Thought Leadership Content: More Important Than The Algorithm

Claire Hunt

March 8, 2024

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When it comes to Instagram, it seems like we’re always being told to focus on the algorithm, use trending audio, you need to have a ton of followers, etc. I’ve seen so many of my students get stuck on the content creation. They usually feel as if they have to post more educational content to “give value.” 

If this is something you can relate to, then this episode is for you because I am giving you more knowledge on how to create some more white space in your content, also known as thought leadership content. 

Having multiple purposes for your content 

If you didn’t know this, there should always be multiple purposes for your content whenever you are creating a marketing strategy from educational problem awareness, to values, to thought leadership, to attraction, to marketing. 

We are focusing on the thought leadership part of it, or creating white space in your industry and in your brand because we are truly inundated with the 1, 2, 3 step kinds of educational posts, especially in the photographer world, and people are not on social media to be educated. Your potential clients are not following you necessarily to be educated. 

While this content can be great for good engagement or establishing some authority, educational content is not really valuable until there’s a need for it, and to be honest, you’re probably blending in with the masses whenever you share that educational content. 

We need to create that white space, or the thought leadership content first before you actually educate if you plan to have that as part of your marketing strategy. 

What is thought leadership content? 

The leadership is how you’re going to cause your audience to think, “Wow! I never thought of it in that way,” or, “Wow! That’s such an interesting perspective that really stands out from what everyone else is saying.” You will get your ideal clients locked into your content because it’s different than what everyone else is sharing. 

How to figure out what your thought leadership, or white space is

If you’re not sure what your white space is, ask yourself these questions: 

  • What are your hot takes in the industry? 
  • What do you really do differently? 
  • What is your specific secret sauce? 
  • What is your why on multiple different matters? (This could be how you run a wedding day, how you plan a timeline, how you communicate with your clients, etc. 
  • What is your perspective on certain matters? 
  • How is this going to benefit my audience if I share this? 

If you are a photographer marketing to potential photography clients, then you want to make sure you’re sharing things with your audience that will actually convert them. So when you ask yourself how it’s going to benefit your audience if you share a certain piece of content, it helps to make sure your end goal is actually intentional and strategic. 

If you ask yourself these questions and you’re still not sure, I would recommend getting some mentorship or coaching on this matter to help you uncover that, and this is exactly what I teach really in-depth in my program Book It. It’s actually part of the very first lesson because it’s so important to get crystal clear on what makes you different in this industry. 

And I’ll tell you right now that what you offer is not what sells. It’s how you deliver it. So, think about your personal brand, your values, and your thought leadership. This is a great place to start whenever it comes to creating content because it’s what’s going to allow you to stand out and book your dream clients. 

Examples of overused content 

Here is an example of overused content: “It’s your elopement day. Do what you want. Break the tradition.” We still see these kinds of posts, and it does not land because everyone has been saying that for years. While someone did come up with that for their own white space, it eventually caught on and everyone started to share it. 

So, how could you still use this kind of idea, but make it your own type of thought leadership? For a specific example, even just regarding the elopement day, breaking the tradition, getting the dress dirty, wearing your hiking boots, and going on the most epic hike of your life, I found that I did not actually enjoy that. I also found that the couples I wanted to work with love nature. They value the outdoor scenery. They want that in their photos, but they prefer easy access. 

With that being said, in all of my marketing toward couples now, instead of blending into that mold of the hiking elopement day, I have started to market my elopement services more as, “Hey, I know that this is actually not about breaking tradition to you. Maybe you do want your family there or maybe you do just want it to be the two of you, but it’s not about going on the most epic hike of your life. You still want the beautiful views, but you want to enjoy your day and not be sweating all the way through it. 

Do you see how that is thought leadership? It’s different than what everyone else is doing and the kind of content that you would share around that is really going to stand out rather than blend in with what everyone else is saying. 

Understanding your brand and who you want to attract

It’s so important to understand your brand, who you want to attract, your thought leadership, your values, and your dream client. What do THEY actually want? That is how you create impactful content and that’s how you create impactful thought leadership content too, because if they are looking for a photographer who really loves hiking elopements, they are going to realize very quickly that I’m not for them, and that’s a good thing. You want your content to attract and repel. 

Understanding yourself, your brand, and your dream clients is incredibly important for creating any kind of content that’s actually going to convert. Just know that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel whenever it comes to sharing content. It’s really just understanding your industry, finding your own white space, and understanding your dream client so you can create this kind of content and infuse it throughout your content creation strategy.

In this episode, we cover:

  • What thought leadership content is and why it’s so important 
  • How to come up with your own thought leadership content 
  • How to turn overused content into thought leadership content 


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