You’ve probably heard me talk about content once or twice…and I hope you’ve caught on to this SUPER important concept by now: Content is everything!
Around here, we believe that what you post today will impact your business for weeks to come, and you never have a better chance to engage your followers than RIGHT NOW.
That’s where content comes in.
What is Content?
Content is information. More specifically, content is both useful and high-quality information that shares a story. People consume content in a lot of different ways – through video, graphics, blog posts, podcasts, on their phone, on their laptop, via Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest. Ultimately, the content you create and share will influence and teach your followers SOMETHING.Content is both useful and high-quality information that shares a story.Click To Tweet
That something needs to be part of your plan! And that, my friends, is why you need a Content Calendar!
What is a Content Calendar?
A content calendar acts as a guide to what you post or share in the coming weeks and months. Your content calendar is essentially a roadmap for your website and social media. It will help you avoid “shiny object syndrome,” and will keep you on track to meet your goals.
You might say, your content calendar is your new best friend! (If best friends were digital and super bossy.)
A Content Calendar Allows You to:
- Improve your brainstorming
- Organize future content
- Identify holes and inconsistencies in your planning
- Plan out images (what you need to photograph/curate/design/edit)
- Stay consistent
- And more!
Content calendars function best as a working document. This means using something like Google Sheets or Excel. In this document, you’ll plan out what you want to post when, build out a schedule, and then figure out when to create the supporting media (like graphics!) you’ll need for each post.
You can get as detailed or simple as you want with your content calendar. Maybe it’s just one tab in a spreadsheet that has a week’s worth of slots listed out and you plug in your ideas. Perhaps you use a digital organizer like Trello and get all fancy! Or maybe you go extra simple and just print out a blank calendar or use your paper planner.
What matters most in developing a content calendar is that you have a place to keep track of all your ideas, and a way to organize them by date so you know what’s coming up!
Why is a Content Calendar SO Important?
Consistency. There are lots of reasons (like maintaining your sanity), but consistency has to be the TOP reason. Your followers want to know they can rely on you for consistent content, and the best way to make sure you’re providing that consistency is to have a plan.
Without a plan in place, it’s easy to go crazy and post a lot all at once while you’re thinking about it…and then forget about it for days because you know you JUST posted stuff!
An added bonus of having a content calendar is a boost in organization and productivity! You’ll be able to see what’s coming so you can prep and plan ahead. No more last-minute reactionary posting. No more worrying that you forgot to share something important.
Best of all, you’ll become known as a reliable source of consistent content by your followers. They will know that they can rely on you for quality and consistent updates.
Building a Content Calendar
Start with Your Goals
Before you start creating your content plan, you need to define a few goals. By this, I mean that you need to know where you are going BEFORE you try plotting your course to that destination.
Do you want to gain 100 consistent NEW followers per month? That’s a goal, and knowing that will help you understand how you need to plan your content to achieve that goal.
Review Your Analytics
Analytics are the secret sauce to building an effective content plan. Checking your analytics will help you figure out when your followers are online, and the best times to get them to engage with your content. That’s when you want to post!
Business accounts on all social media platforms have analytics that can give you some great insight into your clients and followers and help you understand when the best time is to connect.
What to Include in Your Content Calendar
The simplest content calendar can just include Daily Posts. Create a consistent plan for what you’ll share each day. A while back, I shared some ways to tap into the power of hashtags for daily posts on Instagram. You can easily convert these ideas to Facebook and beyond.
Events and Holidays. It’s always a great idea to include upcoming Holidays (Christmas, Easter, Halloween, Mother’s Day, etc.) in your Content Calendar. Holiday posts can create a wonderful connection with your clients and followers. If you have a sale coming up, or another event you’d like to share about, put that on your calendar as well.
Product Launches. If you’re in Direct Sales, you know that your company is always launching new products. You want to take advantage of this knowledge by planning new product launches into your content calendar so you can let your followers know about them! Small Business Owners frequently launch their own products, so make sure you include those!
An In-Depth Content Calendar
Is your content marketing plan a little complicated? Here is a break down of everything you might consider including in your Content Calendar:
- Title of the Post (what it’s all about)
- Type of Content (text, video, graphic, etc.)
- Publish Date (when will it show up online)
- Purpose (educate, empower, engage, entertain)
- Target Audience (who are you trying reach? Include relevant hashtags)
- Distribution Channels (where will this be published? Facebook, Insta?)
- Call to Action (what exactly do you want people to do after they see your post)
- Images (make sure any graphics you are using are branded and ready to go)
Ready to Implement a Content Calendar?
I can’t wait to hear how you’re using a content calendar to streamline your social media presence! Let me know in the comments about your favorite part of planning ahead.
Need help figuring out how to create a content calendar? I’m here for you! Click here to book a chat with me and let’s talk about how I can help you!
How about a FREE Content Calendar you can download and use right away? Stop wondering what to post and boost your engagement on social media right away with this free resource I’ve created just for you!
Want some accountability and consistency yourself? I’d love to have you join me and over a hundred other entrepreneurs, business owners, and consultants in the #ThinkSocial Society today! Get discounts on courses, daily accountability threads, bonus graphics, and access to me AND the entire #ThinkSocial team by joining the Society now!