Marketing is constantly evolving. Strategies that we used to accept as the norm have become outdated, and newer ones take their place. The newest strategy out now is pillar-based marketing (PBM). It closely relates to its counterpart, account-based marketing (ABM). Whereas ABM targets a few key customers to convert, though, PBM targets a broader audience. It focuses on drawing in more groups of people than ABM does.
Because this strategy is still so new, few certifications exist for it. How, then, do you become an expert in this field? Through DemandJump University! More on that in a moment. First, let’s discuss what pillar-based marketing is and what certifications you need to improve your business’s marketing strategy.
What Is Pillar-Based Marketing?
Pillar-based marketing is a marketing strategy that involves creating content to appeal to your target audience. The goal is to write for your target audience so that you can increase your odds of getting onto page one of Google. We don’t really have to explain why you want to be on page one…but just so you know, 92% of all organic search traffic occurs on that page. That means you have to be in one of the top ten positions on Google search results for the vast majority of your audience to find you. Talk about pressure! Pillar-based marketing helps you climb the ranks to page one—and fast.
When choosing your target audience, think about an entire group you want to attract, not just a few specific people or companies like in account-based marketing. For instance, imagine that you work for a business-to-business (B2B) company that sells writing software. You might decide to focus on attracting news agencies or marketing companies because these groups would find your product the most useful. How about a business-to-consumer (B2C) example? Let’s say your business sells baby clothes. Your target audience would probably be new parents or grandparents.
Once you have your target audience figured out, it’s time to come up with a PBM marketing strategy. The strategy itself consists of a pillar topic, sub-pillars (usually three of them), and supporting blogs (usually twelve of them). You choose what to write about in each by looking at a pillar topic network. In the DemandJump platform, that means running an automated Insight Report by searching for a specific topic you want to rank number one for on search engines. From that report, you can pull keywords related to that topic to write about.
The best part about the keywords we generate for you is that they are the words that your audience is searching for. By including them in your content, you already start to address what your audience wants or needs to know. Our platform will also show you where you and your competitors rank for each of the keywords in the Insight Report so that you know which keywords to include in your content to boost you above your competitors in search results.
Now that you have an idea how to come up with a target audience and keywords, let’s take a closer look at each part of the pillar-based marketing strategy: the pillar, the sub-pillars, and the supporting blogs.
The pillar is the foundation of your strategy. It is what the rest of your content will link back to. You want to link your content back to your pillar because it will establish your pillar as an authority to search engines. This piece of content should consist of at least 3,000 words and 15-20 keywords. The topic will be a broad topic where you give your audience general information on that topic. You should not link to any other content on your website within the body copy of your pillar.
Sub-pillars are the second longest pieces of content within your pillar topic network. They have at least 2,000 words and 10-15 keywords. Sub-pillar titles will usually be keywords of medium length. The topic will be slightly more specific than your pillar topic. The only content from your website that they should link to is your pillar page. Want an example of a sub-pillar? You’re reading one right now!
Supporting blogs are the shortest pieces of content you will write. They consist of 750 words and 6-8 keywords. These blogs will focus on a long-tail keyword, usually a question. These will be the most specific pieces of content within your pillar topic network. Your supporting blogs should link back to both the related pillar and sub-pillar.
What Is a PBM Certification?
A PBM certification is exactly what it sounds like: a credential that identifies you as an expert in pillar-based marketing. Because this marketing strategy is so new, DemandJump University is the only place that currently offers a PBM training course. We offer a free PBM certification in each of these categories:
- Intro to Pillar-Based Marketing
- DemandJump Account Setup
- Pillar Topic Discovery
- Building a Pillar Strategy
- Creating Pillar Content
- Measuring Pillar Results
If you are an agency partner, we also offer special courses designed to empower you.
On top of the certifications listed above, there are several other marketing certifications out there to make the ones offered through DemandJump University even more effective. We describe each of them below. These certifications aren’t necessary to take the courses offered through DemandJump University.
Google Analytics Individual Qualification Certification
Google Analytics is a service that tracks traffic to your website and creates reports on it. Having a certification in it will allow you to better understand how many people are visiting and engaging with your website. Having knowledge in Google Analytics works well with DemandJump University’s certifications because it allows you to understand how successful your PBM strategy is.
To get a certification in this service, you should first take the courses offered through Google’s Analytics Academy. The courses are free and cover everything you need to know about Google Analytics. You can complete every course offered in the academy in about 4-6 hours.
HubSpot Academy YouTube Marketing Course
Video is becoming a key player in content marketing. In fact, 87% of video marketers say that video has increased their website’s traffic, and 80% say video has directly increased their sales. That’s why the HubSpot Academy YouTube Marketing course can be useful for your marketing team. This program has lessons that focus on these topics:
- YouTube Strategy: Making the Most of YouTube's Platform and Algorithm
- How to Create an Optimized YouTube Channel
- How to Create High-Performing Video Content on YouTube
- Scaling Your YouTube Channel: YouTube SEO and More
Understanding how the videos on YouTube work and what to incorporate into them will help you create effective videos of your own. To enroll in this course, sign up here.
Quintly Social Media Analytics Course
With billions of people using social media, it is a great way to connect to your audience. This free course offered through Quintly Academy has 23 lessons that teach you about social media analytics. Learn how to create a brand appearance for your business, set goals related to your social media accounts, and pick the right audiences for your social media accounts.
HubSpot Email Marketing Certification
HubSpot Academy offers a free certification in email marketing. The course consists of 9 lessons, 28 videos, and 9 quizzes that should take less than 3 ½ hours to complete. The lessons are:
- Understanding Email Marketing
- Creating a Content Management and Segmentation Strategy
- Sending the Right Email
- Creating a High-Performing Email
- Understanding Email Deliverability
- Outlining the Design of Your Marketing Emails
- Analyzing Your Marketing Emails
- Testing Your Marketing Emails
- Developing Relationships With Lead Nurturing
Emails are a great way to let your customers know about new content you have written. With this certification in email marketing, you can make sure that your customers will read your emails instead of sending them straight to trash.
Canva Design School
The images you include with your content, as well as the look of your website and posts, also have a big effect on whether people visit your website and read your content. Canva Design School can teach you how to use Canva to help with the appearance of social media posts, presentations, documents, and other content. They offer several free courses, including:
- Print Advertising
- Typography & Layout
- Creating a Logo
- Graphic Design Basics
Make the content you create even more appealing with attractive designs.
Is Pillar-Based Marketing Worth It?
We at DemandJump not only think pillar-based marketing is worth learning, but we think it’s essential for successful organic marketing. After using our PBM software, our customers think so, too. The numbers don’t lie, either. With our software, you could bump up your monthly website traffic by 14,450 visits and save $867,000 every year to get that same kind of traffic with paid search ads.
Google’s search algorithms don’t merely look at keywords used anymore. They also take into account relevance of the content, sources used, length of the content, and more. Pillar-based marketing is about more than slapping some keywords into your content and calling it done. It’s about creating the content that your audience wants to read and that can be considered an authority on the related topic. Only then will your content make it to the first page of a Google search.
How Do I Get Started With PBM? With DemandJump University
If you want to get a PBM certification for free, then take the courses on DemandJump University. You can learn everything you need to know about pillar-based marketing in a matter of a few hours. The style of the courses, too, lets you stop and come back to it if needed without losing any progress. Take these courses, apply what you learn, and watch your website traffic skyrocket.
Once you have the PBM strategy down, you can more easily use the DemandJump platform. With our platform, you can run the Insight reports we previously mentioned, access Content Briefs, and see how your content is performing. We even offer a team of skilled writers to write the content for you if you need it. Ready to become a pillar-based marketing pro? Enroll in DemandJump University today!