UCL School of Management

4 November 2021

What did the visual cues in Mark Zuckenburg’s speech to unveil Meta mean?

Graffiti on a wall of a photo of Mark Zuckerberg

Source: Unsplash - Annie Spratt

In his recent speech to unveil Facebook’s new name, Meta and its vision to become the leading metaverse, CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s was critiqued by the masses with many reporting his delivery of the news couldn’t have put him further away from the “relatable guy image” Facebook was trying to achieve. Cited in Fortune, Chia Jung-Tsay’s research into visual cues and pitching explains the consequences of Zuckerberg’s prominent role in the spotlight for the newly born Meta.

Chia’s research on stage presence during entrepreneurial pitching reveals the power of visual cues and for securing funding. Chia suggests that visuals such as body language and facial expressions help to influence the correct judgment more than words and the actual content of the pitches themselves.

Can this be true for CEOs when used as the spokesperson for a company? When delivering a keynote speech body language, stage presence, energy, sincerity in their facial expressions and gestures all contribute to the viewers image of the person for better or worse, and in the case of the recent media publicity surrounding Zuckerberg’s speech, it seemed to be the latter.   

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Last updated Tuesday, 23 November 2021