Becoming a thought leader in your industry brings with it many benefits. Your brand or company will receive recognition, earn respect and loyalty, develop relationships with current and potential customers, grow your brand’s image, and increase revenue. These are all results of being a thought leader, but the actual purpose is not sales. What you want to do is build relationships and an audience that looks to you for accurate, innovative, informative and current information. You’re developing a reputation in your industry.
Thought leadership can be defined as answering the questions that are on your audience’s mind. You explain to them what your brand is all about. You provide a continual flow of content that shows knowledge and authority in your brand’s industry. Soon they will see you as the brand with the answers they’re seeking and they will go to you first when they need something that your brand offers.
Here are three ways you can position your brand as a thought leader:
Provide content with relationship in mind.
You will be providing compelling content online and in social media, so you have to be social. Building relationships with your customers and potential customers is primary. You aren’t trying to make a sale. As you develop relationships, sales will naturally flow from them. You also want to be found by your audience, so be sure and go to where they are on social media, blogs and forums. Get involved on these sites and you will be associated with other voices in your industry.
Provide content specifically for your audience.
Always have your audience on your mind and how you can give them a clear image of who your brand is. Provide content tailored to what they want to know about you and the industry you’re in. Your content will appeal to your audience if it is relevant to them, providing information in a genuine, engaging manner.
Provide content that encourages engagement.
As you develop a relationship with your audience and provide relevant content for them, the next step is engagement. You want to get them to interact with you and get a conversation going around your brand and what you can offer to educate and help them. Besides your company blog, be wherever your brand and industry is present on the various social media platforms. Being genuine and open with your audience will go a long way in cultivating brand loyalty.
As you establish your brand as a leader in its field and grow your audience and influence, you will become seen as a thought leader. The respect and authority that comes with this recognition will lead to loyal brand followers and advocates who will help drive traffic and sales to your website. Focus on your audience and what your brand can be to them, and you will attract customers and keep them coming back for more.
Stand out in the crowd