Get your blog together for better content. Here’s why an editorial calendar can help calm the overwhelm of content marketing.
How many times have you had a great idea for a blog post, only to have it disappear when you sit down to actually draft it out?
When you’re a solopreneur, blogging might fall into the “I’ll get to it later” category, so your current blogging strategy is write whatever comes to mind when you sit down to write.
But if you’ve committed to online marketing then you know that publishing content on a regular basis is key—but bouncing from post to post, coming up with ideas, then staying up to 11pm to finish content is a bit exhausting.
A Little Bit of Planning Goes a Long Way
This is where an editorial calendar comes into play. Your editorial calendar is the framework of the ongoing story you want to share about your business.
The most effective content marketers? They plan ahead. 48% of effective content marketers have a documented editorial mission statement.
You wouldn’t have your business plan floating around in your head right? Why should your blog content be any different?
Editorial Calendar = Content Clarity
Using a content calendar is a content marketer’s most fundamental tool. It allows you to stop stressing about what to write, and gives you the mental capacity to just write instead.
Sure, it may take a little bit of time to plan in advance but knowing where you’re going with blog content helps you:
- See the big picture—you can see areas of overlap, content variety and how consistently you plan to post, so you can also see any content gaps that you might need to fill. Plus you’ll be able to coordinate your content with other marketing efforts, because let’s face it, there are a lot of moving parts when it comes to marketing your business.
- Get into the habit of creating content, consistently—planning out your content 30, 60, 90 days in advance helps you set the right mindset for writing content. Part of turning writing into a habit is giving yourself time to think about the content you’re going to create.When you create your blog content calendar, you have to time to ponder the topic and mentally prepare to write about it. And when you’ve thought about the topic for a little while, sitting down to write becomes that much easier.
- Avoid writer’s block—professional writers are so because they’ve worked hard to build solid writing habits. Throw away the notion that writers are great because they are struck with creativity. They’re usually not. Want to learn how to build a writing habit? Check out this post by Jeff Goins to learn how.
- Say no to projects, that don’t move your business forward—as a solopreneur, it’s easy to get caught up in marketing fads and take on more marketing projects than you can handle. Once you have an editorial calendar planned out though, you’ll have a visual on what pre-planned projects need to be moved in order to accomodate.
Why I Use Google Calendar
I don’t know about you but it’s hard to imagine a time before G Suite (Gmail, Docs, Sheets, Calendar and Drive). After setting up a calendar in Excel and Sheets, and writing it out in my agenda, I realized that I needed to set up my editorial calendar in a different format.
Google Calendar works for me because:
- I can set reminders for each stage of the blog post creation process (drafting, editing, graphics and publishing)
- I can access the calendar from my phone
- Colour coded entries help me visualize my content spread (each category or format can have a different colour)
- The description field comes in super handy
- Google Calendars are free
I’m not going to recreate the wheel here—there are a ton of great resources out there that walk you through how to set up an editorial calendar in Google Calendar.
- How to Use Google Calendar to Create an Editorial Calendar by Amy Porterfield
- How to Create an Editorial Calendar Using Google Calendar by Hubspot
- How to Use Google Calendar as an Editorial Calendar (video) by Rebecca Livermore
Stop saying you’ll get to creating your editorial calendar it later and sit down ASAP to get your blog content organized in Google Calendar.
Your readers will thank you.