An article on how to make a content calendar
An article on how to make a content calendar

So you’ve nailed your content strategy and now you’re ready to implement it. You’ve got tons of creative ideas about how to reach your audience and boost your ROI. But you need some structure, a central place to hold all of the nitty-gritty details and a way to clearly visualize what is happening when. This is where a content calendar comes in handy.

Essentially a content calendar is a tool to help you organize and plan all of your content output. The whos, whats, wheres, whens, and hows. It’s a constantly evolving document that you refer to on a day-to-day basis to keep track of where you are, what’s worked well and what’s coming next.


 

The benefits of a content calendar

The benefits are numerous, but here are Nudge’s top three pros:

Stay focused

A content calendar is an excellent way to focus your efforts in a way that best aligns with your goals and objectives. We’ve all had those moments at work when we sit there bewildered, unsure what we should be doing next. Spending time planning out which content pieces you should work on and when is a fool-proof way to avoid those slack jaw moments. Having a clear plan also makes it a lot easier to jump straight in on those “struggs to func”* Monday mornings and stick to agreed timings. And who isn’t looking for ways to work smarter not harder?

Better collaboration

Having everything mapped out in one central place not only aids you but gives you the best shot at collaborating well with your team. Sharing the plan with your team and asking them to provide feedback in one place keeps the process streamlined and everyone on the same page. It also allows you to see at a glance if anything you need is missing, i.e. feedback, approval or content.

More time for creativity

Building a content calendar does take some effort up front to get set up and working to its best advantage (I’ve given some tips on what to think about below). However once taken care of, you’ll have more time to put your creative brain to work to tackle how best to maximize your brand. Simply put, once you’ve developed your content calendar, all you’ll have to do is populate it with your ideas.

 

What to include in your content calendar

When it comes to developing your content calendar, you’ll need to think about your specific needs and what you need your content calendar to tell you. The basic information you’ll need to include in your content calendar is:

Other things you could include, depending on your requirement, are:

 

Nudge can help you measure the effectiveness of your content with real-time, actionable insights that increase your ROI.

 

Where to host your content calendar

You’ll need to host your calendar somewhere easily accessible for everyone who needs to see it. Here are some of the best collaboration-friendly platforms to host your content calendar:

Google Sheets – An oldie but a goldie. Sometimes a classic spreadsheet is the best way to go. It’s shareable and your team will likely be very familiar with the interface too.

Trello – Using Trello you can create checklists with due date reminders and assign people to each action that needs completing. It’s highly customizable and uses a simple drag and drop function, but it may require a little training time for colleagues who are not familiar with it. Here’s a how-to guide on creating your content calendar using Trello.

Hootsuite Planner – This is a sophisticated tool that gives you a broad ‘Planner’ section to overview all scheduled content activity and then a more detailed ‘Content’ section for scheduling content and recording approvals. However, there are costs associated with this option and it’s specifically suited to social media content.

 

Useful resources for building your content calendar

Some other resources that may come in useful when building your content calendar are:

 

Best practice for building a content calendar

And finally, some best practice to keep in mind when building your content calendar:

 

At Nudge, we’re experts in measuring content to improve ROI so if you need any help with this aspect of your content management, please get in touch.

 

*Struggling to function

robot falling

 

About the author

Sarah Plant is a British content writer that helps organizations put their best foot forward with the right words. She draws upon her experience of working in marketing and fundraising, both agency- and client-side, to tell compelling stories that maximize audience engagement.

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