16 Nov 2012
Glenn Llopis is the founder of the Center for Hispanic Leadership. He is a recognized thought-leader and author who develops talent and leadership that can create sustainable business outcomes through his Immigrant Perspective Framework.
Last year he wrote an excellent article for Forbes titled ’10 Steps to Successful Thought Leadership to Elevate Your Career and Your Organisation’. Besides the 10 steps he outlines in the article he also puts forward his own definition of thought leadership.
“A thought leader is a person who identifies trends, common themes and patterns within a particular industry or functional area of expertise to help others identify new opportunities or solutions for growth.”
Great article Glenn and thanks for the definition.
Craig Badings is a director at Sydney-based, Cannings Corporate Communications. He has consulted to companies small and large, listed and unlisted across Australia and South Africa about their communication strategies, corporate reputation and thought leadership. He is the co-author of the recently launched book #THOUGHT LEADERSHIP Tweet: 140 Prompts for Designing and Executing an Effective Thought Leadership Campaign. He published his first book in 2009: “Brand Stand: seven steps to thought leadership”
14 Nov 2012
Readers of this blog will know that over the years I have provided many definitions of thought leadership from those that have a view on thought leadership or my own.
Beth Monaghan is principal and co-founder of InkHouse Media + Marketing, and independent PR and social media agency in the US headquartered in Waltham, MA. Her definition appeared in an article in PRWeek. I recommend you read the full article as she has some pretty sound ideas on thought leadership.
Here is her definition:
“At InkHouse, we define thought leadership as a platform that transcends the corporate position and brings in market trends and issues to elevate the company out of a “features and functions” conversation. It provides the opportunity for a company to set the industry agenda and showcase its depth of knowledge. Done properly, thought leadership stimulates demand for companies’ products and services by teaching the industry about what is needed and what the future will require.”
Craig Badings is a director at Sydney-based, Cannings Corporate Communications. He has consulted to companies small and large, listed and unlisted across Australia and South Africa about their communication strategies, corporate reputation and thought leadership. He is the author of “Brand Stand: seven steps to thought leadership” and the recently launched book #THOUGHT LEADERSHIP Tweet: 140 Prompts for Designing and Executing an Effective Thought Leadership Campaign.
3 Sep 2012
I’m always on the lookout for good thought leadership definitions. In fact if you click on the right of this on the Definitions of Thought Leadership you will see a host of definitions including my own.
Here is one which appeared in “Thought Leadership: The Next Wave of Differentiation In B2B Marketing” Jeff Ernst, Forrester:
“The process of formulating big ideas and insightful points of view on the issues your buyers face, capturing those ideas in multiple content vehicles and sharing the ideas with prospects and customers to enlighten them, engage them in dialogue, and position your company as a trusted resource.”
If you have any others please e mail me as firstname.lastname@example.org or put them up in the comments section of this page.
Craig Badings is a director at Sydney-based, Cannings Corporate Communications. He has consulted to companies small and large, listed and unlisted across Australia and South Africa about their communication strategies, corporate reputation and thought leadership. He is the author of “Brand Stand: seven steps to thought leadership” and the forthcoming co-authored book#THOUGHT LEADERSHIP Tweet: 140 Prompts for Designing and Executing an Effective Thought Leadership Campaign.
18 Apr 2012
I saw this defnition this morning on reading this blog, which by the way is one of the most refreshingly different views on thought leadership I have ever read. Read the blog here: http://futureofcio.blogspot.com.au/2012/04/five-nature-views-of-thought-leadership.html
This is the definition:
“Thought Leadership is the art of visionary leadership, more authentic than charismatic; more influential than controlling, more thinking than talking; perceiving, not just seeing.”
26 Oct 2011
On his blog, B2B Digital Marketing, Eric Wittlake, moderated a Twitter #B2Bchat on Thought Leadership, why companies should invest in thought leadership and its meaning.
The question that fascinated me was defining thought leadership in 140 characters. Thanks to Eric I have published them here.
These add to the existing and growing list of definitions on this blog.
I suggest you check out the rest of Eric’s post on this as there are some interesting insights.
Eric is a digital and B2B marketer with a background in analytics and online media. He is based in Portland, Oregon and runs the media group at Babcock & Jenkins.
- How do you define thought leadership in 140 characters or less?
- Thought leaders are the trusted advisers of their clients, due to their established expertise in their particular domain #B2Bchat @B2Bento
- A thought leader is someone who is able to see things in a way no one else does #b2bchat @tracibrowne
- @GeraldMoczynski: At most simplistic, thought leadership is: If you speak, do others listen and, do they FOLLOW your lead? @swee06840
And here is my own attempt in 135 characters:
“Thought leadership is about sharing insights and content that meets a known or unmet demand, challenge or issue in your audiences’ lives.”
Please send in your definitions in 140 characters or less on the comments page.
12 Jul 2011
Can content curation lead to thought leadership?
I don’t think so and I will give you my reasoning. But first I would like to share with you a comment on a thought leadership definition from Jessie at Hivefire. Jessie sent this in response to another definition I shared on this blog from Jeff Ernst at Forrester.
This is what Jessie had to say:
Thanks for sharing! We’ve got one we like to use as well from a content curation perspective,
“Thought Leadership – a primary benefit of content curation. Thought leadership status is gained when your brand is recognized, and cited, as an expert on critical industry issues. Creating a consistent stream of industry-relevant content is a key tactic supporting a thought leadership objective.”
Jessie also gives a site where they share a heap of useful definitions across a wide range of content and marketing related topics: http://www.getcurata.com/glossary
This was my response to Jessie:
Thanks Jessie, I have a particular view on content curation and thought leadership which is well known to some of the guys at Hivefire – I don’t believe the one (content curation) leads to the other (thought leadership).
I think you put your finger on it when you say that creating a stream of industry relevant content “…is a key tactic supporting a thought leadership objective.”
I do think that content curation done properly can be a very powerful tool for a content strategy but by its very nature of taking other people’s thoughts, insights and content and repurposing it, means that the person, brand or company curating the content cannot be a thought leader merely off the back of other people’s ideas. That’s not to say that content creation doesn’t work – it does and it can be a great magnet for reaching an audience. It’s just not thought leadership.
I look forward to reading some of your other definitions and thanks for sharing this with me.
Over to you guys – I’d be interested in any other views on content curation and thought leadership you may want to share…
8 Jul 2011
On the right of this page under the heading ‘Definitions of thought leadership’ you will find a host of definitions on thought leadership. These include some of my own which change as the years go by and as I learn more about this fascinating subject from the work I do and from other subject experts in the field.
Here is one of the better definitions I have seen. It comes from Jeff Ernst. Jeff is with Forrester. He serves CMO & Marketing Leadership Professionals. He is an expert across all things marketing with a particular focus on selling and thought leadership.
“The process of formulating big ideas and insightful points of view on the issues your buyers face, capturing those ideas in multiple content vehicles and sharing the ideas with prospects and customers to enlighten them, engage them in a dialogue, and position your company as a trusted resource.”
There are some key words and phrases that resonate with my views on thought leadership – they are insightful points of view, issues your buyers face, content, sharing, engage, trusted resource.
Thanks for a great definition Ernst.
If you have your own definition you want to share please send it in – happy to publish it for you.
20 Aug 2010
On this blog you will find a few definitions of thought leadership including my own – click on the Definitions of thought leadership to right of this piece under Categories to see the others. However, like anything, as I learn more about the topic my definition changes slightly.
So here is my latest definition:
“Thought leadership is about delivering new ideas and content to your target publics based on deep insights into the business issues and challenges they face. In the process, the value you deliver should go well beyond merely selling your product or service. Your thought leadership point of view should differentiate you from your competitors, establish you as the ‘go to’ expert in that field and position you as a trusted advisor – all with the intent of underpinning the sale.” Craig Badings
19 Apr 2010
Robert Middleton is a marketing thought leader. He gives away a lot of wonderful free information and ideas and he clearly solves lots of people’s marketing challenges. It was one of Robert’s posts many years ago that kick-started me down the path to writing my book Brand Stand: seven steps to thought leadership.
In a recent newsletter, Robert talks about how he made a mistake when he stopped marketing his Infoguru marketing brand and goes on to define what he means by Infoguru. The reason I include it here is because there are some very strong similarities between his Infoguru definition and my views of what constitutes a thought leader. But I must admit that Infoguru sounds a lot sexier and more memorable than thought leader.
Robert had this to say: “As an InfoGuru, you need to approach marketing differently. You can’t market yourself like a consumer product or a commodity service. You need to stand out as an InfoGuru who leverages your information, expertise and wisdom to attract clients looking for results, not hype, improvement in their condition, not empty promises.
“InfoGuru marketing uses writing, speaking and the Internet to leverage that information, expertise and wisdom to educate and to demonstrate immediate value to prospective clients.”
I love this part of Robert’s definition. Why? First because it is client focused and second because it talks about educating and demonstrating value. Tie that to what he says in the previous paragraph about improving the client’s condition and you have the genuine intent of a thought leader or thought leadership campaign.
Robert goes on to say that an InfoGuru is in fact many things:
· They possess practical information which they should apply wisely
· They are business professionals who help their clients get results and improve their condition in a way that makes a real difference
· They educate, inform, explore, and collaborate to gain engagement from their prospective clients
· They don’t use hype, pressure or manipulation; they don’t have to
· They market their services though writing, speaking and the Internet – all mediums suited to convey information efficiently and with impact
· The most successful InfoGurus gain attention and notoriety for their expertise, insights and results.
Robert’s list of famous InfoGurus include: Tom Peters, Marshall Goldsmith, Alan Weiss, Seth Godin, Jim Collins, Jay Abraham, Peter Drucker, and John Gray. Some of whom are listed in my book as recognised thought leaders.
So what’s the verdict? Is an Infoguru a close cousin to a thought leader or is it in fact something entirely different?
10 Feb 2010
I have had some great responses to the post on the two definitions of thought leadership from Eric Gruber and Dana vandenHeuvel. While these appear in the comments section I thought they warranted a listing in a post.
The first is from Meg Wildrick from Bliss PR:
“ From a tactical standpoint, the term “thought leadership marketing” means different things to different people. As in traditional marketing, there are endless possibilities for inputs (e.g., statistics, stories, analysis, opinions), spokespeople (institution or individual),outputs (e.g.,books, videos, podcasts, documentaries,articles) and objectives (e.g., credibility, awareness, loyalty, positioning). But what’s unique about real thought leadership, to me, is that it’s edu-marketing. It’s one part promotion/persuasion, one part teaching/giving. True thought leadership helps audiences make sense of things — e.g., the world, a sector, an experience, the future. It’s marketing, of course, because it drives revenue by (1)boosting credibilty; (2) engaging customers; (3) creating differentiation and (4) triggering the reciprocity reflex. But it also inspires.”
The second is from Jim Pennypacker from Dance Communications:
“Thought leadership marketing is the active positioning of your company (or you ) as an authority, resource, and trusted advisor on issues of importance to potential customers. This positioning is accomplished using a variety of media, including books, newsletters, blogs, e-mail, events, etc. It allows you to earn trust and build credibility and recognition, differentiating yourself as one who clearly understands the business and needs of your audience. It’s a means of nurturing leads, improving customer retention, and expanding your market.”
Any other suggestions out there? If so I’d love to hear them.