Lots of Articles Tell Us How…Here’s Why
It happened again the other day. And we have to tell you about it. This is one of the easiest content marketing wins you can get, and we’re going to share it with you right now. After reading this blog post you will be able to dramatically improve your content marketing workflow, and you’ll wonder how you ever worked any other way.
We’re talking about editorial calendars. Before you decide that this is another harangue about how to create one of these, we are actually going to do something different — we’ll clue you in to conversations we’ve had with two different customers (who will remain anonymous). You’ll discover first-hand how editorial calendars transformed their ability to go toe to toe with their competitors and reach a wider audience. For those who want a how-to on creating the actual calendars, we provide resources at the end of this post.
Customer #1: Developing a Content Action Plan
The first customer we spoke to is a leading retailer of children’s books. They are looking for whatever edge they can get to take market share away from two big competitors. We could see that the competitors were working a consistent schedule of getting content out on blogs and social accounts. We talked to this customer about the value of content planning with an editorial calendar. We shared this advice: It’s not only important to create quality content, but to also ‘create quality content on a consistent schedule’. We mentioned that if they did this, they would build authority in their industry via a cache of content that addressed all of the ‘pain points’ their customers faced every day.
Some people think editorial calendars constrain you from being spontaneous with your content. Nothing could be further from the truth. Editorial calendars actually free you up to be more spontaneous. How? When you know that content is going out on your channels on a regular basis, you will be free to respond to people spontaneously with the time you save. Planning a set number of posts each day/week/month (depending on the channel) allows you to gain all of these benefits:
- You won’t be sitting there every day wondering what to write.
- You will have a chance to delegate some of the writing so you won’t have to do it all yourself. This can be really beneficial because it will allow you to introduce multiple voices and viewpoints into your blog and social content.
- You’ll have a chance to decide how to place and re-purpose your content so you can get the most reach from each post.
Key Takeaway: An editorial calendar offers more than a handy place to list the blog and social media posts you want to share. It is actually an action plan that helps you position and time your content to gain maximum engagement from your audience.
Customer #2: Creating a New Content Sharing Channel
Our second customer was basically having everything they posted to Facebook automatically posted to Twitter. While that can be okay for some posts, for best results it’s important to recognize Twitter and Facebook as two unique opportunities to reach an audience. Through research we were able to discern what type of content our customer’s Twitter audience preferred. We recommended the creation of a specific Twitter editorial calendar to help the customer share blog content, special offers and product updates. The result is that the customer’s Twitter account is now providing the audience with content that interests them specifically; no more repeats from Facebook posts! Now the customer benefits from two thriving social channels (Twitter and Facebook) that help deliver more socially attributable website conversions.
Ready to see what an editorial calendar can do for you? Try these resources for templates and tips to build your own dynamic content plan.
Need help? Contact us and we’ll build a custom content marketing campaign for you.
Next: Some marketers still aren’t using a content scheduling tool. What can these tools do for you? In our next post we’ll describe all the benefits and recommend several of the top tools.