Study Finds American CEOs Have Large Social Following but Not as Active Online as Global Counterparts

CEOs in France rank first in social engagement, followed by those in Denmark, Australia, the Netherlands and the United States

NEW YORK (September 19, 2019) – French CEOs are the most active on Twitter and LinkedIn compared to CEOs located in other countries around the world, according to a recent study conducted by the ECCO International Communication Network. The study analyzed the social media presence on Twitter and LinkedIn of the top 20 CEOs in each country per market capital. A similar study was conducted in 2017.

United States CEOs continue to have the most followers, despite the country ranking only fifth in the total number on these social media sites. Apple CEO Tim Cook continues to top the chart worldwide with more than 11 million followers on Twitter — an increase of 120% since 2017. Microsoft’s Satya Nadella leads the way on LinkedIn with more than 6 million followers — an increase of 300% since 2017.

This year, 10 out of the 20 CEOs profiled in France are on Twitter while 14 engage on LinkedIn. Denmark follows closely behind in second, with four on Twitter and 19 on LinkedIn, while Australia shares third place with the Netherlands – both of which have 19 CEOs on LinkedIn or Twitter.

The most active CEO on Twitter comes from Spain. José María Álvarez-Pallete, CEO of Telefónica, has published over 36,000 tweets since joining in 2010, and average of 10 tweets a day, making him the uncontested leader among CEOs.

“Across the world, many CEOs are increasing their presence online to discuss business issues or share thought leadership positions to strengthen company reputation and bolster brands,” said Kelly O’Malley, principal of O’Malley Hansen Communications, ECCO’s US agency. “We expect to see this trend continue and grow more sophisticated in the U.S. as CEO communications continue to expand from traditional channels to the social media universe.”

ECCO is a network of independent PR and marketing communications agencies located in more than 40 countries around the world.  For this study, each participating agency analyzed the 20 largest companies by market capitalization in their home country, tallying the number of CEOs with a Twitter or LinkedIn account and how many followers each one had. The following countries participated in the study: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Brazil, Chile, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, England, France, Germany, India, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA.

Number of Top 20 CEOs Active on Social Media

10.South Africa11314
11.Czech Republic21113
14.United Kingdom2911

About O’Malley Hansen Communications

O’Malley Hansen Communications infuses the high quality of big firm work with the focused client service and cutting-edge strategy that only a nimble, independently owned agency can offer. OHC’s approach breaks through a noisy market with a deep understanding that brand equity and reputation is built by endorsement from a wide range of influencers who receive their information from a variety of sources. OHC has offices in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and St. Louis. For more information, visit

About ECCO

ECCO is a network of independent PR and marketing communications agencies located in over 40 countries around the world and headquartered in London. ECCO member agencies are successful in their own business and are owner-managed by senior executives with extensive agency/big client experience. ECCO’s objective is to offer the best services to their clients, taking advantage of its international presence and of the full independence of its partners. More Information at