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3 Types of Thought Leadership: Creating the Perfect Mix of Content for Your Brand [Infographic]

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Thought leadership is how more of today’s brands get noticed and yield influence, but there’s no one recipe for success. Only by finding the right content mix for your brand will you be able to cook up something good that brings people in and keeps them coming back.

Choosing which ingredients go into your content marketing calls for a look at your overall strategy. Taking a high-level overview can help you identify any gaps in your brand’s influence and create the thought leadership you need to go from line cook to head chef.

To help you establish the right recipe, get a taste of three different types of thought leadership in the infographic below. Depending on your company’s size, industry, and business objectives, you might create content assets that display:

- Industry thought leadership, including perspective on news and trends
- Organizational thought leadership, embodied in the vision and ethos of your company
- Product thought leadership, focused on being the best solution for your customers

All companies share the need to build brand trust and credibility, but recipes for effective thought leadership vary. Striking the right thought leadership mix with your content marketing can allow you to influence people in evaluation or buying mode, helping ensure you are Zagat-rated in your industry.

Published in: Marketing
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3 Types of Thought Leadership: Creating the Perfect Mix of Content for Your Brand [Infographic]

  1. 1. Industry Thought Leadership By establishing thought leadership, you can better define ways for companies to go about business; but it’s not just about highlighting the need for change, it’s also about helping your audience get from point A to point B. Ideally your products (or services) are the vehicle for taking them down this better path. Standing out in your industry is the aim of many thought leadership programs. But what exactly does this mean and how do you achieve this goal? To serve a minimum audience, you need to focus on the news, trends and forces shaping the market(s) you serve Develop and share innovative thoughts and insights about those dynamics with your audience Just remember to keep your audience in mind, whether prospects, customers, analysts, or others Three tablespoons of best practices A dash of practical how-to’s Some fresh strategic roadmaps Sweeten with as much content as you see fit Your thought leadership should pre-heat your company’s vision, innovations and uniqueness. In other words, it should mirror you organization’s culture. We could go a step further and say it should drive your company’s culture. No matter how you look at, your thought leadership and culture need to be in sync for your thought leadership to bake up to a nice golden brown. Once you’ve defined a new—and let’s face it—best way for companies in a certain industry to go about business, you want to give them the means to get where they need to be. Give your thought leadership a little love. Optimize your recipe for success with: For more tips on building a successful thought leadership strategy on LinkedIn, download our popular all-encompassing playbook “The Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to Thought Leadership.” We recommend applying these different flavors of thought leadership based on what you can do well and where the opportunity lies. Commit to all three if you have the resources. That means you need to develop a point of view and produce a variety of content on industry, product and organization. But if you’re running low on all-purpose flour, choose one and do it very well. For example, is there a gaping hole in your industry that you can fill? Maybe there’s an opportunity for a quick win around culture and product, but high competition around the industry. INDUSTRY THOUGHT LEADERSHIP ORGANIZATIONAL THOUGHT LEADERSHIP PRODUCT THOUGHT LEADERSHIP (a point of view on news, trends and the future) (company culture, talent development, etc.) (how to’s, best practices, strategy) Creating the Perfect Mix of Content for your Brand “Thought Leadership is authoritative, yet authentic. When you find this balance with your content, you are truly optimized for influence.” —Stephanie Sammons, Digital Entrepreneur and Marketing Strategist, www.stephaniesammons.com “If you’re just repeating what everyone else is saying, you’re not building authority.” —Dougla Karr, CEO, DK New Media and CMO, CircuPress “Becoming known as a thought leader shouldn't be your goal. It's just the icing on the cake of creating something truly innovative.” —Lauren Hockenson, Editorial and Social Media Manager, BitTorrent, Inc. 3 TYPES OF THOUGHT LEADERSHIP Bottom Line: Authenticity should be the main ingredient. Lay off on the artificial sweetner —audiences can tell when your content is artificial. Organizational Thought Leadership Product Thought Leadership AThree-Tiered Approach to Thought Leadership

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