There is a lot of noise in the market about what thought leadership is and what tactics do you use to establish your brand or executive as a thought leader.
What is Thought Leadership?
Thought leadership is a method of marketing, which establishes you as an expert and authority within your industry. The goal of thought leadership marketing is not generate sales-ready leads, but to provide an entry point for engagement by branding yourself as an expert.
Thought leadership is a key element in any an inbound marketing strategy where you want to attract qualified buyers by offering them the helpful information they need when seeking out solutions to their business challenges.
To build thought leadership you need to be visible and forward thinking. By offering insight that is not readily available into topics that are controversial or emerging in your industry and curating related content, you become the “go to” person on that topic.
No single tactic will establish thought leadership. An ongoing program that consists of many tactics is needed to educate prospects, customers, and industry influencers. Speaking, publishing, media interviews and social media all play a role in establishing leadership.
B2B Buying Journey Begins Online
A recent LinkedIn study found that 93% of B2B buyers are likely to engage with a thought leader. Other research shows that 93% of B2B buying decisions start with online search, and studies show that by 2020 people will manage 85% of their relationship with a company without interacting with one single person.
Prospects are looking online for solutions to their business challenges. They want simple and easily consumable information that educate and resonate with them on topics affecting their industry and how it will address their business issues.
What is an eBook?
Simply put, an eBook is a digital form of a book. In the past, to become a thought leader, you had to publish a book using a publisher to promote it. But nowadays, that is no longer the case. eBooks come in all shapes and sizes – everything from several hundred pages to a 10-20 page quick read on a particular subject.
A short eBook is an ideal format to address trends and industry issues. It requires little commitment on consumer’s time but can quickly educate them on a particular topic. It is not a brochure or a sales guide.
eBooks tend to have high conversion rates in Inbound marketing programs. We find that a top-of-funnel, forward thinking eBook converts at 60-70% during the first six months of launch and then drops to 20-30%. Industry average for B2B is about 16-18%.
Examples of eBooks
Here are several example of eBooks that have been recently released by Red Javelin clients.
Thought Leadership Topic: Smart Lighting, Smart Buildings, IoT
Thought Leadership Topic: Digital Transformation, Cloud Computing