‘Content is King’ as Sumner Redstone put it and now the entire internet fraternity swears by it. For Week 3 of #MyFriendAlexa, we discuss how to use your content to become Thought Leaders.
Good quality and strategically produced content can help position you as a Thought Leader in your niche and industry.
Thought Leaders have the skills, valuable experience as well as helpful insights for the people who have a need. The need could be that of a product, a service or of a problem that they grapple with. But unless your target audience considers you as credible, trustworthy or an authority on the subject, you cannot go far in making your content work for you.
So your strategy needs to cover both these aspects.
What do Thought Leaders do differently
Thought Leaders are one step ahead of others in the content game. They make sure they gain credibility and stay sharp in their offered skill set.
It’s not just about talent; it’s about dependability
Valuable, helpful and evergreen content never goes wrong. They write content that is relevant to their target audience. They identify their problems and offer solutions. Whether the content is blog posts, video content, podcasts or simply a social media post, they make sure that the information is high quality. Most importantly, they are consistent. Their followers know they can count on them.
Sharing multiplies expertise
Thought Leaders help others, share expertise, guide and provide insights. You can first share this freely like on your blog or Quora, then make it exclusive for those who subscribe to your newsletter – thereby rewarding your loyal readers.
Stand-out even when you are in a crowd
Thought Leaders work on developing their unique voice. They also use their content for its natural progression in development. Their topics evolve from the basic to addressing the specific needs of the audience, sometimes researching to present the topic from a different perspective.
Thought Leaders know that the information and data that they quote needs to be from a trusted authority. When they get their data from authoritative sources, their information is not merely a sales pitch. Quoting data also shows the span of that topic’s influence in the industry.
Use different content formats
Thought Leaders don’t confine themselves to only one kind of content format. They know that they can produce content in different forms, all aimed at a different section of the audience. They publish blog posts or do a podcast. They use video content. They put out newsletter or white papers as per need. They write ebooks or appear as guests on other websites or social media platforms.
Collaboration leads to community
Thought Leaders are always approachable. They do not sit in ivory towers and tell their audience what to do. They tell their followers what to do and where to go by doing it themselves and making a case for it. They start conversations around their content, they listen to others and are open to a viewpoint that is different from their own.
Have the will to do what is right
Apart from a vision, Thought Leaders have their own set of ethics. They speak out when they feel that their ethics are violated. Taking a stand cements their reputation as fearless and a leader in the minds of those following them.
Thought Leaders are not just their expertise or their opinions but also their real selves. They often give their followers a glimpse of what they are in their lives that is not related to work. They talk about their passions, the things they are working on and even the things they failed at. They breathe life into their online personas and thus brand themselves. They inspire trust by being right and being real.
Sharpen your skills
Thought Leaders are successful because they are constantly working on themselves. They are always sharpening their saw. They take new courses and upgrade their skills. They use industry trends to learn and then to teach others.