Four Benefits of Using a Social Media Calendar

They make it look so easy, don’t they? You know, those brands on social media that always seem to know when to recognize Houseplant Appreciation Day (yes, that’s really a thing) and have killer “impromptu” content to promote their flash sale.

These companies fill their timelines with a clever mix of posts that are funny, informative and thought-provoking. And yet somehow they still manage to remain focused and on-brand.

It’s no secret that it takes a little bit of elbow grease to produce stellar social content. But there is a secret weapon that these social media standouts rely on to optimize their efforts. This tool can be as simple or complex as your marketing strategy demands. And surprisingly enough, some of the most effective versions rely on a humble Excel spreadsheet for their structure.

What is this miracle tool, you ask? I would like to officially introduce you to the social media calendar.

Curious? Read on!

Save Time, Optimize Effort

Creating and curating content for social media on the fly can be time-consuming. Not to mention, costly.

By setting aside time each week to create a balanced and strategic social media calendar you can focus energy on the task at hand and take full advantage of being in “the zone”.

Start the process by setting up Google alerts for keywords in your industry. This will give you a self-populating library of timely and relevant articles to choose from each week.

Next, compile a list of company blog posts, sales promotions, and other key company messages you want to share.

You will soon discover that in the same amount of time it takes to quell the frenzy that erupts when your boss realizes it’s been two weeks since your last Twitter post, a week’s worth of impactful social media posts can be pre-planned using these simple resources and a template downloaded from the internet.

Increase Customer Trust

Did you know that “71% of consumers who have had a positive experience with a brand on social media are likely to recommend the brand to their friends and family”?

People do business with those that they know and trust. And being a regular and engaged presence in your audience’s social media feeds can have a significant impact on the consumer/brand relationship.

Whether you’re sharing a blog post that positions you as a go-to resource in the industry or humanizing your brand with a behind the scenes look at the staff softball team’s shenanigans, maintaining a social media calendar will ensure you have a healthy dose of brand-enhancing content strategically woven throughout your posts.

The Magic Mix

We have all unfollowed obnoxious companies that only ever talk about themselves.

Mapping out the type of content you plan to publish in a social media calendar allows you to control the frequency of promotional posts and safeguards your business against becoming “that guy”.

In the early days of social media marketing for business, we relied on the rule of thirds to guide content planning. Basically, you balanced each branded/promotional post with two that shared content from similar businesses or thought-leaders in your industry.

Since that time, content theories have evolved. They now include the 5:3:2 rule, the 4-1-1 rule and the 60/30/10 rule. And while they may differ slightly in their content categories and ratios, all agree on one thing; promotional posts should always represent the lowest number.

No matter what ratio you adopt, a social media calendar will help you plan your posts accordingly, ensuring a healthy mix of both community-building and promotional content that will help increase engagement and brand awareness.

Boost Website Traffic

Whether you want to promote a brand new product or a recently published blog post, social media is an excellent tool to help drive traffic to your website.

Unlike the delayed reaction of SEO and Google rankings, you can begin to observe the effect of social media posts almost immediately. And by strategically scheduling promotional posts using a social media calendar your business can leverage the unique power that each channel holds, targeting specific segments and boosting the real-time range of your message.

From the wide-reaching hashtags of Twitter to the powerful geotags of Instagram, pre-planning certain aspects of posts with a specific call to action will increase the chance that your target audience will receive the right message, in the right place, at the right time.

Pretty cool, right?

Do you have questions about social media calendars?

Would you like to harness their power but simply don’t know where to start? Contact the marketing experts at Didjet today!