In the world of social media, it’s all about planning. You want to be able to create content and schedule when you will post your content. This is why having a social media calendar is so important. In this how-to blog post, we will go over how you can create a plan of attack for your social media along with some tips on what types of things to post on different platforms.
Define Your Goals
The first step to creating your social media calendar is to define your goals.
- Define what you want to achieve.
- Ensure that your goals are measurable.
- Make sure that your objectives are achievable, relevant and realistic.
- Finally, set time-bound deadlines for each goal so that it stays top of mind throughout the year and doesn’t get pushed aside at the end of a long day at work or in the midst of a busy season (like holiday shopping).
Identify Your Target Audience
The next step in creating a social media calendar is to identify your target audience. Who are you trying to reach? Where are they? What do they like? How do they communicate? When will they respond best, and how can you reach them most easily? This can be tricky if you’re trying to market towards people across multiple countries, but even then there’s usually some common ground between them all. Don’t worry about getting everything perfect; just identify the main demographics of your potential consumers and work from there.
For example: Let’s say that I’m a yogi looking for a new job as an instructor at an established studio with 10 locations around the country (and one internationally). My target audience might include people who live in those areas; however, it’s likely that many prospective clients could also be reached through my blog or YouTube channel since those two mediums are free from geographical boundaries. Therefore, I might want to think about how much time I dedicate towards posting on these platforms versus my Facebook page (which may have more local reach) each week or month depending on which platform has more users within my community at any given time of year (for example: winter versus summer).
Research Your Competition
So you know your competitor’s strengths, weaknesses and goals. You know their content, audience and engagement (how many times they post per day or week). You even know when they post and what type of content they share. But there is still one more thing to do before creating your own social media calendar: research their strategy.
You need to understand how they are using social media inside of their organization including answering these questions:
- Who is responsible for managing the accounts?
- How much time will be spent on them each day/week/month?
- What types of activities does that person engage in?
- What channels are being used for customer service related issues (e-mail vs Twitter vs Facebook)?
Analyze Your Metrics
If you’re going to commit to posting on a regular schedule, it’s important to make sure that your strategy is working. Fortunately, social media platforms have made it easy for us to do just that by providing us with all kinds of information about our accounts and posts. We can analyze this data to see how well our strategies are working out and adjust accordingly.
You can look at your metrics in several ways:
- How well your posts perform (likes, comments and shares)
- How well your audience engages with them (retweets)
- How well they engage with the brand overall
Develop a Posting Schedule
The next step is to develop a posting schedule.
You’ll want to post on a consistent basis, so as not to confuse your followers—but how frequently you post and the number of times you should post will depend on your goals. If your goal is brand awareness and volume of impressions over quality, then it’s acceptable to post often (a few times per day). However, if you’re trying to increase engagement and build relationships with potential customers or new leads, then there are certain guidelines that must be followed.
The best way to figure out how many times per day or week you should go live on social media is by analyzing your competitors’ social media profiles—and determining what works best for them based on their goals.
Create a Content Calendar
In order to create a content calendar, you first have to understand your audience. What are their pain points? What are they struggling with? Once you know the answers to these questions, you can begin creating social media posts around the topics that will help them solve those issues.
The next step is defining what type of content will help them achieve their desired goal. Is it informative? Inspirational? Entertaining? You’ll also want to determine what format will best accomplish this and how often you will post on that topic or topic cluster (a combination of related topics). For example, if you’re creating educational videos about how to use software X for business Y, then posting once every two weeks with a new video would probably be sufficient because most people aren’t going through massive changes in such a short period of time. But if people are struggling with finding ways to eat healthier and lose weight quickly without sacrificing their work-out schedule or giving up dessert at dinner parties every night—then maybe posting once every day would be best!
Create a Workflow and Approval Process
Now that you’ve created a calendar, it’s time to put it to use. You’ll want to create a workflow and approval process that works for your company or organization. Here are some ideas:
- Create a calendar with social media content planned out by day. This can be done in Google Calendar or any other scheduling tool of your choice, such as Microsoft Outlook or Apple iCalendar.
- Create a document that outlines how the approval process will work, including who has access to what information and when they need approvals on posts before they publish them live on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter—and make sure everyone gets one!
Social media is a crowded space and it’s important for brands to have a plan when it comes to how they will use it. A social media calendar is your guidepost to keep you on track with your strategy and goals, by allowing you to organize, plan, and execute all of the activities for each channel at the same time.
It also allows you to identify potential problems in advance so that events are not missed or suffer from poor execution. This easy-to-use tool helps companies create an effective social media strategy by allowing them to map out their entire marketing plan ahead of time (including key dates), while keeping track of what has been done already so they don’t miss anything important along the way!
Just as we’ve said throughout this article, the best way to create an effective social media calendar is by planning ahead. Take your time and think about what works for you, your audience, and your goals. There are a lot of ways to do it, and finding the right fit for you might take some trial and error—but trust us when we say it’s worth it in the long run! Creating a social media calendar can not only help you feel more organized but also give you peace of mind knowing that every post on your account has been approved by someone else before going live.