How To Create A Content Calendar PLUS our FREE download
These days, if you aren't active on social media or posting to a blog, it can feel like you're seriously behind the times. When you're posting helpful content regularly, you build your "Know, Like & Trust Factor," establish yourself as an expert in your field, and it's serious SEO juice.
However, that can get real intimidating really quickly. You've barely got enough time on your plate to run your actual business, let alone start planning out helpful content! Where do you even start?
We're here to help! We've got the rundown on what a content calendar is, why you need one, and tips to make planning and creating helpful content feel like a breeze instead of a nightmare.
PLUS: We've got our FREE Content Strategy Planner download for you to use as you start strategizing your content calendar!
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What's A Content Calendar?
A content calendar is a list or – even better – and actual calendar of what and when you're going to post on a specific platform. Usually in a content calendar, you'll find a brief description of what the post is about, the date, and where it's going live.
For example, on our content calendar, we'd pop "How To Create A Content Calendar" onto today's date and note that it's going live on the blog, Instagram, Instagram stories, Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest.
*NOTE: For the purpose of this article & for working with a content calendar, the word "post" can refer to a blog post or a post to social media.
Why Do I Need A Content Calendar?
At Go Live HQ, we firmly believe in planning ahead to make our lives easier & smoother. We like to know what's coming up, what to prepare for, and we tend to batch work so we're not flying by the seat of our pants for each post.
When you have a content calendar, you can ...
- Be more thoughtful about the topic and timing of each post
- Have peace of mind because you know what's coming up in your calendar
- Work with other brands on your posts so that it works seamlessly with your timing and your message
- Batch work (more about this below!!) your posts so that you are more productive with your time
Here's 5 Tips To Get Started On Your Content Calendar:
1. Make your blog posts your first priority.
After that, only pick the platforms you LOVE posting on. If you love Instagram and Pinterest, make those priorities two and three. The weekly planner page has four platform spots for you to fill in. Ours are: Blog, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest & Twitter. For you, that can look completely different! Just make sure the ones you pick are the ones you really want to create content for.
2. Post quality over quantity.
You DO NOT need to blasting out one post per day to be successful in this area. In fact, we'd HIGHLY recommend you don't do this! It's better to start off slowly, surely & with quality content that actually benefits your client or customer. We'd rather you take the time to write one robust blog post a month instead of dozens of short, unsatisfying blog posts per month.
3. Be consistent.
If you plan on using these platforms, do so regularly. Putting out content at the same time consistently will help build your "Know, Like & Trust" factor for your audience. They'll know that you are reliable with not only your content, but also your timing. Especially at the beginning, frequency won’t matter as much as consistency. If you know you won’t be able to post Monday, Wednesday and Friday, just do Wednesday! If you can’t do once a week, do once every other week but make sure it’s on the same day. You choose what works for your and your business.
4. Batch work or work in chunks.
This is the BEST way to help prioritize time in your business. We divvy out the work that we do into batches of similar task so that we spend as little time as possible switching from task-to-task. Spend one day planning. Another day creating the content. Another day taking the photos. You don’t have to do everything for one post all in one sitting. You can block out what you need to do for a whole month of posts that way and work more efficiently.
5. Recycle your content.
Guess what? Not everyone saw your Facebook post two months ago. It’s just not possible that you hit everyone's feed, and it’s a possibility you gained more followers since then! Post the same link with a different image on the same platform or a different platform. Go back to your posts that went well and think about how you could tweak it or expand on it. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel for each post!