The Power Of Thought Leadership In The eLearning Industry
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How To Use Thought Leadership In The eLearning Industry

It seems like just about anyone with a large following on Linkedin or Twitter calls themselves a thought leader. Well, strategic thought leadership is about a lot more than social media mastery. A true thought leader is a recognized expert whose viewpoints inform, add value and can lead a discussion about a given subject. And that doesn’t happen with a few tweets or a handful of posts here and there.

eBook Release: Digital Content Marketing Strategy For eLearning Marketers: An Essential Guide
eBook Release
Digital Content Marketing Strategy For eLearning Marketers: An Essential Guide
Find out what to consider as eLearning Marketer when developing your Content Marketing plan.

To fully reap the benefits of thought leadership, brands should focus less on where they’re posting and more on what they’re sharing and why it matters. When they do, thought leadership drives brand awareness, builds relationships with key audiences, and changes the way people view the thought leader and the organization.

A 2018 report by Conductor found that after reading content from a brand, 78 percent of respondents said it was helpful and 64 percent said the brand felt trustworthy [1]. When they were asked the same questions one week later, the respondents’ perceptions were even more positive. Imagine how much more of an impact a brand could make if they keep sharing content with that audience as they progress through the proverbial customer journey. Achieving impactful results like these begins with the basics.

Putting The ‘Thought’ In Thought Leadership

In our fast-paced world of multiple messages per minute, only authentic and helpful information breaks through the chaos to engage a target audience. True thought leadership helps people understand a topic, make a decision, or accomplish something they previously could not, it never tries to sell something directly. Rather, sales are a product of the credibility and trust a brand builds over time with an audience.

To accomplish this, you need to carefully craft a clear point of view that shares insights, expertise, and aligns with your company objectives. Your point of view doesn’t have to be provocative, but it does need to be uniquely yours and bold enough to stand out from the crowd.

A lot of companies want to be thought leaders, but it takes hard work to develop fresh and relevant insights. Compelling content leads a discussion, hence the "leadership" aspect, conveying a company’s deep understanding of a topic and contributing forward-thinking insights.

The Value Of Thought Leadership In The eLearning Industry

A thought leadership strategy is a natural fit for eLearning companies. After engaging with helpful content and developing a relationship with a company, readers naturally seek out that company’s courses when they need training.

For starters, a blog devoted to sharing eLearning insights offers an effective way to deliver content. A blog enables you to delve into timely topics or explore evergreen subjects that address common pain points and will continue to drive traffic over time. Blogs also offer an opportunity to tie in product offerings, such as related online courses, without seeming overly promotional.

Every piece of content offers a chance to engage with readers. Whether it’s answering a question from a Linkedin follower or responding to comments posted by readers of your blog, these meaningful interactions build rapport. For eLearning providers, these personal connections offer opportunities to help prospects navigate specific training challenges or highlight potential applications of online courses that readers might not have considered.

3 Key Steps To Becoming A Thought Leader Through Content Marketing In The eLearning Industry

Once you’ve identified the subject matter that aligns with your brand and expertise, it’s time to start creating content that engages and educates your audience. While that’s easier said than done, here are three qualities that trusted thought leaders must possess:

1. They Never Settle For Quick Or Easy

Audiences will quickly discern high-quality, original content from recycled fluff. It might be relatively easy to throw together a quick listicle or recycle an old post, but that approach will cause you to lose credibility and your audience.

Invest your time in creating high-quality content that’s designed to help readers. When you share your content, audience members will only take a few seconds to decide whether it’s worth their time. If you help them solve a problem or learn something new, you will build trust. Better still, you will begin to establish your name as a go-to resource.

2. They Stick To The Plan

It will take you time to build trust. More importantly, it will require consistency. Successful thought leaders build their followings by developing an editorial calendar and sticking to a schedule for publishing content.

Again, it’s not about volume. Create a realistic plan for crafting content, and deliver on that plan consistently. Remember that thought leadership is a long-term strategy. Commit for the long haul to become a voice that your audience counts on.

3. They Get Real

Authenticity is critical. Engaging your audience requires more than high-quality, thoughtful content, you must also allow readers to get to know you. Personalize your content by incorporating stories that support your point of view and showcase your experience. A storytelling approach connects with your audience while simultaneously differentiating your content.

The desire to form meaningful connections is in human nature, people want to connect. Even if your strategy is brand-based, invite key employees to provide their insights and add a personal touch to your content.

From articles to eBooks to webinars, people seek out content because they crave answers. Developing and consistently executing a thought leadership strategy puts your brand in a position to shape the discussion. When you focus on helping your target customers and sharing your unique point of view, awareness, engagement, and sales will follow.

Content Marketing serves the purpose of improving conversions using a very strategic approach, connecting and supplying leads and potential customers with real value. Download the free eBook Digital Content Marketing Strategy For eLearning Marketers: An Essential Guide to delve into an excellent method to start building long-lasting relationships by establishing trust, and see conversions skyrocket by giving users the information they need to make an informed purchasing decision.

References:

[1] The Content Marketer's Playbook: Brand Awareness & Thought Leadership

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