A while ago we wrote a series of articles about PR and thought leadership, and started with the paragraph:
You don’t have to work in professional services marketing for long before the phrase ‘thought leader’ crops up. Everyone wants to be a thought leader… it’s some kind of utopian vision instilled in every fee earner before they’ve even learnt the basics of contract law. It stands to reason. We’re in a business where people are paid for their thoughts. And the people with the best thoughts command the highest rates. So, why wouldn’t you want to be a leader in this field. The problem is – and we really feel this particular pain – it tends to be a phrase that people use, without knowing, necessarily, how they’re going to get there.
When you break it down to its heart, thought leadership is a fancy name for being viewed as an expert in your field. Whether you’re a partner at a global law firm, a barrister or setting up your own legal business, we’d put money on the fact that your success will rely on people viewing you as an expert in your field. The problem is (and, surprisingly, this is something that most professional services organisations struggle with) saying you’re an expert just won’t cut it. People want proof. Examples. And some insight into your opinions, thoughts and approach to your subject. It means, unfortunately, that those working in a fundamentally risk-averse field are going to have to venture forth with a willingness to speak out and share. The trouble is, working out how to do this can put the brakes on matters, before you even start.
Over the years we’ve written about this subject rather a lot. So, we thought we’d collect together, in one place, all of our advice, comment and knowhow on the subject of thought leadership in professional services.
FURTHER READING ON THOUGHT LEADERSHIP:
Recommended reading: planning your content. Growing firms looking to attract new clients need to address this issue, and an editorial calendar is often a useful way to plan and maintain a quality blog.