The internet is playing an increasingly important role in influencing the purchasing decisions of your customers. For that reason, many businesses are looking for creative ways to influence the decision making process of prospective customers by establishing themselves as thought leaders in their respective industries. Establishing yourself as a thought leader in your industry increases your marketing results multifold. Thought Leadership allows your organization to establish itself as an authority with in-depth knowledge of the industry. It allows you to showcase your understanding of the concerns and issues within your industry, then to present yourself as a trusted advisor who can provide valuable information about the challenges faced by your audience. This post tells you how to focus your efforts in establishing yourself as a though leader in your industry.
Quality of the Content
“Content is King.” While digital marketing as a discipline has evolved over the past decade, one factor that remained constant was the importance of quality content. Quality content always generates audience interest and acts as a catalyst to expedite the decision making process. It is important for your business to not only produce fresh content on a consistent basis, but also to publish high value content. In order to establish yourself as a thought leader, you should concentrate on being relevant with the problems your target audience face and provide suitable solutions for their challenges. The content you produce should motivate your audience to look forward for the new content you develop and also take the actions you recommend for them.
Choose Various Mediums to Deliver Your Ideas
Choosing the right mediums to share your content is an integral part of your content strategy. It is important to make your material available through various free (and possibly, paid) mediums to increase your reach. While blogs and newsletters are commonly used to share content, you can also choose various other content presentation methods to attract more niched customers. For example, white papers can be used to target an audience with a good technical expertise; ebooks and guides can be used to address common problems, to be consumed by a more general audience; podcasts or videos can provide a fun learning experience for various segments. Make sure the content you develop and the medium used is platform relevant to increase engagement level of your audience.
Most companies have a social presence because everyone else does or everyone expects them to have social presence. You cannot expect to increase your followers and expect them to click on every link you share. Use social media to start meaningful conversations and engage with your customers. Use social platforms to build relationship with your customers and prospective customers. Share relevant content, participate in conversations and answer questions posed by your audience. Also, don’t try to be on all the social platforms. Be intentional about the platforms you choose. Understand your target segments and the social platforms they use. Once you choose your platforms, focus on the activities you think you can do over a long term and ensure that you continue doing those activities regularly once you start. The old adage applies here, “the best time to plant is when you have time to water.” The best time to get involved with a social platform is when you have time to consistently tend to it.
This is a special opportunity only for the truly committed, for the truly innovative, for the trend-setter. If you are such a forward-looking company, you may want to consider building and growing an online community to interact with current and potential customers to share industry knowledge and promote products and services. It also acts a great medium to for peer-to-peer interaction with all industry value-chain participants, and will enable you to develop a deeper understanding of your industry and your customers. Don’t just use the online community to share information about your company or products. Develop the community to be more customer focused. Encourage your users to post their questions, opinions and start new conversations. Participate in the conversations or moderate to make sure satisfactory response is provided for queries. Sponsoring a community can dramatically increase your brand value as a customer-focused company, and establish you as a strong thought leader.
Establishing yourself as a thought leader is not for the faint-of-heart. It takes a real dedication and commitment, but the payoff can be phenomenal. And if you are looking for some assistance in developing a strategy that will become your roadmap, be sure to let us know. We’ll be glad to help.