using thought leadership to stand out

Purpose-driven communications must evolve – using new channels, different approaches and unique messages to reach and resonate with consumers, partners, employees and investors on levels deeper than ever before.

 

An increasingly one of the most effective tools to cut through the clutter is Thought Leadership.

 

Rocket defines Thought Leadership as a concerted effort to leverage a company or organization’s unique point of view and expertise on a given cause or issue.

 

In today’s crowded cause landscape, organizations and driven companies must differentiate their purpose efforts. Thought leadership is a powerful approach to present and reinforce ideas and viewpoints.

 

Read on for Rocket’s five-step recommendation on developing a bold and effective thought leadership strategy for your brand or organization.

Thought Leadership Benefits

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Advance issue conversation
  • Differentiate brand
  • Build trust and credibility
  • Attract priority audiences
  • Attract corporate donors

A Crowded Purpose Communication Landscape

An average of 42 corporate CSR efforts announcements each day

An average of 25 cause promotions in the marketplace at one time

Rocket research 2020

1.

have a
point
of view

Identify areas you want to talk about and the “voice” you want to use based on your experience, expertise, passion and personality.

Define where you have credibility, ideas and impact: Work with internal stakeholders to determine what is most relevant to audience.

Determine how you want to talk about it: Align on your tone and brand persona. Consider your opportunities for differentiation.

Be Provocative. Patagonia Founder Yvon Chouinard is not afraid to be bold and first-to-market on taking a strong stand around their values and brand priorities.

Be Fun and Engaging. Our friend Joe Waters at Selfish Giving has developed a large following and influence with his witty and insightful approach through his weekly newsletter on the CSR marketplace.

Be Earnest. Tennis legend Billie Jean King created the Women Sports Foundation as a platform dedicated to her tireless advocacy for women’s equality.

2.

define
your impact

 A point of view is only the first step. The real industry leaders are going above and beyond to put resources and investments behind their unique beliefs and perspectives.

This past World Mental Health Day, Harry’s leveraged this moment in time to announce their success in exceeding their goal of supporting 500k men with mental health support + services.
To date, they have helped over 645K battle the struggles of mental health and continue to do so.

3.

be
omnipresent

We didn’t say this is easy. It takes commitment and consistency. There are numerous channels at your disposal which align best with your audience. Rocket recommends a multi-channel strategy, meeting your current and target audiences where they are.

We love a good rule of 5. Ensure any assets developed highlighting your thought leadership are amplified through at least 3-5 channels.

• Original Content & Research

• Blogs

• Podcasts

• Hosted Webinars or Digital

• Roundtables

• Newsletters

• Guest Speaking Engagements (Virtual & In-Person)

• Paid Media Partnerships

• Strategic Partnerships

• Social Media

4.

get
creative

Now the fun part–adding a creative twist to your efforts to stand out. This is what can take your efforts from good to great. There is no limit here.

From a corporate perspective, also used on social media and Kenneth Cole launched a mental health coalition to fight the mental health stigma in our society. With a collection of three dozen advocacy groups, celebrities
and business leaders behind them, this company hopes to help people access the services they need.

Rocket worked with our client, Bosch Community Fund to create Educator Series where BCF President Kat Owsley interviews BCF grantees on pressing issues related to STEM. The content is also used on social media and local media outreach.

March of Dimes developed It Starts With Mom LIVE in partnership with the Honest Company and Jessica Alba, a live virtual event series with influencers and experts discussing topics regarding moms and moms-to-be.

5.

consider
these tactics

Don’t Be Afraid to be Personal:
Share anecdotal stories and experiences to be memorable and emotive.

Rule of 5: Creating content is time consuming. To maximize time and effort, we recommend organizations and brands leverage 3-5 different ways to use any content created.

To Gate or Not: Gated content allows you to capture emails but hinders response and SEO results. Find a balance.

Use Visuals: Nothing gets someone to slow their scroll than good visuals. Increasing compelling images are a must have to add life to your efforts.

Bold Headlines: Concise, clever headlines get attention. Give thought to your post titles.

get started

Rich Maiore, President, Rocket Social Impact
rich@rocketsocialimpact.com