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The case for thought leadership content

A thought leader is an individual or firm recognised as an authority in a specific field, who others in the industry turn to for guidance. Although it’s an offputting bit of management terminology, it’s worth understanding because it’s guiding a lot of successful marketing initiatives.

Why? Well, almost 60% of business decision makers have said that thought leadership directly led to their awarding of business. Additionally, more than 60% have said they were more willing to pay a premium to companies that “create thought leadership with a clear vision”.

And yet only 14% of sellers believe their thought leadership content creates pricing power. That’s why it’s an opportunity.

Even if the 60% figures are on the high side, there must be an excellent return on investment from positioning our business as the authority which it surely is. As we’ve discussed before, 95% of prospective customers aren’t in the market at any one time, but thought leadership content keeps us on their radar. When the time comes, it’s hard for them not to include us in their considerations.

The key to creating thought leadership content is to determine what our prospects need to know and will find interesting, then to build a schedule of new content we can produce that will service this. Typically this would include blogs, white papers, magazine articles and videos. The content should be useful, actionable advice which might help our audience in their own careers. Then (like everything) all it takes is the appropriate resourcing and commitment.