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How to Use Content Syndication To Build Thought Leadership: A Guide for Marketers

how to Use content syndication to build thought leadership

Table of Contents

Let’s pause momentarily and reflect on these numbers

66% of marketers consider thought leadership a “top priority” for their marketing initiatives. 54% of decision-makers – and 48% of the C-Suite – say they spend 1+ hour/week reading and reviewing thought leadership articles. 52% use thought leadership to understand best practices.

As you can see, your decision-makers spend considerable time – consuming thought leadership content. Hence, as a marketer, you MUST focus on creating and distributing high-quality content.

For the latter strategy – distribution – you can leverage content syndication as a strategic approach to amplify your brand’s influence. Moreover, you can consolidate your authority in the marketing sphere. 

So, let’s discuss how to establish your authority through thought leadership and content syndication. No empty words, just actionable insights to empower you on your B2B marketing journey.

What Is Thought Leadership?

Thought leadership is the art of sharing authentic, insightful content that draws from your expertise and experience – to impart that wisdom to others.

  • It involves creating value, expanding knowledge, and often expressing strong and occasionally controversial viewpoints on industry topics. 
  • Thought leadership also entails establishing yourself as a subject matter expert (SME) to wield influence within a specific niche.

In practice, it's a fusion of both approaches.

Our experts highlight that thought leadership involves disseminating inspirational, research-backed content, igniting change, and delivering educational value.

Who Are Thought Leaders?

As per research, 68% of people say experts in their field are considered thought leaders. These individuals don't only follow trends; they also set them. They are visionary strategists – shaping the industry's course. Let’s explain their traits in more detail:

  • Thought leaders in content syndication can be anyone with the passion, expertise, and ability to communicate effectively. 
  • They dissect industry trends, analyze data, and envision the marketing landscape of the future. 
  • They're the curators of game-changing ideas, inspiring and educating their peers and audiences.

Next, let’s discuss what content syndication is.

What is Content Syndication?

Content syndication is critical to demand generation strategy, enabling you to increase your authority within your industry. By implementing an effective content syndication strategy, you can:

  • Create demand for your business 
  • Enhance your brand's recognition and trustworthiness

In fact, it's the pathway to ensuring your message reaches the right audience at the right time, paving the way for future conversions.

How Does Content Syndication Help Build Thought Leadership?

When employed strategically, content syndication can significantly contribute to developing thought leadership. Here's how it works:

  • Amplifies Reach and Visibility: Your content is shared on credible 3rd-party platforms. As such, your brand gains exposure to a more extensive network of consumers. Hence, it helps position you as a prominent voice in your field.
  • Establishes Credibility: By sharing high-quality, insightful content across authoritative platforms, you build a reputation for credibility and expertise. Your readers trust your knowledge and views, gradually seeing you as a reliable source.
  • Engages Your Audience: Thought leaders communicate and participate in meaningful conversations. Engaging with a broader audience via syndicated content provides opportunities for interactions and discussions – enhancing your status.
  • Demonstrates Consistency: Regularly syndicating well-researched content reinforces your dedication to your niche. Hence, it demonstrates your commitment to providing valuable insights.
  • Fosters Authority: Syndicating content that offers innovative perspectives, cutting-edge insights, and forward-thinking solutions showcases your ability to shape your industry's discourse. It solidifies your authority in the process.
  • Drives Collaboration: Content syndication can open doors for partnership opportunities – as other experts recognize your valuable contributions to the field.

10 Solid Tips to Become a Thought Leader Via Content Syndication

Now, you understand the interdependence between thought leadership and content syndication. So, next, let’s explore how to use this content marketing strategy to become a thought leader.

1. Start With a Strong Foundation

By laying your groundwork first, you'll be better equipped to share content that speaks directly to your audience. Plus, your resources will align with your thought leadership ambitions. Here’s how:

  • Identify Your Buyer Personas: Understand your audience before diving into content syndication. Define your buyer personas by analyzing their demographics, preferences, and pain points. It ensures your content resonates with your specific audience.
  • Set Your Goals: Define your objectives. These can range from becoming an authority in a particular niche to increasing your industry visibility or driving lead generation. Knowing your goals lets you draft a proper content syndication strategy.

2. Choose Syndication Channels and Partners

You MUST identify a suitable content syndication platform for your content carefully. Different platforms cater to various demographics and niches. Therefore:

  • Consider the preferences and behaviors of your target audience when selecting where to syndicate your content. 
  • Opt for platforms that align with your thought leadership goals and enable you to reach the right audience.

Build Partnerships for Syndication

Collaborate with a reliable content syndication vendor that can help you distribute your content. Find reputed partners, such as industry influencers or reputable websites. Then, establish mutually beneficial relationships. 

3. Craft Syndication-Friendly and Relevant Content

This step involves customizing your material to suit the platform where it will be shared. Different platforms have distinct formats, audience expectations, and engagement dynamics. 

Hence, modify your content to fit the requirements of each platform. It ensures your resources resonate with the audience and aligns with the platform's style.

Moreover, maintain consistency in your messaging and branding. Your thought leadership should remain recognizable, regardless of where your content appears. 

Consistency fosters trust and reinforces your authority. Thus, it makes it easier for your audience to:

  • Connect your content across various syndication channels
  • Associate your resources with your brand

4. Focus on Evergreen Topics and Recent Trends

Evergreen subjects remain relevant regardless of the passing trends. For instance, if you're a marketing thought leader, an evergreen topic might be "The Fundamentals of Content Marketing," as the basics tend to hold true.

In addition, include recent trends in your content. It demonstrates that you're actively engaged with your industry. 

For example, you can discuss the impact of emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence or the Metaverse in your content. It showcases your awareness of the latest developments.

5. Be Timely, Relevant, and Research-oriented

Publishing timely and current content enhances your credibility and ensures your audience remains engaged. 

For instance, sharing a blog post about "Digital Marketing Strategies for the Holiday Season" in October is more timely and relevant than in June, when the holidays are distant.

Again, your content should address your target audience's current concerns, interests, and challenges. Hence, understand your audience's evolving needs. 

Suppose you're in the healthcare industry, addressing the challenges of telemedicine during a pandemic demonstrates relevance.

Finally, base your content on well-informed insights and data. If you're discussing the future of renewable energy, backing your claims with statistics, case studies, or industry reports solidifies your authority.

PRO TIP: Discuss with your peers. It lets you gain different perspectives and refine your content. Sharing your insights and experiences and seeking peer input fosters collaboration and keeps you well-connected within your niche.

6. Look at Your Calendar for Opportunities

Keep an ongoing record of subjects and themes your prospective clients or audience is interested in. By compiling a comprehensive list of these topics, you can remain prepared to create content that directly addresses their concerns and desires.

  • Develop a Strategic Content Calendar: Construct a content calendar that aligns with your client's objectives and needs. It should serve as a roadmap for your content creation and publication.
  • Leverage Marketing Automation Tools: Embrace marketing automation software to facilitate the scheduling and publication of blog posts. It guarantees consistency in content delivery, a pivotal element in building thought leadership.

Case in Point, as Shared by Magee Clegg, Founder and CEO of Cleartail Marketing:

“A concrete illustration of the efficacy of this approach can be seen with one of our B2B clients. In just 12 months, their revenue surged by a remarkable 278%. How did they achieve this feat? 

Automating their blog publishing process enabled them to share invaluable industry insights and trends consistently. This significantly boosted website traffic and solidified their status as thought leaders in their sector. Subsequently, their content became on various industry-specific platforms through syndication, further amplifying their authority.”

7. Add Insights to Already Published Content

Offer a fresh perspective to your audience. Enhancing your existing articles, blog posts, or content pieces by incorporating new, valuable information or perspectives. It can involve:

  • Updating the content with the latest trends, statistics, or developments
  • Providing additional context or analysis
  • Offering novel insights that were not initially included

The goal is to keep the content relevant, informative, and engaging for your audience even after publication. As such, you further increase your authority and thought leadership in your field.

As reiterated by Nick Sforza (Founder at Opvital):

“For instance, when I syndicate a video on productivity hacks, I extend the discussion by sharing how these hacks can be tailored for different industries, further enriching the content. Additionally, I consistently include external links to authoritative sources to republish their content and expand on the information that they provide.”

8. Interact With Readers Through Syndicated Content

Actively participate in discussions, respond to comments, and address questions or feedback related to your content. It's not merely about publishing and forgetting but instead fostering a dialogue. 

This interaction showcases your expertise and builds a stronger connection with your readers. Hence, you become more approachable and trustworthy as a thought leader.

9. Don’t Limit Syndication to Text-based Content

Utilize multimedia formats such as videos, infographics, and podcasts in your syndicated content. It broadens your ability to reach a broader range of audiences with varying learning preferences. 

Additionally, consider user-generated content. When you syndicate content created by your customers or users, you demonstrate that your products or services have a substantial following. 

This boosts brand exposure and catalyzes lead generation, showing that consumers value and trust your offerings. Therefore, it builds your authority and enhances your brand reputation.

10. Measure the Success of Your Content Syndication Efforts

To assess the impact of your syndication efforts and gauge your thought leadership success, you should monitor a range of metrics:

  • Social Media Engagement: Measure the level of interaction and engagement your content receives on social media platforms. It includes likes, comments, shares, and the overall resonance of your posts.
  • Follower Growth: Keep track of your growth in followers on social media platforms. An expanding following is often an indicator of your thought leadership influence.
  • Email Subscribers: The growth in your email subscriber list is an essential metric. It signifies an audience interested in your insights and expertise.
  • Content Shares: The number of times your content is shared across various platforms indicates its value and the reach of your thought leadership.
  • Content Views and Downloads: Assess the views and downloads of your content to understand its popularity and relevance to your audience.
  • Mentions and Citations: Count how often your work is referenced or cited by others in your industry. Mentions and citations can highlight your authoritative standing.
  • Speaking Engagements: Being invited to speak at conferences, webinars, or industry events strongly indicates your recognition as a thought leader in your field.
  • Awards and Honors: Receipt of industry awards, accolades, or nominations can validate your thought leadership status and establish your credibility.
  • Lead Generation: Track the number of leads generated through your thought leadership efforts, such as gated content or webinars. It reflects the practical impact of your expertise.
  • Conversion Rates: Analyze the conversion rates of thought leadership-generated leads into actual customers or clients. It demonstrates the effectiveness of your content in driving conversions.
  • LinkedIn Endorsements: On LinkedIn, endorsements for your skills and expertise can provide a visible endorsement of your thought leadership.
  • Media Mentions: Count the number of times you are quoted or featured in the media. Media exposure enhances your visibility and solidifies your reputation as a thought leader.

6 Tips to Sustain Your Thought Leadership Status

Finally, how can you ensure the sustainability of your thought leadership status? Here’s how:

1. Deal With Duplicate Content

Guard against the accidental spread of duplicate content that can dilute your thought leadership efforts. Ensure your content remains unique and adds value to your audience, standing out in a sea of information.

2. Manage Your Partnerships

Your collaborations and relationships play a critical role in your thought leadership journey. Maintain these connections, nurture your relationships, and continue to create mutually beneficial opportunities.

3. Avoid Over-Promotion

Ditch excessive self-promotion of your syndicated resources. Instead, prioritize sharing genuine insights, knowledge, and valuable content. Authenticity fosters trust and credibility.

4. Evolve with Industry Trends

Keep a keen eye on the changing trends in your industry. Adapt your thought leadership strategy to remain relevant and forward-thinking. Your ability to stay at the forefront of industry changes sustains your thought leadership.

5. Expand Your Knowledge and Network

Continue to broaden your knowledge base and network. Engaging with industry peers, staying informed, and learning from others help maintain your thought leadership authority.

6. Collaborate with Other Thought Leaders

Partnering with fellow thought leaders can strengthen your position in the industry. Joint ventures, co-authored pieces, or shared insights can amplify your influence and reach.

Ready to Revitalize Your Thought Leadership Journey?

Start implementing these content syndication strategies today to revitalize your thought leadership and enhance your influence. Remember, the journey of a thought leader is ongoing, and each step you take brings you closer to solidifying your authority in your field. 

If you want additional insights, you can contact your experts at Revnew. We’ll be more than happy to help you.

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