Are you a blogger? Vlogger? Podcaster?
If you create any type of content, it is a great idea to set yourself up with a Content Calendar. Seriously, they can ease a lot of stress and keep you organised and on the ball!
So that’s what I’ll be discussing today, building your own content calendar.
What is a Content Calendar?
A Content Calendar, also known as an Editorial Calendar is a system where you track your future content.
They are designed to keep us more organised and efficient. We’ve all had those moments of wondering what to write about.
Maybe you have a list of topics, a Content Calendar allows you to take that list and plug it into a calendar format that gives you a schedule for your blog/website/podcast/Youtube channel etc.
You can even use it for your day to day writing project if you like.
What goes into a Content Calendar?
It’s your calendar so you can have it as detailed or as simple as you want. The basics would be, for example, your blog posts.
The content you want to put on your blog/website can be scheduled into specific days so that you know what you need to write about when.
But you could also schedule a time for researching the topic, sourcing relevant pictures, social media posts, what scenes/research for your writing project you want to tackle.
Digital or paper?
Again, this is up to the individual. Some people are more comfortable with everything being digital, so if that works and you can create a calendar or system digitally, go for it.
I personally prefer a paper copy. It means I’m not jumping between screens and like having some things written manually rather than typed.
I find I’m more likely to check my calendar (or diary or to-do list) when they are physical copies.
If you are not sure which will work, try both and see how you feel?
What’s the best way to schedule your content?
My best piece of advice is to start simple. It can be so easy to fill up your calendar with everything and overwhelm yourself.
The whole point of this calendar is to make you more efficient and allow you to manage your time better. That falls apart if you give yourself too much to do in a short amount of time.
Next, consider how long your tasks take. How long does it take you to write your articles? write your chapters? write your vlog scripts? How long does it take you to create your banners, locate pictures, do a keyword search, add in links?
If I take myself, for example, most of my posts can be written in about an hour. But the odd time it can take longer.
Since I post on Mondays and Fridays, my calendar shows me what posts I am to write about on those dates and on the Thursdays, is when I have it scheduled to locate pictures, sort banners, etc.
Anything coming up?
Plan your content before you add it to the calendar.
- Are there any special dates coming up that you want to connect to a topic? (e.g. Review a Romance book on Valentine’s day).
- What about trending topics?
- Could you schedule a post to fit in with something that’s currently being talking about on social media?
Can you batch your posts?
Batching is where you have similar posts that could follow on. For example, my Friday posts are all going to be about World Building for the next few weeks.
Maybe you want to review kids books so you could do a run of them up to International Literacy Day.
This way it gets your readers connected to a series of articles.
What else should/could go into a Content Calendar?
What you add to your calendar is entirely up to you. Once you’ve dropped in your content for the week/month/year, you might decide you want to schedule when you upload to social media or when you want to take time replying to comments or emails, when you’ll launch a giveaway etc.
My thoughts on this are to keep it simple. I use my contents calendar just for scheduling content and tasks specific to the content.
I could add in admin tasks, add in business tasks and even chores. But it’s called a Content Calendar for a reason.
I have a diary for other tasks I need to do and a (new) Social Media calendar for planning uploads.
How do you create a Content Calendar?
You could purchase a normal diary and use that. I personally prefer to make my own rather than have another diary lingering around.
Also because I only post on my blogs during the week and not the weekend, I can tailor my calendar specifically to my needs.
If you decide to make your own, it’s easy enough to use Word or Excel to create one that works for you. Include a place to put the day/date and obviously a space to write your article titles.
Here is a link to a simple Content Calendar Template of mine for you to try out. Print it and get started scheduling your content 🙂
Do you plan and schedule your content or just wing it?