Although my editorial calendar has been shifted for this redesign 😉 I wanted to share a bit more about the planning that goes into running a blog and corresponding social media, as well as tips I’ve learned over the years on how to plan blog content!
The first thing you really need to do before creating any content is determine a posting schedule. I post 3x a week on my blog, usually Monday, Wednesday and Friday. There are of course exceptions for sickness, trips and holidays. I typically post 5x a week on Instagram, but have Daily Deals every day on stories. My audience is well-versed in my posting schedule, and this also gives me a set number of content slots to fill each and every week. At the beginning of a quarter, I sit down with my planner and attempt to fill every single one. Here’s how.
Determine Concrete Coverage
To me, concrete coverage are things you kind of HAVE to cover. Your concrete coverage will likely differ from mine, because our audiences are different. Some examples of things I consider concrete coverage:
- major holidays
- start of new seasons
- shopping events like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Nordstrom Sale
- my birthday
- my blogging anniversary
These are always the first things I look at and schedule dates for blog posts, IG posts, etc. For example, with fall officially beginning on September 21, I will have to look weeks out in my editorial calendar to begin prepping fall content for my readers. Additional hot spots that coincide with fall that I’ll likely want to cover are the release of the Pumpkin Spice Latte (BASICCCCC) and Halloween. From there, I can start to look at key dates and write those into my calendar. Halloween will likely be more than one post. Maybe I’ll do a decor post, maybe a costume post, and a “Halloween in Chicago” post. That’s three posts right there off of one concrete coverage idea!
Every time I schedule a blog post, I also make sure the same day or the day after to schedule social media posts promoting it!
Fill In The Gaps
When you have all your concrete coverage entered into your ed cal, it’s time to fill the gaps with other post ideas! Look at your planner – do you have any upcoming trips or events that you could work into your blog content? EX: a wedding could lead to a wedding guest outfit guide, a trip to Spain could lead to a “packing list” post as well as a travel guide post once you return.
Start a New Series
Series on your blog are a way to draw readers in through repetitive yet different content. Some series I post about are my monthly favorites posts, my If I Had $1,000 to Blow, and my gift guides. These also can fill up many slots, especially if they’re monthly! 24 blog posts a year will be dedicated to 2 of my series alone.
Poll Your Audience
If I have slots to fill, I can just ask my audience, usually on IG stories, for some help. This has always gotten me out of writer’s block or just given me fresh ideas! I suggest you do the same. Since they’re going to be the ones reading it, it should be something they actually want to read.
Tools to Use
You’re only human – you are going to need some help with keeping track of everything.
Some resources I recommend using:
- Editorial Calendar
- Up to you on if you want this on paper or on Google Calendar. I use a weird mix of the two. I get a separate paper planner for my editorial calendar, and mark only due dates for campaigns on my “normal” planner. This helps me with work/life balance.
- This is how I schedule Instagram posts as well as determine which order to post them in. Sometimes you don’t want three white background posts going up in a row! This app helps you “plan” the feed.
- Google Sheets
- I guess good ol’ Excel works for this, too. I recommend keeping track of each post’s performance in a sheet to know what your audience is responding well to, and what they would rather not see again.
I hope this is helpful! Let me know what blogging topic you’d like to see a post on next 🙂