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What is a 10X Pillar Page?

top of mind marketing: 10x pillar pages

That old “content is king” thing is so over. In its place are pillar pages. It means creating a content pillar page strategy. It’s both a methodical and creative approach to content development. I believe that organizing information is a creative process, so once I started creating a pillar page strategy for my own digital marketing content, I found that I loved the symmetry of this.

Let’s start by defining pillar page content

It starts with a single page of substantive content that’s an in-depth overview of your business—or if you’re doing multiple pillar pages—of one topic. This will be comprehensive and authoritative; generalities drill down to subpages with more details or illustrations.

Your goal: Create a 10X content pillar page

A 10X pillar page is a single webpage that is ten times better than any other resource out there covering this topic. This is the motherload. More creative, informative and easier to access. This means that it can be seen across devices and it offers solutions. When I write about a topic, I think in terms of providing information that helps people do their jobs—new tools and insights, better approaches to old dilemmas. This 10X pillar page has to be strong, standalone content around which you can build the rest of your website’s content.

One more thing to keep in mind: Word count

Part of this exercise is about ranking in search engines, and search engines need content so they can start indexing the content that we’re uploading to our websites and social sites. Your pillar page needs to be in the neighborhood of 3000 words. Sound like a lot? It is, but remember that you’re providing comprehensive information about which you’re an authority.

Creating topic clusters, or subpages that roll up to pillar pages

Once your pillar page is in place, it’s time to start developing the topic clusters, or subpages and blogs, that will provide more details about that topic. These are supplemental materials that support your pillar page. A subpage provides the opportunity to expand on what you’ve highlighted on your pillar page. It also needs to be fairly comprehensive—think 2500 words. These subpages take the form of text, infographics, videos, a guidebook or ebook. This is where you get creative and attract your users. They can be fun and entertaining, and tell a story.

Creating another layer of content with blogposts

Blogposts are another layer of content that link to the subpages of your pillar page strategy. These can be very specific to one topic. Blogs are informal, temporal and can be extremely topical. They can also be shorter than pillar pages and subpages, at 750 words. None of those 350 word blogs—those just don’t provide enough words for Google to chew on. Blogs should link to subpages. You should also be creating an inner linking strategy that helps keep users on your site, drilling down to read more content. Look for content or topics among your pages that is relational and create these inner links.

Subpages need to link back to the pillar page, strengthening value for both the user and search engines. Internally linking your supporting material to your core pillar creates the organizational structure that search engines like.

Subpages: What goes on a pillar page?An estimated 84% of internet users are looking for content that provides a solution. Our attention spans are pathetically short. We want something that is personal, that reaches us on an emotional level. We love stories and want to be drawn in. Think about how you can work yourself into your descriptions. Provide case studies where appropriate.

Getting started with a pillar page strategy: Evaluate existing content

It starts with some analysis. Take a look at your Google Analytics account to see what pages your audience is coming to most often, paying attention to your bounce rate and where they’re entering and leaving your site. Look for drilldown through your site.

You don’t have to start from scratch. Do you have existing content that can act as either the pillar page or subpage content—or at least the starting point? I reorganized my own site and realigned the content. I also hunkered down and did some serious content development, which is going to be the case with most people who are adopting a pillar page strategy. Those word count requirements mean that content needs some beefing up.

Review your blogs; keep the good stuff and sunset the dated posts

Identify those blogposts that can be redirected and linked to your pillar subpages and those that should be either updated or sunsetted. I had some old blogs that went back for nearly ten years and many were dated and stale. I dumped these, and kept others and incorporated them into my pillar page strategy.

Share your expertise on social media

So now you’ve got this great content but no one knows it’s there. Start using your social media sites to share your expertise! Post to your Linked, Facebook and Instagram sites. Social becomes part of your overall pillar content marketing strategy.

Take the time to develop your pillars

Rethinking your goals, reorganizing and retrofitting content is a process. Take your time and do it right. Once complete, you will have created a stronger foundation for your website that will allow you to keep growing and building out your content.

Once you’ve created one pillar page strategy, you’re going to find that you will want to create more—further breaking down your authority into another grouping with a new pillar page hierarchy. Now you’ve got the tools and expertise to do this.

Ask us about developing a pillar-page strategy for your website. Contact Being Top of Mind.  We’re writers and content marketing specialists.