Effective Editorial Planning for 2014

Since everyone is in planning mode for their new year, I thought this would be a great time to share my editorial planning guide for you to consider for your on online media execution. More on how I strategize this plan on this week’s Social Thursday.

(Free download is at the bottom of this post!)

It’s easy to tell you to just get yourself a calendar and start planning your blog and social conten, right? Sure! Just plop any ideas you have down on that paper and execute accordingly.

But is that really the best way to do it? Is there a more effectively way to give it all a purpose to the greater goal? Social media is a great place for people to learn about you and build trust. It’s that top of funnel place for your online strategy. So thinking of it that way, we need to make that funnel make sense so the audience will move accordingly. Subscribing in ways that count toward your bottom line and will encourage them to make those purchase decisions.

The first thing I do with my calendar is look at the dates and current events of what the world is already thinking about. How can I get on their wavelength immediately?

From there, just work down from your goal. Where is the best venue for that conversation to take place? This might be your email marketing plan. Well, if you’re going to pitch services or products there you need to keep that list fresh all the time and give a lot more than you ask. So how many times are you sending emails so that that ratio makes sense?

This number will then help you figure out that next step which is how much content you need in order to have a fresh email every time, thus helping define your editorial calendar of “free” content. These are the opportunities for you to be building that trust and thought leadership as they’re getting to know you in that mid-point of the funnel where they haven’t quite made a purchase.

And going further from that, if you’re going to share your pieces of content whether they’re blog posts, videos, slideshows, or infographics, how often will you post on social media so you’re not just sharing your own stuff but overall helpful information in your industry on a regular basis?

Working back from your goal will give you a clear idea of what you need to do to get into a position to ask your audience for what you need and this is how you’ll get to a point of effective editorial planning. But like I said, this is a lot of information and just plotting headlines on a calendar isn’t enough space to really think it through so check out this PDF editorial calendar (sign up to download below) for how I get the job done and make it a more purposeful plan that feels less random.