Social Media Leadership

Leadership. Leadership is the art of motivating a group of people to act toward attaining a common goal, whereby the leader is perceived as an individual who guides a group of people, an organization or empowers their transformational processes.

Distributed Leadership Theory

Distributed leadership theory examines the type of leader who works with networks over time and changes personas to strengthen leadership practice and the relationship with shared follower engagement (audience) within a network. Distributed leadership theory encourages interactions with multiple individuals at various levels within an organization as opposed to traditional, top-down individual leadership. This allows the leader to see how actors engage (i.e., SMPs) in any task distributed across a system.

Top-down transactional leadership has declined and a follower-based leadership, also known as distributed leadership theory, has grown within organizational relationships or social presence.  Distributed leadership theory is a team-based type of leadership whereby leaders engage with and disseminate information directly to followers, and vice versa, as opposed to a formal chain of command.  Distributed leadership theory allows for complete interaction with followers.

Digital Rhetoric Theory

Digital rhetoric is the study of how digital speech informs, persuades, and inspires action in an audience on a digital or multimedia platform. Applying digital rhetoric theory to online-based communication provides a broader framework to explain how leaders speak persuasively (message) to followers so they can measure effectiveness (engage).  Digital rhetoric theory can help explain how a leader (writer) in this study can actively curate follower (reader) engagement based on observing how well the leader uses the canons of rhetoric to compose and distribute a message to followers on an SMP.

The five canons of rhetoric are invention, arrangement, style, memory, and delivery. Invention, one of the five canons of rhetoric, is the method used for the discovery of arguments in Western rhetoric and comes from the Latin word, meaning "invention" or "discovery". Arrangement or Dispositio is the system used for the organization of arguments in Western classical rhetoric. Style or Elocutio is the term for the mastery of stylistic elements in Western classical rhetoric and comes from the Latin word loqui, "to speak". Memory or Memoria was the term for aspects involving memory in Western classical rhetoric. Delivery or Pronuntiatio was the discipline of delivering speeches in Western classical rhetoric. Delivery is the process of selecting the optimal method of distributing a message. Dr Ravi Singh used three cannons (arrangement, style, and delivery) to choose the four variables of the study to analyze Donald Trump’s digital rhetoric: tone, sentiment, lingo, and pulse.  Lingo (mentions, hashtags, URLs, abbreviations, and emojis) is the language that is arranged specifically to Twitter, while tone and sentiment are how text is stylistically used in a tweet and pulse is how a tweet is delivered.

Social media platforms, such as Twitter, allow users to deploy unique forms of rhetoric to direct and persuade their users to interact with the platform in site-specific ways to engage audiences.  These forms include the tweet, like, retweet, and reply.  With a tweet, a user can use special lingo (mentions, hashtags, URLs, abbreviations, and emojis) and convey a certain tone to elicit a certain sentiment.  As technology advances, so does the scope of this unique (tweet) rhetoric.

Digital Leadership

Digital leadership refers to the strategic use of an organization's digital assets to realize business goals. This can be done via the organization's social or individual social. If it is from an individual level, people or teams are responsible for overseeing the digital platforms such as social media and website. Digital leadership creates intensity and indicates that anyone is a viable candidate to be a leader and a follower rather than having a small selected group emerge as leaders. As long as you use the right tone or social media voice, you will command followership regardless of your status or location.

Defining Social Media as digital. Social media is an online space where users can engage (buy, share, or link) with created content. To ensure that the content results to positive engagement with the target audience, the author must have the capability and knowledge on tone because it affects persuasion and influence.  Understanding the tones and their patterns can aid leaders in becoming more persuasive. Social media offers a platform/market to meet millions of people who can be transformed into followers or customers. However, how a leader or author of content communicates determines the outcome. Social media platform itself can also be programmed to trigger rhetoric when the leader exchanges with followers using a consistent tone that evokes engagement and influence over that same network. With social media sites being used by ⅓ of the entire world, they have created a great impact on society. Leaders who embrace this new medium of communication become in essence, a social media leader.  Leaders should embrace social media and realize that their efforts online as speakers or actors can impact the relationship of a follower or customer.  When leaders do this, they will ensure that their narrative is persuasive. Hence, they identify a need and a claim in their message with the right tone.

Define Social Media Leadership

Social Media Leadership is a type of leadership whereby an individual has established integrity online, in a precise cause, belief, standard, or organization. The leader has access to vast and influential followers and engages these followers via social media platform, which empowers the leader to strengthen the approval of his or her message.  The leader has over time gained the power to persuade these followers by their forceful engagement of their personal and professional network using their tone: emotional, social, and language. Individuals who succeed in creating the online identity (social media leader persona), perfectly showcase their brand by using a natural online voice because social media voice comprises understanding digital rhetoric. Digital rhetoric situates brand persona first, then suitable message tone, and last, the intended language to communicate effectively in each post made on social media.

The Leaders establish an effective tone to contact their followers and to increase their interactions.  So, the manner through which a leader/brand communicates with a consumer influences the process of shaping the attitude the consumer will have and the decision whether to push the relationship beyond the social media encounter. Understanding the necessary voice to use is critical, and also realizing who you are to the media, customers, and the follower is an essential step in defining your voice. You need to set a legacy and always work focused on what you would want to be remembered for, and in this is ensuring that your voice satisfies the audience and identifies with them. Social media leaders have chances of meeting and influencing more people via social media platforms. So, the chances to build a legacy as a leader are more when it comes to social media. Those leaders who use the right tone are in for building a leadership legacy. While doing all this, it is safe and honorable to operate under guidance of the policies and procedures in place both for the platforms and the brand.