Linkedin, Facebook, Tiktok, now Threads – there are so many different social media channels it can be hard keeping up with what should be posted when and where and to what target audience.
But there’s no doubt that the benefits of social media marketing are too many to ignore.
There’s no need to throw in the towel because there are too many social platforms to keep up with. Rather than chuck all hopes of running a successful social media campaign in the garbage, what you’ve got to do is develop a social media calendar.
Here’s why social media planning is one of the top social media management tools you need in your digital marketing strategy’s arsenal.
What is a Social Media Calendar?
A social media content calendar is just that – a calendar where you plan your upcoming social media content creation.
Most social media content calendars include at least the following ideas for each upcoming post:
- The publish date
- Which social media account will be posting it
- What type of content it will be – picture, video, etc.
- Any hashtags or links that you will use
This information will be organized by date in a calendar view so your social media team members can keep track of what is needed when and where.
Major Benefits to Social Media Management
Having a social media presence (along with ads) is one of the top lead nurturing strategies you can use to attract customers. So obviously, anything that helps you refine your social media marketing efforts is going to come with benefits to your business.
But in case you need more convincing they’re worth the effort, here are some specifics on how social media content calendars can take your marketing campaigns from meh to marvelous.
Sun Tzu, author of The Art of War, advises: “Plan for what is difficult while it is easy, do what is great while it is small.”
Abraham Lincoln once famously said: “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the ax.” Evidently, great minds do think alike because Albert Einstein once said that if he had one hour to solve a problem, he’d spend 55 minutes thinking about it, and 5 minutes on the solution.
What’s the point of all these quotes? After all, Tzu, Lincoln, and Einstein never had a social media account to worry about.
But they were all extremely smart, and accomplished great things. So the fact that they all valued the preparation stage of a task underscores the idea that it’s the key to developing any effective strategy and has been for a long time.
By having a planning calendar, you allow for collaborative brainstorming that makes new content generation easier than doing it at the last minute. A publishing schedule gives your social media team time to think, time to gather resources, and time to schedule each part of the content creation, which means your team is less likely to waste precious moments panicking, scouring for new ideas, or trying to shove content creation into an already-packed workday.
Higher Quality Content Creation
Because your team isn’t stressed for time, they can also focus on creating better content. You want to prepare your social media posts the way you would prepare for a speech because when you really think about it, they aren’t that different. Both involve you making a presentation to your audience.
You want to take the time to think about each social media platform’s target audience, how to reach them, and have the time to organize your thoughts and content. Having scheduled posts guarantees that you won’t be putting together your content at the last minute and potentially making mistakes or producing lower quality images or copy.
Having a calendar allows you to curate content ideas that fit your target audience, and can give your marketing team time to internally review and correct any errors. This means that you’ll be sure to deliver quality social posts every time.
Social media planning makes for better project management. When everyone knows the publish date of each post, it means that everyone knows when they’re contribution is due.
This is especially important if you’re working with outside collaborators such as stakeholders or influencers. If you develop a social media editorial calendar on a commonly used app, you can easily share it with anyone on your social media team.
Flexible Content Planning
You may worry that having a social media calendar will mean a rigid posting schedule that won’t let you make room for the unexpected, like product launches or social media trends.
But that’s not the case. You can still move publishing dates if something comes up and you have spare content, or adapt your planned content as your social media efforts require. If anything, having a backup plan allows you to be flexible without fear – or failure.
Consistent Scheduled Posts
Regularly publishing content helps create loyalty among your target audience and keep your social media content fresh in their minds. If you post sporadically, then you lose the interest of your potential and current audience.
Consistency is the key to success, and that isn’t possible without a social media posting schedule. If you know the best times to post for your audience’s engagement across social networks, then you want to be sure that you actually have something to post at that time. If you aren’t scheduling your posts, you risk missing your social profiles peak engagement time.
Ease of Tracking Social Media Post Performance
When you have a social media calendar, you have a guide for your metrics. If you monitor your posts and see a spike in engagement on a specific date, then you want to know what content was posted at that time. Rather than scroll through your social profiles, you can turn to your social media content calendar and locate what the post was and what elements of it could mean success for new content.
Social Media Calendar Template and Calendar Tools
Organizing a planning calendar doesn’t have to be overly complicated. In fact, there are loads of apps and social media content calendar templates available that can boost your social media strategy with little effort on your part.
You could keep it as simple as creating your calendar in an excel or Google sheet, or creating events on Google calendar – either way, there are loads of free templates for these apps available. There are also paid social media content management tools that include planning calendars and tools paired with them that allow for helpful integrations of metric tracking and more inside your content calendar.
Get Social With Us!
Even though you now know that your marketing strategy needs social media posts to be successful – and for your social media posts to be successful you need a social media calendar – it still seems like too much, doesn’t it?. Maybe planning new content isn’t your thing, maybe you’re sick of screens, maybe Facebook makes you want to pull your hair out.
That’s all right. We’ve got people who can help. We here at Lift are experts at planning and executing quality social posts for all social media platforms, and planning and scheduling social media content. If you want to level up your social profiles, contact us today to get started.