business Managing a Content Calendar: Key Tips for Organizing Your Content Funnel October 30, 2018 The key to a successful content marketing strategy is organization. Learn how a content calendar can help keep you on track and maximize your efforts. Are you looking to ramp up your content marketing? Good idea! Studies show that content marketing helps your business drive website traffic, increase search engine optimization (SEO), develop customer relationships and position itself as an industry leader. Once you have the drive to improve your content marketing strategy, you need a plan. Managing a content calendar can do wonders in this area….read on. What exactly falls under content marketing? Content marketing encompasses many different types of online material—this includes blogs, social media posts, videos, photos, podcasts, whitepapers and articles. The type of content you produce and share largely depends on what services you provide or what products you sell. Goes without saying that effective content marketing can have you juggling many things at once. How can a content calendar help? As our blog, 7 Inbound Marketing Priorities for Your Business mentions, creating a content calendar can “keep you organized, and help you stay consistent.” In short, a well-managed content calendar can help you plan topics, keep track of publishers, resources, deadlines and more. With a content calendar, you can…. Document topic ideas and who/what is needed to produce each piece of content Determine what channels you need to use for effective content distribution Indicate what areas you need to cover per day/week/month to keep up with your brand. Establish a regular schedule for sharing and repurposing content, recurring posts, etc Keep record of the entire publishing and content distribution process over an extended period of time Where should I start? When it comes to mapping out content, a spreadsheet is sufficient for most marketers. Some tips for getting your blog spreadsheet started (we recommend a separate tab or area for each type of content): Consider including these columns to keep track of all content Working title Author Content description Date of submission Status (drafted, completed, published, on hold) Publication date Fill in the schedule with things that are already in the works, and consider creating a color code system so you know what pieces are still outstanding, or are still awaiting approval. As new ideas for blogs come up, add them to the calendar right away so you don’t forget to follow up with the author or reviewer. If a specific article or blog requires an extra step, like adding a link to a previous article or blog once it’s posted, add a note to your content calendar to remind you to complete that step. If you buy content from freelance writers, add a note indicating that. As you move forward, you’ll develop a system that works for you and your team. Maybe that means someone is in charge of updating the schedule once a blog has been posted, or adding a note that the reviewer needs more time to look over a piece of content. It really depends on how your team works. Ultimately, a well-managed content calendar will help you plan your content generation so that you are consistently delivering relevant content to your readers. Even if it starts out as a basic spreadsheet, it will likely evolve into a more refined schedule over time. Questions? Contact us.