If the prospect of adding another “to do” to your list is holding you back from engaging in content marketing, you’re likely not alone. That said, the impact of content marketing shouldn’t be overlooked — people are hungry for information. Done well, content marketing will boost your brand credibility and position you as a thought leader in your industry, and that can have more of an impact on your bottom line than you might think.
A recent study from Edelman-LinkedIn Research examined the impact of thought leadership. The survey which focused on B2B companies from a wide range of industries and company sizes found that decision-makers value thought leadership, and moreover 50 percent of survey participants spend more than one hour a week engaging with content from thought leaders. This includes formats such as:
- Online presentations
It was also shown that 60 percent of companies participating in thought leadership felt it enhanced their organizations brand reputation, while the number was actually 88 percent from polled survey participants. The perceived knowledge of the companies offering thought leadership also translated into a willingness for customers to pay a premium for thought leaders’ products and services.
And when it comes to closing sales, an even more impressive statistic from the survey was that 20 percent of the creators of thought leadership said, “it helps us close and win.” In actuality, nearly half of business decision-makers surveyed said thought leadership has directly led them to award business to a company.
So, how can you put this information to work for you? Focus on creating great content that is relevant and timely for your customers. To create thought leadership via your content marketing you need to stay away from pitching your products/services — people want to do business with a company that helps them.
Know where your customers are looking for information and be present in those channels. Customers are looking for information they can quickly absorb, so be sure to make your content accessible and vary your formats. And lastly, put your employees front and center. Customers want to be able to access and connect with your senior staff — they are after all your experts.
Through your content, potential clients can learn who you are and start to trust you. It feels good for them. It feels good for you. It feels good for everybody. And that is why content marketing and thought leadership works.