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Leadership
July 17, 2024

Transforming Business Leaders into Thought Leaders: How to Become an Influencer for Your Own Brand

Post By:
Nicole Mastrangelo
In-House Contributor
CoFounder | Creative Director
The Daily Drip
Guest Contributor:

Did you know that, on average, we spend 68% of our online time, consuming information from people that interest us? 

We’re not reading our email, we’re not online shopping, and we’re not tuned in to mainstream media outlets as we once were.  Instead, we enjoy learning through watching and reading useful information from those we relate to. Not only are we entertained, but over time, this consumption inspires, builds trust, and establishes a perceived relationship between us the people we follow- which is why 60% of the time we are motivated to take action or seek out a product or service after consuming high quality content about it from a person we know like and trust. Not a brand logo.

The power of influencers, thought leaders, and online creators to set trends, guide the conversation, and engage people continues to rise as they win over audiences (and customers) through humor, creativity, and a new level of approachability.

We want to be entertained and educated- not sold to.

This pattern of behavior extends beyond retail and lifestyle products or services and permeates nearly every purchasing decision. In fact, a 2023 study by Quest Diagnostics found that almost 1 in 4 Americans turn to social media for medical information, a statistic that increases by nearly 40% for Gen Z and millennials.

In the 21st century, if you’re in business, no matter what industry you’re in, you’re in the media business. If you’re a business owner or leader, you’re a content creator. This is the hybrid marketplace.

In a world where leveraging “spheres of influence” has evolved into "influencer marketing", people remain central for any business development strategy.

But what if an organization could develop its own influencers? What if WE could wield our own influence?

Enter Thought Leadership.

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Thought Leadership is the expression of ideas that demonstrate you have expertise in a particular field, area, or topic, offer unique guidance and perspectives, inspire innovation and challenge the status quo. It requires consuming the same media and products your customers and target audience do, so you can effectively join- and lead- the cultural conversation. In essence, meet them where they are and show up in a way that is authentic, approachable, and relatable.

Today’s business leaders- more than 80% of fortune 200-500 hundred Csuite executives- are spending more time and increasingly spending more money to build a brand and digital presence all their own through the power of Thought Leadership and Personal Branding. In fact, more than 70% agree their online presence plays an important role in influencing sales growth and building brand reputation. And they’re right.

Organizations whose leadership have strong online presence receive a halo effect of impact including 8X higher engagement, 147% increase in earnings, 82% higher employee engagement, improved talent acquisition and retention, new growth opportunities, higher market share visibility, more brand trust and more.

*Google Analytics, Gallup, Qnary Independent Research, KRC Independent Research

In an increasingly digital landscape, Thought Leadership, Personal Branding, and Digital Presence are essential for success in gaining visibility, expanding reach, earning trust, and building an audience of loyal customers.