Thought leadership insights – not just a sales tool!


A friend recently shared with me a thought leadership article (cover shown above) from Accenture, a consulting firm.  The article shared views and insights into factors determining the adoption of electric vehicles, and future direction in which they will likely develop. These views were supported by a study/survey that Accenture had undertaken.

The article addresses a topic that I am interested in, and so I was glad to be informed of the article. What’s even better, the article was free (but was still comparable in quality to what one might find in leading professional media publications).

This highlighted for me an interesting development. Professional service / advisory firms are generally keen to prove their abilities, highlight their knowledge and expertise, and often do this by preparing thought leadership articles. These articles are often freely available on their websites (sometimes on request or after registration).

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Why everyone needs to consider becoming an early adopter (or at least in the “early majority”)

Source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0f/Diffusionofideas.PNG

As I mentioned also in a previous post (‘Thoughts on the accelerating evolution of business models’), the world seems to be changing fast (and accelerating in the pace of change). I believe this could require a change in how Everett M. Rogers’ “Diffusion of innovations” should be perceived (he was the creator of the concepts set out in the chart above).

In particular, due to the pace of change, I consider that it is today even more important to be on the left side of the curve, than on the right, and as such, instead of a ‘normal distribution‘, the distribution should be skewed to the left (an example, hypothetical chart for this follows below).

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‘Big 4’ accounting / professional services firms on Twitter

One could say that 2011 is the year that the ‘Big 4’ accounting / professional service firms (in alphabetical order: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, and PwC) really ramped up their use of Twitter as a tool to communicate with people interested in what they might have to say.

That is not to say that they didn’t already have Twitter accounts previously, but the number of Twitter accounts, and use of Twitter has increased significantly this year, including in many cases, separate accounts appearing for each country (often in local language).

This growth however doesn’t always appear to be centrally managed, or connected to a clear strategy to using Social Media (rather appearing in some cases to be the result of decentralized, local decisions, indicated by inconsistent avatar graphic uses and unusual timing of appearance of new accounts).

Below I comment on the types of accounts, what is being said, and provide links to Twitter lists where you can (with or without registering for Twitter) observe what the firms are saying.

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