What is a content pillar? That’s marketing speak for a theme. Content pillars lead your social media plan to build an audience. Once you feel comfortable posting on your social platform, the next step is to identify what you want to write about regularly. These “pillars” will support your platform and help you create many great things for your followers.
Authentic Content Pillars
Many people are stuck on what to talk about, so they randomly post stuff just to be “active”. Sadly, that won’t work if you are serious about using social media as a tool to build a following. You are fighting short attention spans, an overwhelming amount of users, and a mysterious algorithm. I know it can feel artificial to “create” based on marketing principles and conventions. However, many people strike a balance between what comes natrually, and what they need to communicate to grow.
The Content Pillar You Know Best
So here’s what I know from working with artists and writers for most of my life–you are not the best judges of what is interesting to the people who consume your books, music, films, etc. To authors writing is a purpose, a curse, a discipline, a dream, annoying, easy, difficult, frustrating, and whatever other terms you want to throw at it. To readers or aspiring writers, your world is a mystery, filled with things they can’t reach on their own. With this in mind, let’s play with some sample topics around the content pillar of WRITING:
Topic 1: A writing journal, what do you feel like when you write. Repeat for every day that you sit down at your computer.
Topic 2: Writing advice, tips you provide and those you find from other famous or non-famous writers that you research online.
Topic 3: For fantasy writers, world-building and character-building. Here you can talk about your process and those of your colleagues, or you can literally talk about the world and characters in your books. Bring them to life for your audience and talk about what you can’t find between the pages.
Your Goal When Creating Your Content
Your goal is to be able to start with your theme, then take your topics and create a combination of feed posts, stories, reels, or their equivalents on your platform of choice. For example if you choose to do a journal you could include views that inspire writing as your images. You could do a reel of something your house pets do when you sit down. My cat likes (demands) to jump on my lap, then she meows like crazy because I’m typing instead of paying attention to her. I would put your topic at the top of a page and then jot down all the things that go with it from a visual and an internal point of view.
Now, look what you’ve done. You have some topic ideas that are original to you, and. they can educate and engage your audience. Ideally it is a good idea to have a couple of pillars that you plan on your content calendar for the month. Think about who you are trying to reach and what will encourage them to pay attention to what you are saying. Here are some things we have done for clients over the years that have been successful:
- For a writer of plausible thriller fiction, we created a tag line for a content pillar that tells readers about Things You Should Know But Don’t. Every week there are posts relating to something going on in the world that isn’t on the front page, but is important to know. We organize the posts by topic depending on what is being covered in the news.
- A male author writing a female character has a platform dedicated to the character who covers her fascinating life, and how to navigate the world as a twenty-something woman. Her pillars are a regular “Diary” and “Ask Gina”, which is a parody of Dear Abby. When a new book comes out she talks about what’s happening in her life and teases out aspects to look forward to in the future.
The Simple Things
Once you establish the content pillars to lead your social media planning, you will feel more grounded. It will be easier to generate ideas for different kinds of posts. As you grow your following, you will learn about your audience and may get suggestions from them. Sometimes it is the simplist thing that can delight a community. Recently, an author I met said that she started posting sunrises, because she likes to write at that time. This took off for her, because, as she said, who doesn’t love sunrises?
For more information and to read more about content creation search “content marketing” on our blog page. You can also read a recent post Optimizing Your Link in Bio