Why should you plan your marketing activities in a content calendar? Content marketing is not important if you do not put in the effort to make the content meaningful and relevant optimised towards the right audience. All the good intentions, analytics, crazy ideas and creative visuals falls apart without planning; you might end up with some mediocre content or content overload. None of it close to reaching its full potential. Plan it.
We are planning so many things in our lives – we should plan the content that we use a lot of time on making as well. And we should do it properly. Planning helps us eliminate mistakes, avoiding late nights with fingers reaching a limit of 100 clicks pr. sec to reach a deadline. Deadline. Because if you do not reach it, you will be dead. Or. Above all, you want to finish in time. Plan it.
A content calendar also give us a more overall impression of the flow of content and how it turns out before published. ‘Cause once you go ‘publish’, you can never go deletish. Or at least you cannot delete the visual and let’s face it; it is uncool to take it down and put a new one up. Plan it.
“Content planning is easy. You just open excel, add content and sha…”
NO! Excel sheets are genius for many things but in the end planning content for professional purposes; different platforms and campaigns isn’t one of them.
Use a content calendar for the sake of the effort you’ve put into the content. Overview is key, which content calendars for the exact purpose can help you and your company with.
We are always on the run, looking for a more optimised workflow – a flow that adds any kind of value to the process and the product. Anyone working with content deserves a tool to help us being organized in a hectic work day and ahead of time, always well prepared for the next task (even though you’re the most unstructured person, it doesn’t matter if you have the right tools with you).
Hey, can I borrow your eyes?
Working with content creation and marketing activities often involve a lot of people – make sure your content calendar tool enable all stakeholders to access the content and make it easy to understand your ideas even though they have different interests or backgrounds.
Too many cooks do not spoil the broth, if you’re the only one with access to the spice rack; make sure to give stakeholders (clients, graphical designers, art directors, account managers, social media specialists etc.) the right access. Make up if they should have admittance to make corrections or simply just see the content in the calendar.
Once shared, feedback from stakeholders is a central criteria to success in providing the audience with the right information, at the right time with the correct visual(s).
Lack of information is a safe way to misunderstandings and another reason why Excel is struggling to be an optimal way to plan content. To help everyone involved in the process you might find that adding color-codes to themes and campaigns is a good idea too.
Educating stakeholders to put themselves in the shoes of the target audience, and you will get feedback as if it was actually the right audience.
Before publishing you will now have an assumption of how the content will perform, because you’ve worked with it for a while and got a lot of feedback from the involved parts.
Why you should use a content calendar
Equal to asking: Why should we make this campaign/marketing activity, we now have a few ‘why’s on the reason to use a content calendar too:
- You will experience a more organized workflow and it might ends up saving you time and energy (win-win)
- Less mistakes made = better content and increased trustworthiness
- Engaged and motivated stakeholders
- A better impression on how the content will turn out and perform BEFORE published
- Better overview: a common thread throughout the content and marketing activities
Remember, tools are only as good as your ability to use them. Planning tools are no exception it demands hard work and dedication.