If you don’t use an editorial calendar, add one to your tool box now. Editorial calendars act as a master calendar to think strategically about content marketing.
Organization Breeds Strategy
You most likely market your business and services on a variety of platforms: website, blog, social media, etc. It can be daunting to keep track of it all. An editorial calendar collects all those pieces in one place.
The greatest benefit an editorial calendar may offer is organization. However, through that organization you may begin to look at content creation and distribution more strategically. How can you build content upon other content? Where in your calendar are you content weak? How could you re-purpose previous content?
Bonus: Demonstrating you’re organized and have a content strategy with your editorial calendar can make you more desirable to advertisers. When you can show your advertisers that your upcoming content marketing campaigns complement their goals, you’re more likely to earn their favor.
Aspects of an Editorial Calendar
There are a variety of editorial calendar options online, many available through blogging platforms. However, editorial calendars can typically include:
- Content ideas. When an idea for a story or other content strikes, add it to your editorial calendar along with any supporting research, documentation, or graphics. You’ll find articles are easier to write, and podcasts and videos are easier to produce, when they are planned and the basic building blocks are gathered in one place.
- Important dates. Add pertinent holidays, events, and milestones to your editorial calendar. The visual reminder will prompt you to include these dates in your content strategy.
- Frequency of publication. Is it your goal to post to your blog weekly? Do you have the best intentions to produce some sort of value-added content once a month? Adding these goals to your editorial calendar could help you reaching consistent publication objectives. Likewise, knowing what stories and other content is coming up can help you manage your time better to meet the goals.
- Content channels: Consider which content channel is most effective for your topic or audience. Does your audience respond best to blog articles. List this on your editorial calendar. Don’t forget to include how you will market that initial content: whether that means taking to Twitter, Google+, or adding it to a marketing platform like Triberr. Sometimes these marketing efforts should be repeated. Make a note of this in your calendar.
- Publication process: This is where you can delegate tasks to staff or contract workers. Who is in charge of each task of the process: writing, editing, graphics, posting, follow up. Not only does this aspect of your calendar foster accountability among co-workers, but it helps move the process along smoother.
Editorial Content Calendar Plugin for WordPress
If you use WordPress, there are editorial calendar plugins that you can use. The one I use is called “WordPress Editorial Calendar“.
Click on the blue box and a dialogue box opens up allowing your to easily update your Content Calendar.
Don’t miss the opportunity to compare your analytics against your editorial calendar. What response did you receive for the content you produced and how you promoted it (through social media, etc.). Your results could show you what is effective and which efforts should be revamped.
We’d love to know, how has your marketing efforts improved since implementing an editorial calendar.
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