19 Nov How to plan your pillar page and topic cluster pages
Think. Research. Plan. Outline. Write. Design. Deploy. Promote. And measure.
Repeat. That’s the formula for successful healthcare content marketing.
When creating your pillar page and topic clusters, don’t think in terms of keywords. Think in terms of topics. What topic do you want to cover? Is it one where you can provide a lot of valuable content? Can you be an authority on this particular topic? If the answers are yes, you have your topic, which becomes the foundation for your pillar page.
Create your buyer personas
To promote your brand effectively, having a good understanding of your audience is critical. That’s why it’s helpful to create customer personas—avatars of your typical target audience.
As a skilled healthcare marketer, you probably have a good understanding of your audience. But it always helps to review. You can even conduct some research or interviews—either with your audience or the people who may know them best: your sales reps.
Begin by asking yourself: who is my audience? What do they want? What are their pain points? Who are their primary influencers? And where are they in the buying cycle? The very top of the sales funnel, where they are exploring potential solutions to their need? Or further along, where they are considering a specific type of product or service? Or even further along, where they are weighing specific brands of options? Or near the bottom, as they draw closer to a decision?
Once you understand the buyer’s journey, you can create topic clusters that best answer their particular needs.
Create your topic clusters
Okay—we said to think in terms of topics rather than keywords. But keyword research can help inform your choice of topics and topic clusters—as long as each topic cluster relates back to your pillar page.
There are many online resources to help you expand and better understand your keyword research:
• SEMRush is a great tool to analyze your competitors’ SEO strategy
• AnswerThePublic cranks out every useful phrase and question people are asking around your keyword
• Ubersuggest provides keyword suggestions and your competitors’ top SEO pages
• Moz helps with keyword research, site audits, SEO reporting, and so much more
• LSIGraph is a free keyword search generator
Now, create an outline
When preparing our pillar page and topic clusters, keyword research revealed that our audience uses the phrase healthcare content marketing over healthcare advertising, medical marketing, healthcare communications, etc.
Our research also revealed that there was little if any information on pillar pages and topic clusters specifically for healthcare marketers. Our goal: to fill that gap. To help healthcare marketers understand the importance of pillar pages and topic clusters and show how to create them.
Here’s how we outlined our pillar page and topic clusters:
Pillar pages and topic clusters for healthcare content marketing
• 6 reasons why you should be using pillar pages and topic clusters to improve your healthcare content marketing
• How did searches and Google evolve over the years?
• How to plan your pillar page and topic clusters
• How to create your pillar page and topic clusters
• Promoting your pillar page and topic clusters and measuring the results
What about your existing content?
You probably have blog posts, print and digital materials, videos, webinars, podcasts…whatever…that all deal with specific topics. Do an audit, group them according to topic (and revise if necessary), then create a pillar page about that specific topic and link all your existing content back to it. Voila—you have a brand new and relevant pillar page and topic clusters!