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Harnessing the Power of Executive Thought Leadership at Your Nonprofit

Cultivating trust and credibility are critical to advancing your nonprofit’s mission. As subject matter experts with a deep passion for your cause, your leaders are well positioned to help with this. By posting thought leadership content from their personal social media accounts, they can demonstrate authentic, visible leadership that drives interest in your organization. And when they post on LinkedIn, they can also help you reach a more senior audience, since their network is likely filled with fellow executives and other senior-level employees and influencers.

Of course, your leaders are busy people, so to make this a sustainable endeavor, the burden of creating content shouldn’t fall solely to them. Here are some steps your team can take to support them and unlock all the benefits that executive thought leadership can bring.

Ensure their profile is up to date

When people see a piece of thought leadership content posted by your leader, their first stop to learn more will likely be your leader’s profile—so you want to present the most complete and compelling view possible. 

Have a conversation with your leader to help you fill in any gaps on their LinkedIn profile, like their experience and interests. Review their summary together—does it reflect how they want to present themselves, and your nonprofit, to the world? The goal is to leave people feeling inspired, encouraging them to click through to your organization’s LinkedIn Page for more information (so make sure that is up to date, too). 

Explore a range of different content

Executive thought leadership can come in the form of lengthy articles—but that’s not your only option. On LinkedIn, your leaders could post everything from opinion polls to short-form text posts, personal stories, videos, and more. 

Work with your leader to try and set a thought leadership schedule and goals that work for them. For example, would they be willing to publish one short text post every week discussing a trend they’re seeing? Would they be available to participate in one 15-minute LinkedIn Live video every month to share updates about your organization and its work? Would they post longer articles on LinkedIn if someone from your team wrote a first draft for them to review? Make it as easy as possible for them to participate and they’ll be more likely to say yes.

Encourage two-way conversation

The best thought leadership isn’t a one-way lecture. To really establish themselves as active and engaged thought leaders in their space, your executives should be fostering conversation among the community.

Factor this into your initial request for your leader’s support. Even if they can only dedicate 30 minutes every week to checking their LinkedIn notifications, responding to some comments, engaging with other people’s posts, and sharing relevant content, this can make a huge impact on how people view them—and, by extension, your organization.

Thought leadership can be a powerful way to make your organization stand out. For more ideas and insights to help you get your nonprofit noticed, don’t miss our upcoming #BetterTogether events, taking place on June 15 and 17 on LinkedIn Live. Register today!

This post was inspired by the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Blog article Making an Impact with Executive Thought Leadership: 3 Cornerstones, authored by Alex Rynne.