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Top 5 steps to build an effective social media calendar

The Good Marketer

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December 9, 2021 | 6 min read

If you consult with any social media agency London, they will tell you that having a robust social media calendar is one of the most effective ways to save time and make your life a whole lot easier

If you consult with any social media agency London, they will tell you that having a robust social media calendar is one of the most effective ways to save time and make your life a whole lot easier. An effective social media calendar will help you to keep up with the pace of digital marketing.

So, how do you create a social media calendar that will help you grow your reach on each platform? It may sound like a tedious process, but it's not as bad as you think, especially if you start early before your social media is already up and running.

The good news is, there are five easy steps you can follow to create an effective social media calendar that will help you simplify your life.

1.) List the platforms you want to be active on

This step may seem obvious, but it's often overlooked or not given enough thought. There are a ton of social media platforms out there and more popping up every single year.

This is one of the first questions that you should answer when creating a social media calendar or planning for social media in general. But, first, you need to know which platforms you want to be active on. List at least three different platforms that you want your brand to be active on.

Also, make sure to think about whether you want to be active on niche or more specific platforms like LinkedIn, Pinterest and Tumblr.

Don't worry if you don't think that all three platforms work for your brand; this is just a list of suggestions and ideas. Take into consideration how your customers and clients use the various platforms, as this will help you narrow down your list.

2.) Prioritize the platforms that are most beneficial to you

After you have listed all of the social media platforms you wish to use, it's then time to prioritize them in order of importance.

The reason why you want to prioritize is that it can help you save time and money. If you focus on the most beneficial platforms to your brand, this will help with budgeting and allocation of resources.

Some social media platforms are used more than others, depending on your industry or niche. Some may even have a higher audience engagement which is vital when trying to grow your reach. You want to do your research and find out which social media platforms are the most beneficial for you to use. This means looking at the following:

• Monthly active users.

• Audience demographics - age, location etc.

• Pricing - is it free, or does it have a price tag?

• Target audience - who are you trying to attract?

• Is it easy for you to use and navigate around the platform?

• Integration with other social media platforms.

• Accessibility on various devices.

All of these factors will influence whether or not you should be active on that particular platform and how often.

3.) Create a calendar for each platform that you're going to use

Creating a social media calendar is one of the most effective ways to save time, but it can also help cut costs if done correctly.

You want to do this for each platform that you're going to be active on.

It's important to note that there is no 'one size fits all' social media calendar. Instead, you want to customise your calendar(s) depending on the platform and what works best for your brand. For example, if you're using Facebook, it will look different than if you're using Instagram or Pinterest.

You want to also think about how many times you will post each day on any given platform, as this may affect your social media calendar. The power of a social media calendar can help keep you organized and streamlined with your social media efforts. It's all a matter of what works best for your brand and keeping you transparent.

If you're not great with keeping track of your social media efforts, this is definitely for you. You will be able to stay on top of any posts that need to be made and ensure that there aren't gaps in between posts and content creation.

4.) Define the metrics for success

This is something that many brands forget to do, but it's vital. You need to define the metrics for success before you begin your social media efforts or build a social media calendar.

What does 'success' look like for your brand? What goals have been set out, and how will you know if they've been reached?

For instance, if you have a goal to reach X amount of people for your latest blog post, how will you know?

You need to keep in mind the following:

• What content gets shared the most on which platform.

• Most popular time to post.

• Audience growth.

• Most popular posts by month.

• Most popular posts in terms of engagement.

• Top influencers to share your content.

All of this information is vital if you're trying to measure success, and it will also help with future planning when building your social media calendar.

5.) Repeat the process for each month or quarter

Building a social media calendar is not something that should be taken lightly or done once. Instead, it should be part of your long-term social media strategy because it will have benefits for months and years to come.

If you're trying to achieve certain short-term goals, these are reflected in each month using a social media calendar. Social media never sleeps, and neither do you. It's important to keep in mind that social media platforms will change, and it's vital that your content marketing strategy is updated and reflects this.

You want to put yourself in the shoes of your target audience, similar to when you were putting together buyer personas for your content marketing efforts. This will help better reflect your content creation and social media efforts.

You want to be aware of current trends, what's hot right now and what your audience is talking about. If something major happens, then put it into consideration for your social media calendar. Social media is interactive, so you should be too.

If you're not great with keeping track of these details or want to ensure that you don't miss a beat, then it's time to take the next step and build a social media calendar.

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