Frequently enough, thought leadership campaigns run out of steam after their initial launch. After publishing a report, backing it up with a few social media posts, and a conference panel or two, companies allow thought leadership efforts to falter. Marketing teams go on to their next campaign, and subject matter experts go back to their day-to-day activities.
Positioning as a thought leader requires a longer-term strategy, however. It takes several months to develop sufficient authority on a topic. Doing so requires a range of activities to remain present and visible in a particular area. In turn, that sustained effort can pull against people’s natural tendency to run out of creative energy and move on.
Several tactics can help sustain and refresh your efforts:
- Quarterly updates on trends or, where relevant, market data that supported your initial release
- Commentary on high-profile news stories that shed light on new events, using your longer-term point of view.
- Monthly audio or video updates discussing angles of your topic with clients or other industry experts.
- Social campaigns, including direct posts by individuals in your firm rather than corporate feeds.
- Publishing focus topics that highlight facets of your point of view relevant for specific regions, segments, industries, etc.
- Working with internal and external media relations resources to get quoted and interviewed on topics that reinforce your perspectives.
- Distributing multi-step email sequences (journey-based approaches and drip campaigns) to get your thought leadership directly into the hands of relevant stakeholders.
- Commenting and interacting with others’ social media highlighting relevant connections to your point of view.
- Planning now for your next major update and including teasers in your marketing to let people know what’s coming.
Using these sorts of tactics helps combat a natural tendency to lose energy and focus on a thought leadership topic. It breaks through the unintended obstacles created by crossing the finish line when you are planning and launching a significant piece of thought leadership.
Done is just the beginning.