A Year of Good Content: Building Editorial Calendars
Establishing yourself as the go-to-brand in your industry is about more than creating solid marketing programs; it’s also about creating value by sharing expertise through editorial content. A certain percentage of your subscribers will click through on a regular basis. By adding educational messaging to your promotional messaging, you can increase the number of subscribers who engage with your campaign.
But It’s not always easy to know what will feel the most relevant to a particular audience at a particular time, and it can be hard to stick our heads above our day-to-day frenzy to get a clear view of what matters outside of our current projects.
To help minimize the brain-racking and maximize the value of our content across the year, we’ve been working on developing robust editorial calendars, twelve months out. While the imperative to respond to trends and conversations as they pop up prevents us from ever setting the calendar in stone, taking the time to plan can help us avoid roadblocks – and writer’s block – throughout the year. Getting a big-picture look at editorial content also helps us think about how to best share info across multiple platforms in a way that feels as seamless as our marketing campaigns.
Creating a frame for a year of content:
- Start by plotting out annual events and holidays, and weigh how they’ll impact your brand’s usual activity. Consider seasonality and key events in popular culture: reoccurring sports events, awards shows, political concerns – and whether there is an opportunity for interplay with your content.
- Choose a year-long theme for your brand’s content, or segment the year into quarterly or monthly themes that extend across your blogs posts, newsletters, videos, etc. Selecting themes at the beginning of your content development process will reduce the number of decisions needed later and increase the likelihood of getting a consensus on your ideas each month, which is particularly essential when multiple shareholders are involved.
Selecting the content:
A lot of times we do know what’s coming in the industry, based on our own work and our conversations with clients and colleagues. We can begin to plan what we’ll address now, and work in unexpected concerns later. Take a look at:
- Evolving industry innovations, and how they affect or are affected by your brand.
- Industry events and news, including previews of conference sessions or recaps of conferences.
- Your brand’s products launches or upgrades, as well as event announcements.
- Implications of new surveys and reports.
Figuring out the logistics:
When we’re generating blog posts, articles, videos, podcasts, webinars, white papers, press releases and more, our heads can start to spin. Create a space on your calendar to map out the wheres, whens and hows of each piece of content you plan to deliver.
- Decide where each story will be hosted, and in how many locations. Which content can you repurpose into newsletter snippets, videos or social media posts?
- Take stock of your resources, and identify any players that you still need to get on board. Do you have copywriters and/or editors with both bandwidth and expertise to develop what you need throughout the year? &n bsp;
- Choose the best ways to measure your impact as a brand. Which metric or feedback -- views, comments, social shares, sales and conversion -- can you actually trace for particular content, and how will you leverage the info in decision-making as you go?
We’d love to hear ways that your brand manages editorial content and ensures meaningful industry contributions as well -- please share in the comments!