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Thought Leadership:

Generating Thought Leadership & How
That Drives Trust Within Your Brand

88% of decision-makers believe that thought leadership can enhance their perception of an organisation.

Are you interested in generating thought leadership content? You’ve come to the right place! Content continues to reign as king, and more and more savvy leaders are building professional brands and thought leadership programs in order to position themselves, and their organisations as leaders and valuable resources. As you can see, establishing yourself as a thought leader can attract new opportunities, and provide value to your company. But how do you do that?

Here’s everything you need to know about thought leadership, as well as how you can increase trust between your company and customers.

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What is Thought Leadership?

Thought leadership is expressing your expertise in a particular field, area, or topic. When you use thought leadership as a form of content marketing, you make use of the talent, experience, and passion within your organisation. Or you use your community, in order to answer the questions that are on your prospects’ minds.

In your role as a thought leader, you provide the best and deepest answers to your customers’ biggest questions, consistently.

These thought leaders build trust in their audience by providing high-quality advice for free. It increases the chances that a potential customer will decide to purchase from them rather than from a competitor.

There is plenty of data to support this. Based on the 2019 Edelman-LinkedIn B2B Thought Leadership Impact Study, 55% of decision-makers use thought leadership to vet potential vendors before working with them.

How To Generate Thought Leadership

To establish your company’s thought leadership and grow it’s influence, follow these 5 steps:

1. Identify your audience and your message

If you define your audience too broadly, your message will not resonate. You have a better chance of reaching and engaging your target audience if you are more specific when identifying them. Instead of defining your audience as “everyone” and spending time and money on getting your content in front of everyone, focus on those who are most likely to love what you do, who you are, and what you have to say. They are the ones who will become your brand advocates.

You can create thought leadership content that serves a targeted audience in a meaningful way if you develop an authentic, strategic message. To build a loyal audience, choose a topic within your expertise area, or identify the segments within your industry that can benefit the most from what you have to say.

2. Offer exclusive offers to your audience to add value

Having narrowed down your topic and your audience, you should demonstrate your expertise on that topic to the audience. Providing exclusive resources to your audience is an excellent way to establish yourself as an expert. Providing immediate value to your audience is the key to a successful thought leadership strategy, as well as giving them multiple opportunities to interact with you.

Follow these key tactics to provide maximum value to your followers:

Your audience can download gated content, such as white papers, ebooks, and useful tools after reading your blog content and clicking your calls to action.
Send an offer to your readers and website visitors so they can subscribe to your content and updates.
Maintain client engagement with high-touch services like coaching sessions, mastermind groups, and networking events. Your clients are your best advocates and referral sources.
Create unique offers for your audience by partnering with brands and organisations. In the end, you will gain new followers.

3. Boost your presence on social media

Social media is an excellent way for you to stay connected with your followers. It is also very useful for thought leadership. In reality, since your audience won’t be on every social network, you’re more likely to find success by focusing on one or two platforms that engage your audience, more than maintaining a minor presence on every social platform.

You can identify which social media networks will be most beneficial to leverage by researching social media demographics. Additionally, you should check your social media accounts to see if your followers fit the demographic you’re targeting.

Spend time every day interacting on social networks and connecting with new people. Taking about 30 minutes a day to explore your social networks will likely help you feel comfortable with them in a short time.

You might already be comfortable using social media, but step it up. Try to make as many new connections this month as you can by posting valuable and engaging information for your followers, being more active in conversations, and reaching out to others.

Consider sharing your content through LinkedIn’s publishing tool or SlideShare to reach a professional network that will benefit from your expertise. SlideShare, which was purchased by LinkedIn, is a surprisingly powerful tool that allows users to share presentation slides. Re-purposing your content for presentations or your website is easy and it integrates well with LinkedIn.

No matter which platforms you choose, the main focus should always be engaging the audience you defined and communicating the message you defined in step one.

social media growth

4. Keep your calendar full of thought leadership content

You already have a topic to speak or write about, a blog where you can post your content, and a growing social media following that will listen to your content if you follow the first three steps in this article.

In order to serve and maintain this audience, you must regularly produce valuable content. Bloggers and social media managers can maintain consistency by scheduling blog posts and social media updates in accordance with the editorial calendars of thought leaders and their teams.

It makes sense to share thought leadership content through multiple channels the more content you create. Consider forming a relationship with a blogger in your field who has complementary expertise and occasionally contributing a guest post to their blog. These relationships can enhance your reputation and help you reach new audiences.

5. You might consider writing an ebook or guide

It’s hard to establish yourself as a leader in your space unless you’re the person who wrote the ebook or guide on your topic. No matter if you’ve never thought of yourself as an author, you have big ideas to share, and an ebook or guide is one of the best ways for you to become more visible and differentiate your brand.

You should start your writing journey with an outline. Writing an ebook or guide takes time, but building your brand as a thought leader takes even more time. Begin engaging your audience through blogging and social media as you write your ebook or guide. When your ebook or guide is released, your audience will be ready and waiting for it.

It takes time for you to become recognised and respected as a leader in your field. Every thought leader has to start somewhere, and it takes time, commitment, and dedication to create high quality content.

How Does Thought Leadership Drive Trust Within Your Brand

The process of building a customer’s trust is not easy. There are several factors to consider. When thought leadership is relevant and timely, it can help enhance efforts that other areas of the organisation are taking to build trust with their customers. Marketers can use thought leadership to enhance perceptions of an organisation, while product teams focus on building things that deliver value to customers and sales teams focus on demonstrating that value.

Creating trust is important for every organisation, but the organisation must also build a culture of thought leadership that takes time and consistency. Producing thought leadership requires a culture of investment in thinking to drive deep thinking and intellectual rigour. And finally, executives must be fully engaged across the organisation.

Thought leadership

Summary

So, now you know! We have discussed how to generate thought leadership for your band and how it can build trust. As a result of what we have discussed today, you can gain a competitive advantage, develop your thought leadership, and grow your brand’s trust.

Are you struggling to generate thought leadership and build trust within your brand?

Contact us for a meeting to discuss how we can help your website and socials today!

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