You know you need to market yourself and your business. However due to a lack of time, resources, and maybe even ideas you have not really been able to get to the job of marketing.
This is understandable. Trust us, we know how difficult and time consuming it is to consistently develop new ideas for marketing content, not to mention actually having to develop and publish it.
There is a simple and effective tool that can help you manage all of your marketing activities so that you do not feel overwhelmed. That tool is a marketing calendar.
What is a marketing calendar?
A marketing calendar is a roadmap for your marketing activities. It details which marketing channels you will be using, the types of content you will be developing, and when you will be publishing that content. You can also use your marketing calendar to help you assign roles and responsibilities for your team so everybody knows what they are doing.
A marketing calendar is so important because it does the following:
- Organizes your marketing activities so you can better meet your goals
- Serves as a valuable communication tool for your team
- Allows you to track your marketing actions
- Gives you more time to plan for future marketing campaigns
Let’s now examine how you can create a marketing calendar for your business.
Type of Calendar
There are a few different ways you can organize your marketing calendar.
- By Marketing Channel – You can organize your calendar by marketing channel. If you decide that the majority of your marketing activities will be via social media you can create a calendar that details all your activities on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc. The same goes for email marketing. If email is going to be your primary source of communication, create a calendar that outlines all the emails you want to send in a given period of time.
- By Marketing Content – You can also organize your calendar by types of marketing content. Let’s say you decide to really focus on video that you are going to share on YouTube and Facebook. You can create a calendar that details all the videos you will be developing and publishing. You can also create a calendar that combines two types of content such as blogs and videos. This can be especially helpful if the blogs and videos you develop compliment one another.
- A Combination of The Two – If you are going to use multiple marketing channels and publish multiple types of marketing content, you will want to create a calendar that helps you manage both. This is a more complicated calendar, but well worth the time because it will save you time and money in the long run.
If you are unsure what type of marketing calendar that would be best for your, review your marketing strategy. Your marketing strategy should detail which marketing channels your target audience uses and which types of marketing content they will respond to.
Know Your Audience
Speaking of target audience, you want to make sure that you know your target audience. Know matter what type of calendar you determine is best for your business, you still must be able to reach your audience and compel them to take action.
This requires you to understand who your audience is and what motivates them. You should know this before you begin developing your calendar.
As mentioned above, your marketing calendar can be used to manage your team by assigning roles. As you create your calendar, determine who is responsible for the various tasks that need to be done to promote your team.
Make sure that everyone on your team understands their roles and responsibilities and more importantly understands when tasks need to be completed. There will be times where one person cannot complete their assigned task until another team member completes a task assigned to them. Your goal should be to spot potential bottlenecks and alleviate them.
By themes we mean the topics that your content will be centered around. These themes, or topics, should address the pain points of your target audience. Remember, one of your key objectives in marketing your business is to position yourself and your organization as the problem solver your customers have been looking for.
Actually Use The Calendar
Next is to remember to actually use the calendar. We mention this because we have seen businesses do all the hard work in developing a strategy and a calendar only not to use it. For some reason they abandon it or do not follow it.
Remember your calendar is a roadmap that, if created from a sound strategy and followed, has a high likelihood of leading your business to success.
Bonus: Schedule Time To Review Process
Quick bonus step: take time to review your process. As you create your marketing calendar, keep in mind you are laying the foundation for a system of marketing that will guide your organization for years to come. Chances are that you will not get everything right. Schedule some time, maybe every 6-8 weeks to review your processes to see what can be improved. The more you stick to your calendar and the longer you work to improve it, the better your results will be.
Do not settle for being lost when it comes to marketing your business. There IS a better way. A marketing calendar will help you organize your thoughts and plans so you can better see what needs to be done marketing wise to make your business succeed.