It is one thing to have the ideas to build a Thought Leadership programme on, but finding a voice to distribute these ideas is altogether another thing.

By your voice I mean the style and tone of delivery of your Thought Leadership programme. This should be based on your target audience and your perception of how they would like to receive your insight.

If you find yourself wondering what your voice should be, I can recommend only one remedy. Immerse yourself in the Thought Leadership of others. Read as much as you can by other experts who work in the same field as you. Seek out their opinions in the press, subscribe to their email newsletters and blogs, watch their videos on YouTube, download their podcasts, and whenever possible attend the conferences and presentations where they speak. Be sure to ask questions and take notes on the content and also on the style of delivery.

Of course, some people have a natural flair for writing or public speaking. Don’t let these people intimidate you. Their ease of delivery comes with practice and the confidence they have in their message. Learn from them and then ask yourself how you could do better.

Try and dedicate a little reading time focused on your particular industry into your working day as often as possible. Reading every day will not only ensure you keep abreast of the latest trends, but also help you to understand what your competition is up to. It will also ensure you are not put off by the sheer volume of reading material you may be presented with if you do not make regular reading a priority.

Make it easy for yourself to find relevant articles by subscribing to RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds from your favourite blogs and online publications. It is also a great idea to set up news alerts via Google News ( using specific industry terms and competitors’ names, etc. Both of these tactics will mean any relevant content is delivered directly to your email inbox, making it highly accessible as well as providing you with a deep archive of relevant opinion.

It is also important to cast your eye outside of your industry. A greater understanding of what is going on in the wider world, particularly with the economy, will help you better position yourself with a more sympathetic and reasoned voice. As an old newspaperman, I’m telling you to read the newspapers and find out what is going on in the world. When you are well-read, ideas and the voice you need to present them will come to you much more easily, which will help build you as a character in the eyes of your audience.

The above text was taken from Becoming THE Expert: Enhancing Your Business Reputation through Thought Leadership Marketing – available now from in paperback and ebook formats and the Apple iBookstore for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch devices.