Last week, HubSpot hosted their annual INBOUND conference in Boston, Massachusetts, where they talked about the latest and greatest developments in marketing, eCommerce and HubSpot technology.
Here, we highlight a key development in HubSpot’s methodology that you should be aware of in order to make the most out of the CRM and be effective in your marketing efforts.
Rethinking Keyword Strategies
With their notion of Pillar Content, HubSpot highlighted a key shift that’s happening in the way that marketers do keyword research and develop their keyword strategies.
The main idea here is simple: marketers and online businesses shouldn’t simply toss individual long-tail keywords onto their blogs or landing pages in the hopes of improving their SEO or increasing their ranking on search engines. This is the equivalent of throwing sand on the ground, with each individual word having its own page and its own disconnected existence: it’s messy, scattered and not conducive to a site-wide, cohesive strategy. On top of that, this kind of execution makes ranking the focus rather than getting a larger message across.
Google itself has recognized this problem and is trying to move away from rank as a signal of whether or not to target a specific keyword. Instead, they are shifting the focus to searcher’s intent. That way, keyword-rich, content-poor sites won’t end up on the first page of search engines, and people will instead find what they’re actually looking for.
Defining Pillar Content
To this end, HubSpot has introduced the idea of Pillar Content. With this notion, companies have central “pillar” topics related to their business, and they use their blogs and keywords to internally link and drive traffic to this pillar content. It’s essentially propping up a key topic with supporting information, thereby unifying the central themes of the site and bolstering key messages. The scattered sand, then, is suddenly formed into a sandcastle.
This pillar content could take many forms. It could be:
- An eBook or content offer
- A long-form blog
- A homepage topic on your site
- An umbrella keyword
That said, it appears most often as a main page on your website. Ideally, you should have between six and eight pieces of pillar content on your site. This kind of centralization of information will not only unify your message but also move your visitors down the funnel more quickly and effectively.
Remember Your Basics
For this to work, you have to understand your target audience and pick the most effective, informative pillar content for them. This is a good time, then, to go back to basics.
Look into your existing keyword strategy, blogs, and landing pages: what content or topics are resonating with your site visitors? Where are they bouncing? This kind of persona research and strategizing is absolutely necessary for this pillar methodology - or any keyword strategy - to work. After all, if you focus on the wrong people or the wrong message, you’ll get the wrong results.
Use this information to build your comprehensive keyword strategy and support your pillar content in order to have a high-performing, fully optimized online presence.