Table Of Contents
- What Is Thought Leadership Content?
- What are the Qualities of Thought Leadership Content?
- Step-By-Step Guide to Defining Your Niche for Thought Leadership Content on LinkedIn
- Key Takeaways
From simply hosting job opportunities and acting as a platform for same-niche professionals to connect, LinkedIn has come a long way. Today, it serves as a full-fledged social media platform for professionals and aspirants across all classes and boundaries. No wonder the evolution of LinkedIn from a mere connecting platform to a thought leadership platform has been revolutionizing. Today, it is one of the first apps and websites that would strike your mind if you wanted to gather new audiences and enrich existing ones through value-based content in your niche, better known as thought leadership content.
Here is a detailed thought leadership guide that would help you reach out to your LinkedIn audience, no matter the size, with enriching content that not only connects but also uplifts. But before that, let’s better understand what thought leadership content means and its distinct qualities.
What is Thought Leadership Content?
To a novice in the world of digital marketing, the prominent question to strike the mind would be, ‘what is thought leadership?’ before they move on to its related content. The importance of thought leadership cannot be stressed enough in the present-day B2B environment of marketing that feeds and grows on content that is impregnated with scopes of strategy creation for value enhancement among existing customer bases and target audiences.
Not to mention, thought leadership helps generate market authority and trust over time, which works in favor of businesses.
A LinkedIn study itself suggests as many as 47% C-Suite executives agree to thought leadership being the reason why they agreed to share contact info.
So, when it comes to understanding what is thought leadership content, one can simply say it is an amalgamation of ideas, skills, techniques, and strategies that demonstrate expertise in a given niche. When working on thought leadership, you can play with different content types and formats that ingrain the idea of trust and authority on readers about the business or individual.
What are the Qualities of Thought Leadership Content?
The top identifiable qualities of thought leadership content can be summed up into the following:
A thought leadership content is always loaded with information that serves the targeted reader base and client base. Information so carried is designed to address the pain points of the reader for a specific industry niche.
And, it is not just information but also accurate details that the thought leader talks about based on valuable research and real-life experiences in and around related circumstances. The solutions provided are also practically useful and well-timed.
Any content on thought leadership is equally visible as it is valuable with a capacity to create trust and authority. Visibility of your thought leadership does not just mean content availability. It means consistency, discipline, and the use of exciting content formats in publishing your posts from time to time, so your reader is sure of when and where to find information.
Content-based on thought leadership is always aimed at a targeted audience segment, which may be related to the entire business niche or a part of it. As the audience is defined, identifying and addressing their issues and providing practical solutions thereto becomes possible.
Innovation is among the key qualities that drive thought leadership to maintain authority. It is not just the information that readers receive under thought leadership-based content but actually news that strikes head-on. Loaded with ideas that can shake up conversations, these content types shape a story your business wants to convey through attractive and meaningful insights and presentations. And, of course, you can play with innovation in all content aspects, be it the type, format, or tones.
Adaptability is another irreplaceable quality ingrained in thought leadership content. Whether you are focusing on leadership creation, innovation, or any other value-based aspect, you would know as a thought leader when and how to get the right nerves for what’s happening around you.
Inspiration is that one thing that drives human beings to go for something new and life-altering. Thought leadership content needs to inspire readers, driving them for more such value-based info.
Many businesses claim to be working the way around social media platforms with their thought leadership. But, how true that is can be confirmed by looking at their content ideas and what they are addressing. Are there any visionary ideas that drive these content types? Such ideas can add new insights for readers and address industry challenges in the present and far into the future.
Having discussed these, let us move on to the stepwise thought leadership guide for a better content strategy formulation, authority, and trust creation to better define your niche on LinkedIn.
Step-By-Step Guide to Defining Your Niche for Thought Leadership Content on LinkedIn
Just identifying your niche on LinkedIn and addressing readers with related content is not enough. You also need to define it with every content that is published through and through. Here’s a thought leadership guide you can use to define your niche on LinkedIn better and inspire, lead, and garner trust from your reader base.
1. Choose your area of expertise
Irrespective of which industry you belong to, thought leadership always starts with knowing what expertise you have gained. Know that you cannot be a thought leader if you address all aspects related to the industry your business operates in.
You would thus need to choose a niche that best defines your area of expertise and complement it with topics and the sub-ideas that build it. For instance, if automobiles are your business industry, you can break it down into different segments and niches like car servicing, careful driving, vehicle efficiency, car care, and the likes. You can then choose from either of them based on your expertise.
And yes, do not mix it up with your business agenda. Your reader is seeking value, not a sales pitch, so you might want to address what troubles them in the segregated niche.
2. Outline and define your specific reader/audience segment
Next comes the step of defining who you are creating your thought leadership content for. Recognizing the buyer persona, you need to serve can be a great start to determining who your target audience is. To identify your core targeted audience segment, reflect on the following aspects.
- Age and gender of the people you need to serve
- Their education levels
- Income backgrounds they fall into
- The professional inclinations
- Information that they seek
- Challenges in their way to information access and goal fulfillment
- Their goals that align with your products/services
- Any prominent personality traits they carry
Having answers to all these aspects helps you get a step closer to your reader.
3. Create realistic goals on thought leadership
Your thought leadership goals play a key role in ensuring your content aligns with the right target audience, serving your niche of expertise. You can take a hard look at the following aspects to create realistic goals for thought leadership to flourish as a content marketing strategy. Note that these goals are as much introspective as they are about your reader.
- Are you thorough with your subjects of expertise?
- What skills would you like to work on?
- Is your expertise aligned with your passion?
- Where would you like your thought leadership to reach in the short and long-run?
The last question leaves scope for many aspects to be considered, parameters defined and measured for you to quantify your goals and know the actual numbers that are comparable later.
4. Grab new thought leadership content opportunities
LinkedIn is quite versatile today and is a hotspot for new opportunities in the B2B segment. You can work on new opportunities in the following ways to better define your business niche and reach out to targeted readers.
- Add a fresh perspective to your readers’ pain point.
- Leverage current trends to reach out to your readers and elaborate on what it means to them.
- Work on existing problems for your audience to come up with groundbreaking solutions.
- Use data storytelling to reach out and publish real-life research findings.
- Connect with your audience through personal stories.
- Leverage the prominence of influencers and industry experts to expand reach.
Add to it a well-researched knowledge of who your competitors are to better time your thought leadership content. When tapping these opportunities, you can use versatile content ideas to maintain variety in how you convey so your readers are hooked for the next. You can use the likes of long-form insights, blogs, podcasts, videos, newsletters, infographic content, and interactive content to reach out and nail.
5. Work on community engagement
A great way to create interest and garner trust is to engage with your community from time to time. This can allow you to know how well-informed your audience is, gaps you haven’t addressed, and gain insight into what’s new in your community. Engaging with your community also allows you to remain adaptive to new trends in your niche.
Plus, a good engagement leaves your community feeling included and leaves a sense of belonging, strengthening the trust they carry.
6. Measure output and rework to fill gaps in strategy
Well, even if you have completed all the steps, you can’t be sure enough of how well you have done it unless you bring the numbers right. It is thus important that you measure your thought leadership and authority on LinkedIn to quantify goal fulfillment. Conducting a poll is a great way to measure the output.
Here are the important points you can take away from this thought leadership guide.
- Thought leadership on LinkedIn or any other platform is about creating authority and trust among the audience.
- A high-quality thought leadership content is inclusive, insightful, informative, accurate, and visible while being innovative, adaptable, and inspirational for the targeted audience.
- You must be well-aware of your area of expertise and skills and be well-adept at related subjects for propagating thought leadership.
- A recognition of your target audience based on your industry’s niche is crucial. You must know who you are creating for as per the demographics and what troubles need to be addressed.
- There should be a definite set of goals that you aim to achieve with thought leadership.
- You must be updated with the available opportunities and work up to grab them.
- Stay well-engaged with your community to make them feel included.
- Measure your success through defined metrics and rework on gaps to improve.
As you move forward to defining your niche on LinkedIn with this thought leadership guide, know that the attention span of people is among the lowest these days, and they might as well forget your content. So, it is crucial that you make your content memorable with the right strategy in place that reaches out, conveys, and secures a place in your reader’s mind with thought leadership.
The richness of your content is defined by the photos, videos, and interactions included. In this, it’s always the more, the merrier. But just so you don’t overstep, conduct a survey to know what your audience exactly wants.
Yes, thought leadership has evolved to be a critical part of content strategy.
Thought leadership is all about dynamism and adaptability, which means the way you convey and connect changes with every industry. However, the fabric of this strategy remains the same, and you ultimately end up creating trust and authority in your community.
The right LinkedIn optimization would definitely help you reach out to your targeted audience. But, from thereon, it all depends on how well you connect and the values you provide.