Gaining a bigger audience for a company’s thought leadership is a top priority for communications professionals. With limited time and resources to push thought leadership, opportunities to expand into new topics sometimes fall through the cracks. Finding the whitespace opportunities (or quiet place) where you can lead a new conversation can be a game changer. This is especially true in noisy industries where providers are talking about the same thing. But where do you start your whitespace analysis? You start with some research about you, your industry, and competitors or peers.
A financial services study on consumer financial anxiety was getting a lot of attention in the media. The report focused on specific concerns that consumers were having regarding personal finances. A leading financial services company thought their customers would be interested in their thought leadership on financial anxiety, but they weren’t sure where to start. They had to figure out which of those high-level topics they were already doing well in and which ones, if any, they weren’t.
Performing a Whitespace Analysis
Working with their media analytics team, they performed a whitespace analysis to look back over the past year at how their traditional and social media coverage mapped to the report topics. They did the same with a core group of competitors. While seemingly a daunting task, it was easily accomplished since the firm’s media analytics team had been analyzing these conceptual data points for a number of years. Access to this rich, accurately categorized data enabled the company to visualize the congested conversations and where they had an opportunity to create a new one. The analysis revealed one subject on the list was not yet owned by anyone in the industry. With relevant content, they had the opportunity to both start and own the dialogue.
The data provided clear, prescriptive insights to guide the company’s thought leadership strategy, complete with specific authors and publications to target. They had details about authors and social influencers who were covering this topic, but not writing about them. The analysis also detailed the article structure most often used in the publications. Armed with accurate media analysis, they continue to create thought leadership content that catches the interest of industry influencers, helping them earn high-profile placements.