“Thought Leadership” is a frequently-used buzzword within the marketing industry. According to Forbes, a thought leader “can refer to an individual or firm that is recognized as an authority in a specialized field and whose expertise is sought and often rewarded.”
However, it’s not enough to just say “I’m the best in the business” and not have evidence to support your claim. This is where “organic credibility” comes into play. It essentially encapsulates all of the desired effect that thought leadership provides for a PR campaign. Here’s how you can build up your organic credibility.
Owned media, such as your blog site, social media pages and website, are publishing properties you control. Essentially, your blog site and social media pages are an extension of your site and your site is an extension of your brand. It’s important to not treat your website as a landfill for content, but rather a refined and reputable source for new and recurring visitors. This means consistently working on your site so that it’s always visually up-to-date and full of crucial information.
Publicity Through Promotional Efforts
A Nielsen study in 2013 found that “earned media” (aka free media) is more likely to spark consumer-to-action than paid advertising. Earned media can be anything from a bylined article or social media mention to a personal quote in a news story. It may seem like earned media is hard to come by, but that’s not actually true. Here are a few ways a business can get earned media:
Creating Content That Is Worth Sharing
Shareable content can be thought-provoking, useful or funny, and can come in many forms like a blog, infographic or video. It’s also important to make sure you’re taking advantage of social share buttons when available.
Engaging on Social Media
The purpose of social media for businesses is to bring you closer with your consumers. Luckily, there are plenty of social monitoring tools that allow you to track what customers are saying about your brand and also connect one-on-one.
Making Your Customers Happy
If you want to build loyalty with your customers, you need to go above and beyond their expectations. When your customers are happy, they are going to let their friends and family know, eventually leading to more business.
Consumers trust earned media because it is publicity that isn’t controlled by the company itself.
Consistent Dialogue and Engagement
One of the missteps of most thought leaders is not effectively communicating with their target audience. The job isn’t over after you hit ‘publish’ on a blog or post an article on social media. Actively engaging with users on social media is a great way to build organic credibility because it shows your audience that you care and want to help them understand your business.
Organic credibility not only tells your audience you’re an expert in your field, but also shows potential clients your proficiency. Overall, the goal is to showcase an individual’s or business’s enterprise in a palatable, informative way. A great way to start building your organic credibility is with a killer content marketing plan.