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Creating a Social Media Calendar

Maintaining a social media calendar allows you to keep track of what to post and when so you're never caught off guard and you don't lose time!
Mirelle Hassler
Last Updated
October 22, 2021

Why creating a social media content calendar matters

There are a lot of benefits to having an overview of what you're going to post for at least the next month.

1. It helps you to show up regularly

Audiences remember people when they show up regularly on their timelines. Of course, a lot of that is determined by social media algorithms. And as businesses posting on social media, constantly fighting against the algorithm can seem impossible.

But starting with a social media content calendar is the first step to doing just that.

Bonus points: when an interested person goes to your company page, they see activity.

2. It saves you time when trying to figure out what to post

Figuring out what you're going to post ahead of time saves you from rushing in the moment.

Ad-hoc social media posts aren't driven by an over-arching strategy and can come out looking like a rushed effort.

You can also find yourself spending too long trying to figure out the details like the caption, image, and the linked content.

Trust us, it is easy to overthink any of these things.

3. You can spend your time more effectively

Let's use an example.

If I know that I'll be posting an "Employee Tip" every Friday, I can spend the free time I have getting a template ready that I can use every week, and I can ask employees for 10-15 great tips at the beginning of the month.

Just like that I have 10-15 great posts ready to schedule at the beginning of the month.

Planning ahead can help you take the attention off of operating social media, so you can focus on improving branding, analyzing your social media strategy, or just focusing on other aspects of your business that need attention.

What are the different building blocks of a social media calendar?

Ideally you should do this exercise in the first, early steps of setting up your social media strategy.

And then you can revisit your social media plan on a monthly or bi-monthly basis to improve on it.

To start off, you need:

  • 🥅 A social media strategy
  • 🗓️ A monthly calendar
  • 🍉 Content categories
  • 🗨️ Post ideas
social media calendar

Step 1: List recurring post categories

Ideally, everything you post on social media achieves a certain objective. These objectives are used to create post categories.

In Willow, you don't need to come up with these categories. You can find them under the Ideas tab.

You need a good mix of these categories in your calendar to create a solid social media plan.

Let's say you choose Educational, Promotional, and Employees & Workplace categories.

On to the next step.

Step 2: List post ideas for the chosen categories

You're getting closer to your plan!

Now for each category that you've chosen, think of 3-4 post ideas. Here's an example:

Category: Educational

💡 Post Ideas:

  • Tip of the day
  • Blog of the week
  • Blog excerpt visual
  • Carousel based on blog

Repeat the same exercise for each of your post categories.

It can of course be difficult to come up with post ideas that work. That's why there's a complete section in Willow dedicated to give you ready-made post ideas based on the categories mentioned above.

Here's an example of a Post Idea in Willow. You can find plenty more in the Ideas tab.

example of a Post Idea in Willow

Step 3: Plan your slots

🔨 Decide how many times a week you're willing and able to post

  • It's okay to start with a minimum of 2 posts per week.
  • Once you can be consistent with 2 posts per week, you can ramp up the frequency. Eg. If you're a one-person business and need time to work on other aspects of your business too, it might be wise to start small.

⏲️ Decide when you're going to post

  • Wednesday & Thursday mornings are the best times to post in the week especially if you're a B2B business.

🎰 Build your calendar

Take each post category you chose and choose their slots.

  • Most frequent: If educating your audience is a priority to you, then you can choose to post an Educational post idea (eg. Tip of the Week) once every week. This adds to 4 posting slots a month, e.g. 2 Blog posts and 2 Tips of the Week.
  • Promotional posts must be done at a more conservative frequency. Just 2 out of every 10 posts on your social media should be promotional posts. Eg. You post twice a week which adds to 8-10 posts a month. Look at your calendar to ensure that you post promotional stuff only 2 times in that month., e.g. 1 Customer testimonial and 1 Product highlight
  • Employees & Workplace categories can fill up at least 2 more slots in the week since we're posting a total of 8-10 times a month, e.g. 1 Employee testimonial and 1 Team photo

Perfect! Now you have a repeatable monthly social media calendar.

Planning your tasks in Willow

If that seems like a lot to digest, we've got you. In Willow, planning your post tasks is a piece of 🍰..

  1. Jump to your Willow Schedule - Month view and press Add Tasks.
  2. Write a title to categorize your post, such as Infographic, Employee highlight etc.
  3. Pick the best date and time for your post from the suggestions. You can choose when and at what time the post task is scheduled.
  4. Select the channels you want to post on at this time slot.
  5. Pick a Category. Choose from the following: Educational, Entertain & Inspire, Personal, Promotional, Employees & Workplace.
  6. Next, add a Description to help you when you're posting. These notes are just for you and your team members to read. They will not be posted. It could be pointers on what to include in the caption or the image.

Press Create Task at the bottom of the column. You have successfully added a task!

One final thing...

Step 4: Plan annual event posts

Think about all the annual events that you celebrate as a business.

Add them to your schedule so when an event is about to arrive, you're prepared to post something valuable on that day.

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How to Curate News Articles for Social Media
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