Content Marketers: How Do You Get By Without an Editorial Calendar?

Posted on May 27, 2014
By Summer

When it comes to content marketing, it is absolutely critical to have a well documented editorial calendar to be successful. Research from Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs’ fourth annual B2B Content Marketing: 2014 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America report reveals that having a documented content strategy would not only improve content marketing effectiveness, but it makes a huge difference.

A documented strategy includes a plan and the tool to achieve marketing success is the editorial calendar. Using a calendar is important in managing the content marketing process and acts as a roadmap for providing audiences with quality content on a regular basis.

So let's see how we can implement an exceptional editorial calendar.

When to Start Planning Your Editorial Calendar

It is important to think ahead as far as possible but at the very least, you should plan at least one month out. At a year's glance, take a look at your calendar and try to fill out important dates first.  Holidays and industry events impact your content and can inspire themes, topics and ideas that surround these days and give your content's performance a boost.

Collect Ideas and Fill Out Your Calendar

Here are 10 ideas to get you started:

1) Product launches - people love being the first to know about new features and / or services you're offering.

2) Refresh older content - did you have content that performed well in the past? Give it a fresh update by repurposing it into a different format.

3) Trending topics - what are people talking about these days? Jump on the bandwagon and get involved with the hot discussion!

4) Interviews - conduct an interview and provide a Q&A, turning into a series, video, podcast and more!

5) FAQs - what questions pop up the most in your niche? Dive in and respond to them through the content you create. People are always Googling for answers.

6) Crowdsource topics - ask people what they want to know more about. This is the best way to keep your readers engaged!

7) Events - what's happening in your industry? Events offer up a lot of information that you can feature in your content.

8) Curate content - create a round up post. They are very popular because they become a source or aggregator of valuable information geared towards your audience.

9) Variety of content - switch it up and create different types of content for your readers. This includes: guides, infographics, videos, podcasts, Vines, images, slideshows, case studies, charts, eBooks, etc.

10) Authentic stories - share a personal story about yourself or an experience that you've had. Other people will appreciate it and relate to you.

What to Track in Your Editorial Calendar

Figure out what works for you best, but here are 5 ideas:

1) Title/ headline - this is arguably the most important element in content (especially for sharing online) so make it count! Here are some tips.

2) Author - who is in charge of creating this content?

3) Target audience - who are you creating this piece of content for? This will help you hone in on what people want and who you want to engage.

4) Distribution - where are you going to share the content? Some networks will relate more to it than others so be aware of where your audience lives.

5) Metrics - how do you define a piece of content successful? Is it pageviews, time spent, unique visitors, likes, referrals, shares, etc.

 Your Turn

Do you use an editorial calendar? What tips can you share with us in documenting our content marketing strategy and plan? What success or failures have you had using an editorial calendar?  Share your comments below, we'd love to hear from you!

This Post Was Brought to You By #AtomicChat

Check out more information about editorial calendars, content marketing and bonus, content curation, in the transcript below. It's highlights from last Twitter chat with special guest Ira Haberman. Join in on the discussion every Monday night at 9pm EST/ 8pm CST/ 6pm PST.

Tags: Content Marketing