How a Thought Leadership Content Strategy Can Replace Your Best Salesperson
A thought leadership content strategy can drive the business growth you’re seeking. It persuades the purchasing agent right up to C-level. Winning more RFPs, having less price-sensitive buyers and establishing longer-term clients are some of the many benefits of launching a thought leadership content strategy. It could be considered one of the best marketing investments a growth-driven organization can make.
Thought leadership content strategy differentiates your brand in a crowded marketplace. It builds trust with your audience and shifts purchasing behaviour towards your product or service.
More businesses are starting to see the value in creating meaningful content. In a survey of more than 1,300 business decision-makers by Edelman and LinkedIn found that 91 percent of business decision-makers, and 73 percent of C-suite executives, considered thought leadership either important or critical to business growth. Nearly 40 percent of those surveyed, spent one to three hours a week reading this type of content.
What is The Purpose of Thought Leadership Content Strategy and Why Bother?
Thought leadership content helps you differentiate your product/service offering in a meaningful way. It gives a business the opportunity to showcase their expertise, knowledge, and opinion on a variety of topics. When this content is created and published, it gives you an authoritative voice in the google sphere and in every-day business dealings. With every piece of content published on your website and social media channel, you are gaining audience reach in an organic way, which is one of the least expensive ways to fill your sales funnel and generate business results. Plus, it helps distinguish the brand in a competitive marketplace.
What Type of Content Goes into a Thought Leadership Strategy?
Creating content doesn’t have to be onerous and difficult, but it does require planning and thought! The question is whether you need outside help to get the content written or do you have a great resource internally who is itching to show off their creative side? Either way, you only need a few key pieces of content to get you started and get your words (keywords/SEO) working for you and see the leads start to flow as part of your sales funnel strategy. Focus on the following:
Blog Post – Write an original blog post on a relevant topic – one that ties into your business offering, and offers value, and is informative. A minimum of one blog post a month is recommended to begin building your brand’s reputation. This should be posted to the business website each month in your Blog/Insights section.
Social Media Posts – Social media channels like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are an important part of a marketing strategy and are the best place for you to promote the blog you’ve written. You can entice your business followers to read your blog by posting a short excerpt of the blog and include the link to your website. This is important to drive potential customers to your site to read the blog. They will be more inclined to peruse the site’s offerings. A content calendar is a great way to keep track of these and other business-related posts. Aim to post content 2-3 times a week.
Research Material – Original research and data are considered gold when it comes to thought leadership. When you can speak authoritatively with research and statistics to back up opinions it strengthens the message exponentially. Plus, it makes great material to post on your social channels. And, if done right, you can create a great PR campaign with many opportunities for the content to go viral and get seen.
Webinars – Hold a webinar once you have great research material. By hosting a webinar, it provides the business with another sales opportunity to connect with its customers and provide insights and value in an interactive setting.
Videos – Today’s social sphere is a prime spot for video content. Videos don’t have to be long, they can be fun and engaging. Creating short videos with employees, owners and leaders often provides a glimpse at who the company is and what they stand for. This is another opportunity to tell your brand story and connect with your audience.
These are just a few easy strategies that can be incorporated into your marketing plan. Just remember, it’s not the quantity of content that matters, but the quality and relevance. Take the time to do an audit of your space and check-out the competition. And, remember content creation and thought leadership is one pillar of a growth plan, but it’s one of the most effective over the long-term.
Consult with professionals at 360 Integral Marketing for your content and thought leadership needs. We become an extension of your team and work with you to create actionable plans that are repeatable and measurable and drives business growth.