Majority of decision makers agree thought leadership enhances their perception of an organization
By Anna Halstead, Account Director and Social Media Strategist at Racepoint Global
Today, company executives need to be their own brand in addition to running their business. From the c-suite to product line managers, these people have to build business value while being the face of your company. In fact, a study by LinkedIn and Edelman found that 53% of buyers say it’s important for new and small companies to produce thought leadership if they want buyers to consider working with them.
Unfortunately, that same survey also discovered that, while B2B thought leadership content expanded exponentially during the pandemic, 71% of decision makers say that less than half of the thought leadership they read provides valuable insights.
As a startup or early-stage company, this means that elevating your executives’ visibility with trusted content is more crucial than ever. Here are three tips to help you develop an executive visibility program that can cut through the noise and help you reach the right audience.
1. Create a narrative foundation
First, identify potential topic areas and conversation maps for executives and the audience they’re looking to engage. Then merge that with authentic narratives that align with your executive’s expertise, personal passion, and company mission. This intersection is the narrative sweet spot.
Through this process, you can determine the comfort level each executive has with being controversial, questioning norms, or challenging the status quo. High-performing thought leadership balances sharing knowledge and visionary perspective, while also retaining an authentic voice—and even having some fun.
Most importantly, your narrative foundation should provide value to potential customers. This is what will quickly capture their attention and earn their trust.
2. Develop an editorial calendar
An editorial calendar helps you plan, schedule, and stay on track with your content. This also helps you avoid big gaps between publishing posts. This doesn’t require expensive software or a Kanban board. A simple spreadsheet works fine. You can create columns for:
From blog posts to videos, graphics to podcasts, rich content tells a captivating, provocative story with easy-to-digest third-party insights and data that highlight original thinking. And always remember, although you’re raising executive visibility, thought leadership is really for your customers and potential customers.
Planning and creating content ahead of time is more than a consistent cadence – it also leaves room for agility. A great editorial calendar opens the door to be opportunistic to news and conversations in the zeitgeist.
3. Activate your executives on social media
Most people have a LinkedIn profile, but audit your executives’ profiles and make sure that there are updated photos, appropriate header images, and that the “Title” and “About” sections contain current information. You’ll also want to turn on “Creator Mode” to prominently display future posts and to enable the “Follow” button on their profile.
Also have executives engage with other experts and influencers on whatever platform they use. Speaking of that, according to an article in Forbes, the average B2B buyer uses 10 or more channels to communicate with suppliers so don’t neglect webinars, in-person events, and your company’s blog.
Ignite your customers with visionary perspectives
By considering these three points, you’ll be on your way to raising your executives’ visibility. You will also improve your impact-to-effort ratio and humanize your brand in a way that helps people better connect with your company’s purpose.