Blogging Credibility – Why Some Bloggers Just Ooze Authority

Blogging Credibility2Some bloggers just have it.

The innate ability to write posts that resonate with readers. Posts that grab attention, teach you something valuable, and then leave you wanting more from them. You know who they are. They are the bloggers that have become superstars in their own niches. The ones whose names are easily recognizable and known by all.

How do they do this? It’s not that they are the best writers out there. Or even the smartest. Okay, they’re pretty great at writing and they’re pretty darn smart, but those are not the reasons.

These bloggers are authentic. They have authority.

But they didn’t get there overnight. They built their authority over time. And a lot of it has to do with the type of content they write.

It’s not necessarily about writing new content. Authority bloggers often write about topics that have already been covered. It’s not what they write about, it’s how they write it. They write pillar content; content that tells a story, teaches, entertains, inspires, motivates, encourages and makes you think.

The good news is, anyone can write pillar content that will help grow their audience and increase their authority. The trick is knowing exactly what will continue to inspire, and how to write it.

What is a Pillar Blog Post?

Pillar content goes far beyond a regular blog post. While a regular how-to article will tell you the steps; a pillar post will tell you the steps, explain each one carefully, include images to help make it clearer, and more.

Pillar content is something that educates your audience, covering something they are currently struggling with. It is usually a comprehensive guide that can include:

  • A case study that uses real numbers and data
  • Examples and stories of real people and real results
  • Screenshots, image or video

And most importantly, pillar content is evergreen. It’s something that won’t expire soon and will continue to inspire long after it’s been published.

Crafting the Perfect Pillar Blog Post

Because pillar content goes beyond what a typical blog post does, it makes sense that it would require just a little extra work. To really write a blog post that is authentic and demonstrates authority, follow these steps.

Step #1: Understanding your audience

When the point of creating content is to increase your authority, that content should be something that is important.

But not to you. It should be important to your readers.

To figure out what’s really important to them, you need to start by understanding your audience.

You may have heard about profiling your readers, to compile information about their genders, social status, income, family size, maybe even making up an “ideal reader,” going so far as to envision this person in your head.

I’m not going to tell you to do that.

What I am going to tell you to do is to spy a little on your readers to understand them and find out what they really want.

Because they’re already telling you. You just need to know how to listen.

Start by:

  • Looking through your comments. What are common issues or questions that keep coming up? What concerns do your readers seem to have? What points do they agree or disagree with you on?
  • Looking at your emails. If you have an email list (and you should!) you have a direct connection to your readers. When they respond to your emails, what comments or questions do they leave? Make note of these things, as these are what’s important to your readers.
  • Checking social media. What are your readers, or potential readers, saying on social media? Many people come here to vent their frustrations, so it’s a great place to figure out what they want to know about.

Step #2: Analyzing what others are writing

Now that you have a better understanding of what your audience wants, look at what other industry leaders are writing.

Take a look at their most popular pieces to get an idea of what your target audience is really interested in. Use a tool like BuzzSumo or renoun to give you an idea of what topics are trending and getting the most shares on social media.

Step #3: Write something epic

You understand what your audience wants to learn from you, you know what others are writing about. Now it’s time to write your own epic pillar content.

While there are no set rules for creating authority-inducing content, here are some ideas.

  • How-to article. These are pretty standard when it comes to pillar content. Whatever it is your audience wants to learn, write an in-depth post teaching them how to do it. Go step-by-step and include images and screenshots to really help your readers understand what you’re explaining.
  • List article. List articles are great. They go above and beyond, giving readers a bunch of tips, ways, tools, etc. To create an epic list post, start by looking at list posts that are already popular. Now, add to it. If it’s a top 10 list, create a top 20 or a top 50 list. Take something that readers already like, and make it even better.
  • Case study article. Want to really drive your point home? Write a case study! Feature someone your ideal reader will relate to and tell their story. Include data and images that highlight your point.
  • Resource article. Provide your readers with the ultimate resource article. This can go deeper than a list article.

Make sure you write with authority – you are, after all, an authority!

Step #4: Promote your content

Once you’ve written your amazing content, make sure it gets seen.

  • Pin it to your homepage
  • Include it in your “favorite” posts widget
  • Mention and link to them in your other posts

And of course, send them to your email subscribers and share them on social media.

Step #5: Keep them updated

Pillar content should be something that’s timeless. The content should always apply, no matter when your readers access it.

But things can change in every industry. Stay on top of industry news and update your content as needed. Make sure your content continues to provide the best and most current advice.

There are some bloggers out there who never fail and delivering the best content. They write with such authority that other bloggers begin to look up to them. They turn to these authority bloggers for the latest advice, and follow their tips to the tee.

But guess what? Nothing is stopping you from becoming the next authority blogger. And it starts with writing content that people want to read.

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  1. Hi Corrine,

    I’m going to take a different direction on one of your recommendations, and not only is it based on #1 but that’s the one I’m taking a different take on. lol

    I’ve been contemplating this thing about “figuring out what your audience wants” for some time now. I think it’s a much harder prospect to do than most people believe it is. To that extent, I’m not really even trying to do it… at least not intentionally.

    What I’ve found is that there are topics that will get people reading, get people talking, and every once in a while get them enthused, whether or not they agree with you. I tend to believe that trying to intentionally get people to react well to every single post is like Michael Jackson trying to top Thriller with every subsequent album; it literally drove him crazy and to depression. Frankly, he’s my favorite artist of all time but I wouldn’t wish that on anyone.

    I’ll say this though. If people have a specific niche then it behooves them to try writing to that niche. As long as they recognize that everything they write isn’t going to be the best article they’ve ever written, and that they also realize that even if it is the best thing they’ve ever written that it might not get the attention they hoped for, to feel good about themselves because they know they produced quality.

    How’s that? 🙂
    Mitch Mitchell recently posted…Determine Who And What You Are Regardless Of OthersMy Profile

  2. Hi Corinne!

    Ah, yes… the almighty pillar blog post.

    Speaking of which, I haven’t created one of those in a while. A lot of the higher traffic / more detailed posts I have relate to a niche I’m no longer pursuing… hmm, that’s no good, is it?

    Excellent post! Sharing now.


    Brent Jones recently posted…Position Yourself for Success with Brent GallowayMy Profile

  3. Hi Corinne,

    Oh how I dream to be like my favorite bloggers, a few of them actually. 🙂

    This is great information you shared here, very detailed for those who want to know more about creating pillar content. And I agree with the ideas you shared for getting started. I find get ideas from the comments and comments my Facebook group.

    I’ve never done a case study article…I think it would feel like homework so I stay away from those, hehe…but in all honesty, I do need to create a few of those. 🙂

    I hope you had a great vacation!

    Corina Ramos recently posted…Why Your Visitors Aren’t Sticking AroundMy Profile

    • Corinne says:

      Hey Cori!
      I do too! There are many bloggers who I want to be when I grow up 🙂

      Mining your FB group for topics is a great idea! Especially when someone who is just starting out is asking something, you know that’s that new bloggers or freelancers want to know.

      Vacation was so fun, but exhausting! One kid didn’t want to come home and the other was excited to see his toys again 🙂 He totally wanted to leave Disneyland. 5-yr-old boys are funny that way.

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