When you are trying to reach a large percentage of the world’s population, a good marketing strategy is a must. Social media helps us keep track of our friends, family, and favorite brands. It is even great for business-to-business marketing.
However, social media for businesses can sometimes take a back-burner to other important daily activities. Knowing that your social media is taken care of in advance lets you focus on the day-to-day happenings of your business. The best way to do that is with a social media calendar.
WHAT IS A SOCIAL MEDIA CALENDAR?
A social media calendar is an overview of your upcoming social media posts. It helps you create a framework of what your social media will look like over time. Social media calendars are cost-effective tools to not only help you organize your posts but also keep track of your goals.
You should have a very basic idea of what you want your social media to look like. We often tell our clients to post a certain number of holiday posts, quote posts, testimonial posts, blog posts, informational posts, and engaging posts throughout the month. A social media calendar will allow you to effectively stagger these posts and plan them for specific dates and times.
Social media calendars can be as detailed as you want them to be. They could include just the copy for the posts, copy and graphic definitions, or copy and completed graphics. They are a great tool for tracking your results because you can easily go back and look at posts that performed well.
BENEFITS OF A SOCIAL MEDIA CALENDAR
Creating a calendar can work wonders for your social media marketing strategy.
It helps reduce the stress of trying to come up with a social media post on the day you want to post it. When you think ahead and plan posts a week or a month in advance, you can save on productivity and time.
Social media calendars let you take advantage of any holidays that are relevant and beneficial for your business. They encourage you to research holidays in advance so you can brainstorm how you can connect each holiday to your brand. If you’re doing social media for a mental health practice, for example, the last thing you want is to realize you missed an opportunity to post on World Mental Health Day.
Consistency is key to good social media. A social media calendar can significantly help you achieve consistency with your social posts.
HOW TO CREATE A SOCIAL MEDIA CALENDAR
A social calendar is a great way to visualize your posts. The first step is deciding what you want your calendar to include. Do you want it to include hashtags and links, or just copy and graphic information?
Next, pick your template. You can use Google Sheets, Google Calendars, a Microsoft tool, or any number of free sites you can search for to help build it for you.
PICK YOUR CATEGORIES
Decide what type of posts you want to put out. You can choose to do either a weekly view or a monthly view.
Some posts we tell our clients to include are:
• Reshares of helpful content.
• Blog posts.
• Conversation starters.
Next, decide how many posts of each category you want per month (if you choose a monthly calendar view). This part will also require research into relevant holidays that fall within each month.
Finally, create a color code for each category. Keep your color code saved at the top of each calendar template for easy access. When you write your posts, make sure to highlight the text according to your color code so you know whether you are staggering posts well. You also want to make sure you have a consistent theme for each style of post you make. Again, consistency is the name of the game.
PICK YOUR SCHEDULING TIMES
Now that you know what categories you plan to post, decide what time you want everything to be posted. Include these dates and times on your calendar so they are ready when you go to schedule the posts.
Decide whether you want to post every day, only on weekdays, every other day, etc. This is your time to take a look at what will be best for your business and decide how much content you want to put out during the month.
Each platform has different optimized times for posting, so do your research and create custom times for your posts depending on the platform.
From there, all you have to do is create your content for your target audience and make sure you are posting it on time. By knowing in advance when you want to post something, you will allow yourself the time to make something that fits your brand and style.
GET ORGANIZED WITH A SOCIAL MEDIA CALENDAR
Say goodbye to manually posting inconsistent social media posts at odd times. When you take the time to create a social media calendar, you will have a better overall perspective of your social media marketing strategy. Save time by being organized.
Whether you are B2B or B2C, social media calendars help you spot potential blunders and ultimately help you publish fresh and relevant content. Once you create and implement your first social media calendar, you will be wondering how you have survived without one before.
Jason Hall is Founder and CEO of FiveChannels, specializing in creating brand awareness, traffic and lead gen, marketing funnels, social media and more.