Blog Posts

Good writing is important in business as everyone knows. And it’s especially important for professional services firms publishing articles, research studies and white papers. These things show off a firm’s expertise and so are actual samples of the firm’s product. A sales brochure for a printer,...
Real insights, in the world of business as much as in any other field, take a lot of work to produce. All the best (and enduring) ideas are underpinned by substantial study of the real world and the development of a model to explain the findings. But in business, our intended audience — executives...
The point of thought leadership marketing of course is to attract prospective customers with interesting and relevant points of view. But for firms that don’t have a well-established reputation already, if they don’t push the material out, how will anyone know about it? And if they do push it out...
When we entered the thought leadership marketing business back in 1998, our clients rightly asked us what would make them thought leaders. There are two pieces to that puzzle: great content and great marketing programs that implant that content in the minds of their audience.   
As a long-ago graduate of Penn State (1977) who covered Joe Paterno and Jerry Sandusky’s football teams for the school newspaper, I feel the following goes without saying. Sandusky’s alleged sexual abuse of boys, first and foremost, is an enormous tragedy for his victims. Their emotional health...
In February this year, Google rolled out an algorithm change called Panda, intended to give lower rankings to content farms. These are sites that host not very original content specifically written to capture search enquiries and generate advertising revenue. If you are wondering why this matters,...
The term “knowledge management” was big in the mid-1990s when big companies saw the need to share expertise beyond those proximate to it. A decade and a half later, the term “thought leadership marketing” is in vogue, and some see a connection between the two.
A thought leadership content function needs to be charged with creating compelling concepts that generates more leads -- and new services. Making that happen starts by chartering your thought leadership R&D machine with the right ambition. 
In just the last two years, we’ve been asked the same question by six very large B2B firms (two consulting, two IT services, one financial services and one software Company): how do you build a thought leadership content machine. There are five things you need.
We have long known that how much good thought leadership you can generate in a professional services firm relies on one or both of two things: the ease of extracting new insights from practicing professionals, and whether or not the firm does dedicated research. This week I saw a model that neatly...
  Historically, writers and editors have been comic figures, ye olde ink-stained wretches, necessary evils, people so lacking in life skills that they're reduced to trying to earn a living by putting words together, something anyone, even a child (and certain birds) can do. Is it any wonder that...
  I was informed by a client this morning that my compensation for writing for their website would be cut by more than 50 percent. I was told not to take this personally; all the writers the client employed were taking the same cut and they were taking it happily. After a few email exchanges, I...
Great thoughts are the foundation of successful thought leadership marketing campaigns. But you can have a great process for developing ideas — extensive primary research and thorough analysis of the data you gather — and still produce lackluster content if you’ve brought the wrong people together...
A post I read today made me wonder what I would find if I looked for management truths derived from the story of Apple Inc. Scratting, by the way, is the process of grinding apples into cider between huge stones. The blogoshphere would be a better place if there were less of it.
I thought this might be a good time to unveil my inner geek and let you in on my favorite and indispensable content management tools. Most of them are free, some of them are unashamedly technical, and they are all good.
There are of course, lots of blog posts that tell us thought leadership is easy, or easier than we think, and I owe it to a recent one of these on HubSpot’s (otherwise) excellent site for prompting me to write this post. The truth is that developing good thought leadership content is hard. 
To get your boss behind thought leadership marketing and raise your organization’s investment in it, you need to be crystal clear about its value in dollars and cents. But after that, it helps to point to the other concrete, “I-want-them-too” benefits. There are seven.
Sometimes, Yes. I explained in a post in October that nonetheless, we haven’t found a better term for it. Since then I’ve had time to observe some occasions when it’s legitimately applied and others when it isn’t. And I think there are some useful lessons to be learned.
  In a previous post, I laid out four stages that professional services and other B2B firms go through in becoming thought leaders (Stone Age, Medieval, Industrial and Post-Industrial). Each stage reflects varying levels of sophistication in the way a firm develops and markets its expertise....
As I’m sure you’ve noticed, we’ve entered the era of “content marketing.” Content marketing budgets are going up; companies are falling over themselves to hire journalists to write stuff for them; and so on. But while everyone is rushing to produce content, do they know which content matters?