First of all, what the heck is a content plan?  How is that different from a content strategy?

Well, a strategy is the higher level plan for your overall marketing.  It’s setting goals and identifying your ideal client. It’s knowing what platforms you will be posting on and what the theme of the month is for your plan. It’s being intentional with how you represent your company online.  

The content plan is what you are actually doing and when.  So the topic of the blog posts, what the social media graphics look like, what engaging question you will ask in your group that week.  It’s knowing what your audience likes and doesn’t like.

So do you need both?  HECK YES! Both are critical to your success online.

The biggest problem I see with content planning is that people don’t ask the right questions.  They just open up a new spreadsheet, find a few interesting articles, promote their upcoming event, and call it a day.   

Is that going to work?  No.

Content marketing is a long-term plan, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t need to plan each month.  It’s a super important part of the process.

So, here are the top 3 questions to ask when creating a content plan each month.  Do this and your content will kick butt this month!

1. What is coming up this month?

What events or tradeshows?  Do you have a specific product you are promoting?  Are you trying to build your list? You have to have a goal each month and know what’s coming up so you aren’t just randomly posting.

One of my favorite things to post about is silly holidays. Hello National Grilled Cheese Day!  It keeps things light and fun and helping me stick to my 80/20 rule of posting (80% value based, 20% promotion).  Although that isn’t necessarily value-based (unless you love grilled cheese as much as I do, then it does provide value to know there is an actual day to celebrate), it will most likely engage your audience without selling.

Something else to consider, is what do your affiliates or business besties have coming up that you want to help support and promote?  You don’t want to overwhelm your tribe with too many promotions, so it’s something to consider if you and your bestie are launching the same month.

2. What is the theme of the month?

Go back to your strategy.  What can you share that relates to your theme of the month?  Make a list of ideas – or better yet keep a list in Evernote (check out the list of social media ideas I started for you!), so when you are planning your content, you have something to reference.

If you are in real estate and this month’s theme is all about staging houses, brainstorm ideas of how you can share your knowledge using Facebook Live, blog posts, social media posts, and if there are any third party content that you want to share.

3. What did your audience respond to last month?

This is something that often gets overlooked.  Don’t forget to look at your analytics. This is critical to your social media success!

  • What did your audience like last month?  Did they respond well to your videos? Do more of those!
  • Is there anything that got a lot of engagement?  Include more of that in your plan this month.
  • What got crickets?  Try reposting it at a different day and time to see if it gets better traction.
  • When is your audience online?  Go live during those times.

You gotta review the analytics and make adjustments each month.

I am running a 5 day challege in May to create your content plan/calendar.  By the end of the 5 days, you will have a content calendar ready for the next month.  
If you are interested in joining the challenge, click here!

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