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Measuring Your Thought Leadership – Are You on The Right Track?

Staying competitive and relevant in a fast-moving, ever-changing industry means demonstrating expertise and innovation. This is where thought leadership campaigns come in – they’re a vital part of any successful business strategy, establishing your company as a thought leader in your industry.

But how do you ensure that your thought leadership campaigns are effective? It’s not enough to create content for content’s sake. You want to address your customer’s pain points, add value, and empower them with insights to make critical business decisions. By creating a strategic engine of valuable, relevant, and forward-thinking content, you can position yourself as a thought leader.

However, effective measurement is essential to ensure you’re on the right track. A solid thought leadership strategy needs to include a plan to track and measure performance. Without factual data, you won’t be able to boost your ROI by knowing what’s working and what isn’t.

Here are four reasons why companies should measure their thought leadership campaigns:

1. Evaluate ROI: Data-driven insights are critical to ensure that your thought leadership is getting seen by the right people. This can boost brand value, lead generation, sales, and customer retention. According to our recent survey, nearly 60% of business leaders that create thought leadership say it affects their company’s revenue through customer and prospect conversations and relationship building and 55% through lead generation.

2. Identify areas of improvement: Analyzing engagement metrics can help you determine which content resonates with your target audience and refine your strategy accordingly.

“What works best is a mixed metric, tiered approach to get a balance of various measures – reach, awareness, engagement, authority, relevance, trust, and influence. For thought leadership, you might track monthly return visitors, engaged email subscribers and social media conversations.” – Yogesh Shah, CEO, iResearch Services

3. Track progress: By setting measurable goals and tracking progress, you can gauge the effectiveness of your thought leadership campaigns and make adjustments as needed. By understanding what works and what doesn’t, companies can refine their strategy and create more effective campaigns in the future. This can have implications for marketing metrics, for example, website traffic, but could also set the strategy for the type of content you produce, the channels you use to distribute it, or the target audience you are trying to reach.

4. Stay competitive: Measuring the effectiveness of your campaigns can help you stay ahead of the curve by identifying industry trends and ensuring your content remains relevant and valuable to your target audience. It also allows companies to benchmark themselves against competitors, identify strengths and weaknesses and adjust their strategy accordingly.

How are companies measuring thought leadership?

Measuring thought leadership campaigns can be challenging. There is no standard framework that companies use to measure the effectiveness of their campaigns. Our recent survey revealed that there is no consistency in the way that creators of thought leadership measure its impact and ROI.

However, consistently asking key questions around reputation, recognition, commercial effectiveness, and influence can help you measure the success of your thought leadership and gauge whether you’re on the right track.

Metrics that matter

1. Reputation – One of the most important pillars of successful thought leadership is the capacity to build brand trust. Some questions to ask yourself are: How do you rank as a thought leader in your industry? How has your thought leadership been received in the media? Has your thought leadership improved brand loyalty?

2. Recognition – Is your brand recognized in the industry? Some key questions to ask are: How has your thought leadership built or enhanced client relationships? How do you compare to the brands you most admire?

3. Commercial effectiveness – What is your market share? What work has your company won thanks to your thought leadership?

4. Influence – It’s important to understand your company’s brand presence and share of voice. Gauging this overall, but also by region, function, and geographic position should uncover some interesting insights. Do you rank in the top brands recognized as thought leaders? Are you one of the most prominent thought leaders recognized by the industry? Analyze the engagement you receive on your thought leadership content every month and use it to refine your approach and align with your overall strategy.

Commit to measuring your thought leadership campaigns and ensure that the direction you’re moving in is generating the right business outcomes.

Measuring effectiveness is a crucial component of a robust thought leadership plan. Find out more about how you can maximize your thought leadership investment in our latest guide.

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