Buzzwords like brand leader, thought leadership, subject matter expert and the like are all part of the same pie that every business hopes to at some point get a slice of.
Because it means your product and company are relevant. It means you’re connecting with people’s needs, wants, and desires. It also more likely than not means you’re making some serious capital to go along with it.
But to get to this position of a trusted and sought-after source that people want to actually buy from – again and again, is not an easy feat.
It takes a great deal of effort from the company, meaning loads of work, lots of inspired content, and a well- thought out
1. Narrow Your Audience
It may seem counterintuitive – aren’t we supposed to be earning more dollars and attracting as many customers as possible? Well yes. However, the online marketplace is full of noisy content that doesn’t truly speak to anyone and therefore doesn’t do the business or the consumer any good.
To position your brand as an expert, think about niching down your target audience. This allows you to really serve a specific market. You can always add a different demographic back in later, but this singular focus can help you and your team create truly valued consumer advocated content not just more generic junk.
2. Be as YOU as possible
It should go without saying that you must know thy audience. But what’s also important is your target customer gets to see your business’s relatable side. People crave and respond to authenticity and honesty from a brand.
This is a great place to really dig to set your brand voice apart in 2019, as research shows, only 48% of U.S. consumers trust businesses – this is down from 58% just two years ago.
But how do you build a solid and genuine relationship with your target audience? The same way you would with a neighborhood or coworker, by incorporating these three values: know, like, and trust.
This is the secret sauce that helps forms a solid bond with your audience.
There’s a marketing rule of 7 that refers to the idea that a prospective customer needs to be exposed to your product seven times before they will consider taking action and purchasing from you. But that was then, and this is now, thanks to increased internet access and all that is social media it now takes more exposures or touches from a brand for a customer to make a purchase.
Because it can take a lot to be noticed, use the three attributes listed above to help direct the specific type of content marketing your audience wants to grow a relationship and influence buying rates. Building a leading brand is directly linked to how well your audience responds to you.
And another great way to grow a fruitful following is by doing what more and more brand leaders are implementing, having a two- way conversation with their audience. This essentially gives the brand a way to get to know their market and their crowd, in turn, gets to know the brand- in a more humanistic way.
“Where marketing of the past used to push one-sided conversations toward consumers, successful brands know that content marketing opens the door for two-way conversations and relationships with audiences unlike anything before,” says Forbes writer, John Hall.
3. Content Marketing IS Your Marketing
Content Marketing: A strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience – and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
This definition on content marketing lays out exactly the type of content writing you should be aiming for with your brand, writing that is valuable (to your audience), relevant (for customers), and consistent (for engagement).
Create content that first establishes a relationship aka not constant pitches or selling customers but to create an impression and connection to your ideal target audience. Think ratios. Nine out of ten posts need to be value related, i.e. a recipe, a how-to hack, a vibrant story.
Content that is latent with immersive storytelling, as well as interactive and location-based experiences delivered narratively will peak engagement for your brand. Need an example? Take National Geographic—it’s the most popular brand on Instagram with over 86 million followers. It creates a true experience for their followers through both stunning visuals and in-real-time tales.
Give more time and thought to your content creation—whether you handle it in-house or join forces with a creative content marketing agency – it’s essential and can elevate your brand to the elite ranks.
4. Value Pitch
This is where the thought leadership part becomes essential for your brand to stand out. Give content freely but strategically. What message can you share that no one else has yet? Keep in mind it doesn’t have to be lengthy if the topic doesn’t warrant it. And there are no set platforms that cater to “thought leadership” specifically, so choose the medium that works best for your style be it video, blog post or live streaming on social.
Identify what your brand’s strongest points are and how they separate you for your competitors and highlight that over and over again to your audience but with different points of view and topical relevance.
If you handle thought leadership the right way, it has the amazing potential to amplify your brand through connected and socially engaged followers.
In the end, we all want our brands to be cutting edge and our content to be distributing valuable information to the masses.
Because it means your product and company are relevant. It means you’re connecting with people’s needs, wants, and desires in a way that matters. It also more likely than not means you’re making some serious capital to go along with it.