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Why thought leadership should be a part of your brand strategy

The ability to generate rapport, build trust and nurture genuine relationships is an important part of your brand strategy. And now more than ever, that needs to be reflected in your digital marketing. By offering your audience unique insights, you can hook readers and keep them coming back for more. It’s called thought leadership and it’s a lot easier than you might think.

Thought leadership

Are you a market leader? Do your customers think of you as a trusted provider of products, services and/or insights? If you are an expert in your field, demonstrate that by changing the way people think. Thought leadership isn’t simply about having the answers that your readers seek. It’s also about taking a step further by offering new ways of thinking or innovative approaches to solving problems. Thought leadership might sound like a self-serving marketing label but, in fact, it’s just the opposite. It’s about understanding your audience’s needs in a way that sets you apart from your competitors. When executed properly, being a thought leader strengthens your reputation and forms the basis for solid brand recognition.

Why it’s important

The purpose of any thought leadership content is to engage with readers by offering direct access to relevant and timely information derived from your unique expertise and experience. In the case of a financial services company, for example, this could be sharing the latest information on the markets. But it is not enough to publish material with the goal of just educating the reader. You need to talk about a challenge, how you would overcome it and what the outcome of solving that challenge would mean for your audience. By revealing your pioneering opinion or insight, you provoke your reader and invite them to consider your distinct approach. If they can identify themselves and their challenges in your story, you have created value.

The hook

It used to be that people associated thought leadership with dense white papers or lengthy proclamations, but that’s no longer the case. Indeed, some of the most effective thought leadership today is online microcontent shared via video, blogging and social media. As long as you have a unique point of view and avoid an overtly promotional tone, thought leadership content can be a highly effective engagement tool.  

Financial institutions are in a unique position to demonstrate thought leadership. By sharing market observations through daily commentaries, you can display your expertise and provide value that people come to expect. The information can be shared across multiple channels, including social media, to generate stimulating conversations. Whatever channel you choose, you want to communicate thought-provoking ideas. Challenge your audience, reveal your passion for particular concepts and draw your audience into the narrative.

Keep them coming back

Thought leadership has an enduring component. Bold statements can be powerful on their own, but readers will keep coming back if you have offered kernels of wisdom that they find useful and appealing. Once you’ve planted the seed, your role as a trusted leader can give a voice to your brand.

Looking to develop your own thought leadership? Ext. Marketing can help you create and manage an effective thought leadership campaign with a focus on the content your audience is looking for. Contact us today at 1.844.243.1830 or info@ext-marketing.com.