What the hell is a thought leader? Obviously, it’s someone like Professor X from X-Men who can control minds. Or maybe it’s the guy sitting next to you reading Mind Manipulation co-written by Dr. Haha Lung and Dr. Christopher Prowant. Or maybe it’s you. More likely, it’s the future you. To become the thought leader leader, follow these 5 insights:
1. There’s more than one way to skin a cat.
Consumers don’t buy products, they buy solutions. Preferably, your solutions. People these days know the mantra above rings true in most markets and they have multiple options when selecting services. What they are looking for is how you’re skinning their cat. What’s your approach to solving their problem? They are buying into your ideas, your points of view. The important point is to stage that conversation through social marketing.
2. Trust is the key to building a relationship.
Eighty-three percent of consumers say they trust the recommendations of friends and family (peers) (Neilson Global Trust in Advertising). Thought leadership is the way to become that peer. Through your online sharing, opinions and dialog, you can be viewed as a trusted source. I can’t tell you how often I get referred to or see a tweet from brand influencers that triggers me to look further into them, their company and their solutions.
3. Put your best foot forward.
Content marketing generates 3 times as many leads as traditional outbound marketing, but costs 62% less (Demand Metric). So we should clearly be posting content, although the quality of that content is the key to success. Facebook even has an algorithm to determine if your content is good enough to warrant larger audience exposure. Make sure it’s the right content for the right people at the right time.
4. Social media is the place to be.
There are over 2.3 billion people using social media as of January 2016, according to We Are Social’s Global Digital Snapshot. In the world of ConnectedStuff, that means the information you share could have immense reach. Tight on time and your thought leadership marketing is falling to the back-burner? Try using Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule posts ahead of time throughout the week.
5. Your work and your reputation are what you have.
Our CEO, Bill Murtha, was reminiscing about a bit of advice he heard that “Your work and your reputation are what you have” and what translates into long-lasting business relationships. The work experiences you have will drive your personal/corporate brand reputation. Sharing experiences and insights humanizes you to your audience, proving you have the experience to be a thought leader.
Long story, short: Get your thoughts on a page and share them with the world. Heck, you could even write a blog about it…