10. Dubai’s Ruler HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum ranked tenth of the world leaders using Twitter. In 2012 His Highness Sheikh Mohammed gained 910,000 followers in just one year to surpass one million followers. In a recent study, he was ranked as the second most connected Twitter user in the country.
9. President Enrique Pena Nieto of Mexico remained in the top ten despite the country electing a new leader in December. His tweet on Election Day, “Now is the time to start a new stage of work, for the good of Mexico,” was widely shared.
8. Columbia’s President Juan Manuel Santos was new to the top ten in 2012. At number eight, President Santos’ had grown his followers by well over 1m since 2011.
7. When Argentinean President Cristina Fernadez De Kirchner appeared on Twitter in 2010, Argentine politics were utterly transformed as Twitter was quickly established as the central battleground between politicians and citizens.
6. President Dilma Rouseff of Brazil remained at spot #six in 2012. At the time of her election in 2011 she had already 330,000 followers and while her activity dwindled after the election, her account continued to gain followers, indicating a desire on the part of the people of Brazil to connect with their leader.
5. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev was a fresh entry into the top ten in 2012. He chooses to tweet in his native language and in English, with separate accounts for each. In 2010, a personal account in the president’s name was established in both languages and currently his Russian language @MedvedevRussia has the largest following.
4. Queen Rania, the Queen Consort of the King of Jordan, grew her account by over one million followers despite the fact that she continued to scale back her public activities since facing criticism that she was playing too prominent a role in “running Jordan.”
3. President Abdullah Gul (r) of Turkey increased his Twitter followers over two million people in 2012. An early adopter of Twitter, he tweets mainly in Turkish but important statements are also made in English.
2. President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela grew his account by two million followers and maintained the #two spot, although he had 20 million less followers than President Obama in 2012. When he found himself fighting an election campaign from his sick bed in Cuba, Twitter became his main tool for communicating with the electorate, a tool predominantly used for challenging his opponent and fighting the rampant rumors about his ill-health.
1. President Obama again maintained the top spot of all world leaders, with a vast 24 million followers, adding 15 million followers in one year. 2012 was an election year, therefore, the Twitter account continued to be managed by the presidential campaign staff. Obama continued to occasionally post his own tweets, signed with his initials.