The Science Of Social Media: How To Build An Effective Social Media Content Calendar
As a business owner, you don’t need us to tell you about the importance of social media in today’s digital age. It’s always in the back of your mind to throw a post up on Instagram or Facebook every once in a while, but did you know that your lack of planning is actually a disadvantage for your business? Rather than creating and posting things willy-nilly, you should be planning your content beforehand to ensure your posts are diversified, going live at a good time, and hitting the mark in terms of helping your organization reach its goals. That’s why we’ve compiled everything you need to know about the science of social media and, specifically, how to build an effective social media content calendar to help your business thrive online!
When creating a content calendar, you will first want to audit your existing social media channels and content to see what’s working and what’s not. Maybe your videos on Instagram and TikTok have been doing fantastic, meaning you want to focus more on video content, or perhaps your posts on LinkedIn have been experiencing massive reach, and you want to continue this trend. Regardless, look at what’s working so you can begin formulating ideas on how to duplicate this success.
After seeing what content is currently performing well, it’s time to identify your content pillars and create some goals. For example, one of our Client-Partners, Metalfab Fire Trucks, wants to prioritize educating their clients, making informative content one of their most important pillars. Some other examples of content pillars for your business could include creating posts that inspire, build trust, promote your brand, or highlight your culture. (Keep in mind, this is not an exhaustive list!) As your brand pillars begin to emerge, it’s also a good time to start setting some goals for your content so that you can stay accountable over time.
Phew! Are you still with us? Now that the auditing, content pillar identification, and goal setting are done, it’s time for the fun part—brainstorming post ideas! We recommend using a content calendar template (these can easily be found online), inputting all the information you’ve generated, and then filling in different post ideas. Pro tip: when inspiration strikes but you’re on the go or away from your computer, write a note on your phone so you don’t lose your next content idea! Also, don’t forget to add the date and times that your content will go live and what platforms the content will be posted to. At this point, you’ll also want to look into different social media scheduling platforms such as Meta, Planoly, Loomly, Sendible, and many, many others to help seamlessly plan and auto-post your content. Plus, these tools make it simple to collaborate with your team members for seamless content creation and execution.
Content Types and Diversity
Now that you have some general content ideas, it’s time to look deeper at which content type will be best for each post. On Instagram, for example, you can have static posts (one image), carousels (multiple images), or reels (videos), and this is just one platform! Regardless, it’s always a good idea to diversify your content types to reach different audiences and gather feedback and analytics that can help you further hone your content calendar. If you’re here looking for some specific advice on how to create fresh, engaging content, try this out: create an educational carousel (more room to educate!), design an inspirational static post (maybe consider adding a song on top of Instagram), or test out a trending audio with some simple b-roll footage (coupled with a hook and attention-grabbing caption). You can thank us later!
Alright, so you have your content ready to go, but when do you post them? And how often should you be posting? As always, this will depend on your organization and its goals, but a good starting point would be to look at your analytics to see if you can gather any insights to answer these questions. For example, Facebook (and several other social media platforms) can actually suggest the best dates and times to post content based on your follower activity. You may also decide to utilize a scheduling platform or other digital tools—like Hootsuite or Later—to help you determine the best posting time. If you’re still really unsure, start by posting a few content pieces throughout the week to see what performs best.
Posting Frequency and Timing
Once you’ve got your content on a proper schedule—thanks to your content calendar—it’s time to sit back and relax, right? Well, not quite. In order to reap the most benefit from your analytics and continue honing your content strategy, it’s important to regularly review your content’s performance to see how things are going and what could use improvement. For example, let’s say your educational posts are connecting really well but your promotional posts are lacking engagement. In this case, you may decide to double down your efforts on your promotional posts, change the content type of these posts, or add additional value to the captions to try and increase your engagement rates. Keep in mind that this analyzing and adjusting piece is basically like trial and error; however, having these analytics helps you make data-driven adjustments to your content calendar, so it’s not like you’re just shooting in the dark.
To bring together everything we’ve been talking about, we want to leave you with this sentiment: social media is an ever-changing and evolving entity that requires the perfect balance of planning, execution, and flexibility to see success. Although social media can be challenging, one way to make it a little less difficult is by creating and sticking to a content calendar. Yes, there might be times when you feel drawn to post off the cuff (and in those cases, you should definitely do it!), but having a specific plan for your content—including the posting times, frequency, content types, and ideas—will be instrumental on those days you’re not feeling as inspired. Ultimately, having a well-organized and thorough content calendar is the key piece your business needs to create and maintain a strong social media presence, meaning the only thing left to do is get started!
If you’d like further information or assistance with your social media marketing strategy, contact our team at www.tulipmediagroup.com today.