Thought leadership is an essential ingredient of digital strategy for B2B companies committed to effective online marketing. But not all believe in the need to establish themselves as opinion leaders in their industry. Ever wondered how sharing opinions, experience, practical knowledge, best practices or success stories online can contribute to the establishment of your brand?
Leadership content is not about marketing your products or services. It is about the value your expertise can add to your customers, who need such insightful information.
It is to engage and establish trust with customers and potential customers. In short, it is your secret recipe to outshine the competition. It establishes your brand as the go-to resource for decision-makers, helping them resolve business challenges or establish strategic priorities. It is the lifeblood of B2B marketing and it is here to stay as a best practice. Today, we see that savvy B2C brands are adopting it too!
Given its intangible nature, not everyone recognizes the ROI in thought leadership. The effort required may seem to be disproportionate to the results derived. However, there is no question that it will increase a company’s organic exposure and audience reach much better than a large advertising campaign ever could. Let us look at the benefits that result from thought leadership.
Improve Credibility: We live in an age where the Internet is our fount of knowledge. The issue with this is that there’s too much information and no one really knows whom to trust. By not trying to sell any products or services, thought leadership can establish trust by sharing information which is pertinent to the consumers. It empowers them to manage their day-to- day tasks better, while we become opinion leaders. But first, we need to establish thought leadership with strategy, dedication, and patience.
Enhance Brand Identity: Done right, thought leadership marketing can help your brand to establish a strong presence in the industry. It can help consumers recall your brand’s name easily based on the trust established. The efficiencies created draw in people and strengthen the brand’s identity itself.
Boost Innovation: Knowledge is invaluable, and it can benefit not just your customers but also your internal teams as you keep religiously adding more industry-relevant information and insights through your messaging. This will encourage them to apply their newly acquired knowledge to their day-to-day tasks and help them to seek out innovative solutions to everyday problems.
Establish Authority: The knowledge shared by you could be a way to build your name as a thought leader in the field and establish your brand as an authority on important matters. This would make it easier for people to recall your name when making a purchase decision and help you gain a better market share than before.
Build a Loyal Audience: The thought leadership established by you would expand your audience and improve the goodwill of consumers for your brand. Your audience will believe in you and expect products and services to offer the quality and satisfaction they seek. They will be loyal to your brand and make purchase decisions under the influence of this loyalty, ignoring the attractions of a better offering from a competitor.
Bring in Opportunities: Your name will be automatically recognised, making it easy for people to involve you in activities that address your specific sector. You may attract opportunities where you could participate in conferences/events, publish, or address a group with your thoughts on issues important to your community. This would help spread your circle of authority wider.
Ensure Authenticity: When you publish content, usually certain statements or data will need to be authenticated/cited using external or internal backlinks. You will also have other thought leadership publishers linking back to your content, when they cite something written by you. All these instances help to build the authenticity of your SEO backlink profile.
These benefits will undoubtedly attract anyone to thought leadership activities. But establishing leadership requires sincere commitment and consistent, unflagging efforts over a period of time before one can hope to reap its rewards.
More about the Author:
B2B Strategy & Communication Head at GenY Medium