Thought Leadership and Executive Visibility

When does executive visibility become true thought leadership?

Thought Leadership Strategy and Consulting

It’s not easy to achieve and the term is probably overused in the PR industry, but thought leadership grows out of many qualities. To be considered a thought leader is not merely a matter of positive PR, or subject-matter-expert status, although they are often by-products of a leadership campaign. True thought leadership is a blend of insight, innovation, and influence.

Building Executive Visibility for B2B Thought Leadership

One way to earn the label of “thought leader” is to be first to market. In the blogosphere, we have early movers like Chris Brogan and Mack Collier, for example. Each rightfully parlayed first-mover status into a reputation for insight and influence. Companies like Starbucks and Amazon are considered thought leaders because they’re category-creators.

But what about those who aren’t first? Can they be considered as thought leaders? Our answer is yes, and as a thought leadership agency we’re here to help them achieve that status. Our approach to creating a B2B thought leadership strategy for our clients is founded on a few key pillars.

It deals in ideas. The classic example is John F. Kennedy’s historic mission to put a man on the moon. It was a real goal, but also a metaphor for American idealism and ingenuity.

It requires commitment. To be a thought leader, one must have a strong and well-articulated point of view about a relevant issue. Our rule is, the more differentiated, the better.

It’s well packaged. Often a trend is staring us in the face, but the credit belongs to the one who identifies and names it, like Malcolm Gladwell’s “tipping point” label about the spread of ideas.

It’s forward-thinking. Or it offers a path to a solution to a problem at a time of turbulence or change. We live in a cynical era, so a large part of real thought leadership is simple inspiration.

It’s not commercial. Most thought leaders don’t seek to profit from their ideas or POV in the short term; instead, they look for a relationship.

For more information about our thought leadership services, contact us.