How to Use Content Pillars: The Foundation of Content Marketing
Content marketing can be tiring! There we said it! Between forming content ideas, crafting captions, creating the content and then distributing it, things can become overwhelming. This is especially true when you are the owner of a small business with a to-do list as long as both your arms!
Often when it comes to content creation, we fall down at the first hurdle, forming content ideas. This is where content pillars and content banks come in handy.
What are content pillars?
In the context of social media marketing, content pillars are themes or topics that your business can use to create and structure posts. These themes and topics are specific to your business and should reflect the content that will engage your audience.
The pillars you choose should encompass your brand's purpose, tone of voice, values and general aesthetic on social media. The content pillar method is an efficient way to cover all your content bases without losing focus.
Creating your content pillars
As we have already mentioned, content pillars are unique to your specific business. You need to do a deep dive into what your target audience wants from your business to really figure them out. We do have four basic content pillars though which could start you off and allow you to get your creative juices flowing. Let's dive into them:
Promotion is your first possible content pillar. It is one of the most common ones that businesses use. Don't fall into the trap of promoting too much though and only doing it in the same boring way. It's time to spice things up and keep things interesting! The trick with content pillars is saying the same thing in a different way and being experimental with your content. Do you sell one main product? Well, how can you promote that in a creative way?
Always make sure you are providing value by teaching your audience something about your product, service or industry. People are curious so share your knowledge, tip and tricks of the trade or you could even share advice on how best to use what you are providing.
Create content that plays on your audience's emotions. This doesn't need to be content that makes them want to cry! Why not try the approach of happiness or humour? You could try sharing a meme or a funny current trend.
Keep your audience inspired. Inspire them to buy your product or service which may lead them to inspire someone else to do the same thing, helping to grow your community. You could inspire your customers by sharing something you overcame so that you could provide a better service or you could share the stories of your customers.
Content Pillars and Content Banks
The addition of content pillars to your brand's social media strategy may be what you need to level up and finally see the results you've always wanted.
Content pillars are not enough though to help you nail the 'forming content ideas' part of content marketing. You also need to create a content bank. In this document, list or notebook, write down every idea you have in regards to content. You could save posts that a competitor has posted that you like (or think you can make better). Take a photo of a billboard that you have seen and save it into your content bucket folder. Write down things you read or hear in podcasts that inspire you. The list goes on but the important part is to save all these ideas and then once a month see which content pillar they fit within and work from there.
If you struggle to find the time to create and schedule content for your small business, let us take it off your hands!