The current stampede to embrace social media as a valuable business tool has kicked up a big cloud of dust and created new layers of confusion for chief executives and other leaders. social media marketing tips Most CEOs sense that social media marks an important breakthrough for business communications, but they aren’t sure how to fully utilize the technology to gain a competitive advantage. This is because leaders often have trouble distinguishing between “actionable social” information and what I like to call plain old “social noise.” There is a substantial difference between the two.Think of actionable social as useful information that can be acted upon to improve business results. Social noise, on the other hand, involves a vast overload of data that drowns out the underlying message or meaning.Nearly three-fourths of senior executives in the U.S. believe that C-Suite leaders who use social media to communicate their core mission and brand values are more trustworthy than those who don’t adopt social media. This surprising finding comes from the 2014 Global Social CEO Survey by Brandfog, a social media consulting firm for CEOs. The Brandfog survey also shows that 82 percent of senior leaders think executive use of social media raises brand awareness and helps establish industry leadership.Social media offers a useful way to capture community knowledge and enhance group creativity. Yet many of the enterprise social media tools out there today allow everybody involved to interact with everybody else. This creates a dynamic in which the die-hard followers carry on and on to hear the sound of their own voices, causing many others to zone out and disengage from the process altogether. social media marketing tools This is the unfortunate situation at too many businesses today.To succeed as a next-generation social CEO, business leaders need to engage more with their internal teams, partners and customers. But this requires leaders to contain, control and curate such social media conversations, rather than hosting unwanted social free-for-alls. This is the challenge most CEOs face regarding social, whether they realize it or not.