The quickest way to make your life easier when it comes to content creation is to create boundaries around what you will and won’t talk about.
The short version of this article is that you need to come up with 3 or 4 different topics in relation to your offer, that you will talk about 99% of the time with your content.
Great, thanks Becky. Real light-bulb moment… 😑
I know I know, you’ve probably heard you need to do this already. Content pillars, right?
And if I was also going to take a leap of faith, you’ve probably scribbled down a couple of topics somewhere and it hasn’t really helped. Sound familiar?
If I’m being honest I’m not entirely surprised, because when *most* people talk about Content Pillars they so often forget to really explain the reasoning behind it
And without understanding the reasons behind it – often we can misjudge what those key topics should actually be about, and the purpose that they serve.
So let’s change that, shall we?
And the way I’m going to explain it, is to talk about one of my favourite reference points – Harry Potter ⚡️
Using Harry Potter to Understand Content Pillars
Now, the main plot of the Harry Potter films is for Harry to defeat Voldemort and the main story or theme is about good versus evil.
But if that was allllll the film focused on, it wouldn’t be half as interesting or give us as many opportunities to fall in love with the characters and invest in the journey, would it?
So we have sub-themes of friendship, bravery, death and the importance of rebellion to name just a few.
We have Quidditch matches, the Ron and Hermoine romance and the highs and lows of Hagrids teaching career.
Now, these things don’t directly impact whether Harry is going to defeat Voldemort, but they do get us more invested in the story and the characters within it.
And JUST as importantly, we DON’T have scenes of the students sat doing homework, or doing their clothes washing or revising for their exams 😴
The filmmakers have been very intentional about giving us specific avenues to connect with the main plot, depending on our own personal preferences within the overall topics explored.
This is the exact same thing you want to be doing when you are developing your content pillars or content topics.
You want to identify the different avenues and topics that contribute to your overall story and the journey you want to take people on with your content.
You then want to be ruthless at setting and maintaining these boundaries, and remembering that we’ve set them because our audience doesn’t want to see the equivalent of us doing our clothes washing.
So how do you work out your Content Pillars?
Establishing these content pillars in a way that makes sense to your overall Brand Story is a whole other thing, and something that actually gets covered in Module 3 of Brand Message Bootcamp, but to get you started a great exercise is to do this:
- Write 30 questions or thoughts that your audience has in relation to your product, service or brand offering.
- Once you’ve done that, look for any recurring themes that come up and use those as the basis for your content pillars.
Don’t forget to write these down and put them somewhere you won’t forget!
Whether it’s post-it notes stuck to your computer screen, the screensaver on your Phone or any other place that will remind you whenever you’re creating content.
After all, making content won’t get easier if you’re don’t make it easy for yourself 😉
Let me know if you found this useful in the comments below!
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