Becoming an entrepreneur is a well-rounded journey – one that encompasses all types of responsibilities such as marketing, sales, new business development, customer experience, accounting and technology adoption, among many others.
And so, juggling between so many time-consuming tasks can feel exhaustive and sometimes a bit burnt out. Being an entrepreneur is not for everyone. You have to ensure you are constantly creating superior value for your business ecosystem and nurturing your community.
This is why building thought leadership as a natural extension and expression of your personal brand can give you relief. Why? More perspective customers visit you and would like to to do business with you when they fully trust you and your merit based on your expertise and your business niche.
Before we get to how an entrepreneur can build thought leadership, let’s first understand what it means to be a thought leader.
A thought leader is someone who can use their expertise and insights to create business and people outcomes that matter. Furthermore, thought leadership is not about transient content pop-ups on social media or blogs, just to influence and form opinions. It is a long term view of how quality content creation created consistently across marketing platforms can empower your customers with fresh take on market developments, industry trends and service.
That said, below are 3 ways you can become a thought leader in your entrepreneurial journey.
Advance your business agenda with more human connection. While it is crucial to focus on business valuation and turnovers, but it is equally important to also invest in building business rapport and building a more human connect with your community. For example, participating in webinars or conducting a seminar with a rigorous Q & A with your audience that is relevant to their business challenges solidifies your thought leadership. Just remember, ‘It is about them, not you’. Having empathy for your audience and immersing yourself ahead of of just tending to your business agenda can make them feel special and cared for. And possibilities that emerge could be to work with new customers or conduct more of these insights-driven sessions with your audience, say in a different geography and market.
Create and publish fresh content as a media company. Since entrepreneurship can get tedious, you can always take help of your brand custodians or expert writers who could create a stellar narrative for your company. You could then add your value through a quote or an interview excerpt talking about your perspective on an issue or trend in your business niche. You ambition should be to become a content company and contribute to media outlets and publications such as Forbes, Startup Grind, Inc, Entrepreneur, Business To Community, etc. The goal is to be discoverable on the web through your articles, blogs and videos. Micheal Brito, author of Your Brand, The Next Media Company illustrates this point through the power of content marketing and brand narrative. As can be applied for founders and entrepreneurs of all company sizes and scale in their content creation cadences.
Build your brand community. Your customers may not always be a part of your brand community. They may employ your solutions to deliver their business results. But they may not necessarily always be your brand advocates on an active basis. This is where you can start creating content on social platforms such as LinkedIn, especially LinkedIn Groups and Facebook Groups to form your brand community by inviting people who understand, connect and align with your brand’s values, mission and purpose irrespective of the fact whether they become your immediate customers or have the potential to become in the near-future. You can then invite your audience who have taken an ‘experiential admission’ in your group to host a call and talk about their respective business and social agenda with a practitioner colloquy approach.
To become a thought leader, especially as a founder or an entrepreneur, you have to think long term and with a lot of patience to see how your thoughts, views and insights are creating purpose-led conversations in the market.
So, go in the creation mode and start activating your brand’s genesis in your narrative that resonates with your market on a consistent basis.
Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash