Social Media Content Calendar Planner Package 2021
Content is King and each year it becomes even more important. We put together a FREE KIT of downloadable templates you can use for 2021:
Around the world, 47% of internet users ages 16 to 64 have spent more time on social media in 2020 than they did in 2019. And those users aren’t just mindlessly scrolling: ecommerce sales are on the rise as well. This only further highlights the value of social media for small business.
“In a sense, social media is our business,” says Laura Moss, cofounder of outdoorsy cat-lover company Adventure Cats, “It's where we engage with our audience, promote products, and even answer a lot of customer questions.”
In the coming years, social media will play an increasingly crucial role in driving sales, providing customer service, and improving brand awareness. Here’s how (and why) you should work this valuable asset into your plans for 2021 and beyond.
How social media helps small business
You’ve known for a while that social media for small business is important — but 2020 has made it essential. Seventy percent of small-business owners are concerned about financial hardships due to the COVID-19 crisis. At a time when money is tighter than ever, social media can be a lifeline.
While social media can serve many functions, here’s a quick look at some high-impact benefits of social media for small business:
- Low-cost brand recognition with free social media accounts or small-budget brand-awareness initiatives
- Targeted reach through tools, such as Instagram Ads or Facebook Ads, that homes in on specific demographics (i.e., age, gender, salary, location, etc.)
- Event promotion through features such as Facebook Events and Facebook Groups
- Customer service options that endears you to customers
(Social Media for Small Business: A Guide for 2021 and Beyond)
Social Media Content Calendar
If you are responsible for social media posts, you not only need to be publishing great, relevant content about your business, but also keep a finger on the pulse of what is going on in the world surrounding your business and your customers to make sure you are delivering highly relevant and engaging content that resonate with your followers and will achieve the results you want.
It can be time consuming and, even worse, some of your posts may not work. But there is a way to plan your social media calendar so that you can schedule posts ahead of time with content that is tested to deliver results. This tool can also build consistency in your branding because your posts are pre-planned instead of reactive and unplanned. This is the Social Media Content Calendar.
What is a Social Media Content Calendar?
A social media calendar is a tool you use to plan your social media posts. This includes what to post, when to post and which content to share. It is also helpful in managing campaigns and tracking deadlines. The calendar can be a spreadsheet file, app or the traditional paper calendar for those who prefer a handwritten method.
We do not recommend the paper calendar, but we are not stopping you either if that works for you. Spreadsheets are good for a start-up, but based on experience, it would be unwieldy if you have a full calendar. If you have a robust social media schedule, a software suite or app is the best option.
Reasons for using a Social Media Content Calendar
- 1A calendar saves you time because you can prepare ahead. Knowing the posts in your schedule will allow you to research ahead of time instead of doing a last-minute scramble. Even if you are handling just one social media account, it will help you better organise your posts, more so if you are handling several accounts.
- 2A calendar can be an assignment board where team members can see when they are supposed to share a post or engage in one.
- 3A calendar helps you stay organised because it allows you to see the content you have published and when. When your activity is mapped out this way, you can keep a balance between the types of content you make and the social media platforms you post in.
- 4A calendar can help you keep track of your posts, campaigns and events. This ensures that you are not remiss in creating content for specific occasions.
- 5A calendar that is planned in advanced can be reviewed by your team members. You can get input from everybody so ensure that you come up with relevant posts.
- 6A calendar helps you build your brand because your posts are planned and thought-out.
Who Benefits from a Social Media Content Calendar?
Anybody who creates social media content, be it for business, work, or personal blog will benefit from using a social media content calendar.
- 1Small businesses – Small businesses have limited resources and would benefit greatly from planning tools.
- 2Marketing teams – Marketing teams have a lot on their plate and can easily lose track of their schedule. A social media calendar can help in keeping teams organised.
- 3Consultants – Managing social media posts for multiple accounts can be difficult without a social media calendar.
- 4Bloggers – Bloggers can better organize their content promotion with the help of a social media calendar.
How to Use a Social Media Content Calendar
Here are the steps in using a social media calendar:
1.Know which type of content to create – It is purely text? A witty text can get your followers engaged, and sometimes that is all you need.
Do you want to post pictures? Is it going to be a single image or multiple images? What about videos? It can be a pre-recorded one or you can also do a live video streaming via Facebook or Instagram.
Do not forget links. Links, whether your own or curated, can be an effective content.
Identify recurring events – One year’s worth of content looks like a lot until you realize there are recurring events than can help you fill your calendar up.
Stores, for instance, have regular sales. There are sales scheduled during pay days, big holidays, etc. Holidays may also affect your social media content, no matter what your business is.
If your company is going to have a scheduled event (a product launch perhaps), you can project beforehand your social media activity. Knowing these special dates can help your team plan your content.
Code your events – Assigning codes is one way to help you organize your tasks faster.
You can assign color codes to identify campaigns, events, and promotions. In this way you can see which social media platform you are using more of and which one(s) you are neglecting.
Over the years I've read countless articles regarding the optimal posting frequency on social media networks. And I've reached the conclusion that they're all flawed.
One article suggests posting no more than twice a day on Facebook. The next one says you should post to LinkedIn on weekdays only, preferably between 4 pm and 6 pm.
But, in reality, there is no magic formula for deciding how often to post on social media.
That's because what works for one brand, doesn't work for another. Sure you can read case studies of what has worked for others, but don't make their solution your solution.
So, instead of seeking magic formulas, let's focus on these proven posting strategies:
> Posting consistency is more important than posting frequency.
>Content quality is more important than content quantity (and social media networks are letting us know with all the changes).
>Without having an objective for social media, you won't know if your posts are successful or not.
Aim for consistency, not frequency
The problem with suggested posting frequencies is the skewed data. It's okay to say, "We analysed thousands of posts and this is what we found...", but this is still a 'mish-mash' of data. For instance, how does the location of you and your audience affect posting, and how do different industries react to the number of posts shared?
One of the most baffling suggestions is that you should post at a specific time of day. For example:
"For best results on Facebook, post once a day between 1 pm and 4 pm."
That's crazy and ambiguous. For a start, does it mean 1 pm Sydney, 1 pm London or 1 pm New York? Or does it mean the equivalent of 1 pm CST in your local time, so for example, 1 pm CST would be 7 pm GMT. That's quite relevant, isn’t it?
Imagine everyone heeded this advice and posted at 1 pm EST (New York). For 23 hours, Facebook would remain dormant before exploding with thousands of posts at the allotted time.
A better alternative is to aim for consistency when posting on social media. Create a plan and stick to it.
For example, if you decide that your social media post frequency should be twice a day on Facebook, you know you need to create or curate content to fill that schedule. Your audience will know that they can visit your page at any given time and expect two fresh posts every 24 hours.
The chances of your content being pushed to someone's newsfeed have been reduced following changes to the social media algorithms. You need people to start coming to you. And the best way to attract them is to have something worthwhile for them to digest.
Social media is beginning to take its rightful throne in the world of marketing as for many businesses it’s the key catalyst for brand growth. If done right, it’s domino-effect can create waves of positivity for many businesses to boost brand awareness and increase conversions to improve company profits.
Promoting your brand through social media is therefore vital to businesses, but getting your content on these channels isn’t what gets you the sales. The key to becoming a successful social media user is in the engagement. Follow these top tips for increasing social media engagement below to achieve business growth.
This was the best article I could find about this topic and has full details of the top ten:
How to Develop a Calendar-Based Social Media Program
Identify what type of content are you creating. Are you going to promote a blog post, an event, a contest, or a product?
Write your copy. Treat your copy as a call to action (CTA). If you are promoting a post, sell to the reader the value that they will get from reading your post. Use your words to get them to react. This is how you will get your readers’ engagement.
Talk to your visual artist about the image you have in mind. Do this for each of your campaigns. Upload your graphics in a cloud-based storage system that you can easily access at the time of posting.
Add your campaign content onto your calendar. Start by posting a copy of your post, then add the link for your image. Then, add the time for your post. Repeat until you have entered all your content.
When you have started using your calendar, you can see your results. Use Google Analytics to measure referral traffic to your website via the Source/Medium report.
Who Benefits from a Social Media Content Calendar?
A full social media calendar does not require fresh posts all the time. Your posts that have done well may be reshared on an ongoing basis. You may also link to your post other blogs or sites that you think your audience will enjoy.
You can be consistent in posting without racking up your brain for new posts every time.
Social Media has brought and continues to bring success to a lot of ecommerce businesses. This is not surprising considering the amount of time people use their social media accounts. As marketers, we know that you are you are using social media quite a bit, if not a lot.
With the many platforms available now, each with a specific type of content that works the best, managing social media accounts need not be daunting. Use a social media content calendar and you will wonder how you managed without one!