Your company’s digital strategy plan may include blogs, social media, email newsletters, website updates – or all of the above and more. Tracking that much content – from who writes it to when it gets posted and how well it performs – can be overwhelming or even impossible without an organized process in place.
That’s where the editorial calendar comes in. If you’re a content strategist struggling to stay ahead of your deadlines and make sense of your content needs, creating an editorial calendar can help preserve your sanity.
Why Use an Editorial Calendar?
A highly organized editorial calendar can do so much more for you than keeping track of due dates. Today’s content marketers use very sophisticated editorial calendars that do a lot of work for them.
An editorial calendar can help you to:
· Coordinate efforts: If your blog and newsletter promote a new product or service one week, you can tailor your social media efforts accordingly.
· Repurpose content: Make sure you don’t miss opportunities to present content in new ways. Yesterday’s white paper can be turned into a half dozen future blog posts.
· Linking: Easily find content posted on the same or similar topics so you can include a number of “learn more” links to connect your audience with related content.
Tips for Creating an Editorial Calendar
Your calendar can be as sophisticated as you like. But here are a few basic pointers to help you get started:
· Think long-term: For once, don’t start small. Your calendar is most effective when you plan six months to a year in advance. Don’t go a week or month at a time.
· Document responsibility: Who is assigning, writing, editing, posting?
· Use a multi-user platform: Chances are, there are a lot of people on your team creating and managing your online content, so get them all on the same page. Allow your team to access your editorial calendar and make updates. There are many sophisticated platforms available today, but you could even use a free tool like Google Drive.
· Organize by content: You may want to view all of this week’s content deadlines at once, but make sure your calendar allows you to view types of content separately so you can hone in on this week’s plan for blog posts separately from your social media tasks.