4 Keys to Pitching Thought Leadership

By Corey Gallagher
Corey is a thought leadership guru with the ability to find the positive light in every situation. She's a champion matchmaker, charming reporters into long term, stable relationships with her clients.

You know securing the right content is crucial to a successful PR campaign. Getting your clients in the right news, at the right time, boosts brand awareness and increases their clout in the industry. One important angle to get there: thought leadership.

Your client is undoubtedly an expert or authority within their specific field or industry. When you harness their insight – whether as an individual or a whole company – and offer it to reporters, you’re providing thought leadership. Through this, you’re able to establish your client as an expert and trusted knowledge source on that topic, further bolstering their influence in the space.

Before you get started, here are four keys to keep in mind when pitching thought leadership angles.

Know where your client is a thought leader.

This may sound obvious, but it’s important to make sure the messaging you’re utilizing in your pitch matches your client’s knowledge and expertise. This is a conversation the PR team should be having during initial client meetings, when both teams are introducing themselves and learning about one another.

One thing to keep in mind: Don’t assume your client is only an expert on one specific topic. It’s always a great idea to openly brainstorm with your client about industry topics and see if you can shift outside their comfort zone and offer their expertise to a new audience. Where can they add value and insight to a conversation? Where do they think a little differently?

Always, always, always read the news, follow industry trends and track for rapid response opportunities.

Use your client’s expertise to push out some additional thought leadership that is more timely and relevant to what’s going on in the space.

Clients are busy. Very busy. Flagging over relevant articles to get their insight not only shows them you’re paying attention to the industry, but it also gives you the chance to gauge other topics where they may have knowledge (see above). Gain their additional insight for timely news opportunities – and, bonus, you now have more ammo for future pitch topics.

Know the why behind the pitch.

When crafting your pitch, it’s important to include why your client is an expert in the space or on the topic. Simply adding “CEO” doesn’t give much context on why your client is a credible expert. Provide additional context: “Cybersecurity expert for over 20 years,” or, “Fintech specialist and successful app creator.” This gives the reporter more background and emphasizes why your client is an expert and eligible to talk on a specific subject.

Target the right journalists.

Do your research and know which reporters and journalists to target with your client’s specific thought leadership topic. Reporters don’t want their emails blowing up with unrelated pitches outside their realm, and you’ll have the most luck placing your client if you pique a journalist’s niche interest.

Thought leadership isn’t just a buzzword phrase – it’s an important step in showcasing your client’s brand and representing them as an expert in their industry or on a specific, trending topic. Use the above tips to start pitching your thought leaders and getting them in the right publications at the right time.



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