Business-to-business thought leadership
The technical division of an international company, leader in its sector, needed to grow its influence and stature within a community of experts related to their business.
Target groups included government bodies, trade associations, politicians, technical trade magazines and a wide variety of interested parties.
The company knew it had a lot to say and already communicated well internally, mainly at internal seminars. It also presented many technical papers at specialized conferences and events.
It had not previously been interested in stating its opinions publicly or proposing a point of view. In fact a clear-cut point of view was seen historically as being counter-productive in a competitive market.
The growing importance of business-to-business social media channels had convinced them that they needed to be present in new media to increase their profile.
The objective we agreed on was:
The company’s experts should become part of specific online communities and then a credible thought leader, without appearing to be simply selling their ideas.
How did we achieve this together?
We recommended that the company needed to take the justifiable position as “expert”, but without preaching the corporate spiel.
The company’s new social media accounts became reference points:
- the Twitter account was followed because it pulled together the latest news and opinions from a variety of sources, all of interest to the target groups
- the website blog posts, highlighted the expertise of the company’s top managers and technical experts.
- the experts’ blog posts were promoted through Linkedin’s long posts / influencer program and within various specialist discussion groups.
In addition, the online approach was fully integrated into the real life presence of company experts at trade events, seminars and conferences as well as the technical papers published in the trade press.
What were the keys to success?
- Ensure the content is of interest to the target groups and presented in an attractive, engaging style
- Find the best channels to connect with the target groups
- Concentrate efforts on building the image of the company and its experts, not directly selling their expertise to the audience