In this blog post, we’ll take a look at why you need a content calendar before you begin writing your next blog post. With a content calendar in place, you’ll be able to write standout content every time, very quickly and easily. Included here are some useful strategies to keep in mind as you write.
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Developing a Content Calendar
If you’ve ever sat down to start writing and tried to figure out what the heck to write about, no doubt you’ve wasted plenty of time. I know I have, for sure.
Trying to figure things out as you go along really isn’t the most efficient use of your time. And by “winging it”, your blog posts probably won’t be as effective as you’d like for them to be.
After all, how can you write useful, intriguing content created specifically for your target audience if you don’t even have a topic for your post? This is where your content calendar comes in.
Related Article: How to Write Attention-Grabbing Headlines
What is a content calendar?
A content calendar basically is a tentative schedule, a working document where you can jot down:
- Potential ideas and headlines,
- Post types you want to create,
- Links for your content,
- Snippets for social media captions,
- Image links, and
- Publishing dates.
HubSpot has a great example available. It’s a free, downloadable template you can actually start using today. You can also modify it to suit your needs.
Making Changes to Your Calendar
Your blogging calendar doesn’t need to be set in stone. And it shouldn’t be. As you start creating content and interacting with your audience, you’ll soon discover they’ll have many questions. These questions provide for fantastic topics and are great for creating new and engaging content that speaks directly to your audience.
Your content calendar is definitely a working document, and you’ll find that you’ll be continuously adding to it, taking away from it, and modifying it to suit the needs of your audience.
How often should you review your content calendar?
Your calendar can be reviewed weekly, monthly, quarterly, and even on a biannual basis. This all depends on how far in advance you like to work. I find that monthly works best for me. This helps me make sure I’m relevant to current topics and that I create content my audience is actually interested in.
Having a content calendar in place:
- Keeps you organized.
- Ensures you post varied, well-thought-out content.
- Moves you forward consistently with fresh, updated content. (Your audience will definitely appreciate that).
- Keeps your overall content strategy in focus and on point.
BONUS: Research shows that if you have goals that are written down, which is basically what a content calendar is, you are 42% more likely to achieve them. Your content calendar helps achieve your blogging goals because your plans are literally written down.
Your calendar, your guide.
Remember, your content calendar acts as a guide to point you in the right direction as you develop and implement your content marketing strategy.
If important company news comes up, if you need to pivot your business model, or even if a new idea pops into your head, you can and should make adjustments to your writing and posting schedule accordingly.