Whenever emerging technologies with seemingly infinite potential come to the fore, conversation around them naturally follows in public, political and media circles. There is no better example of this than the exponential growth of Artificial Intelligence (AI), a technology that has been mentioned by media outlets across the globe more than five million times so far this year (Source: Meltwater).
Cutting through so much noise can be a challenge for both individuals and organisations. However, this level of attention also creates endless opportunities. Positioning your executive team as thought leaders on the trends, challenges and opportunities facing this growing industry can be an effective tactic to raise awareness, build trust and enhance the reputation of your business and its leaders.
While some do this very well, others simply piggyback off already established opinions. So, how do you ensure you’re the former and become a trusted expert and AI thought leader?
Thought leadership dos and don’ts:
In order to become a truly credible AI thought leader, it’s critical to have a coherent strategy to follow. However, it is equally important to ensure that this plan is flexible enough to evolve alongside the news agenda and enable you as the expert to provide unique thoughts on the topic at hand.
Some tips for any content that you produce are as follows:
- Communicate in a way that’s easy to understand – save the jargon for the marketing collateral and focus on taking your audience on a journey.
- Lean on your own experience and knowledge – you’re going to sound a lot more convincing when you know what you’re talking about and can use anecdotes or examples to reinforce your opinions.
- Let your work speak for itself – leaders like Sam Altman, use their authority and company’s brand to bolster their credibility but don’t put themselves in the limelight at every opportunity. Being a credible thought leader is not only about being present in conversations that matter, but also knowing when to stay quiet.
- Draw on other’s opinions as well as research and data to present a well-rounded argument – it’s always important to demonstrate that you’ve considered all options. You can then wrap up by tying what you’re saying back to your own opinion/stance.
Thought leadership channels:
When developing a thought leadership strategy, it is important to not only consider the tactics to leverage but also where to apply them. Effective thought leaders possess the agility to distribute their expertise and insight across a variety of platforms in order to engage a broad range of stakeholders.
Journalists spanning national, broadcast, trade and technology media are all on the lookout for value-adding content that enables their readers to better understand AI and its emergence as a technology. Offering your expert insight to news outlets like these enables you to reach a wider audience but also enhances your credibility through third-party validation.
When trying to achieve coverage in these publications it is important to ensure that the content you are providing is highly relevant for the publication and its audience. If your organisation serves customers from a specific industry, securing press coverage in the trade publications that are read by decision-makers from that sector can be an excellent way to build trust. Any PR pitching must be highly relevant to that specific audience group and must be much more specialised than targeting publications with a broader remit.
Similarly to AI, podcasting is another channel that has soared in popularity in recent years. There are hundreds of podcasts discussing the emergence of AI technology with highly engaged followings.
As the technology continues to captivate both the tech-savvy and the general public alike, several specialised podcasts have covered the topic but so have more mainstream platforms. Featuring as a guest on these shows has become a golden opportunity for professionals in the industry.
The longer-form nature of podcasting as a channel gives experts a platform to disseminate deep knowledge, insights and experience.
Engaging in discussions on podcasts not only bolsters the personal brand of your company experts but also facilitates the distribution of AI knowledge to a broader audience, ultimately shaping the course of this transformative technology in a positive and meaningful way.
Social media is another channel that organisations should consider when sharing thought leadership content.
Whether that be longer-form articles on LinkedIn or short, snappy explainer videos on TikTok, the opportunities available for businesses and their leaders are endless. Through their very nature, social platforms encourage discussion, build connections and stimulate debate. Utilising this content format enables thought leaders to respond to trends in real-time, share ideas with other stakeholders within the ecosystem and ultimately accelerate understanding and adoption of what is still an emerging technology.
To find out more about how we could establish you and your organisation as a thought leader on the AI industry get in touch today.