When Shouldn’t You Utilize Your CEO as a Spokesperson?

January 24, 2020


Hi everyone. Today’s Two Minutes of Advice segment from Sunwest is about your CEO – when to roll out the chief executive officer as your spokesperson and when to use them with the media. Kind of a tough question and it really depends on, sometimes, the size of your company. So, often times we see two extreme mistakes. One, is the CEO is only utilized in crisis situations. So you imagine the 20/20 segment with the lights and the two camera shoot and the tough reporter asking the really difficult question of the CEO who’s just dripping with sweat. Or, the other extreme, where you see the CEO utilized as a media spokesperson for a company, and probably the interview didn’t really merit the CEO taking that interview. So, when do you use them? Well, number one, the best communicators – the best brands that are communicating – are using their CEO as a thought leader. They’re out there having their CEO – him or her – talk about their industry as an expert in that particular area – even if it has nothing to do with that particular brand or company. So that’s speaking engagements, that’s blogs. The CEO is very visible, and sometimes that’s in an internal perspective. Second, profile stories. If you do have a robust thought leadership profile, it probably makes sense to find the right publications that are going to profile your CEO – who they are, what they’re doing, what their background is. But again, their CEOs are offering interviews for the right situations and the right publications. And third – and perhaps most importantly – is you’re only utilizing your chief executive officer for the most weighty publications, the most experienced reporters, with the most high-profile stories nationally that are going to truly benefit your company, your brand, and your CEO’s thought leadership profile. Otherwise, it’s always better to find another spokesperson to represent the company with the day-to-day, bread-and-butter news releases and media opportunities. So that’s Two Minutes of Advice today from Sunwest.