How to Organize Your Content Plan Using an Editorial Calendar
Life gets hectic and staying organized is a big part of staying on point. An editorial calendar helps you keep track of your weekly, monthly, and yearly goals and can make the process of creating content that much more enjoyable.
There are many tools you can use to organize your schedule. I use Trello which helps me get from point A to point B to point C. In other words, from the idea to in progress to complete!
Creating a Content Plan
Consider for yourself, what are your goals? How much traffic do you want this to generate? How much time can you spend on content creation? How long does it take you to do each task?
Asking these questions will help you make decisions on what types of content to produce and how frequently. This helps you understand where your priorities are and what needs to get done to reach them.
You should also look through Facebook and see what gets the most viewer response. Go for those articles that get the most attention (likes, comments, shares) and clicks. You can also look at the analytics of each article on your website to determine which was the most successful (pageviews) which is an indication of what will give you the most bang for your buck (or time).
Once you understand what types of content you want to create and how much time your willing to spend, turn that plan into a re-usable template with specific tasks like "create an article for week 1" or "send out monthly newsletter on the 15th".
For me, I organize each month in Trello with weekly deliverables in a single column (see right). This includes a Guide (a viable sponsorship opportunity), 2-3 articles per week, various numbers of Advertorials, 2 newsletters per month, as well as events and listings added to our online calendar and directory as needed.
Each week, fill out this template with more specifics and set dates to get them finished. This process can work with large and small groups alike. Pulling everyone into the same plan helps keep campaigns focused and on schedule.
Each task is defined in separate monthly columns and moved to "Completed" once finished. Trello is incredibly flexible though and can be setup in many different ways. We encourage you to experiment with what works best for you and your team and share your results with us!
Move at Your Own Pace
Start small and work up. There's really no need to produces hundreds of articles in order to be successful. Start with 1-2 per week, making sure to share them on Facebook and in a monthly email newsletter, and move forward from there. Then wait and see what garners the most views, likes, clicks, etc.
The key is to stay consistent with the plan at hand. Figure out what works and what doesn't and get smarter over time.