concerns (ranging from water scarcity, education, illiteracy, women empowerment, need for improved governance, policy support). The paper extends the theoretical and empirical arguments for the importance of CEOs' social media communications. Finally, this research suggests that with a well-planned and strategic social media use, CEOs can create value for themselves and their businesses.
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Review Of Literature

CEOs Presence on Twitter

Global CEOs have embraced social media communication though the growth seems to be lagging far behind compared to the general public (Social CEO Report, 2013). The two social networks, Twitter and LinkedIn, though stand out in terms of respectable growth rate in number of CEOs embracing the new space (Figure 1). Twitter is a micro blogging social media platform which is used to obtain breaking news; communicate with friends, celebrities, and companies; follow the latest score of sporting events; etc. Users post “tweets” or mini-posts up to 140 characters in length via mobile texting, instant messaging, third-party applications, or the web (Rybalko & Seltzer, 2010). Unlike other social networking sites, “following” users on Twitter is not mutual. Other users have an option to follow members if their profiles are public, or they can ask permission to follow private member profiles. There are currently 28 (5.6%) CEOs on Twitter, which is definitely an improvement over last year’s 18 (3.6%) CEOs. The report categorizes certain CEOs as active Twitter users on the basis of tweets in the last 100 days. The survey suggests 19 (67.9%) CEOs as active Twitter users, which indicate that only 3.8% of the Fortune 500 CEOs are active Twitter users (Social CEO Report, 2013). Further, while Twitter's active global users are tweeting about twice per day, Fortune 500 CEOs who are active on Twitter are tweeting an average of 0.98 tweets per day (Social CEO Report, 2013).

Figure 1.

Fortune 500 CEOs presence on Social Media Platforms (Adapted from: 2013 Social CEO Report)

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