Do you have an editorial calendar for your blog?
If you do, that’s fantastic! But if you don’t, I’d love to know why. For many bloggers, it’s simply because they find the task of planning content to be totally overwhelming. But it really doesn’t have to be that way!
In this post, I’m going to share why you need an editorial calendar and how you can easily create one of your own.
Why You Need an Editorial Calendar
If you need a little convincing that an editorial calendar is worthwhile, it’s time to listen up! Having been a blogger since 2009, I’ve seen firsthand how beneficial it is to plan out your content in advance. Here’s why:
1. It Helps to Create Consistency
How often do you post on your blog? Every day? Three days a week? No matter how often you post, you can utilize an editorial calendar to create a schedule that works for you. After all, there’s no rule that says you have to post five days per week. It’s better to create a schedule that works for you and stick to posting quality material on those days. No fluff pieces allowed!
Consistency is key when it comes to blogging. When you continue to show up for your readers on a regular basis, it helps to build a trusting relationship with them. Plus, they’ll learn to expect when your new posts go live, which allows them to be on the lookout for new content. When your readers know exactly which days to expect a new post from you, they’ll begin to check your site, without fail, on those days.
Don’t you want to create that kind of anticipation for your readers? It gives them something to look forward to!
However, it is worth noting that sometimes life does get in the way and it becomes nearly impossible to get a quality post up on your blog. Don’t let it get you down if you miss a day. Your readers will forgive you when you come back with a fantastic new post. Quality over quantity rings true even when it comes to blog posts. It’s much better to take your time to write a quality post than quickly throwing something together that’s less than impressive. Never post just for the sake of posting.
2. Planning Allows You to be More Strategic
Another reason why you need an editorial calendar is because it allows you to be more strategic with the content you create. Instead of posting whatever you want, whenever you want, you can take time to plan it out ahead of time. That gives you the opportunity to create blog posts that truly serve a purpose and help you reach your goals. (And you can learn how to write posts your readers will love here.)
For example, let’s say you have a launch coming up… You’ll want to publish posts on your blog or upload videos that support whatever you’re launching. That content should showcase your knowledge and authority on the topic so people begin to trust you. It’s also a great way to promote your offering, which will help boost sales in the long run. By planning your content in advance with the help of an editorial calendar, you have every opportunity to take full advantage of this.
3. Content Creation is More Organized for You
And my third reason in favor of having an editorial calendar? It’s going to help you get much more organized. After all, how many of you are guilty of scrambling to write your blog posts the night before they’re due to go live? I know many of you can relate and I’m guilty of doing this myself. However, it’s just not the most productive way to go about content creation.
When you’ve created an editorial calendar, you won’t be stressed out and wondering what you should post next. It’s already been mapped out for you! Plus, you can then get ahead of schedule and write your content much earlier instead of putting it off until the last minute. Personally, I like to use this opportunity to batch write my content so everything is done and ready to go when it needs to be. And you can schedule in time for batch writing as well if you want to give it a go!
How to Create an Editorial Calendar
Now that you know why you need an editorial calendar, you might be wondering how to create one of your very own. The good news is, it couldn’t be simpler! There are plenty of tools out there that you can use, but you can also stick with a good old fashioned calendar. It’s all about making it work for you!
This is what my process looks like:
- Every blog post or YouTube video starts off as just an idea that I store in Evernote. I have a specific note in Evernote where every content idea goes. It’s also organized by category. This makes it easier for me to keep track of everything, as opposed to having random notes scattered about.
- When it comes time to create my editorial calendar, I choose a theme for the month. Having a theme gives me an overall focus and helps me choose which topics will move from my ideas list onto the calendar.
- Then, it all gets plugged into my “Content Calendar” board on Trello. That’s where I label blog posts, YouTube videos, and email newsletters. I have separate cards to move each task along in the process from writing/filming, editing, uploading, and then sharing on social media. At any given time, I can check this board and see where I’m at with a piece of content.
It’s worth noting that my process isn’t going to be for everyone. You may find that something else works better for you. But here are my tips to help you out:
- Choose a single place to store all of your blog post ideas. It can be Evernote, a physical notebook, or something else. Having everything in one place is so much easier because you don’t have to worry about your idea going missing.
- Select how often you’ll post on your blog/upload to YouTube/whatever. Then, choose the days you’re going to publish new content so you can develop a schedule you’ll stick to.
- Take your ideas and start plugging them into an editorial calendar. This can be a tool like CoSchedule, a note in Evernote, Trello like me, or even on your whiteboard or inside your planner. Do what works best for you!
So, you have the scoop on how to create an editorial calendar… Now you just need to fill it with ideas!
But where should you start?
How about checking out my Captivating Content Kit for Bloggers? It’ll tell you how to come up with content ideas and create content that resonates with your readers. Learn more here.