Rescue Your Blog with an Editorial Calendar
There’s nothing worse than knowing you have to publish something on your blog at 11am on Tuesday and still having no idea what to write about at 1pm on Thursday afternoon. The demand to constantly come up with new posts is what causes many organizations to give up on the whole blogging thing all together. A little bit of planning and organization can empower you to deliver interesting and engaging content that your audiences will appreciate.
Blog Editorial Calendar – it sounds counter intuitive to the concept of blogging – but having a collaborative space in which to conceptualize and develop the content of your blog can be a very useful tool for your organization to deliver solid content on a regular basis.
Your Blogitorial Calendar (if you will) can be as dynamic or straight forward as you would like (personally, I’m a big fan of the excel-magic-spreadsheet-color-coding method). Another option is to use an Outlook Calendar complete with pop ups and reminders to stay on point. Google Docs are a good choice for collaborative efforts, and some people prefer using an actual calendar, which they can hang within their sightline to stay on task. Whatever method you choose, it should be manageable – no one benefits from a tool they aren’t comfortable using, or one which isn’t easily integrated into the workflow of an organization.
Tracking information such as Contributors, Categories, Organizational Events, and Holidays (everyone loves a themed post now and then) is a good place to start when building out your blogging schedule. By having more than one person writing for the blog, you’ll not only provide a diverse view of your organization, you’ll also spread out the work load of maintaining the blog. Defining a set of categories can help develop content, but be sure to provide some space in your calendar for impromptu posts as well.
Include a section in your calendar (and time in your schedule) for brainstorming, to help generate subjects for future blog posts and to jot down notes that might pop up while you’re working which might turn into a topic for another time. Once a month check your Editorial Calendar and make sure that everything is on track, you have the content you need, and the scheduled posts are still relevant. Comparing it to your organization’s event calendar, along with industry specific event listings are good ways to make sure that your content is both relevant and timely.
Banish “Blogger’s-Block” by planning ahead - Blogs shouldn’t be restrictive and intense, but an Editorial Calendar for your blog can help you stay on track by insuring that you’re publishing relevant content on a regular basis, while giving your readers a sense of what to expect, and when to come back for more.
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