Editorial calendars are an essential tool for every content team. Social media calendars make it possible to plan, avoid last second fire-drills, and keep content organized. Without a calendar, you are left scrambling to maintain a consistent content flow.
Similarly, a great social media calendar allows you to deliver the right content to the right audience - without being spammy! It provides maximum exposure to your content on social networks.
What Makes a Good Social Media Calendar
1. Understand how the Audience Connects with Content-
You need to tap into the audience's mind and find out what content resonates with them. Once you understand the audience's psychology and why they consume or share your content, you can find innovative ideas to produce content that the audience enjoys and finds valuable.
2. Understand Target Audience’s Persona
Create content around different user personas to cover a wider range of audience. It allows you to connect with your current audience and attract new users to your brand.It also helps you identify and align your content strategy with the target audience.
3. Engage Audience Amongst Each Other
Image the online network you can build if your audience engages with each other. It is a great practice to include content in your calendar that pushes the audience to tag their friends, react to the content, or share it.
A simple way of doing this is through polls, questions, or even a simple Twitter chat!
4. Value your Audience
If the audience engages with your content or reaches out to you, ensure that they feel valued. Maintain a high response rate and cater to every user's need.This will help you let the audience know that you value their contribution.
5. Convert Prospects into Advocates
Valuable content to the target audience on your social media channels will enhance the chances of converting prospects into advocates. Include high-quality content from other sources in your content strategy to provide maximum value to the audience.
Again, you need to make the advocates feel valued since they drive a lot of traffic to your business.
Step to Draft a Social Media Calendar
Have you only be publishing your own content so far? Or possibly the same type of content?
If yes, then this is the reason why you have low engagement across all social media channels. The audience enjoys consuming various types of content from various sources. If you limit your content to just one source, it is going to drive users away from your brand.
For this reason, you need a social media content calendar to find the perfect balance between the type of content to be shared and the source of the content.
Here’s how you can create and curate content for your social media -
Step 1: Plan out the Possibilities
Let's start with a hypothetical campaign. Maybe you're promoting:
- A blog post or article
- An event
- Repurposed Content
- A brand
- A product
Whatever you decide, knowing what you'll be curating, producing, or sharing is likely where your process will start.First, you need to map out the possible content you will produce or curate. Second, you need to identify the type of content that your audience finds valuable. The intersection of these two elements will help you understand exactly what you should include in your content calendar.
Step 2: Write Post Copies
Words have a lot of power. Which is why you need to carefully draft the post copy with an assertive call to action.
Sell your content to your followers on the value that your post will provide. For instance, the knowledge they can acquire if they just click through the blog post link.
Make them question a current trend/solution with the promise of a better answer to the problem.
Take advantage of FOMO and make them believe that they are missing out on something great.
Invoke an emotional response that you want from the audience.
Doing this right is the key to highly engaged social network.
Here are some great ways of drafting a post copy -
Questions. Close-ended questions drive more click-throughs. But be open to 'open-ended questions' may drive more engagement (through audience responses).
Benefits. Hint at the benefits the audience will enjoy if they click on your link.
FOMO. Popularly known as "the fear of missing out." This is a great strategy if you're giving your audience a deadline. It could increase the conversion rate.
Stats. Numbers that seem impossible (but are accurate) can be a great way to invoke curiosity.
Facts. Again, the harder it is to believe, the better.
Controversy. This doesn't mean to be offensive. It means don't be afraid of questioning. If you have an opinion on a topic, put it out and stand by it. You just might start a discussion that changes what the audience considers common wisdom (which isn't always wise). It will also help you establish authority over a particular field.
Step 3: Hand it off to the Design Team
Next, hand off your ideas and content list to the design team. You should discuss your ideas with the designer before they begin and get their creative input on the strategy as well.
Ensure that you deliver the campaign objective and your insights to the designer to get the best visuals
Step 4: Add all the Content to the Calendar
We have been using Google Sheets to create our social media calendar for the longest time. Reason being, they are simple to use for everyone and are easily shareable.
Here is a sample of our social media content calendar -
Add your copy, visual link, weblinks, hashtags, and CTA in the calendar and set a posting schedule for it.
Step 5: Set A Schedule
Each social network requires a content mix and posting frequency that matches the expectations of its audience so you need to set the schedule accordingly.
Understand the post frequency for each platform and set your schedule accordingly. You can also use automatic publishing tools for social media like SocialBee or co schedule.
Regardless of what you choose, it is essential to organize your social media campaigns and your calendar is a major part of that equation.
Most marketers successfully create a social media calendar. They set a schedule and publish their posts. And then, nothing. There is zero to no engagement and their target group does not consume their content (even if the content is highly valuable).
One of the reasons behind it is the lack of strategy and understanding about the changing social media algorithms. To reach more people and build connections with your audience, you need to crack the code to social media algorithms today!