Create a Social Media Editorial Calendar in 3 Steps

Create a Social Media Editorial Calendar in 3 StepsOne of the biggest challenges to successfully using social media for your business is what to post, when to post it, and to find a way to track your efforts to see if you are meeting your goals.

By creating a social media editorial calendar, you can plan ahead to determine the type of content you will post, where you will post it, and when. Once you’ve outlined your content development strategy, you can track your frequency and days/times posts occur to measure engagement and results through your analytics.

To help in the process, I developed a three-step method to creating a social media calendar that works.

Step 1  – Set Your Strategy

Editorial Calendar StrategySelect the social media platforms you are using.

Specify your social media goals for the next 3-6 months.

Specify how many times per week you will post on each platform.

Specify the breakdown of original content vs. sharing content that others have created.

Specify the types of content you will use: status updates, articles, blog posts, newsletters, photos, videos, events etc.

Your content strategy needs to be as detailed as possible. This makes the content development and creation easier to manage and maintain for consistency and branding.

Step 2 – Create Your Content Development Schedule

Editorial Calendar Content DevelopmentCreating a weekly schedule of the types of content you will be creating or sharing will help to create consistency and engagement.  I use an Excel spreadsheet and create a separate sheet for each month.

The left column first lists the type of content that I will create and then I specify exactly what that content will be and the week it will be posted. For example, in week 2 I will write a blog post that will include a podcast from my Blog Talk Radio show.  In week 4, I will create a video testimonial from of my clients.

In addition, you will share content that others have created. As you find content in your daily web browsing that you would like to share,  capture the page link and put it into the calendar for the week when you will post it.  This way all your content is in one place.

If you use a third party platform such as Hootsuite, Social Oomph, or Seesmic, this method helps you manage your time more efficiently. You can schedule some of the content in advance to be posted.

Step 3 – Create Your Tracking Calendar

Editorial Calendar Tracking SheetThe tracking sheet creates a snapshot of your social media interaction and the frequency of your posts. In step 1, you noted the platforms, goals, types of content, and frequency of posts per platform. On the tracking sheet, you document this data.

At the top of the calendar, note your post frequency goals.

At the bottom of the calendar, create a legend (or use this one) to code the social media platform and type of content posted.

At the end of each month, you have a complete overview of your social media content created and shared. This data can now be used with your Google Analytics and Facebook Insights to measure your effectiveness.

Click on the link for the PDF of the sample sheets of the 3 Step Process to Create a Social Media Calendar.

If you have any feedback, methods that you use or suggestions, please share your comments. If you found this helpful, use the share links at the top of the post and share this content on your social media platforms.

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7 Responses

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  1. this is an excellent resource. Thank you so much.

  2. Thanks this is awesome. So simple but effective and great to keep track of results as well. Thanks and I’ll definitely share this post with our community of women entrepreneurs!

  3. This was a great sharing , Lisa ! I was looking for this. As I was pretty confused on how to combine various strategies together.

  4. Hi Linda,

    Mari Smith just mentioned having a calendar like this, which I thought was a great idea and thanks to her tweet I found your post.

    Thank you so much for explaining this and providing the PDF.

    Much appreciated!
    Yorinda

    P.S. have you thought about installing the commentluv plugin to encourage more comments?

  5. You’re welcome Gerry. Glad you found this helpful!
    Lisa

  6. This is exactly what I was looking for.

    Thank you!!

    Gerry

  7. Great ideas in your post!

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