When it comes to your personal social media accounts, you probably don’t do a great deal of advance planning; you share a picture or an opinion as it happens, and don’t necessarily give much thought to what you’ll be tweeting or Instagramming, say, next week.
When it comes to your small business platforms, though, you don’t necessarily have this luxury. Though social media marketing can offer significant ROI, it’s only efficient and it’s only effective when it’s done with plenty of advance planning.
Using a Content Calendar
We don’t mind telling you that we use content calendars for all of Grammar Chic’s social media platforms. Are we willing to craft an “on the fly” post if one pops into our head, or if breaking news happens and we want to share it? Sure. But generally speaking, all of our social media posts are scheduled a week or more in advance—and they’re scheduled with real purpose.
That’s what a content calendar is all about: Providing a roadmap for where your social media channels are headed over the next few days or weeks. Your calendar should offer:
- A breakdown of posts/content ideas by platform. We recommend different sheets/pages for Facebook, for LinkedIn, for Google+, etc.
- Task assignments—who is writing what? Who is posting what?
- Dates and times for each post.
- Easy readability—organize your calendar in a way that it doesn’t seem confusing or disjointed.
The Benefits of a Content Calendar
Why are we so keen on the content calendar? The benefits are numerous, and include:
- It keeps you motivated. Many small business owners become bogged down with daily posting. It’s far too easy to say, I’m busy today—I’ll skip today’s post and then pick back up tomorrow, and then to say the same thing the next day and then the next! Using a calendar provides you with a clear schedule and structure, lessening the odds of you skipping a day.
- It helps you ensure consistent, quality updates. Using a calendar and plotting social media activities in advance, you’re much less likely to post something that’s too sketchy or ill-conceived.
- It keeps you from missing posts, or from timing them badly. Did you know that Facebook engagement is highest on Thursday and Friday? Twitter on Saturday and Sunday? A calendar can help you schedule your best content for peak times.
- A calendar can also help you track what works and what doesn’t. Keep old calendars on hand and annotate them with comments about the posts that work really well, and the ones that fall flat. Look for trends, and fine-tune your strategy.
- Finally, it keeps you from over-posting to one platform while neglecting another. You may not like posting to LinkedIn or signing into Twitter—but a calendar will help you balance your content activity.
Start using a content calendar today—and if you need help, don’t hesitate to contact Grammar Chic right away! Reach us at 803-831-7444, or www.grammarchic.net.