A social media content calendar is a tool that you can include in your social media marketing tool set to assist schedule and plan your content on social media in advance. Like a standard calendar, you need to determine the type of material and time when you want to publish your posts. The only difference is that a social calendar is specific to social media. Continue reading to learn everything you require on social media content calendars.
Why do you need a social calendar?
Research shows that 92% of digital marketers utilise social media to share out their content. However, the enormous amounts of material make it difficult for marketers to become prominent in the newsfeeds of your target audience. Since organic reach is continuously declining, we are past the era of using disorganised social media marketing strategies – regardless of the quality of your content.
Do not miss significant dates
A social calendar can assist you to plan ahead of all the important dates on social media and other actual holidays like new years and thanksgiving days. You will not miss a chance to boost your brand while engaging with the audience on these special days.
Have a consistent schedule for posting
One of the best and simplest ways of generating followers on social media is posting on a regular basis. People will not follow you when your last post was at the beginning of the year. A consistent schedule for posting illustrates that your brand is worth the time invested by your target audience to visit your page. Also, it trains your existing followers to wait for and engage with your material regularly. This develops long-lasting relationships that result to purchases.
A social media content calendar can assist you to publish posts regularly across all social media platforms by making sure that content is created and scheduled before. You don’t have to release 25 posts on a single day to cover the days that you didn’t add a post.
Discover a perfect mix of content
People don’t like individuals who always speak about themselves. This case applies to brands too when it comes to social media marketing. Yes, the audience needs to know when you have an item for sale. But they need to see other kinds of content like responses to their questions and interactions, content generated by other users, and posts about various topics in your field of business.
Through research, marketers find out what works best for them. You should divide your content proportionally to engage the audience, to outsource content from other relevant sources, and to generate leads. Most of your content should be interesting and helpful information to your audience and the rest promoting your brand. Scheduling your social media content ahead of time ensures that the content you post contains a fair amount of information from each set. Otherwise, you will end up losing clients with boring promotional messages.
Determine what works the process
Keeping records of the content you have posted simplifies the process of measuring the results. Analyse your posting schedule using analytics to see if you can get a pattern. Maybe the posts you publish on weekends are the ones that perform best. Perhaps your followers on Twitter like short videos while followers on Facebook like long blog posts. Use your findings to analyse and improve until you get a publishing schedule that works best for your brand.
If you have a post that works consistently well, it is advisable to boost it using some marketing dollars to increase its reach.
Post fresh content
A social calendar is not only a tool for planning, but it is also a recording tool for the content you have posted. If you post the same material several times, it will let you know. When creating content, look back to ensure that you are not repeating your posts.
Evade errors on multiple platforms
One of the primary sins of social media content management is publishing the same posts on various social media platforms. You may find yourself asking your followers on Facebook to retweet your post. If you plan, this is not likely to happen.
A social calendar allows you to create unique captions for each platform earlier. You avoid seeming disorganised to your audience.
Allocate resources effectively
A quality post always involves copywriters and editorial team. Planning ensures that you don’t strain yourself and your team members too much, as well as the business resources. You are more likely to publish quality content.
Posts created on the last minute tends to have adverse effects on your business.
You may be wondering whether creating a social media content will not take time. The answer is no. A social calendar saves time. By scheduling your posts in advance, you save a lot of time that can be used to grow your business.
Sharing your social media on cloud platforms like Dropbox or Google Sheets is an excellent means of cooperation. Sharing your social content calendar shows stakeholders the truth about what you will be sharing and when it will be published. They will be able to divide duties among themselves. If someone is absent, they will not be left wondering what to post.
Creating a social media content calendar
Audit your social media platforms
You need to analyse your current social media strategies before creating a social media calendar. Determine the platforms that you are already using and the one that works best. It will assist you to know whether you need to continue posting in all of them or there are some that need to be disapproved. Also, determine your posting frequency and the goals of each platform. Adding this information to your social calendar is helpful, mainly if you work as a team.
Audit your content
Analyse your content to determine whether it is out-of-date. If it is, do you need to update it or get rid of it? Also, learn the material that has performed well in the past and the type of content posted by your competitors and their performance. This information will assist you to generate content that is beneficial to your business.
Familiarise with the demographics of various platforms
Each social media platform has a specific audience, and these people determine the type of content you publish on each of them.
Publishing content that is specific to each platform and tailored to a particular audience is a crucial part of every social media marketing approach. So, ensure you understand the demographics of each platform before you add content in your social media calendar to make sure all your plans are appropriate.
Determine your frequency of posting
After doing your social media audit, you will have information on your rate of posting on social media. Will you continue with your existing frequency or do you need to change things?
Your frequency of posting determines the outline of your social media content calendar.
Determine the ratio of your content
A social calendar should include a system to categorise your content. This will assist you to track the type of material your audience enjoy most. One suggestion is to mark your content as user-generated, curated, or self-promotional. Otherwise, you can label your content depending on the type like announcements, videos, or blog posts.
Ensure that you label your content helpfully and descriptively. Also, determine the amount of each type of material you wish to post to ensure that your calendar is aligned.
Create a content repository
As its name sounds, a content repository is a storage space for all the content you may need when creating your social media content calendar. It can be a simple spreadsheet that includes the title, type, links, date of expiry, and images (if required) of your content.
Determine the needs of your calendar
Start with as many details as possible then start reducing them to what you and your team find the most relevant. The most basic needs of your calendar include the social platform, dates (highlight the vital ones), time, links, images (if needed), and copies.
Fill up content in your calendar
Input excellent content in your calendar! But don’t go at it randomly. Ensure that you have a strategy in place before starting. Determine the person who will have the responsibility of updating the calendar. You and your team need to answer the following questions before you start adding content in your calendar:
- Who will schedule and publish your posts?
- Do you need to give the copywriter a copy of the content?
- Who will source for images?
- Who approves posts before publishing them?
- How far in advance will you plan your posts?
Request stakeholders to review it
Depending on the size of your business, sharing your social calendar with other people is valuable. They may include clients, project managers, marketers, designers, and content creators.
However, you should ensure that you set the proper permissions for each person you invite. Not all people have access to edit the calendar, for example.
Schedule your content for posting
It is now time to schedule the content you have created and planned for publishing. You can post on multiple social media platforms from a single dashboard using tools like Hootsuite.
Examples of social content calendars
Few businesses in Singapore are more advanced than magazines when it comes to editorial planning on a long-term basis. While the content you are scheduling may be a bit different from that of a conventional magazine, learning how it is created can be of great significance – especially in inspiring your social calendar ideas.
Most editorial calendars for magazines are available online. Here are some of the best:
Forbes’ editorial calendar arranges the theme for each subject and the main pieces of content that each of them will include. The content calendar adds details of the material scheduled for online publishing. The programs that are anticipated to change are marked with a star.
Entrepreneur’s editorial calendar maps out broad topics for upcoming matters and the specific issues that will be included in each of the editions. It has an excellent approach to writing an editorial calendar.
- Condé Nast Traveler
This lifestyle magazine’s editorial calendar has a high-quality overview of various topics and their publishing dates. It includes images to express each subject and can be used by stakeholders as a reference to add their contributions. They can look at the calendar to create appropriate content.
- National Geographic
Their editorial calendar includes the main articles for various topics per month. The calendar also has a part that maps out the four key subjects that the magazine plans to embark on throughout the year and how they will approach them.
- Harper’s Bazaar
This fashion magazine’s calendar has a simple outline. It outlines the key themes in each month without showing details of how to approach each concept.
Most of these calendars are appealing. You should ensure that your social calendar focuses more on function rather than artfulness.
Free templates for social media content calendars
Get the instructions on how to use free calendar templates below:
How do I use an editorial calendar template?
The template is meant for planning online content. It has sections to key in the title of the material, author, topics covered, deadline, and the expected publishing time and date.
Simply fill in the content appropriately. Each week’s content is highlighted using a different colour for perfect visual distinction.
How do I use a social media content calendar template?
The template is meant for planning all your social media posting endeavours. It is sectioned by weeks with various months split into tabs. Then the weeks are divided by the social media platform.
Ensure you don’t miss out the tag for “evergreen content”. It is a repository for content that consistently performs well on social media.
Apps and tools for social media content calendar
Trello is a great app because of its ease of use and flexibility. It allows you to manage your social media calendar and the production process. You can even add innovation ideas in the app.
It is an app for taking notes that offers customizable Social calendar templates. The templates can be utilised to track your posts on social media in different levels of details.
If you use Hootsuite, you can track and manage your scheduled social posts using Planner, a graphic calendar accessible on Hootsuite console. You can also craft fresh content using Hootsuite planner.
An elementary Google Sheet has everything that you need to create a working social media content calendar. It is simple to use and share.
After creating your social media calendar, use the apps and tools to schedule all your posts on social media, engage with your audience, and monitor the performance of your strategies.