Content Calendars Will Help You Stay On Track
If content is king, a content calendar is the most trusted advisor.
A staple in any content strategy, a content calendar, formerly known as an editorial calendar, is the document used to schedule when and where you are going to publish upcoming content. This can range from social media to promotional activities.
Frequency and consistency – these two factors play an important role in your marketing materials. If you have positioned your business as a thought leader in your industry, your audience will be looking for content. And humans are predictable in that they like to follow patterns. Therefore, so should your content.
Not only is a content calendar good for your audience, it is also good for you. Keeping your content and the distribution of that content organized is a must! Don’t start looking through Post-it Notes or a notebook for the answer – look to the content calendar.
Not sure if you posted the latest cat meme? Content calendar.
Did you already cover that topic? Content calendar.
Need an open space for breaking news? Content calendar.
Content calendars will help you stay on track. The days of forgetting to post a birthday message of congratulations are in the past. If it is in the content calendar, it should be scheduled and ready to go!
Now let’s say you have made it to the big leagues… and your marketing team has multiple members? How do you all collaborate and know who is doing what and when? You guessed it – content calendar.
This is a quick, easy and effective way to ensure that your team is on the same page and not duplicating work.
EXPLAIN THE NEW TOOL
Make sure that everyone involved in the calendar has a clear understanding of what everything means. This will be a net positive in the long run as it will alleviate any miscommunications or misunderstandings.
Forgetful? Add a key. Maps have them… so can content calendars!
This is a tool used to make things easier, not more complicated. Over time you will understand what works for you and your team. There is not a one-size-fits-all template for this so adjust it to the needs of your organization.
KEEP TO A SCHEDULE
The main goal of a content calendar is to make sure that your content gets created and published in a timely manner and on the correct platform.
Know ahead of time what needs to be written and who is going to provide the information needed to write compelling content to engage the audience. Remember, not all content is applicable to all platforms. Facebook content will have a different tone and tenor than LinkedIn.
How far ahead can you schedule? It depends on your organization, industry and audience. Some companies are able to schedule a year in advance while others are not sure what the next week looks like. Figure out an optimal schedule for your team and don’t be afraid to measure and modify if needed.
WHERE TO POST?
Picking the right platform for your organization can be a daunting task. I recommend that you start with something simple and with low initial investment. You guessed it – Google Sheets.
This is a free platform that has (nearly) all of the capabilities as Excel with the bonus of easy sharing and editing.
There are a number of paid services or template calendars that are available. The most important thing when choosing a content calendar is that it works for you.
PROMOTE YOUR WORK
What good is content if no one can find it? After all, these are promotional activities that are used to drive traffic to your website and engagement with your audience.
I prefer to have all my promotional activities included on my content calendar. This allows me to know at a glance where and when certain content pieces have been published. Once again, this calendar is used to make your daily life easier!
It is important to have a differentiator from your regular content creation, whether that is a different color or location within the calendar. You want to be able to notice these differences easily.
GREAT IDEAS LIVE HERE
If you are like me, you have multiple million-dollar ideas every day, but where do they live? Well, mine live in the content calendar. Sometimes they get scheduled immediately. Other times they are sidelined until the time is available.
Your content calendar is a great place to store future ideas. It keeps them organized and top of mind for when you need them.
Free up some space in your mind by utilizing a the calendar. Organization is paramount when you are juggling a number of tasks and responsibilities. A properly built and utilized content calendar can increase productivity, creativity and motivation – not to mention engagement and traffic on the other end.
Check out our starter template linked below and contact us if you would like to learn more.