Regularly producing evergreen content is an important factor in staying relevant online. This most especially applies to businesses that capitalize on providing online information in the form of blogs, articles, vlogs, podcasts, social media posts, etc. But in order for this kind of marketing strategy to succeed, online marketers need to up their games and create an effective marketing plan.
One way to do that is through the creation of a content marketing planning calendar. These planning calendars are created specifically to tailor to the needs of any content marketer while making sure that they still maintain their online clout without sacrificing content quality. If you are an online marketer who is looking for a content marketing calendar that you use for planning and scheduling all your site’s content creation strategy, make sure to read the rest of this article as we will offer tips and examples of these marketing planning calendars.
Check Out These Content Marketing Planning Calendar Templates
As we have mentioned earlier, this article is filled with examples of content marketing planning calendar templates that any online marketer can use to organize their business content. Note that the printable templates included here are mostly available as PDF or Excel template files so make sure that you have the compatible software tool installed on your computer before downloading the planning calendar template that you like.
2018 Content Marketing Calendar Template
What are Content Marketing Planning Calendars?
Content marketing is a form of marketing that focuses on the creation, optimization, and distribution of content for readers and viewers over the internet. As we have mentioned earlier, content marketing includes the creation of blogs, vlogs, infographics, tweets, posts, and other media that can be digitally shared with other people online. This is why content marketing is also sometimes called online marketing.
If you are an online content marketer, you are tasked with brainstorming, creating, and publishing different kinds of content over different online platforms. This task can often become too tedious if you have a lot of online channels that you need to create effective content for. That is why, if you want to make sure that you are still creating relevant content for all these online channels (websites, blogs, Youtube channels, twitter accounts, etc), you need to plan out your content or editorial schedule beforehand.
This is where planning calendars come in. As its name suggests, planning calendars are just like regular calendars that allow you to schedule events within a day, a week, a month, a year, or way ahead. Content marketing planning calendars allow content marketers to create a timetable for all the online content that they need to post and where they need to post it. As with other kinds of calendars, they take the guesswork out of ordinary online content generation as it allows end-users to efficiently plan out and decide what type of content they need to create and when to post it.
In this article, we provide you with free calendar templates that are all formatted to match an online marketer’s posting needs. Most of these templates will already have built-in pre-formatted columns, rows, and sheets that make the calendar-making process much easier. Take a look at each of these planning calendar templates and test out the ones that you think will best your content scheduling needs.
Annual Content Marketing Calendar Template
CMI Editorial Calendar Template
Tips for Creating a Content Marketing Planning Calendar
In the next few paragraphs, we will share to you a few tips on how you can best create and improve any kind of content marketing planner calendar that you are using for your business or organization. Read each tip carefully and internalize the different examples that we are sharing so that you could effectively apply these tips for your own planner calendar.
1. Choose a calendar layout.
One of the first things to consider when creating a marketing planning calendar is what calendar layout or format to use. This is an important thing to keep in mind since the format of a calendar will greatly affect how usable it is to you and your team.
To illustrate, if you prefer to readily see all the tasks that you need to do for that specific month on your calendar, it is best to choose a monthly calendar layout as this gives you a bird’s eye view of the entire month. Determine the type of calendar layout that you like first so that you can more accurately plan out what things to include in your planning calendar. For more tips on how to use business calendars to boost brand awareness, check out the linked article.
2. List down all the row and column headings that you need.
The next step in creating a marketing planning calendar is to create a list of all the things that your calendar will contain. This means that you already need to know what kind of information you want to see or things you need to do and type them into their corresponding row or column on a calendar spreadsheet or document.
Most digital marketing plan calendars will include subheadings on the date, task, post title, website links, status, the article’s author, and target keywords. Before you start plotting your own planning calendar, think carefully of what you need most out of your own content marketing calendar and include them for your own calendar. You may also check out this article on how to create a social media marketing plan.
3. Apply conditional formatting rules.
Most digital calendars are created using spreadsheet software tools. A common feature of this tool is that you can apply conditional formatting to any cell/s of the spreadsheet where you get to decide that formatting style of a cell if any given criteria are met.
For example, you can use conditional formatting to let a spreadsheet cell to sport a red background and font color if you complete a certain task (criteria) on your spreadsheet. This is an effective technique to keep track of your progress within a week or a few months.
Hubspot Content Planning Templates
4. Follow it up with a good color scheme.
In connection with the previous tip, you should always make sure that you choose a good color scheme when applying conditional formatting in a spreadsheet. This is very important if you do not want your planner calendar templates to appear too crowded and/or ill-designed. For more tips on how to create a calendar in Excel or make a planning calendar in Word, check out the linked articles.
5. Create separate sheets or pages for different months and/or content type status.
If you have a lot of websites, social media platforms, and projects to create a content schedule for, making separate sheets or pages for these different projects and their statuses may work for you. Most of the free content marketing planning templates that we have included in this article will feature this kind of calendar template layout. Check them out and take a cue from their design.
6. Incorporate your business branding identity designs.
Another helpful tip that all digital marketers should follow when creating their own planning calendars is to make sure that they add their own unique business branding identity designs. This especially applies if your marketing planning calendar will be viewed and used by all the members of your team. Adding a simple logo design or business name into a standard calendar will help boost your business’ credibility and promote brand ownership among your employees.
7. Use a pre-made planning calendar template.
Our last tip that will help digital entrepreneurs in creating the best content marketing planning calendars for their organizations is to use pre-made planning calendar templates. This calendar creation approach will help you save time and effort with making an editorial calendar yourself. You may start by using any of the free templates in this article and customize it according to your needs. For more tips on organizing your online content editorial calendar, make sure to read the linked article.
And that ends this list of useful tips that any online marketer should follow when creating their own content marketing planning calendar templates. As always, we encourage you to adopt these free printable templates into what you think will best suit your organization or business and have fun at it.
Simple Content Marketing Calendar Template
Website Content Marketing Editorial Planner Calendar Template
Be Ready to Upgrade Your Online Content!
The use of a content marketing planning calendar is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to succeeding in digital marketing nowadays. Know that there are a lot of factors and moving parts that will affect the reception of any kind of content you post online. As a digital entrepreneur, it is your job to stay committed to your business goals and make sure that you are actually doing all the things listed on your content planning calendar.
Also, keep in mind all the marketing planning calendar creation tips that we have shared above and you will be efficiently doing all the content marketing-related tasks without a problem. Just remember, when it is on your calendar, you need to follow-through and do it. Because if you don’t, you and your business will soon suffer the consequences.
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