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Beyond the Prompt: The Demise of Generative AI in Thought Leadership Content Creation

Quality Content That Matters

Is there a place for generative AI in the creation of thought leadership content? This question recently came up on a professional writer's forum. 

Addressing the question experienced marketers and writers quickly addressed the first question: what is thought leadership content? By answering this question, understanding if relying on or using generative AI is appropriate becomes more straightforward.

Back to the forum, the comments were riddled with varying definitions of thought leadership, and most were a bit sarcastic due to professional client experience. Rightly so. 

Often, marketers and corporates mistakenly use thought leadership content as a way to produce written articles, for example, that position the company as knowledgeable in their potential client's industry. It is a very contorted approach to content marketing and an abuse of the freely available publishing platforms, notably company websites.

Thought leadership is the knowledge and expertise on a specific topic. In the era of Google and now generative AI, it is too easy to appear as an expert. 

True thought leaders need neither Google nor Chat GPT to write an in-depth article on a thought leadership piece. Their expertise comes from years of experience and passion on a topic. This depth of knowledge comes through hard work and by being a leader. These people tend to put themselves in the spotlight by proposing innovative ideas, even those readily challenged, and are willing to face criticism. But here's the thing: their deep knowledge, dedication, and passion make them reliant and willing to take on criticism as a stepping stone to more refined and leading their industry to even greater heights.

Now, as a content marketer, how many of you have been given the opportunity to write pieces for clients or internal contributors that are truly thought leadership pieces? Probably very few. 

Why? Most likely, a true understanding of what thought leader content is and the trend in marketing that a thought leader only must appear to be like one. 


It is also likely that the creation of thought leadership-style content is increasingly easy. Google and new platforms like Chat GPT make it seem simple and foolproof. 

The problem is that relying on external sources has weakened the impact of true thought leadership content and, most importantly, incorrectly informed audiences on topics. 

True as it may not seem to some, every company or organization has extremely competent thought leaders in their defined areas of expertise and knowledge.

So, the next time you are approached or tempted to create through leadership content, ensure the topic fits the organization's competency and search out those who are best suited to bring their knowledge to the audiences aimed to gain the greatest value of the content.

Here are a couple of definitions worthy to consider:

Thought leadership is the delivery of authentic and genuine content that uses the expertise, insight, and experience of the author, with the goal of sharing that wisdom with others. Thought leadership is all about you creating value, building knowledge, and taking a stand.

Thought leadership content marketing is when a brand provides its audience with free deliverables packed with trustworthy information from experts who have demonstrated measurable experience in a given industry or topic. 

Thought leadership is a type of content marketing where you tap into the talent, experience, and passion inside your business or from your community to consistently answer the biggest questions in the minds of your target audience.

Thought leadership pieces are also highly quotable. They're packed with so much value and interesting opinions (as opposed to an SEO article that looks similar to the others on the SERP) that every few sentences packs a punch.

Be unique. Create quality content that matters to your audiences. 


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