Keeping up with the latest and greatest tool or channel to get your marketing message out can become overwhelming at times. For many marketers, getting a company page set-up on all the main social media sites, sending out a few tweets, posting a some blogs to the website or posting a couple of videos to YouTube is their idea of a successful marketing program.
Taking this approach, however, without having a content marketing strategy in place is much like the old Bruce Springsteen song “57 Channels and Nothing On.” If you have nothing much to say, no matter how many channels you have going, pretty soon your audience will start to tune you out.
One of the first things you can do to put more thought behind your content is to put together an editorial calendar. An editorial calendar will help you to better manage your content development efforts by keeping everyone on the same page. Maintaining an editorial calendar will also help to assure your messages are consistent and more relevant to the audience you are intending to reach.
Using a simple spreadsheet program such as Excel is a good way to create your editorial calendar. Here are some suggested items that should go into your calendar:
- Track upcoming events or milestones that are not only important for you, but also your audience. This could include key industry events such as conferences or trade shows, times of the year that may impactful such as holidays or seasons of the year, or upcoming product or service rollouts you may have.
- Provide a brief overview of all the content you plan to create. This could include white papers, press releases, case studies, webinars, videos, blog posts, newsletters, etc.
- Assign people with due dates to the content items you want created. Getting both your subject matter experts and content creators accustomed to developing content on a regular schedule will help assure you always have enough content on hand.
- In addition to identifying new content, outline ideas on how to repurpose content that is already created.
- Determine the purpose for your content. What are the calls to action you want the audience to take? Are you creating anticipation for future content?
- Identify the distribution channels you plan to use to send out your content. For instance, what items do you want to send out through your website or blog, what goes into an email nurturing campaign, or what gets posted to social media.
- Outline how your content will be used throughout the buying cycle.
Taking the time to put together an editorial calendar is a great place to start in putting together a more thoughtful content marketing strategy. Having an editorial calendar in place will also make your content marketing process more efficient and consistent.
To learn more about content marketing, please contact us.