Programs

Content Calendar: What is it & How to Create One?

A content calendar is a very important part of businesses that use digital marketing and any form of content to educate their customers or promote their business. It is also called an editorial calendar. This calendar acts as a schedule and tells you when and where your next content piece will be published. This content can be anything from blogs to videos. 

A content calendar also acts as a content planner, giving you the window to plan the upcoming content that will go on your website and social media platforms. It also helps you plan a promotional activity to help you grow your business. There are different aspects of a content calendar that you should understand before you start creating one. 

63% of businesses don’t have a documented strategy like a content planner to plan their content well. Let’s understand the importance of having a content calendar and how to create one to plan your digital marketing strategies. 

Learn digital marketing courses online from the World’s top Universities. Earn Masters, Executive PGP, or Advanced Certificate Programs to fast-track your career.

What is a Content Calendar?

A content calendar overviews all your upcoming social media and website posts, arranged by the date. Marketers use a content calendar to plan their posts, create campaigns, and schedule them accordingly. They also use content calendars to review their existing strategies and make necessary changes. 

A content calendar can be created in different forms. While several companies use an excel sheet to plan their content, others use software to create their content planner. You can use a social media management tool to create an effective content calendar

There are different elements of a content planner. Let’s have a look at some of the most important aspects of it:

  • Date and time chalking out when the post will go live
  • Details of the platform where the post will go live
  • Copy of the post and all the related creative assets
  • Hashtags to be included in the copy
  • Links to be added to the post

What is the importance of a content calendar?

A content calendar plays different roles in a company that uses content. It is even more important for companies with active social media and regularly interacting with their customers. You might not need a content calendar if you post occasionally. However, if you are using content marketing to increase the reach of your business, you must use a content calendar

Different reasons make a content calendar important. Let’s have a look at some of these reasons. 

1. Ensures that the content goes live on time

When you have several tasks lined up, tracking the posts going live is difficult. A content calendar ensures that you control all the posts and that they go live on time. With a content calendar, you will not forget things and keep updating the old articles and blogs on your website. 

2. Better collaboration

When you create a content calendar, it can easily be circulated to the entire team. This ensures that the entire team is on the same page. Even if one of the team members might forget to shoot out a post, others are there to remind them about the same. A content planner is one of the most effective project management tools. 

3. Gives you an overview of the upcoming posts

A content calendar gives you a bigger picture of the posts lined up for the year or the next few months. You can keep control of all the future posts and make changes to the posts if a trend changes or the post is no longer relevant. It also gives you an idea of the days when you are not posting anything, so you can also plan something for those days.

How to Create a Content Calendar?

You must take different steps to create an effective content calendar. Let’s have a look at these different steps.

Step 1: Conduct an audit

Before making your content calendar, you should have an overview of your existing content. You need to analyse the content on your website and social media platform and try to get an idea of what’s working, what’s not, and what can be improved. You can check the engagement of the posts and other metrics to get these aspects about the existing content. 

Step 2: Select your social media channels

An audit will give you a fair understanding of the channels that are working for your business and those that are not. You will also get an idea of the content types preferred by your audience. You can list these content types to ensure you play around with them. 

For instance, if your audience likes makeup reels and you are a beauty brand, you should create and post more of them on their preferred channels. 

Step 3: Decide on the inclusions of the calendar

Every business uses a content calendar that is tailor-made to fit their needs. However, there are a few inclusions that all content calendars must have. 

  • The social media platforms you are using to engage with your audience
  • The timing for every post (date, time, etc.)
  • Creative assets, caption, etc.

You can also include platform-specific materials in the calendar. Along with the details of the post, you can add information on the campaigns you plan to launch and their durations. 

Step 4: Review the calendar

Once you have a content calendar in place, it is very important to review it. You must also share the calendar with your teammates and get their input. If the feedback adds value to the calendar, you must try to incorporate all the suggestions. 

Content Calendar Template

There are different styles of creating a content calendar. A content planner must be easy to understand, and it should be designed in such a way that it shows the date, platforms, and creative assets of the post. It should also include the link to the posts. 

Let’s have a look at a functional and easy-to-make content calendar template. You can easily replicate this calendar on an excel sheet.

Content Calendar Platforms

There are different content calendar platforms that you can use to create a content calendar. These platforms are quite interactive and have tools to help you build a content calendar that caters to your business needs. Let’s have a look at some of these platforms. 

Google Drive

If you are looking for a tool that helps you optimise your digital collaterals and assets, you can use Google Drive to create your content calendar. Google Drive has many features that can help you create a functional and editorial content calendar. The best thing about using Google Drive is shareability. You can share the calendar with the entire team and avoid scheduling conflicts. 

Loomly

Loomly is another popular platform widely used in creating a content calendar. The tool comes with a 15-day free trial and the monthly subscription costs around $26 (around 2100 INR)  for two people. The platform offers different tools to schedule and manage your content effectively. It also acts as a collaboration tool where you can submit mockups, and the team members can add their comments to the calendar. 

Trello

Trello is a task management software for creating a content calendar. While it is free for individuals, its standard monthly plan begins from $5 per user. This tool is ideal for large-sized companies that usually work in teams. The tool comes with customisable dashboards and assignment cards, making the entire process more interactive. 

The best thing about using Trello is that it offers a full calendar view. You can make use of this option to visualise the content. Also, you can assign due dates to work-in-progress posts using Trello. 

Best Online Digital Marketing Courses

Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a social publishing tool that can help you create one of the best content calendars. It allows you to customise the content calendar per the business’s needs. Sprout Social is an advanced content planning tool as you can create a calendar and directly post the content to different social media channels from the calendar. 

The standard plan of the tool starts at $249 (Around 20,000 INR), and you can add up to 5 social media platforms to the calendar. The platform also acts as a social media listening tool that helps you uncover insights that can help you design your posts better. 

Top Digital Marketing Skills

Evernote

If you are looking for a platform that helps you create a content calendar and manage all the tasks, you must use Evernote. The best thing about the platform is that the basic version is free for all. It is a note-taking app that lets you keep a tab on all your social media posts and campaigns. 

Evernote also allows you to customise your templates. It also includes an option of maintaining hourly, daily, and weekly logs, giving you a better hold of all the social media content that goes out from the company. You can also use the Web Clipper extension of the tool to save important links to the platform. 

Digital Marketing Free courses to Learn

Wrapping Up!

It is quite imperative to understand the importance of a content calendar. A content calendar not only helps you in scheduling your content but also helps you in planning your content better. Having a content calendar is a must if you work in teams. You can create a content calendar on Google Sheets or use any content calendar platform for a customised content calendar

To create an effective content calendar, you must understand the role it plays in the world of digital marketing. You can take up the Digital Marketing Job Linked Bootcamp brought to you by upGrad, which offers a clear understanding of in-demand digital marketing skills and credentials. The boot camp focuses on developing the soft skills and tools you must know to enter the world of digital marketing. 

So, hurry up and claim your seats soon!

Popular Digital Marketing Blogs

Are there any free tools to create a content calendar?

You can use Google Sheets or Trello if you want a cost-effective option to create your content calendar. Content planners can also find many content calendar templates on the web to customise according to their needs.

What are the important inclusions of a content calendar?

A content calendar must include the publishing time and date, the post idea, and the post link. You must also include the creative assets of the post in the calendar to ensure incorporating it into your posts.

How can one optimise their social media strategy?

A content calendar is the best way to optimise social media strategy, as you can track your posts and make changes to the calendar in real time.

Want to share this article?

Prepare for a Career of the Future

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Popular Digital Marketing Course

Get Free Consultation

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

×
Get Free career counselling from upGrad experts!
Book a session with an industry professional today!
No Thanks
Let's do it
Get Free career counselling from upGrad experts!
Book a Session with an industry professional today!
Let's do it
No Thanks