Whether you are a new business owner that is just starting to build your social media plan or a seasoned marketer, a social media calendar is definitely a lifesaver. But what is it exactly?
A social media calendar contains the summary of content that will be posted on your social media accounts. It could come in different forms, like a spreadsheet, calendar, or on one of the specialized scheduling tools that are available.
It usually contains the following information:
- Date and Time of the post
- Social Media Platform where the post will appear
- Caption for the post
- Assets – This could be your photo, video, gif, infographic, etc.
- Links to the assets
- Link to the post
There are a lot of benefits to creating a social media calendar. It helps you get organized and lessens the chances of you missing out on posting on important dates and events. It also helps you make higher-quality content since you have more time to plan and come up with ideas. And most importantly, it helps you be consistent and cohesive on your social media platforms.
Keep in mind though that before you start your social media calendar, you must have all your branding materials and other important marketing collateral in place. These include your website, mobile app or e-commerce store (if you have any), and most importantly, your logo design. These are all essential to your brand and brand identity, all of which your social media is trying to promote. You wouldn’t want to waste your efforts on building a social media presence, right?
With all that being said, let’s dive into how to create the calendar.
- Do an audit – You’ll need to have a clear understanding of your existing social media account (or your plans for it, if you are just beginning to create one) before making a calendar for it. Take a look at the following first:
- Your target audience
- What kind of content works best for your audience?
- What kind of content or strategy was successful before?
- What kind of content do your competitors post?
- How much manpower and resources do you have available?
- What are your goals and KPIs?
- Decide what kind of content to post – While your content will largely depend on your audience, as a general rule it is recommended to post a variety of content. This is to avoid making your audience get tired of seeing the same thing over and over, and will also help you experiment to see which kind of content will work better.
Try to create a mix of images, infographics, videos, gifs, or articles to diversify your content. You should also experiment with the format, for example, try using Instagram stories, reels, Facebook carousel, or live video.
There is also what is called the “Social Media Rule of Thirds”. According to it, ⅓ of your content should be to promote your content, ⅓ should be to interact with your audience, and ⅓ should be to share news or tips that your audience can benefit from. Consider this rule when coming up with your content strategy.
- Decide which platform to prioritize – It’s a good idea to be present on all social media platforms to increase your visibility and reach. However, there should be some platforms that you prioritize over the others. But how would you know which one?
It would depend on your target audience, your brand, your content, and your goals. Are you a brand that focuses on visuals, and posts a lot of images? Then Instagram is the best platform for you. Are you looking to get more engagement and discussions on your content? Twitter might be the best match. If you are geared towards a casual, younger audience, TikTok should be your priority. Determining all of this will help you decide which platforms to focus on.
- Decide your posting frequency – Consistent posting has been proven to be rewarded by the algorithm of any social media platform. The more you post, the more chances will your post appear in your followers feed. Of course, you wouldn’t want to spam your followers by posting 10x a day, but you should be so inactive that you don’t post anything in months. Regular and consistent posting is key. Posting at a specific time also helps build a pattern in your followers minds that they keep an eye out for your post.
Of course, your posting frequency will depend on your industry standard and your available manpower. But as a general rule of thumb, here is the recommended frequency:
- Facebook – 1x or 2x a day
- Twitter – 1x or 5x a day
- Instagram – 3x or 7x a week
- TikTok – 1x or 3x a day
- LinkedIn – 1x or 5x a day
- Pinterest – 1x or 3x a day
- YouTube – 1 video per week
- Target the best time to post – Just like the posting frequency, this will largely depend on your industry standard. Another thing to consider is your audience – what time are they usually active, and where they are located (time zones are tricky, after all).
On average, here are the recommended posting times:
- Facebook – 8am to 12pm, Tuesday and Thursday
- Twitter – 8am, Monday and Thursday
- Instagram – 11am, Wednesday
- TikTok – 7pm, Thursday
- LinkedIn – 9am, Tuesday and Wednesday
- Pinterest – 6pm, Sunday
- YouTube – 6pm, Friday and Saturday
Again, your own data and audience should be the deciding factor on when you should post. However, if you are just starting out it won’t hurt to try posting at these recommended times.
- Start creating your calendar – You are now ready to create your calendar. If you are stuck on ideas on what to post, here are a few examples. Keep in mind though that the content should still be geared towards your audience and brand, so pick which one will work best for you:
- Product Launches or Announcements
- Special Events
- Sales or Promotions
- Behind the Scenes of your business
- Funny or Relatable Content
- Seasonal Posts
- Blog posts or articles
- Sharing articles or news about your industry
- Sharing content from your followers
- Resharing old content
Share the calendar with your team to get feedback and suggestions, and make sure to review it for further improvements as well.
If you want to take your social media to the next level, then having a social media calendar is definitely the way to go. It’s the best way to save time, be organized, and be strategic with your content. With a great social media presence, you’ll surely make your brand stand out even more.
Faviola has been in the digital marketing industry for six years and is currently an SEO Content Writer at BrandCrowd.com. In her spare time, she likes reading mystery novels and watching indie films.