Content marketing is a major key to successful lead generation.

Say you own a local business and you’ve started marketing online. That’s a good start, but soon you may see your page views becoming stagnant. You may get a couple thousand hits to your site a month, but you’re concerned because this number doesn’t seem to grow. Even if you have a blog, there are so many sites on the Internet it is difficult to rank your content, within search engines, high enough to gain significant traffic.

The solution may be a simple shift of changing your strategy from Keyword Marketing to Content Marketing.

What is Content Marketing for blogs?

Traditional means of creating a blog post suggest you do keyword research and write blogs for the words that you want to rank for. The more blogs you write with those keywords, the more likely at least one of them will start ranking. With content marketing, you create a cluster of blog articles around a specific content with the center piece of the cluster being your Pillar Content.

How does Pillar Content work into Content Marketing? Your Pillar Content is an authoritative piece of content. This is much larger and more detailed than the average blog. Your pillar content should work to answer any questions the searcher may have about the topic at hand. It is your authoritative piece of content. It should give the reader all the general information they need to know on the subject and serve as their beginning reference point.

What if they want to know more? That’s where the Cluster part comes into Content Marketing. Your Pillar Content should ultimately be divided up into sections, like a book. Each section will be linked to other blogs that will go into even more depth on the subject.

This is an image from NewsCred represents your content marketing bundle. Your Pillar Content is the yellow boxes.You will be creating long tail keyword blog posts around this pillar content to give a baseline about the content you will dive farther into with the blue and red sections.

The supporting articles you write within the blue sections will link back to the pillar content. And the red sections will link to the blue. When Search Engines start crawling the pages you create in this content marketing campaign, they will see the links back to the pillar content and understand that it is the authoritative piece. In so doing, it will rank the pillar content higher. By association, it will also start ranking the cluster content higher.

Let’s put a Content Marketing Plan into action

Step 1.

Figure out what content you want to rank for. We recommend our clients to start with the things they really want their business to be known for. This could be the one service you are best at, or the product that is the most profitable for you.

Step 2.

Set an achievable goal for your Content Marketing Campaign. Once you know what product/service you are going to focus your content marketing around, set a goal. It should be difficult to achieve, but possible. Try looking at the metrics you’ve collected for traffic or impressions in the 12 months and increase it by 20%.

Step 3.

Write your Pillar Content. This will probably take you a while. Depending on your blogging style and business type, these pieces should be between 1,000 to 5,000 words long. It should be broken up into sections a that will be expanded on with further cluster content.

Publishing your pillar content once is not the end. You should go back to it often, make changes, and add more to it. It could be a new section you want to add, or simply adding more to the sections you have. Always make sure it is fresh enough that it will keep potential customers coming back to read it.

Step 4.

Start writing your content cluster articles. These should also be written and updated often. The title for your cluster articles should have the primary content keyword in it. But you would be best off to make it more of a long tail keyword. These blog articles can be shorter than your pillar content, but Google Recommends making them at least 300 words. The more content you can put in these articles, the better they will perform within search engines.

Step 5.

Get your Content Marketing Campaign seen on Search Engines. We won’t get into a lot of detail here, but you will need to create a Google Webmaster account and have these new pages indexed. They will be indexed eventually anyway, but this will give it a head start. You should also start working on getting back-links to your articles. As a digital marketing agency, getting content seen is one of our specialties. This can be a very involved process for a business owner, which is why we recommend outsourcing this step.

Step 6.

Share your content with current and perspective clients. Share your awesome new content on your social media channels. If you use a CRM or have a newsletter, send your content through those channels as well. Don’t be afraid to use paid advertising in this step.

Our clients have seen success implementing this process in as little as three months. You should be able to reach your achievable goal with the help of blogs in our marketing mix within a few months. Once you reach that goal, start on a new content marketing goal and repeat the strategy.