6 Steps to Make Your Content Marketing Calendar More Effective

December 28, 2021

To capture the readers' attention, you need a well-devised content marketing calendar that will help you deliver messages in a timely and consistent manner. When it comes to impressing a network of millions of followers, the last thing you want to do is seem disoriented and unprepared. Businesses tend to be motivated to create and share more content, but the scarcity of time and human resources often gets in the way. In particular, the companies who handle their digital marketing and content creation in-house can often struggle with carrying out all of their planned content. Here is how to make your content marketing calendar more effective. 

1.   Define your goals 

When planning your future content, start with the question: what is the main goal of it? The answer to the question should be used as the basis for determining the right channel and format. Is the content meant to produce new leads, direct readers to a website, gain visibility or possibly grow the number of your Facebook followers? The set goals have a substantial effect on whom, where and how often you publish content. It is important that your team has a clear understanding of your goals prior to and during the planning process. 

Defining your goals should be the first step to implementing a content calendar. Pushing out content without a clear purpose will not benefit your company – it will only waste resources. The person working on each project or item on the calendar should have a clear idea of what the expected results are.

2.   Understand Your Audience 

After setting your goals, the next crucial step would be to identify and understand your target audience. This is important because a customer's purchase decision is highly dependent on whether they find your content valuable and helpful. Therefore, content marketers have to keep in mind their target audience in order to create content that sells. 

Otherwise, you might fail at creating content that your customers care about. If your content resonates well with your customers or you helped them understand what to buy, they're likely to purchase from you.

3.   Re-evaluate your publication channels and frequency

Re-evaluate where you publish your content and how often. Remember, each channel serves a different purpose. As such, each channel suits your content differently.

  • Blog: Publish "how-to" content, as well as insights regarding your business and industry. Ideally, you should publish a blog post daily. If this isn't possible, focus on sharing 1 to 3 quality posts per week.
  • Website: Landing pages, videos, and gated content can be used to make you more credible. It also helps improve your SEO. Once created, this type of content only needs to be updated whenever your business or industry has changed.
  • Video sharing sites: Explainer videos, interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage can be uploaded to channels like YouTube. Depending on your audience, you can publish videos weekly or monthly.
  • Social media networks: These channels are perfect for promoting new content, building brand awareness, and engaging with your audience. The frequency changes between channels as such; you can post once or twice a day on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest. 
  • Emails: This allows you to target specific audience segments with content like newsletters, press releases, surveys, and seasonal content. If you don't want to annoy your audience, only send weekly or bi-weekly emails.

4.   Stay organized 

Curating high-quality content is one thing and generating maximum interaction from that content is another. A content calendar ensures that all your content-related goals are actually accomplished by giving you proper direction. For instance, if you already have an amazing article written for woman's day, you'd probably want to repurpose it on different social media platforms on that day. 

If you forget to use that article on that day, it will lose its relevance, and you might end up missing out on this great opportunity to connect with your followers. A content calendar helps you plan, organize and schedule all your content-related activities weeks or months in advance, ensuring that nothing gets overlooked.

5.   Content research and understanding your analytics

In order to be more strategic with your content, you also need to research your audience and the types of content they prefer; you can do so by looking at your own analytics (if you've already been leveraging content marketing on your website), as well as using content research tools like Buzzumo to analyse top performing content in your niche:

  • What type of content generates the most shares? 
  • What are the most effective headlines? 
  • What content formats work best with your audience? (short form or long form content, listicles, how to guides, ebooks and so on) 
  • Which topics are most popular? 
  • Which of your content generates the most traffic/leads/etc.?

Likewise, if you want to improve your search engine optimization, it's important to research numerous keywords ahead of time and make a list of the long tail keywords that you're going to use in your content.

6.   Streamline Your Content Process 

This is where you will streamline your content marketing efforts to produce fast and efficient content. Start your plan by defining the buyer's journey. In most cases, you can base your strategy around these funnels: top of the funnel, middle of the funnel, and bottom of the funnel. The first one is the awareness stage, where people seek answers to their questions through research. The middle funnel is known as the evaluation stage, where people conduct extensive research on whether your product or service is a perfect fit for them. Lastly, the bottom funnel or purchase stage is where people figure out what it would take to become your customer. You should take these funnels into account when creating content.
There should be content pieces (i.e. product guides, blogs, social posts, research studies, etc.) specifically designed for each stage of the funnel. Next, you must plan an editorial calendar. Brainstorm content topics with your team and assign writing and editorial tasks to your key team members. It's ideal to keep all your content ideas in a spreadsheet. However, spreadsheets have their downsides. They lack automation and commenting functionality. If you want to see everything in place and avoid missing deadlines, you can opt for content calendar tools.

At Cannesis, we help you acquire more customers. We create easy-to-use software products for entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, startups and local businesses. Our software is designed to be easy to learn, quick to set up, and to provide the same powerful marketing tools that enterprise organizations enjoy. Contact us to learn more and get started. 

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