Do you have an editorial calendar for YOUR online business?
You KNOW consistency is key in making a success of your business, but how do you follow through on that? Whenever you sit down to work, do you find yourself staring at a blinking cursor, quickly distracted by Facebook?
If you’re in my Facebook community, you’ve heard me say dozens of times that no matter what kind of entrepreneur you are, you should have a blog. It sets up such an easy pathway for readers (and potential clients!) to find you.
Perhaps you hear me say that, though, and you think “Okay, but what do I write about…?”
If you run an online business, you should have a blog. It’s an easy way to share your value and expertise, and when done right, it can easily drive traffic to your website in a nearly-passive way.
So how do you get started running a successful blog?
With an EDITORIAL CALENDAR!
How to Create an Editorial Calendar
1. Go deeper with your goals
How will you get your audience from Point A (your post) to Point Z (your sales)? What sort of pathway do you want them to take? How do you best connect to your ideal clients? When you consider these factors as you map out your goals for your calendar, it becomes much easier to not only direct yourself, but to direct those leads that will (ideally) become paying clients. Don’t just scratch the surface and say “I’ll write four posts on W, X, Y, Z” and then expect mind-blowing results. Each post should have a purpose beyond just free value for your readers.
How do your priorities factor into your writing/videos? How can you use these to ensure an easier transition from new reader to client? IS writing a blog or doing regular videos ACTUALLY a priority for you? Whether you write for a blog, do a podcast, do videos, or all of the above, you should have all of those commitments factored into the overall editorial calendar. If you’re just starting out, start slow and pick ONE media platform to run with. If writing comes naturally to you, but you don’t have the time or care to make video a priority, don’t try to squeeze it in there because you think you’re “supposed to.” This is your business. There is no “supposed to.”
3. Start with pen and paper
Physically writing out your editorial calendar will take you a LOT farther than plugging it into an online program. Put paper to pen and create PHYSICAL proof of your passion and abilities. Allow for a judgement-free space and write down whatever comes to mind, even if it feels totally unrelated to your business. Just write. See what starts to flow and build from there.
Decide how often you’re going to post and BE realistic. Don’t start off posting 2x/week and then suddenly leave your audience hanging by disappearing for a month. Always be at least one post ahead. Better to set the bar low and have extra posts then to set it too high and fail to stay consistent.
5. Pay attention to the dates
Think about the months/seasons as you begin to plan. Example: January – New Year Resolutions, recovering from the holiday season, starting off a new year right, etc. February – Valentine’s Day, getting started on taxes, Mardi Gras, etc. March – St. Patrick’s Day, spring cleaning, end of Quarter 1, etc. How can you use these to develop content themes? Map out your entire year if you have to, even if it’s just a bare-bones framework.
6. Work backwards
Along those same lines, if a holiday passes and you find yourself thinking “Man, that would’ve made for a GREAT blog post!!” then WRITE IT! Imagine if you wrote TWO blog posts every week and only posted once. You’d be an entire year ahead come December!!
7. Brainstorm & Free Write
Still stuck on the pen and paper part? Give yourself 30 minutes to brainstorm. No judgement, no dumb ideas, just free write for 30 minutes. THEN go back and decide what’s worth plugging into your editorial calendar. From there you can come up with keywords to focus on, photo you’ll need to take/find, and note what content you’ll use to nudge people towards your programs/products.
8. Keep it visible
However you decide to compile your editorial calendar after creating the rough draft, do it in such a way that it STAYS IN FRONT OF YOU! Pick up a yearly calendar from the dollar store and use it only for your editorial calendar – pin it up in front of your desk. Or use a program such as CoSchedule or a WP plug-in like Editorial Calendar.
Actually create your editorial calendar and you’ll already be one step ahead of those still staring at their blinking cursor.
Stop staring, get to it today!