How to Leverage Thought Leadership as Your Lead In
Mpowered Podcast, Episode 08 Show Notes
Welcome to Mpowered, the podcast brought to you by Material Bank and created by ThinkLab.
In this bite-sized episode, we tackle the question, “How can I use thought leadership as a lead in?” Host Meredith Campbell, who develops research and content at ThinkLab, brings insight into how to recognize the types of content that resonate with audiences, how to best deliver, and how thought leadership can benefit you as a rep.
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If you have a question or topic you’d like us to tackle on air, we’d love to hear from you. Simply direct-message Material Bank on Instagram with your success story or question through the messaging function.
Welcome to Mpowered, the podcast brought to you by Material Bank and created by ThinkLab. Consider this your new weekly dose of bite-sized, actionable insights to help you succeed as a B2B rep. I’m this week’s host, Meredith Campbell.
We’ll be answering one key question each week, many of them submitted by you. Want to join in? We’ll share details about how to submit your question at the end of this episode.
Our question this week: How can I use thought leadership as a lead-in?
In a recent ThinkLab study, webinars and CEUs were in the top three benefits most wanted from product suppliers by architects and designers. So what types of content resonate? How do designers prefer to access thought leadership, and how can it benefit you as a rep?
Let’s dive in. First, content. Maybe your company already has some ready-to-use webinars or CEUs. Maybe you’re spearheading a thought leadership initiative. Regardless of whether you are reviewing what you have planned or what you might create, it’s important to tap into the mindset of your target audience in order to truly leverage your content.
Think more about professional interest and/or development and less about 16-gauge cold-rolled steel. It’s not that the details that make your product an engineering marvel aren’t, well, marvelous; it’s just not what will inspire the A&D audience and keep them thinking of your brand after the lunch-and-learn is over.
Second, delivery. Are you a rep who loves speaking to large groups and leaves energized after responding to unexpected questions after a presentation? Amazing. Designers and architects love to learn in person, especially when you can present from a deep knowledge and understanding of the topic. Or maybe that Q&A scenario makes your heartbeat faster just thinking about it. No problem. Designers and architects equally love to learn from the comfort of their desk as well, or home. Leveraging experts from your corporate team to present, and tag-teaming to man the Q&A and chat, is a great way to drive conversation and engagement with your audience and provides consistent delivery for your brand.
Or, if your clients are Zoom fatigued, but connection starved, consider exploring the newly open world of CEU podcasting. This takes all of the lift off of your team, and it gives designers a way to connect virtually, perhaps getting away from their screens, taking a walk to recharge. Check out The Learning Objective wherever you get your podcasts, for more information on this CEU podcast format.
Lastly, how does thought leadership benefit you as a rep? So, not only do architects and designers need the credits from CEU hours and the knowledge bank to be on the top of the latest innovations for their clients, but when you provide this type of content, you’ve repositioned yourself as a resource and supporter of them professionally, outside of projects and outside of product. While, yes, of course you hope they specify your product, that will come with time. And building a relationship that positions you as a beneficial connection for them professionally has far greater return than just “the rep with the right product for the right job.”
I’d like to take a moment to thank you for listening in and invite you to listen each week for more tips and tidbits to empower you as a rep. If you have a question or topic you’d like us to tackle on air, we’d love to hear from you. Simply direct-message Material Bank on Instagram or LinkedIn. Drop us a note with your success story or question by clicking on the message button.
Special thanks to Material Bank for partnering with us to provide bite-size, valuable insights for B2B reps in the interior design industry.