An essential tool for content creation.
What is an Editorial Calendar you ask? It is an essential tool for consistent, quality content creation.
Let me be honest. I knew I was due to write a blog article, but I was not sure what would be relevant and useful. Typical “uh…what now?” kind of moment.
In an effort to a) follow my own advice and b) show how content creation doesn’t have to be torturous, I thought I’d share with you some thoughts on getting past the blank page.
Create An Editorial Calendar
What questions do you find yourself answering all the time? You likely have ten or more questions that clients and prospects regularly ask. Moreover, you probably have an answer at the ready. Each of those questions and your response is fodder for an article.
Taking a few minutes to jot down some article topics that you can write throughout the year and make a note in your calendar.
Pay Attention To Ad Hoc Topics
Have you ever found yourself ranting about a business-related topic that comes up somewhat randomly? Those inevitable little fires or trouble spots that only you can resolve? That’s an article! (Though you may want to tone down the rant and turn it into something productive for your readers.)
For example, a while ago I found I was spouting off about “social media experts” (OK, I was gently TOLD I was spouting off…) So I wrote an article; “If You Call Yourself a Social Media Expert…Have a Facebook Page!“.
Another time, we landed a project with a new client who needed an agency to clean up the mess their previous vendor had made of their WordPress website. That too became an article; Not All WordPress Websites Are Created Equal.
It takes some practice to move beyond the soapbox and turn your rants into great content for your website. But once you get into the habit you can turn what might be a roadblock into an opportunity.
Invite Guest Authors
Inviting guest authors is a fabulous way to create new content for your website; and it helps to build relationships with clients, strategic partners, vendors, etc. Any of these folks could help you with content for your site.
Make the invitation more enticing by offering to include a bio and link back to the author’s website.
Guest authors can also drive traffic back to your website by sharing the article with their readers.
It’s a Win-Win scenario.
The content you already have can also be a rich source of new material.
A lot changes in a year, never mind two or three. Previous posts can be updated with new information and new insights. Or they may provide inspiration for new articles based on changes in the industry. Or maybe you just want to clean up the writing or add new photos.
Maximize the work you’ve already done. Don’t recreate the wheel when you don’t need to.
React To Articles Written By Others
You likely share links to articles on social media fairly regularly. Consider doing something a bit more robust and write a post for your blog. You may agree and can write in support of the author; sharing your ideas, anecdotes, etc. Or maybe you disagree and can write how your views differ. This is a great technique to supplement your editorial calendar since it’s a bit harder to schedule.
Do A Mashup
Consider doing a mashup of Creating An Editorial Calendar and Recycling. One month you write a new article and the next you refresh an old one.
However you plan to keep your blog going – having a plan in the first place will help immensely.