Social Media Editorial Calendar Basics

Running a social media marketing strategy is no small feat. A single post could have five layers behind the scenes before the “Publish” button is even tapped.

One tool marketers can use is a social media editorial calendar to help keep teams on the same page as the social media beast gets fed.

Using an editorial calendar not only keeps everyone on the same page, but it also creates efficiencies, establishes accountability and helps keep an overall balance of content, creativity and expectations. In case you need it, here are a few social media editorial calendar basics.

What are the basics of an editorial calendar?

There are a few core basics that every social media editorial calendar should have. Those elements include:

  • Date
  • Post copy
  • URL
  • Hashtags
  • Tagging notes
  • Platforms
  • Creative

What are things you need to know when building editorial calendars?

Before building your first social media editorial calendar, you should establish guardrails. Here are some of the things you should define on the front end to help keep consistency from calendar to calendar:

  • Buckets – What are the core themes you want your content to fall? Each post should have a dedicated bucket to fall into.
  • Length – How long is your calendar? Are you writing weekly, biweekly or monthly?
  • Deadlines + Approvers – Once you have length answered, you can back out to determine when you need to send the calendar to those approving the content.
  • Internal Markers – Are there any specific highlights or colors that have meaning? For example, maybe a post in yellow means that’s a blog post and can’t be scheduled in advance.
  • Organization/Client Philosophy – Be on the same page as far as philosophy goes. Does a client care if the 4/18 post publishes on 4/18, or if it’s OK if it gets swapped with 4/22? Do they need to know that before it happens?

What tools can be used for making editorial calendars?

This is the fun part, finding the tools to help get the job done. The No. 1 thing to keep in mind is to find a tool that works for the team and STICK WITH IT. A tool or a system is no good if it’s not being used consistently and correctly. Here are some of the tools you could use to stay on track.

  • Google Sheets
  • Trello
  • On-platform Planning and Scheduling Tools
  • Brandwatch
  • Sprout Social

Casey Prentice

A self-proclaimed organizational junkie and data geek who confesses to a secret desire to be a professional organizer, Casey enjoys account management, writing, editing and digital content strategy. Her agency work has helped clients like Virginia’s Community Colleges, VCUarts and Swedish Match.

Read more by Casey

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