thought leadership webinars

How to Build Your Thought Leadership Brand with Webinars

Explore the art of thought leadership with our comprehensive guide on leveraging webinars to establish your brand's authority. Unlock the potential of thought leadership webinars and position your brand at the forefront of your industry.
February 21, 2024

The notion of entering the thought leadership space may feel intimidating. However, setting aside imposter syndrome and approaching thought leadership objectively reveals the advantages of cultivating and showcasing your unique expertise.

LinkedIn conducted the B2B Thought Leadership Impact Study, uncovering that 48% of survey respondents devoted at least an hour per week to consuming thought leadership content. An impressive 89% believed that thought leadership had a positive impact on a brand. Additionally, 49% reported a positive sales impact from thought leadership in purchasing decisions.

The prominence of thought leadership is growing, with everyone possessing something valuable to offer, from unique insights to lessons learned. Whether producing webinars, live streaming virtual events, or publishing articles and ebooks, the options are abundant for establishing your authority.

While the term "thought leadership" may sound like a buzzword lacking substance, it's a crucial aspect to embrace if you aim for your brand's success. But what does it truly entail?

What is thought leadership?

Thought leadership is a form of content marketing where individuals and brands position themselves as experts in their specialized fields. The objective is to actively build authority within a specific domain and become a trusted go-to source for information. Thought leadership can manifest through various mediums such as webinars, keynote speeches, ebooks, or a series of video or blog content that steadily garners authority.

A robust thought leadership hinges on a well-defined content strategy. Initiating a thought leadership content strategy requires gaining a clear understanding of your audience, identifying their challenges, evaluating your competitors' actions, and cultivating leaders capable of sharing their expertise to meet the needs of your community.

How does it relate to your brand?

Your brand's relevance stems from your efforts to address the questions within your target demographic, rather than the virality of your video or the alma maters of your employees. It involves continuously working to attract increasing traffic, generate leads, and drive sales through your website and marketing strategies.

Thought leadership holds particular significance for companies dealing with complex products or markets. It is crucial for those operating in a blue ocean market, where potential buyers require education, or in scenarios where the deal size exceeds mere transactional sales.

3 benefits of Thought Leadership Webinars

In the competitive landscape of business, any advantage in serving your clients better can translate into benefits for your company. Webinars, particularly thought leadership ones, offer direct advantages over competing marketing tactics, providing a valuable tool to help your company stand out and thrive. There are three compelling reasons to incorporate thought leadership webinars into your marketing plan.

Search engine optimization for your company

Thought leadership webinars are not isolated; they can be recorded and posted online, making them accessible to search engines. Utilizing video as a tool for social sharing can enhance search engine rankings, providing a long-term boost to your online presence.

SEO for webinars

Content sharing ratios

Effective self-promotion requires a two-way street. To build connections, it's essential to share non-marketing content that resonates with your audience. Thought leadership webinars, offering valuable insights beyond product promotion, position you as a contributor to the community, fostering a reputation crucial for business growth.

Lead generation

Thought leadership webinars act as enticing opportunities, attracting participation from individuals who might not otherwise engage with your regular webinars or feature on your current mailing lists. While immediate revenue from these webinars may be modest, the long-term investment in providing enhanced value to your customers pays off, contributing to sustained business growth.

7 ways to build your thought leadership brand with webinars

In your industry and depending on your communication style, there exist numerous ways to establish your thought leadership brand. Successful thought leadership content strategies combine various content forms, such as webinars, events, workshops, social media, blog posts, and gated content.

Mastering the art of creating engaging and thought-provoking webinars can enhance your brand's authority in a specific topic or industry. A webinar platform provides an easy and effective means to directly connect with your audience, regardless of their location. You can confidently manage your broadcast, sharing your unique perspective, offering insights, and addressing questions in real-time.

Offer a fresh perspective on a topic

Thought leadership demands a compelling speaker, a profound understanding of your field, and insights that are unavailable elsewhere. Before initiating your webinar planning, thorough research is essential.

Conduct extensive research to understand what your competitors are currently undertaking. Brainstorm potential questions your audience might pose and leverage the collective experience of your company leaders to shape your content.

Utilize surveys and polls on social media to gain accurate insights into the challenges your customers are facing. Regularly perform content audits on Google to compare your existing content with that of competitors, particularly focusing on specific topics. Internally audit to identify your top-performing content and discern what attracts people to your brand.

Thought leadership content that offers timely and relevant industry analyses, shares rich personal experiences, provides exclusive data, imparts insider knowledge, and presents thoughtful case studies can all serve as valuable assets, giving you a competitive edge.

Build a roster of thought leaders

Once you've grasped a clear understanding of the information beneficial to your audience, initiate the process of tapping into industry leaders, whether from within your company or externally.

Thought leaders emerge from various departments, including seasoned sales professionals, project managers, engineers, and marketing executives. Their perspectives may be shaped by diverse backgrounds, races, ages, or identities. They don't need to be naturally extroverted or camera-ready at all times; your leaders might excel as blog writers, podcast hosts, engaging speakers, or thoughtful panelists.

Source thought leadership talent from industry events, networking groups, or by identifying brands or individuals gaining authority in your field of interest.

The most effective thought leaders possess profound knowledge and understanding of their subject matter, consistently seeking opportunities to enhance their expertise. They are passionate about their work, open to challenges, and enthusiastic about sharing their insights to help others.

Promote your thought leadership content

In the initial stages of establishing thought leadership credibility through webinars, a crucial element is a robust promotion strategy. If your company already enjoys recognition within professional circles, you have an advantage.

Start with the readily accessible opportunities: update your header images on social networks to highlight the webinar, create an engaging landing page to promote the webinar, and begin gathering email addresses from visitors to your blog and website. Send a video email to your existing subscribers and customer base. Additionally, ensure the creation of a user-friendly webinar registration page.

Explore areas where insider knowledge is expected, such as utilizing key hashtags on Twitter and LinkedIn, sharing articles authored by your thought leaders on platforms like Medium, or actively participating in industry-specific forums. Ensure that your thought leaders are proactively nurturing and expanding their networks.

A well-crafted promotional content strategy, combined with strategic networking, not only familiarizes your target audience with your thought leaders but also serves as a platform to test new material. This approach helps refine your voice and deliver appealing, necessary, and relevant content to your industry peers.

webinar promotion

Provide actionable insights for your audience

With a webinar date set and promotional materials in place, your audience is actively engaging with information on social media channels or your company website. However, creating a webinar differs from crafting short blog posts, updates, or quick-hit analyses. It's a thought-provoking and data-rich resource that has the potential to disarm and inspire your audience.

Consider the following ideas when outlining your webinar content:

  • Present a well-informed yet unconventional opinion on the culture of work in your industry.
  • Share a case study enriched with substantial data and insightful observations.
  • Narrate an inspiring personal story, drawing from a perspective often overlooked.
  • Deliver a game-changing industry analysis or benchmark report.
  • Host a fireside chat or panel discussion featuring some of the most renowned names in your field.
  • Provide an in-depth tutorial or whiteboard analysis of a new trend or technology making waves in your industry.

A successful thought leadership webinar should be data-driven and delivered with confidence. It should empower viewers to enhance their internal processes, encourage fresh approaches to the topic concerning their business, and leave them eager to delve deeper into what your company offers.

Rehearse your content

Anticipate the unexpected and schedule multiple run-throughs with all speakers participating before the webinar.

Allocate time for a tech rehearsal to thoroughly test your technology and ensure seamless operations. As the date approaches, conduct a dry rehearsal to ensure that all presenters are comfortable delivering content and to address any issues. During this rehearsal, enlist a few members of your team to observe and report any stream, audio, or video quality issues.

Use engagement tools during a live webinar or event

Delivering thought leadership content through a live webinar proves effective in keeping your audience engaged, recognizing that few individuals possess the patience and attention span to absorb information for an entire hour, regardless of the message's riveting nature.

To maintain engagement, employ various tools: initiate icebreaker questions and assign a team member to facilitate chat interactions, conduct polls, and incorporate a Q&A session either within the chat or after the webinar presentation.

It's essential to recognize that at the core of thought leadership lies relationship-building. While your audience gains valuable information, you, in turn, draw inspiration from them, learning more about their preferences and what they wish to explore in the future.

webinar engagement

Be authentic

More than any other form of content marketing, thought leadership relies on the speaker's charisma and expertise. Leading with personality, authenticity, and a refreshing delivery accelerates the journey to acquiring more qualified leads.

Since audiences respond better to real and relatable individuals, having information or insight that can assist them in reaching their goals is akin to magic.

Throughout the presentation, provide ample opportunities for your audience to sign up and follow through links in the chat or presentation description. Follow up gently in the days after, using a feedback form or extending an invitation to book a call.

Additionally, ensure maximum audience engagement by incorporating a webinar recording and implementing a clear video distribution strategy. When executed effectively, thought leadership content can be as evergreen as desired.

Host your next thought leadership webinar with Hubilo

Consider thought leadership as a means of building relationships with your audience, offering them valuable information while gaining inspiration from their preferences for future learning.

Establishing thought leadership cannot occur in isolation. Video and other tools play a crucial role for individuals and organizations aiming to disseminate their message and connect with the right audience.

Assess your objectives and align them with the audience's needs to pinpoint the optimal webinar format for your company. Ensure effective promotion of your webinars and deliver value by disseminating informative and captivating content. Adopting the correct approach transforms webinars into a potent instrument for expanding your business and forging connections with your audience.

Moreover, leveraging a robust webinar platform like Hubilo can significantly enhance your webinar hosting experience. Hubilo provides comprehensive tools and features to ensure seamless webinar execution, from registration and promotion to interactive engagement and post-event analytics. With Hubilo, you can effortlessly create, manage, and deliver impactful webinars that leave a lasting impression on your audience. Hubilo can be your partner in hosting webinars effectively, connecting your business with your target audience in a meaningful and impactful way. Request a demo with Hubilo to unlock the full potential of webinars for your business success.

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Hubilo is the webinar platform built for marketers that helps you 2X your pipeline. Founded in 2015, Hubilo's powerful engagement features, dedicated client experience team, and custom branding tools have helped create over 12K virtual events & webinars, creating hundreds of millions of minutes of high-engagement experiences and counting. Headquartered in Bengaluru and San Francisco, Hubilo's 200+ employees are dedicated to enabling webinars & virtual events that convert.

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