New ranking published amid ongoing digital turmoil as uncertainty spreads on the viability of X, the rise of AI, pending elections and an increasing amount of disinformation.
Brussels, Belgium (September 13th, 2023) – ZN, Brussel’s leading digital communications agency, announces today that it has revealed the EU bubble’s top-50 social media influencers at its yearly ZN #EUinfluencer ranking in Brussels. During an evening event held in Brussels on September 12th, Dave Keating, Correspondent at France 24 was crowned as this year’s most influential social media figure.
The 2023 #EUinfluencer ranking, currently on its seventh edition, looks at the impact of Brussels-based EU influencers on social media. Recognition was given across thirteen categories including technology, sustainability, human rights, transport and Ukraine.
Keating was recognized as the “most influential presence on social media” built on his high engagement levels with MEPs and his extensive, and ever growing, contribution to the digital coverage of EU politics and economics. With an impressive 53K followers, amongst the many criteria used to evaluate influencer impact by ZN, he was the clear winner in this year’s ranking. He also holds the top position in the “Economy and Trade” category and this despite the recent announcement that he is stepping back from X.
An impressive second place went to Jean Quatremer at Libèration and third place to Jon Worth, EU transport commentator, campaigner and writer. The top ten influencer list also included both Theresa Fallon from the Centre for Russia, Europe, Asia Studies (CREAS), who actively writes on the current situation in Ukraine and Katie Owens at the European Commission’s DG SANTE who is a key health influencer within the bubble.
Other movers and shakers in the top ten included Andrew Stroehlein, last year’s winner, from Human Rights Watch, Eddy Wax from Politico, Javier Blas at Bloomberg and Ariel Brunner at Birdlife Europe and Central Asia, who was the biggest jumper gaining an impressive 45 places in the ranking.
The event, which was hosted by Philip Weiss, CEO at ZN, comes amid ongoing turmoil in the digital space as uncertainty spreads on the viability of X (formerly Twitter) and currently the most used social channel by the EU bubble, the rise of AI, pending elections and an increasing amount of disinformation.
“This year’s annual ranking of the top influencers in the Brussels EU bubble is a recognition of the efforts made by them to drive attention and change to critical topics which affect us all. From championing change in our approach to the environment to human rights, today we recognize those individuals who have passionately worked to evolve the debate on these topics through social media. This year’s ranking comes amid a rapidly changing social media landscape where the state of flux of X could mark the beginning of radical changes as politicians, associations and journalists realise that their preferred platform is no longer offering stability. It is a potential precursor to a very different ranking for 2024,” explains Weiss.
“‘Diversification of media channels is a challenge we are all facing to enable us get our message out,” adds David Keating, this year’s rank leader. “Five years ago, I would have said that an hour on Twitter is worth the time, but today we are all spreading that time across four or five platforms to enable us to reach our audiences. As the digital space continues to fragment, we all need to be aware that our audience is doing the same, and to remain relevant, we must follow.”
The topic was extensively discussed by leading social media influencers at a panel discussion which included Maria Linkova-Nijs, Communications Director at Cefic; Sevim Aktas, Policy Officer at the European Commission and top ten ZN #EUinfluences Dave Keating, Andrew Stroehlein and Theresa Fallon during the event.
ZN is Brussels’ leading digital communications agency. Established in 1998, ZN has conceived, implemented and been recognized for its many successful communication campaigns over the past 25 years, including its #DiscoverEU campaign. The company works for and advises clients from European associations, policy makers and major corporate clients. The ZN team always reaches for the stars and to ensure its clients are always #OneStepAhead in an age where social media is an integral part of our everyday life.