It might sound like something uber-professional reserved only for type As who are obsessive with their social media accounts. In fact, you might even shy away from content calendars because you feel they're inauthentic and don't leave you enough wiggle room for creative inspiration. I know I used to... but, I also used to spend at least 4 times the amount of time on social and I do now and manage less than a quarter of the number of accounts. If you want to save a ton of time in your social media management, content calendars are a great idea.
They can be as simple as you want or as in-depth as you want. I find a lot of that just depends on your personality.
Personally, I like to be really loosey goosey with my own content calendar. For my clients; however, I am much more buttoned up.
These are the exact steps I take when I'm putting together a content calendar.
Ready for it?
1. Decide on your platforms and your primary platform focus.
2. Then, select your frequency for each.
3. Grab your calendar and fill in your promotions.
- Calculate what 20% of your monthly post number is on your primary platform
- I like to work from the primary platform, so in my case that’s Instagram. If I’m posting 5 times a week on IG and there are 4 weeks in a month, that would give me 20 posts overall.
- Since 20% of 20 is 4, that means I'll have 4 promotional posts in a given month.
- From there, determine what you want to promote each week.
- If you don’t have a specific thing in mind, could you drive people to your email list, your opt-in freebie, or your FB group?
- Note: don’t take the 20% too seriously, some months you will have a BIG promo and go over your 20. Other months, it won’t be so important to exactly hit the 20, so have grace with yourself.
4. Once you’d got your promotions filled in, it’s time for the rest!
- Now it's time to fill in your valuable content.
- Reminder: valuable content serves 4 purposes (educating, inspiring, entertaining, and humanizing).
- Mix it up! Find a good balance.
- Inspire is great for Mondays #motivationmonday
- Humanize is fab for Fridays #fridayintroductions
- Education is awesome on Tuesdays #teachmetuesday
- Entertaining works well Wednesday/Thursday
5. Choose your adventure.
- You can leave it at that, with a Promo or Value (and category) next to your posting dates.
- Honestly, that’s what I do for myself, but not for my clients.
- If you want to go a little more in depth, you can actually write out each post ahead of time.
- If you want to use a scheduler, you can do it natively in FB and most email platforms. For Instagram I recommend Tailwind.
The Bottom Line:
Content calendars not only can save you a ton of time, but they can really help you balance your content to keep it relevant and fresh for your audience.
Let me be your social media BFF and join my private FB community, where I keep track of and break down social media news so you don’t have to.
What questions do you have about content calendars? Do you use one? Tell me in the comments!