Thought leadership strategy forces you to ask what you can say about yourself that is true, and what you do in the world to make it true. These questions span an entire organization. Answering them and then doing something about them unmistakably requires the input of people empowered to make executive decisions and lead towards change. Including top company leaders in thought leadership strategy discussions takes the best advantage of this transformative opportunity.
Although thought leadership is not an appropriate format for marketing product features and benefits directly, there is a way to link thought leadership pieces to a broader product marketing strategy. In other words, thought leadership can accomplish more than brand awareness and help build reputations. Connecting the two strategies can be very effective. You can even design them to reinforce each other.
High-quality thought leadership allows companies to stand out from competitors with differentiated insights that communicate unique value. While its primary purpose is differentiation and adding value, thought leadership also provides an enormous benefit for sales pipelines and client relationship management. The reason why? Thought leadership sustains conversations. A few scenarios help illustrate this point.
The first few days of January offer an excellent opportunity to take time to think through your vision for the year. Your vision can be for your company or organization, your team, your career, or even your life overall. What would you like to be able to say on 31 December as you look back over the year? Before you get too caught up in the day-to-day, before your calendar fills up with back-to-back meetings, block out an uninterrupted two hours that you can dedicate to this essential work.
Can one person go on an executive retreat? Absolutely! Setting aside dedicated time to think through your vision and strategy makes sense no matter what your role may be. Taking an executive retreat for yourself can be an excellent year-end activity as you start to consider what will define success in the year ahead. Your strategy sets the contours for action, for change, and for why and how you respond to what happens. Just as with companies and other organizations, Company You needs a reliable mechanism for creating that strategy. The executive retreat approach accomplishes just that. Follow this six-step process to set aside time and ask yourself the questions you should be asking.