Demonstrating thought leadership increases your visibility and credibility and can ultimately lead to a virtuous cycle: journalists seeking you out for interviews as well as organizations offering speaking opportunities – both of which further bolster your position. Here are a few things to consider when positioning yourself or your organization as an industry thought leader.
- Engage customers at every opportunity, not just at the beginning of the sales process. Look for touch points where you can provide advice or help them solve an issue that’s impacting their business. Being viewed as a trusted business advisor increases the likelihood that customers will be long term customers. Not only that, it encourages them to become your advocate, touting your organization’s expertise – growing your industry expertise through one of the most valued communications mediums, word of mouth.
- Employees are an extension of your business and can impact your reputation. They’re also a tremendous asset when they are experts in your business and are able to communicate your message on behalf of the company. Utilize these subject matter experts through bylines and interviews with industry trade media. In addition to the visibility and credibility generated by the original articles, linking to them through social media can widen readership. Of course, this is an ongoing effort. Consistent, ongoing coverage of your experts solidifies your organization’s reputation as an industry leader.
- Like building a brand, establishing yourself and your organization as industry thought leaders takes time. You have to consistently produce and distribute content that supports your position. That content must be engaging and compelling as well as educational and entertaining. But the content is only part of the equation; the second step is to find avenues to share the ideas. Consider writing a book, creating a blog, hosting a podcast, contributing as a guest blogger to other industry blogs, or pitching journalists to generate interviews.
Staying ahead of your industry as a thought leader requires you to continually and proactively seek out opportunities. Each opportunity builds upon previous ones and, over time, journalists and industry influencers will begin to rely on you and your organization’s expertise.
Thanks for visiting the CaptainComm blog. We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our thought leadership tips. If you have any questions or would like more details, feel free to leave us a comment.