How to Define, Earn and Build Thought Leadership in a Nutshell

thought leadership definition how to build and earn trust


What does it really mean to be a thought leader? Unfortunately too many digital and social marketers have a false belief that they can simply write a few blog posts, send a few tweets and increase their social influence scores such as Klout and they will quickly become the go to thought leader of their niche.

We've all seen the blog posts promising the magic 10 steps to be a thought leader in 140 characters or how to be a thought leader on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and every other social network known to digital man and woman.

The truth is that you can not become a thought leader in 140 characters. You also can't become a thought leader via mastering one single social network.

Becoming a thought  leader requires earning trust, respect and investing time in helping the human beings in your community, network and audience.

I've seen loads of businesses and people promoting their own personal brand spending months or even years of time trying to become “thought leaders” yet they have no real business. In reality they are helping almost nobody as they are too focused on becoming “influential” vs actually helping a real business or person.

Take a listen to the 155th episode of the Social Zoom Factor podcast for an overview of what it means to be a thought leader as well as 5 steps to help you build a plan do establish yourself and your brand as a thought leader.

This episode is part of a new “in a nutshell” mini-series of the Social Zoom Factor podcast to do a deep dive on many concepts, strategies and tactics important to understand if you want to be successful in the online world and with digital marketing.

Be sure to subscribe to the entire series on iTunesStitcher or SoundCloud!

In this 15 minute podcast you will learn: 

  • Definition of thought leadership
  • Why thought leadership is based upon serving the top needs of your audience and clients
  • Why you can not establish thought leadership overnight or in 140 characters
  • How to build thought leadership
  • 5 steps to get you started in building thought leadership
  • Who can be a thought leader
  • Why thought leadership is important for B2B and B2C organizations and brands
  • Benefits of establishing thought leadership
  • What thought leadership is not
  • Why a content marketing strategy and framework is at the core of establishing thought leadership

Supporting Resources:

Free webinars: We are also launching a series of webinars and training opportunities to dig even deeper. Sign up here-> You are the Media – Building Your Media Foundation

social_zoom_factorHow to Subscribe to Social Zoom Factor Podcast 


About the Author:

*Forbes Top 10 Social Media Women, Forbes top 10 Social Media Power Influencer - CEO / founder of Marketing Nutz, full service social brand, digital marketing agency. Keynote speaker, author, strategist, consultant, coach, & trainer. Helps businesses of all sizes integrate social media into the DNA of their business, connect with target audiences to nurture authentic customer relationships. 15+ years experience working with Fortune 500, Franchised corporations with 4000+ local franchises to entrepreneurs and startups!

One Comment

  1. Ken Carroll November 27, 2015 at 12:43 am

    Nice overview, Pam. I think too many people give too little thought to what they stand for and how that will differentiate them. I think a thought leader has to work from a clear identity. That identity has to be real and authentic and they have to stick to it. For some, finding that identity is straightforward – often then result of the work they’ve been doing for years. For others, particularly those who have changed direction, finding the identity can be really hard. This podcast helps clear some of the issues for those folks.

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