Becoming a Thought Leader

What is a thought leader and how does it impact your ability to get found via social media and on search engines?

A thought leader is a person that has expertise about their industry and has the ability to discuss industry topics in a knowledgeable way. For example, a lawyer can establish themselves as an expert on IP law if that is their topic.
The key is to choose a lane and share your expertise as yourself - not as your business or company. Being a thought leader is part of your personal brand - by sharing this expertise will help lead an audience on a path to become your customer.. However, it is not about leading people back to your company, but becoming an expert in your industry space - it helps you establish authority.
Plus, the information you give to others is valuable in and of itself - your audience may not be aware that certain topics or issues exist but as a thought leader, you can inform them of things they didn't know about and help bring these topics to light.
So how does being a leader help your ability to get found on social media and search engines?
If your audience is searching for a certain topic or answers to questions, you will be found in that search and you will be seen as an authority.
An exception might be if you are a lawyer who likes golf and wants to become an authority on golf, you might want to use your personal social media platforms to talk about golf to your followers - not use your professional or company platforms to discuss this topic. You could be confusing your audience as it's unrelated to your IP law business - best to keep the two topics separate.
Advantage to why you would want to consider becoming a thought leader?
Becoming a thought leader will help create a level of expertise with your audience, establish trust in you, and lead them to being a potential customer. You are giving them knowledge they didn’t know they needed.