July 8, 2020 Guest Blogger

Thought Leadership Marketing at the Age of Online Influence

Thought leadership is one of the most influential brand-building strategies, but it is also the most demanding process in marketing. After all, not everyone can become a key opinion leader and impress target audiences with a continuous influx of top-level content.

It shouldn’t stop you from trying, though, because the Internet gives you the chance to target more than 4.5 billion users worldwide. Almost every customer can learn about your business if you prepare well and begin publishing a lot of quality posts. 

But how do you create a thought leadership marketing strategy at the age of online influence? Keep reading as we are about to show you four steps to become a key opinion leader in your niche. 

The Basics of Thought Leadership Marketing

A lot of entrepreneurs are still not familiar with the concept of thought leadership, so let’s define it first and see what it really means. By definition, thought leadership marketing is the process of increasing the visibility of specialized expertise and accelerating market influence to accomplish business goals.

 In other words, this marekting strategy turns you into a trustworthy source of information and helps you build stronger relationships with the target audience. You can also raise brand awareness, generate new leads, boost customer loyalty, discover business development opportunities, and attract talented professionals to join your organization.

Practical results of thought leadership are immense:

  • Nearly 60% of decision-makers say they choose a business based on its thought leadership.
  • Almost 50% of buyers said their opinion of a company had decreased after reading poor quality content.
  • 70% of customers feel closer to a brand after engaging with their content.

However, it turns out that only 50% of marketers have a strategy in place to produce thought leadership marketing content. If you are among those who don’t have a clear plan of work, check out the tips we have prepared for you.

4 Ways to Become a Key Opinion Leader

It takes a lot of work to become recognized as the key opinion leader in your niche, but it’s doable if you follow the right course of action. Here are a few practical ways to achieve this goal.

1. Answer the right questions

Thought leaders are there to help the audience find answers to the most interesting or intriguing questions, so your primary task is to identify the dilemmas that the average customer is facing. Jake Gardner, a blogger at the essay writing service UK and the first person I call to write my paper, believes anyone can do it quickly using a couple of research mechanisms:

  • Read blog comments and questions on social platforms because that’s where your followers will leave a lot of interesting content proposals.
  • Conduct online surveys on your website or social media accounts and ask fans to give you content proposals directly.

2. Create high-quality content

Now that you know what to write about, it is time to create high-quality content. The best articles you can find online are long-form, which is exactly why the average Google first page result contains 1,447 words.

The point is that users want to read in-depth analyses with lots of data-driven conclusions and fresh insights. Therefore, you should always try to support posts with official reports and statistical facts. 

Besides that, thought leaders are always trying to develop a unique style of content creation. This trait depends on your personality and professional preferences, but you must keep in mind the importance of standing out of the crowd and not writing like every other content creator in your field of work.

3.Use multiple communication channels

We live in the age of communication, which means you have to utilize more than one platform to approach target consumers. If you are just starting a thought leadership campaign, we suggest using the following communication networks: 

  • A website is the first place where you should publish blog posts and other relevant stories
  • Social networks will help you to engage with fans and show personality
  • Guest blogging gives you exposure to new audience groups
  • Email newsletters allow you to solidify relationships

4. Use a two-way communication strategy

Another thing to remember is that the Internet promotes two-way communication. You can’t just publish content and neglect users’ comments, so do your best to engage and initiate a dialogue with your followers.

This is an excellent opportunity to exchange opinions and generate fresh ideas while making your audience feel appreciated and acknowledged. Sooner or later, they will start anticipating your next posts and wait eagerly to hear what you have to say about relevant niche-related topics. 

In the long run, it will turn a lot of followers into loyal consumers and probably even full-time brand advocates, a major achievement if you know that 65% of a company’s profit comes from recurring customers.

The Bottom Line

Thought leaders are genuine trendsetters with a strong influence on modern consumers. The audience is tired of traditional advertising, so the only natural way to approach them is by proving your expertise and letting users engage with your content.

In this post, we analyzed four simple steps to improve your thought leadership marketing. It’s a great starting point, but we also recommend you to adjust the strategy so as to suit your business in particular. Good luck!

Freelance contribution especially written for Find Your Influence by Justin Osborne.