As a thought leader, you may be great at telling stories through a presentation deck,…
If you’re an author or thought leader with a desire to get your work embedded and effectively monetized in large organizations, your content needs to be a must have for the client. The mistake that I see far too often is that the thought leader positions their work as a nice to have. The breakneck speed of business operations makes for a hyper-competitive environment, and frankly most companies don’t bother with nice to haves; they focus on the must haves.
They must have profits, they must have engaged employees, they must have delighted customers and clients, and they must have cutting edge products and killer solutions. It would be nice to have a lot of things, there just isn’t the appetite or bandwidth for it. If you get a sense that potential clients enjoy and appreciate your work and even see a possible place for it in their organization, but they’re rarely moving forward with you, you may be inadvertently putting yourself in the nice to have bucket.
Let’s see what we can do to change that. Typically, “nice to haves” are solutions that could fit into the organization at some point if there weren’t other pressing issues or higher priorities. The client hasn’t said no or that it doesn’t fit, they just can’t make the case to move forward at this specific point in time or identify a likely test population.
Must have content solves a pressing need.
It immediately tackles an issue that is top of mind to the organization. They have identified the concern as an area that needs to be addressed and are looking for creative and innovative means to address it. Bam! That’s your entré.
Stop talking about the amazing things your work can do and start listening to what the client is trying to accomplish. Ask what their priorities are, what competencies they are trying to develop, what metrics they are tasked with moving. In many instances, by asking and having an understanding of what they need, your objective then becomes to use that need as a bridge to what your work does. Are they focused on customer satisfaction? Employee retention? Productivity? Innovation? The reality is there are only so many business metrics out there that clients focus on. Once you have a better grasp of what they are and how your work can be part of a solution it will become more second nature.
The bottom line is nice content, like nice guys, finish last (or so the saying goes). You can be a nice guy, but nice guys with “must have content” finish first.