As our Senior Account Manager, Natasha draws on over eight years of account and project management experience to lead our account team in providing exceptional service and work to a diverse roster of clients in all areas of digital marketing. She began her career working in Los Angeles at William Morris Endeavor, where she spent several years learning the entertainment industry and growing her account and project management skills. Upon returning to her hometown in South Florida, she began working in marketing and advertising as an Account Executive at Zimmerman, notably working on the Save-a-Lot and Lumber Liquidators national accounts.
Natasha provides daily hands-on service to clients both large and small, offering timely, creative solutions to meet their digital marketing needs. Natasha’s attention to detail, client service, and digital marketing knowledge allows her to excel and lead the team in client collaborations to create relevant and impactful digital marketing campaigns.
Natasha is a graduate of Penn State University, and in her free time, she loves spending time with friends and family, staying active, and soaking in the sun.
How to Develop Content Pillars for Your Social Media Strategy
What do social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest all have in common? They’re thriving hubs for your target audience — and they’re rapidly encouraging consumers to spend money straight through the platform. In fact, of the 1.074 billion users on Instagram alone, 81% choose social media to research products and services, and a whopping 130 million users tap on shopping posts every month.
If you’re looking to optimize your social media marketing for conversion, look no further than a content pillar strategy. Content pillars are the broader topics and themes that create the foundation of your content marketing. On social media, content pillars create a cohesive brand image, drive engagement, and increase authority. If you haven’t developed content pillars for your social media strategy, let this blog serve as your DIY guide.
What Are Content Pillars?
Content pillars act as a foundation for every successful content marketing strategy. Like a physical foundation, pillars are necessary to support the overall objectives of a content strategy. They help ensure that your efforts are spread evenly across all objectives, from awareness and lead generation to conversion. Without content pillars, your content pieces lack direction, leading to lower reach, engagement, and brand recognition.
Often referred to as content buckets or content clusters, pillars consist of the most relevant topics for your industry and target audience. Content pillars can also be composed of different types of content, such as blog posts or visual content like videos or infographics, that your audience would find of interest. Generally speaking, most brands select three to five content pillars to consistently create content for and amplify across social media.
Content pillars heavily rely on your niche. So, a Fort Lauderdale marketing agency’s content pillars will look vastly different from a local doctor’s office. For instance, here at Bullseye Strategy, some of our content pillars focus on:
- Digital marketing trends
- Search engine optimization (SEO)
- Social media marketing
- Paid media
As you scroll through our blog and the related tags, you can see these pillars reflected in content pieces. And if you land on our social media pages, you see that our recent Instagram posts follow suit. By selecting and optimizing these content pillars, we can create various types of content that cover a range of relevant topics, all while serving our target audience.
Why Develop Content Pillars in the First Place?
Why is pillar content the key to an effective content strategy? For one, pillars allow you to stay focused on your core objectives. With solid content pillars, you no longer have to worry if your content pieces connect with consumers at each stage of the buying cycle — because you know you’re specifically creating content for each portion of the funnel.
Likewise, pillars enable content marketers to provide consistent value to readers. When you designate content pillars for the most relevant topics for your audience, you remain focused on your specialties. On the other hand, if you neglect pillars and brainstorm content ideas on the fly, you spread yourself too thin. Before long, your content goes from cohesive to chaotic — and readers will notice, and the content loses its value.
In digital marketing, you always want to provide valuable content. Valuable content leads to more followers, exposure, and engagement, all of which boil down to increased conversions. Besides, valuable content based on solid pillars can streamline marketing efforts and improve associated authority from search engines.
Streamline Content Efforts for Maximum Efficiency
Chances are, the products or services you provide aren’t suitable for everyone’s needs or interests. Having content pillars in place keeps you focused on creating content for your target audience, so you spend less time catering to an audience with a smaller likelihood of converting. Content buckets also help with organization. It takes time for content marketers to develop social media and blog posts, and if you’re just picking content pieces at random, it could make the process longer and harder. Pillars streamline content efforts for maximum efficiency.
Boost Associated Authority from Search Engines
Aside from your target audience, search engines like Google also prefer topic clusters. If the content is related to a core topic or follows specific pillars, you ultimately boost your search engine optimization (SEO). When you develop your content around specific clusters or pillar pages, Google sees related information across the site and becomes aware that you are an authority in the space — and so do the people reading the content.
Similarly, social media sites like Instagram also utilize a form of SEO. Instagram is just another search engine, only for pictures and profiles. In the same way SEO techniques improve your ranking for web pages, Instagram SEO can improve visibility for your account. Content pillars such as relevant topics, post types, and trending hashtags can help drive engagement and conversions on social media.
How to Create Content Pillars that Encourage Conversion
Once you understand how topic clusters feed into social media marketing, you’re probably eager to create your own content pillars. Remember that the purpose of a content pillar strategy is to provide valuable content to consumers, so you want to focus on your target audience, keyword research, and content calendar. Consider these steps to create content pillars for social media content.
1. Understand Your Target Audience
Before establishing content buckets, you must understand your target audience. If you haven’t already, utilize your audience research and analytics to create a customer persona(s) that best describes your target audience.
Ask several questions to establish a detailed persona, including:
- Who is your customer in terms of demographics and psychographics?
- What type of content does your customer consume daily?
- What kind of content has historically performed well with your customer?
- How does your customer speak or present themselves on social media?
These questions will help shape your content pillars and social media posts and shed light on your brand’s appropriate tone and voice. Consumers will want to hear themselves echoed in your brand voice and feel connected to your posts, so understanding how your target audience operates across social media is crucial.
2. Identify Your Audience Needs
Once you understand who your target audience is, it’s time to identify their needs. Which of their pain points can you address through your content? How can you make their lives better or persuade them to purchase a product or service that makes their lives better? At this stage, pay close attention to social listening. More often than not, common audience needs will be reflected in social media posts and across frequently searched keywords.
3. Implement Keyword Research
To nail down audience needs and create content that performs, be sure to implement keyword research. When you identify specific keyword phrases that consumers care about — and search for often — you can satisfy that need with your content. Your content should offer value, so monitor highly-searched key terms often to determine core content pillars for your social media strategy.
4. Sort into Buckets of Core Content Pillars
Now that you’ve determined your target audience, their needs, and what they search for, you can finally create your core content pillars. Begin by creating a master spreadsheet of all keyword phrases or topics you’d like to cover. Then, cluster content based on related subjects. For instance, topics related to keyword mapping or backlinks could both be clustered under an umbrella of technical SEO. Aim to create three to five content pillars, but do not exceed more than 10 — otherwise, you’ll end up stretching your content too thin.
5. Create a Content Calendar
With content pillars in hand, you can move along to the content planning stage. A content plan establishes a blueprint of the exact blog posts, articles, infographics, social graphics, videos, and other content pieces you’d like to create. Before content creation, implement a content calendar that includes the post type, desired keywords, and date for publication to maintain a cohesive brand presence across social media.
6. Develop and Promote Content
You must begin content creation with your target audience and their needs in mind. Use your noted keyword phrases to develop the body of the content, such as an accompanying graphic and caption, and supplement with related hashtags. Once you create content, promote it across all platforms, from your blog to your social media platforms, to extend reach and visibility.
7. Repurpose Existing Content into New Formats
Lastly, always continue your content cycle by repurposing existing content into new formats. For instance, you can repurpose a pillar article about the future of digital marketing into visual content, like an infographic or video. Or, you can repurpose the transcript of a high-performing video into a new blog post. Remember that quality content can take several forms, so long as each form can nestle underneath one of your content pillars.
Content Pillars and Social Media Strategy Go Hand-in-Hand
Brands like Nike or Apple — which boast 144 million and 25.5 million followers, respectively — do not just wing their social media strategy. They optimize for conversion using content pillars. Great content isn’t a spur-of-the-moment decision; great content is the culmination of audience research, analytics, and planning hours. If you want to turn your social media content into great content, contact Bullseye Strategy today.