Have you been procrastinating when it comes to creating a content calendar? It’s totally fine to feel overwhelmed and not even know where to begin. We can relate as we’ve been there ourselves. But it’s actually not as daunting a task as you’d think, especially because we’re going to break it down into a few really simple steps for you.
What IS a Content Calendar and Why Do You Need One?
A content calendar is basically your plan of attack which helps you organize, strategize and schedule your content to all your social media marketing platforms. This can be for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, your blog, e-newsletters, videos, and anywhere you post online. You need one so you aren’t pulling your hair out while mindlessly scrambling to come up with what to post where and when.
How to Begin – Right here and now!
First thing’s first: log off of all social platforms and silence your cell. You can’t be multi-tasking when you’re creating your calendar because you have to really hone in on what your goals are for the next week. Yep, we’re focusing on a week because your content calendar will actually change as you see what works best for you, strategically speaking. Once you get a hang of the week, then you can repeat, adjust, and extend it to the month and eventually the year while sticking in/swapping out those special posts pertaining to the holidays.
Break it Down and Take it Day by Day:
When you’re planning out your week, think about what you’re trying to convey to your followers. You want to be personable, interesting, funny, and educational so that they keep coming back for more of what you have to offer. Remember to stick to the 80/20 rule of sales. 80% non-product pushing posts (but related to your overall business) and 20% product focused posts (that’s where you get to show off your products in a non-spammy way). Use engagement posts that ask questions, do a poll, have a contest, offer business related hacks, share a funny video – keep things fresh and upbeat!
Trisha Lewis of Perfectly Posh, graciously shared her weekly calendar with us that she devised for her team. Use this as a guideline for your own calendar. See what resonates with you! Every company is different, but this is a great starting point for ideas. Trisha’s branded campaigns like “Masking Mondays, Try it Tuesdays, Posh on the Go, Facemask Fridays” really make it fun and interesting for her followers to see each week! What unique themes can you come up with for your business?
Now it’s Time to “Shop”
After you have your calendar planned out then the fun begins! No really, it is fun to find content! Search by topic on Pinterest, YouTube, blogs and of course you can see what your company has to offer. We also love “shopping” for content on Flipboard where you can customize your search. We suggest designing as much of your own content as you can using great DIY tools such as Canva and PicMonkey, WordSwag or Photofy. CinchShare even has Canva built right in so you can design and schedule your image directly into our calendar! Once you have compiled your content for the week you can then break it down into how many posts per day and where you’d like them to go. Remember to stagger posts so they aren’t seen at the same time on different platforms and stick to each platforms’ suggested frequency (i.e., 1 to 3 posts a day on your FB business page, 10-20 tweets to Twitter, etc.)
And that’s really all there is to it! See? It’s not all that bad! And, once you get going with it, you might even like planning out your content. There’s a sense of freedom and security when you have a content calendar. Even better, if you have a CinchShare account, you can schedule your posts months in advance which gives you more time to look for amazing content to post and design. Take one day a week and make it your “Content Day” so you can plan ahead and relax. Now doesn’t that sound lovely?