thoughtleader_iconThought Leadership Definition (Audience by Content 2×2)
definition_iconThought Leadership Definitions

Thought Leadership Defined

What Makes a Thought Leader?

To be a thought leader, one must be recognized as an expert with good compelling content and an audience to share it with.


  • Expert content can be created (originated), curated, or even expertly aggregated.
  • The audience is typically not a generic audience, but one that is associated with a specific industry or set of industries.
logo1345Without good content and with no audience, folks in this quadrant are unknown.

logo12Has a large following but not a robust set of content as the content is focused on a single product line or company.
logo13The go-to person in a vertical for the expertise they are known for, but has a small audience. Has access to great content that they’ve originated, curated, and expertly aggregated.
logo134Is an expert in a particular area and is recognized as the expert (the go-to person) in a specific vertical or set of verticals.

Want to read more about our thought leadership concepts? Visit this page to find out what a thought leadership funnel is.

Thought Leadership Definitions

Listen to a number of thought leaders (Praba Murugaiah, Dr. Natalie Petouhoff, Laura Mackey, Robert Galinsky & Mitchell Levy) share their definition of thought leadership! (This is a segment of Thought Leader Life, hosted by Mitchell Levy and Michael Procopio.)