At this digital marketing era, we cannot underestimate the capabilities of a blog editorial calendar. An editorial calendar is mostly used by online publishers such as bloggers, marketers and website owners. The goal of creating an editorial calendar is to control content publication and ensure that the audience will get varied contents regularly.
Editorial calendars have long been used in traditional print publishing in managing book, newspaper and magazine publications. Needless to say, the Internet breathes life to a new breed of publishers who also require organizing and ensuring contents are published on a regular basis.
Bloggers, too, are embracing the editorial process of brainstorming (or brainwriting) content ideas and writing, editing and publishing the contents. Definitely, the most difficult part is preparing what goes into the content. The editorial calendar thereby needs to accommodate the content preparation processes (i.e. researches, interviews, etc.) for the purpose of setting more realistic dates.
Here are the processes leading to the creation of your own editorial calendar so your blog won’t be out-of-date.
1) Identify your own blogging schedule
Determine by yourself how often do you want to blog, but be realistic when doing this. Consistency is key. For corporate bloggers, the goal is blogging 2 to 3 times per week and once a week for personal bloggers.
2) Identify your blog categories
Figure out which categories you are going to blog about. You may see these categories as your main keywords based on your products or services. For instance, our main category is ‘digital marketing agency’ while our sub-categories are ‘web design’ and ‘mobile application.’
3) Brainstorm/brainwrite your blog post ideas
If you are working with a team, you and the other team members brainstorm. However, if it is a one-man or one-woman effort, you can only brainwrite. Brainwriting means writing what’s on your mind. Come up with at least five blog topics or titles on each blog category.
4) Create your own blog editorial calendar
Start by filling out your calendar. You can use a standard calendar or online calendar tools whatever works best for the purpose. Mix up the categories and topics/titles, again, whatever will give your blog enough structure and flexibility to run smoothly.
5) Write your blog post as per schedule
Diligence is key here. Don’t wait until your deadline is approaching before you start writing your blog posts. You can write as many blog posts as you can in one sitting and just schedule the publication date in advance. WordPress or other blogging platform will publish a post on a specified date.
6) Update your blog editorial calendar
New topics and events came up every so often. Keep your calendar flexible to allow changes in the schedule and content. Change the calendar only if the need arises. Don’t overdo it. Treat the deadlines as your motivation.
Further, there are many blog editorial calendar tools that can be used to make the process easier for the bloggers to create contents recurrently. Before, blank papers and file folders are enough to create an editorial calendar. Today, however, online publishers are endowed with
- Online calendars,
- Online spreadsheets, and
- Content publishing software programs.
The most commonly used online calendar is Google Calendar. Setting up a blog editorial calendar is very easy with Google Calendar.
Step 1: Create a blog editorial calendar
Sign in to Google Calendar. Under the My calendars drop-down menu, select Create new calendar.
Next, create the calendar by typing in the desired calendar details including the name, organization, description, location and time zone. You can click the box next to Share this calendar with others.
You can also Share with specific people by entering their email addresses and permission settings. Then, click Create Calendar and you will be carried to an empty calendar.
Step 2: Fill in the slots based on the content plan
You may view the calendar by day, week, month or 4 days. Click the slot and fill in the information. Here’s how it looks:
You may also edit the slot by clicking the name of the slot. While on the slow, you may also click Edit event. You will be directed to:
In the description, you can put the scope or draft of the contents, among others. You may also put the keywords to guide the discussion.
Google Calendar is just one of the free tools that you can use in creating your own blog editorial calendar. Whichever you choose though, make it a point to follow the schedule otherwise the essence of having an editorial calendar will be useless if you aren’t going to create and publish contents as per schedule.