9.8% of CEOs are endorsed for social media as a skill on LinkedIn, which means 90% are not. Social is no longer something an intern does off the side of their desk. Customers, competitors, employees—all of your stakeholders are online. Businesses risk becoming obsolete to customers if they don't take the plunge. Social media is redefining the customer journey.
- So I recently wrote a book called The 4 Billion Dollar Tweet, which is a leadership guide for social media. The 4 Billion Dollar Tweet references a tweet that Donald Trump made at Lockheed Martin in December of 2016. The tweet referenced cost overruns in their jet fighter program, and the subsequent market cap erosion was $4 billion. And the reason for this is that they did not have social DNA. They were flat-footed on the response for over 48 hours. And really the reason they didn't have the DNA came from the highest level.
They did not build up the leadership that they needed around social. My question to other leaders is are you ready? If Donald Trump tweeted at your company today, do you have the DNA around social? And this really doesn't have to be Donald Trump. It could be a leader, a thought leader. It could be a celebrity, or it could just be any type of customer that starts a campaign to engage with your brand. And if you're not building up the DNA around this, there's a huge business risk.
When I think about what has changed in the world, I think about a number of big trends that are happening that make social more important. First off, bring your own device. Mobile is everywhere in the office. People are bringing their phone and they're engaging on social every day. I also look at trends like generational trends. If we think about the millennial generation, how they engage with brands, their preference is to go to social and interact with your brand.
So social media is really important at every step in the customer journey. This is not just the job of the millennial, your social media intern. If you are not thinking about every aspect of your business, how you build social DNA, your competitors are going to be, and your competitors are going to be eating your lunch. Every new technology that comes along, as we think about business, it's very Darwinianism. And that whole aspect of the adoption of new technology really means that the winners that adapt new technologies ultimately are the winners in business at the end of the day.