If there’s one thing many niche bloggers struggle with, it’s the fact that they are capable of creating numerous blog posts but unable to see them rank well in search engine results pages (SERPs).
For a long time, search engines focused on quantity rather than the quality of posts that were on a domain. That caused many marketers to adopt a strategy where they were churning out a lot of content, but very little that resonated strongly with their target audience.
Today, Google and other search engines have put focus on the quality of the page their users will see whenever they make a decision about which sites will rank at the top of the SERPs.
They realized that if their users were dissatisfied with the results of the pages they were prompted to go to, they would simply find another search engine to use that delivered better options.
Now, you can embrace a better strategy that allows you to spend your time crafting a blog post that serves the needs of your audience fully so that they don’t feel the need to go elsewhere.
This content, known as pillar blog posts, are organized and written in a way that covers a specific topic in-depth, answering all of the potential questions your reader may have and providing ample information for them to make a decision from that point on.
If you’re not used to creating these lengthy, comprehensive posts, artificial intelligence (AI) tools do a wonderful job of helping you figure out what to include and exclude, how to structure the information, the best way to write it, and more.
Because the creation of pillar blog posts usually takes longer, relying on AI to assist you means you will be able to publish more of these high-ranking content pieces that can position you as a top competitor in your niche.
AI Can Guide You in Choosing the Best Pillar Blog Topics
Creating pillar posts is a strategy that can begin boosting your blog rapidly in the SERPs. When you have pillar blog posts serving the needs of your target audience, not only will your readers and search bots appreciate them, but other bloggers will see the content as a solid authority piece they’ll want to link to, as well.
You don’t have to create all pillar posts for your blog. You will have normal posts that aren’t of the level of pillar posts, where you exhaust every bit of information. These smaller posts will be very specific topics that will link back to your pillar posts in support of them as the main hub.
So if you picture a mind map, with a main topic like list building, you might have smaller topics like creating a lead magnet, building a landing page, driving traffic, and others as the spikes leading out from that primary topic.
Those pages might be big enough for pillar posts of their own, or they might be so narrow, you just have a limited amount of information to share with your audience. But all of the “spike” topics leading out from the main one will be in your pillar post.
This is a cluster effect, where you build pillar posts around topics that have lots of smaller sub-topics. So another example might be anti-aging. Your primary circle in the mind map might be anti-aging regimens.
But the items spiking out from that could include anti-aging skincare regimens, anti-aging brain health routines, anti-aging mobility and fitness exercises, anti-aging nutrition, and more.
You can use AI tools to help you brainstorm a list of topics that would serve me well as pillar blog posts for your audience. It’s always a good idea to prompt AI with a query that allows it to tell you what it needs in order to achieve a task for you.
So we are going to prompt our AI tool like this: “I have a blog that teaches newbie marketers how to succeed online. I need a list of topics that would make good pillar blog posts. What do you need from me to give me a list of those topics?”
Your AI tool might respond similarly to this:
- I need to know who your target audience is and what experience they have in the industry.
- I need to know what their pain points and challenges are
- I need to know what types of topics you are already covering on your blog
- I need to know if there are common questions your readers ask you about online marketing
- I need to know which posts have received the most attention on your blog
So for part of this, we can give AI the information that we have. For other parts, we can make our AI tool do the brainstorming for us and figure out these answers on its own, with us serving as supervisors.
We will respond to the request like this:
- My target audience is newbies who want to begin making money online. Some are brand new and know nothing, and others have been trying for a while, but have not yet had success, so they’re still learning. They may not know certain terminology.
- Their pain points and challenges include fearing failure, not understanding the technical steps, not having money to invest in courses and tools, and lacking knowledge of what to do strategically. Can you come up with other pain points and challenges this audience might have?
- The topics I already cover on my blog are the basics like business model options, niche choice discussions, list building, email marketing, social marketing, and mindset.
- Common questions people often ask are about how to build a list, how to pick a profitable niche, how to build a website, and how to drive traffic to their site.
- The posts that have received the most attention are the ones about list building and traffic.
Pushing AI To Get Quality Content
So in the response about pain points and challenges, notice that we asked AI to give us the answers, although we prompted it with what we knew off the top of our heads. We’ll then deliver this back to AI to see what ideas it gives us.
AI then responds with pillar blog title ideas like this:
- List Building 101: Tips, Tools, and Best Practices for Beginners
- The Ultimate Guide to Making Money Online: Tips and Strategies for Beginners
- Overcoming the Fear of Failure: How to Build Confidence as a Newbie Marketer
- How to Start an Online Business with No Money: A Beginner’s Guide
- Choosing a Profitable Niche: Tips and Strategies for Newbie Marketers
- Website Building 101: A Step-by-Step Guide for Newbies
- The Power of Content Marketing: How to Create Content That Attracts and Converts
- Social Media Marketing for Newbies: Tips and Best Practices
- How to Drive Traffic to Your Website: Tips and Strategies for Newbie Marketers
- How to Set Realistic Goals for Your Online Business
- The Pros and Cons of Affiliate Marketing for Newbie Marketers
You can ask it to give you an idea of what would be in each of these if you’d like to see a preview of what it’s thinking in terms of content. Make sure that you go through and weed out anything you don’t care to pursue.
How To Prompt AI For The Best End Result
Prompt AI like this: “I like the idea of List Building 101: Tips, Tools and Best Practices for Beginners. What do you think would go into a pillar blog post like this?”
It might give you a complete outline or a list of topics such as steps to getting started, best practices for lead magnet creation, optimization of your opt-in form, email marketing tips, list segmentation, strategies for list growth, advanced techniques for list building, list hygiene and management, etc.
We want to go through and remove anything we feel isn’t a good fit. For example, if our post is all about list building, we don’t want to veer off into email marketing territory. That should be reserved for a different pillar blog post.
With the list-building topic it suggested, we can create a pillar post that ranks high and also gives us plenty of monetization opportunities because we can promote things like email autoresponder tools, page-building tools, PLR stores, and more.
If you see other ideas you like, save those so that you can use them as pillar blog posts in the future. You want to have a publishing schedule that allows you to maintain a consistent presence online that your readers will appreciate and search engines will notice.
You may also find subtopics in the outline that you can immediately identify as things that would be beneficial to create as a pillar blog post. For Example, One Of The Main Topics AI Gave Us Was Social Media Marketing For Newbies: Tips and Best Practices.
When we ask AI what should go into this particular topic, you may find something about creating engaging content, using social media advertising, understanding social media analytics, etc.
Any of those would work well as a pillar blog post of its own because they are broad enough topics to have several items within it. So put these on your schedule for future pillar blog post creations, too.
If you see something that you like, but you feel like it’s too broad for you to rank for, simply ask AI if it can help you come up with a more narrow topic or a keyword phrase that would be easier for you to dominate in the SERPs with.
So for our example, we might say: “I like the one about List Building 101: Tips, Tools and Best Practices for Beginners, but that seems hard to rank for. What is a title with a keyword phrase about this topic that I can have a shot at ranking well for in the SERPs?”
It then returns results such as:
- List Building Tips for Beginners: How to Build Your Email List from Scratch
- How to Build an Email List: A Beginner’s Guide to List-Building Strategies
- List Building for Newbies: Tips and Tools for Growing Your Email List
Any one of these would make a great article title, but personally, I would choose “List Building Tips for Beginners: How to Build Your Email List from Scratch”. This not only sounds like a great topic for humans and search bots, but if it’s well-written, it can be a fantastic resource for others to link to as well.
If you are looking for a good — and affordable — AI Content tool, I have two that I highly recommend: this one turns any YouTube video into a fully formatted WordPress blog post, while this one combines 50 different AI capabilities in one dashboard (it’s awesome!)