As you develop a content strategy for your blog, vlog, or social media, it’s important to start thinking of yourself as a publisher. Traditional publishers in magazines, newspapers, etc. have everything planned out in advance based on the yearly cycle. They know ahead of time exactly what type of content they need to create and produce for the month of February and why. Try thinking like a publisher and use an editorial calendar to be more successful in your content strategy implementation.
1. Develop An Overall Theme
An editorial calendar lets you develop an overall theme for the year or the quarter based on the products and/or services that you’re promoting, as well as the seasons of the year. You might not have a product to sell, but you have a website or a channel to promote. Planning in advance makes it easier to be prepared and come up with the ideas, content, and images that you want to use to promote.
2. Find Your Voice
By planning out your marketing year in advance, you’ll also be planning your product creation. If you provide services, you’ll already know in advance which services you’ll be focused on. This will make it easier to know what kind of content to create and in what tone you need it to be, because you’ll understand in advance when you need it and what it’s for. When you have a plan, finding your voice comes a lot easier.
3. Diversify Content
It’ll be easier to create different forms of content for your needs when you know in advance what your topic will be. You can plan in advance to create blog posts, vlogs, videos, reports, status updates, pictures, and more, based off the particular subject or theme you planned in your editorial calendar. By not doing it “on the fly,” your content will be more cohesive and diversified.
Tip: It’s a very good thing to have video as part of your content. If you need help making videos I recommend Jules free ebook: iPhone Video Marketing. Don’t worry if you use a different type of phone; the same principles apply.
4. Plan Content Ideas
By making an editorial calendar, you actually create a situation where you make it easier to keep content ideas flowing. Some people think planning makes content boring, but the truth is, planning makes content effective, appropriate and enjoyable for your target audience. It gives you time to create appropriate titles and outlines, to ensure that you get the message out that you want out.
Tip: Planning ahead gives you more time to find pictures and graphics that complement your content. Image Monthly will deliver pictures to your email inbox every month for a small fee.
5. Create Quality Content
By planning your content in advance, you have more time to make the good quality content that speaks to your audience. You can avoid last minute computer or camera problems and not have to panic if the internet goes down if you have content ready ahead of time. Whether you’ll be writing it and editing yourself, or hiring others to do it for you, it’s important to plan in advance to produce the highest quality that you can.
Tip: Kelly has had good success with curating content and becoming a source of news for her market. She’ll teach you all her tricks in the course Smart Curation Skills.
6. Keep on Topic
It’s easy to jump around with different ideas and things you want to share. Before you know it, you’ll be way off topic. By writing down what content you’ll be creating before you create it, you’ll have time to nix ideas that go off topic, or move them to the right time and place. If you try to produce content at the last moment, you may end up with irrelevant content that has no purpose.
Tip: Focus is important for you and for your readers. The Power of a Focused Business will improve your productivity and help you build a strong foundation for your business.
7. Reach Your Goals
You’ll have more efficient work time because when you start the day you’ll already have of an idea of what you need to do. Your editorial calendar is just like GPS or a map. You can look at it in one glance and see where you’ll be in the future, and you can look more deeply into it and find out what you’re supposed to be doing right now.
Tip: Lynette offers a new Blog Energizer calendar every year – for free! It’s specifically created for bloggers with lots of places for notes and reminders about social media.
8. Increase Collaboration
Having a publication calendar that you make visible to the public can also help increase collaboration. Guest writers and bloggers can look at your publication calendar to decide what to write about within your guidelines. In addition, it will help the people who work with you understand the direction you’re taking the business.
9. Attract More Visitors
Having a set calendar will help you publish content more regularly, thus increasing the rate of visitors to your website. Your audience will learn to expect certain content from you at certain times and will appreciate knowing when, what and where to go to see it and view it. The search engine bots also like to see new content on a consistent basis and can help get more eyeballs on your content.
10. Set Expectations and Deadlines
It’s important to set expectations and deadlines, even if it’s just for yourself. If you have no expectations of yourself or others it will be difficult to build a truly profitable business. For instance, if you are building a furniture business, but you cannot ever tell anyone when the furniture will be finished, you won’t ever be able to sell anything. Meet your goals by laying out clear instructions, expectations, and deadlines in your editorial calendar.
Tip: You can use any type of calendar, handwritten or digital. Find what works well for you, and go crazy planning!
11. Organize Your Business
Finally, by having a publication calendar you’ll ultimately have a more organized and planned business that will make more money in the long run. That’s what we all want, right? Content that is distributed and marketed according to your editorial and/or publication calendar will see a lot more success than content that is haphazardly put out without any notion of a goal or a plan.
I wish you all the best in your business! If you need help setting up and implementing an editorial calendar I’d be happy to help you. Contact Jendi@Jendi.me