Why You Need a Content Calendar!
If you are like most bloggers and content creators (myself included) it is difficult to consistently develop and publish fresh content to your blog when you don't have a plan. Our staff at Inbound Marketing Agents has created a very simple blog calendar that we are giving to you today to help you feed your blog. A hungry blog is an unhappy blog!
One of the keys to successful blog is publishing consistent content. I am sure you have visited a blog that has not been updated for a year, a month, or even a week and thought, "Is this person or company still in business"? This why a calendar is important. Don't disappoint your visitors and most importantly you don't want them to think you have forgotten about them. Your blog is not about you. It is about your them!
Let's be realistic for a minute. How much time do you really have to create new content to feed your blog? Not everyone has a team of content writers that can push out an article a day. Start by allocating time to your weekly or daily schedule to create content and put that block of time on your schedule.
Every good blog article must have a great title. Titles are the starting point for each of your blog articles because they typically contain keywords relevant to the article and for search optimization.
Once you have created your calendar and committed to the number of articles you will write each week or month the next step is to do some keyword analysis for the keywords you want to rank for. (If you are a HubSpot user you can easily use your Keyword Grader). Once you have selected your keywords you want to target then create a month's worth of titles. If you are blogging 3 times per week then you should have 12 titles on your calendar at the start of each month.
Schedule your articles in your blog calendar to post on the same days each week. This will enable your subscribers to know when you post and expect to see an email notification or RSS on these days. Having the post dates on your calendar should also help with personal accountability to get your research and creation done prior to the posting date. Your subscribers love consistency.
Allow time for research and preparation for each blog article you create. The worst thing that can happen is to rush to get your article done and to publish a piece of content for your visitors that is rushed or incomplete. You will see that the blog calendar sample we provide has a place for research. Be sure to allocate enough time for each specific title based on your knowledgebase of the topic and type of article you will be creating.
When to Publish
We have some great data from Shareaholic to help you schedule the optimum posting days and times for getting your content seen and shared on line. Sharaholic is the leading global social share widget, installed on over 200,000 websites. They took a look at all their data for 2011 and found the 100 top days and times for sharing and views from all of the websites. Let’s see what we can learn from this data dive.
As you can see by this graph the earlier you can post in the week the more pageviews you will generate for your blog articles. Why are weekends not on the graph. The pagview rates drop significantly on weekends. We would not recommend that you post on Saturday or Sunday unless you have a firehose of content that will enable you to post daily.
This information along with the graphs from Shareaholic should give you a good starting point to create your blog calendar. The days and times above are a small sampling and may not be applicable to your industry, content, or subscribers so be sure to analyze your pageviews, comments, and leads from each post and then improve based off the analytics. Note: All time zones in the graphs are Eastern (EST).
- Download the Blog Calendar
- Be realistic with your time allocation
- Be accountable to your calendar and subscribers
- Consistency is the key
- Post early in the week between 9am-11am