What is a content calendar?
A content calendar is a scheduling tool that enables marketing teams to plan, collaborate, publish, distribute, and promote their upcoming content. Content calendars offer a panoramic view of the end-to-end content pipeline, allowing teams to collaborate on content, and adhere to a unified publishing schedule. The scheduled content could be of any format — blog posts, videos, infographics, social media content, web pages, and emails, to name a few.
Why do you need a content calendar?
Individual bloggers and content writers tend to plan their content creation and promotion in a one-off excel spreadsheet. But when your content strategy requires collaboration, approvals, and input from multiple stakeholders across the enterprise, a spreadsheet offers limited scalability, governance, and compliance. A unified content calendar is also non-negotiable when you want to scale your marketing efforts across channels, geographies, and business units.
What are the benefits of a content calendar?
A comprehensive content calendar can help content marketers:
Strategize proactively. It’s easy to fine-tune your future content marketing strategies aligned to key content pillars with an eye on the types of content that received good engagement, drove sign-ups and leads, and other performance metrics that matter to your business.
Deliver on time. You can save valuable time by planning ahead, giving your team ample time to create and assess content marketing strategies instead of last minute surprises around deadlines.
Collaborate and brainstorm. You can align internal and external content stakeholders by giving them a shared platform to exchange and evaluate ideas.
Enable visibility across distributed teams. Robust governance — via roles and permissions — can help you maintain an audit trail while giving visibility into your content strategy to cross-functional teams.
Stay relevant and authentic. You can plan content topics, assets, and campaigns in a timely manner to stay on top of trends in this fast-moving digital world. At the same time, you can avoid content duplication and innovate original ideas to stay ahead of the competition.
Publish consistently. You can maintain a consistent publishing frequency to avoid over- or under-publishing content — both of which can adversely impact audience engagement.
Help with governance and compliance. You can maintain an audit trail, protect sensitive content assets, and uphold compliance standards by assigning roles and permissions to the stakeholders of your content calendar.
Learn more: What is content marketing?
What are the key elements of a content calendar?
A typical content calendar comprises some key elements.
Flexible views: supporting visualization from a yearly overview to a daily content schedule — yearly, quarterly, monthly, weekly, and daily views
Content pillars and objectives: the categories, personas, and customer journey stages associated with your product or company, under which all your topics fall
Assigned members: the individuals and/or teams that participate before, during, and after content production, distribution, and promotion
Feedback workflow: the approval cadence and workflows coordinating review and feedback cycles for content assets
External stakeholders: the customers, partners, and ad/PR agencies that have a stake in content marketing
Deadlines: the scheduled timelines for various pre- and post-production tasks and stages
Publishing channels: the touchpoint where your content pieces would be published
Goals and metrics: the end goals and KPIs to measure the success of your content marketing and promote the high performers — engagement, reach, sign-ups, visits, monthly traffic, etc.
What are best practices for creating a content calendar?
Creating a content calendar can be a chaotic process, especially if it involves many stakeholders, platforms, and content types. To keep it organized and useful, observe a few best practices.
Analyze your workflow demands and pick a content calendar tool that offers all mission-critical features such as cloud hosting, visualization, filters, color coding, approvals, and feedback across multiple channels and formats.
Allow users to customize calendar views based on their roles and teams. Use filters to classify content based on content pillars, objectives, audience, dates, formats, campaigns, channels, status, and other parameters.
For best results, opt for a unified content marketing platform that aligns your planning with execution. A content calendar that shows what’s planned and what is published across your sales, marketing, and advertising campaigns to enable automatic status updates, tagging, collaboration, and publishing.
Power your content marketing with Sprinklr Marketing.
As opposed to planning, distributing, and analyzing content through siloed platforms, Sprinklr’s Sprinklr Marketing unifies every campaign lifecycle stage with a single source of truth and expedites time-to-market by 40%. Driven by the world’s only AI-powered unified customer experience management (Unified-CXM) platform, Sprinklr Marketing solution offers a seamless content marketing experience that allows you to:
Ideate, plan, produce, publish, analyze, and optimize content across 30+ digital channels from one place.
Collaborate with every content stakeholder, control publishing rights with external vendors or ad agencies, and share feedback and action items from within the platform.
Reduce hours of weekly manual work by automating task assignments, approval workflows, and compliance reviews.
Go omnichannel by managing and publishing content through multiple media outlets at once and maintaining a cohesive brand voice.
Monitor real-time dashboards around content performance and online trends to create evergreen and trending campaigns.
Sprinklr Marketing software can help you create high-quality content calendars and campaigns. Leave all the messy back-end operational processes to Sprinklr so you focus all your efforts on high-cognition tasks that boost your authority and engagement.
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