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6 Steps to Create a Social Media Calendar

May 7, 2020
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6 Steps for Creating a Social Media Content Calendar

To be effective in social media marketing, you need to stay organized. The easiest way to create a cohesive social media strategy is by developing a social media calendar. This document will help you stay organized and reduce the time you spend on social media each month.

Improve Your Social Media Content Strategy

The thought of putting together a social media content calendar may seem like an overwhelming task, but the benefits significantly outweigh the time you will spend creating the calendar. By integrating a content calendar into your social media strategy, you’ll notice benefits like:

  • An opportunity to create better content. Planning allows creatives to collaborate and improve their work.
  • Creating all content within the same time frame ensures that it has a consistent brand voice and tone.
  • Fewer mistakes. Posts can be proofread, edited, and even reviewed by legal teams if necessary before posting.
  • Increased efficiency and productivity in social media and all other areas.

How To Create a Social Media Content Calendar

I’ve broken down the creation process into six easy steps:

1. Take a step back to look at your social media networks and content

First things first, determine what social media accounts your business already has and which ones you want to develop. Perform an audit of current accounts, unused accounts, top-performing channels, and posts, as well as your target audience and demographics. This is also the perfect time to narrow down key performance metrics (KPIs) to measure your content calendar success.

2. Decide what elements to include in the calendar

It’s time to start sketching out what your social media content calendar will look like. The key information to add should include:

  • Platform
  • Date
  • Time
  • Copy
  • Link to offer or assets
  • Approval
  • Published post link
Screen Shot 2020-04-27 at 1.30.18 PM

 

These are the basics for mapping out a content calendar. However, it’s possible to dive deeper if necessary. You may need to add in other key elements such as the campaign, geo-targeting, paid or organic post, or some type of platform-specific format (Instagram Story, live stream, ad, etc.)

3. Establish where it will live and where your content will live (e.g. Google Drive or shared drive)

Whether you’re a one-person team or one of twenty, it’s important to figure out where this spreadsheet will be stored. If you’re working on a team, this spreadsheet should live somewhere easily accessible by those who need it. It could be kept in a Google Drive folder or a shared company drive.

The same is said for where your content will be stored. Photos, videos, copy, and all other content should be stored in an accessible location for easy scheduling. This folder or drive should be kept organized and free of irrelevant files.

4. Determine creation and posting system

It’s time to sort out roles and responsibilities. Who will be responsible for creating new content and who will be approving posts before they are scheduled? This is also the time to determine when and how often you’ll be posting to each platform. The “when” should be based on your analytics. You can reference your data to calculate the best times to post for each channel.

5. Put together your posts and send for approval

Now for the fun part! Begin brainstorming ideas for engaging posts and start piecing them together in your social media calendar. As you create sets of posts, send them for approval.

6. Start scheduling

It is done! Now that you’ve shaped out your social media posts for the foreseeable future, it’s time to get them scheduled to post. You can easily reference your social media content calendar to select the dates and times for your upcoming posts.

After you create your social media content calendar and begin to schedule posts, you’ll start to feel a huge weight lift from your shoulders. Knowing that your social media content is already written, approved, and scheduled is a huge relief. This gives you more time to focus on other important tasks in your content marketing strategy.

We’ve got a free content calendar template available for you here:

content calendar template free download

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Olivia Tagye

By Olivia Tagye

Olivia Tagye is an Account Manager and Social Media Strategist for SMA. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising and Public Relations from the University of Central Florida. Olivia loves the ever-changing rules and strategies in the world of digital marketing and social media. She enjoys working for SMA because everyone works together as a team, and they make an effort to give back.

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