Steph’s Stories – Content planning: my tips for a typical week

Hello again, I’m Steph and I’ve been working freelance for Stori for almost 3 years on some exciting projects.

Tori – head Stori-teller – invited me to share some of the things I’ve learnt along the way with you fine people so I’ll be blogging about my experiences regularly from now on.

First, a bit about me: my degree is in Early Modern and Medieval History and I got into the digital marketing biz in August 2014 when Tori offered me some freelance copywriting work. Tori encouraged me to have a stab at pretty much everything digital, coaching me along the way, and the result? I moved up North in June 2016 to start a job as a Digital Marketing Executive in the tourism industry… and it’s great fun!

I’m very fortunate that, between freelancing with Stori and my new role, I get to do lots of different marketing tasks for lots of products and services, but it all requires careful planning! When you start marketing, you soon learn that planning is the key to everything. The key to completing your marketing strategy, the key to successfully delivering it, the key to keeping your sanity!

As we all know, no two weeks are ever the same when it comes to promoting your business, but here are my top planning tips for a typical week.

What is content planning?

Content planning is simply the process of developing an editorial calendar, and then deciding what to create and where to publish it.

When populating this list, you need to ask yourself some key questions, such as ‘What’s the purpose of the content?’, ‘When/where/how will you publish the content?’ and ‘Who is the intended audience?’

If you do nothing else, create a calendar!

Regardless of the scale of your company, creating and sticking to an editorial calendar is vital to executing marketing strategies effectively. In creating a plan, you’ll be encouraged to consider what you want your business to attain, and checking in with a calendar will keep your goals clear and achievable.

It can seem a mammoth task, but Hub Spot has a great free template here. My content planning spreadsheets have separate tabs that are split into social media channels, aspects of websites etc., with breakdowns into daily, weekly, monthly and annual segments.

Tips:

  • I put reminders in my online diary to remind me to check the calendar when something important needs to be set up.
  • A paper desk calendar is a great planning tool for those who love to doodle, you can easily input your musings online afterwards.
  • Let a calendar help you, not hinder you. Allow room for your own creativity, or you’ll miss out.

Scheduling isn’t bad!

Do use social media scheduling (think Hootsuite, Buffer, Facebook pages, Sprout Social) = the miracle that allows us marketeers to have holidays once in awhile!

Hootsuite is my weapon of choice, but Tweetdeck really does the job for Twitter while Facebook’s scheduling features are getting better all the time.

I tend to schedule a week in advance at a minimum, but I still need to supplement these updates with on-the-fly content because there’s nothing better than natural updates; sharing posts such as breaking news or happenings in the office are really engaging to your followers.

Kissmetrics did a great infographic series about the science of social timing that you can read up on here – I’ve found it really useful!

I hope you’ve found my tips helpful; please get in touch if you’d like any advice and support in creating content plans! Everyone has their own methods – how do you create content campaigns?

Writer bio:

Steph is a destination marketer and social butterfly. Busy at work promoting her neck of the woods, Steph loves creating content to encourage people to go out try something new. When she’s not wearing her digital cape, Steph can be found lifting weights, baking clean food treats, listening to extreme metal or – naturally – watching Disney movies.

Image courtesy of: Unsplash via Pexels.

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