Maintain Blog Posting Cadence: Use An Editorial Calendar

Maintain Blog Posting Cadence: Use An Editorial Calendar (Part 1)

organization system for tools

We work with businesses to increase their online visibility. While our clients often understand the importance of maintaining a posting cadence, many times they have difficulty keeping up with a publication schedule for blogs or email newsletters. When prompted during conversations, these same individuals are able to convey tremendous knowledge about their industry, including relevant news, research or legislation, and unique ways that their services meet specific needs of their customers.

So why is maintaining a blog such a challenge? Because ideas pop into our heads at inopportune times — while driving, at a meeting, or waiting on hold on the phone — and inexplicably, not when we have scheduled time to create a blog post. When we have fingers poised to create content, the email preview pane interrupts our concentration, the phone rings or our minds run wild with other urgent priorities, and our ability to write a focused article may be lost. We have the best of intentions, but as this pattern repeats, the commitment to adhere to a posting schedule may just drop off our list of priorities.

What can you do? We know that breaking down large tasks into smaller ones can help. It’s easy enough to jot a quick note when an idea occurs to us, but we can’t always take time right then to create a blog post. So how do you avoid having that great blog post idea fly out of your head as quickly as it popped in? It’s a matter of creating a structure to make content publication a simpler task. We use an editorial calendar.

First Steps to Creating an Editorial Calendar

Start with a list of general topic areas, or content themes, that would be of interest to potential clients. These include not just news and services but also content from relevant journals and businesses in a similar niche. As you peruse industry publications or review your morning news feed, you stumble across interesting articles. Other possible topic areas are events, tips, advice, resources, and promotion of your business, including client testimonials. These content themes will translate to Categories on your blog.

Use your list of categories as a place to jot down blog post ideas as they occur to you. If you create a spread sheet with the categories as column headers, add blog post ideas in the appropriate column. As you add ideas, you’ll be able to see which categories will be easier to write about and which ones will require more focused research. You may come up with a blog post topic that doesn’t fit into one of your categories … that’s great; simply add a new category; just be sure that your posts are focused on your core business.

The screen shot below shows categories and post ideas for a nutrition-related company. The categories selected include several that are niche-specific, such as Antioxidants and Germ-free zone, and others that are more generic such as  Industry News. Beneath each color-coded category are ideas for blog posts. These posts may be in draft form on your blog or in a Word document, or they may be just an idea.

Editorial calendar categories

This post includes homework for you to build momentum around maintaining blog cadence. We’ll post next steps to building your editorial calendar in two weeks. In the meantime, take a few minutes to create your spread sheet and begin to stockpile ideas. If you’re inspired, create a draft post or a couple of paragraphs. Or just take a minute here or there to document the topics for future posts.

Ready to take the next step? Read our follow up post.

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6 Comments

  1. Roberta

    This was perfect to read today and gave me an easy way to outline my post ideas. Thank you so much for writing it out in simple terms that will work.

    Reply
    1. Online Amplify

      Thanks for your comment Roberta; glad you found it helpful. I use an editorial calendar with many of my clients — it offers a head start each time I set out to write a post.

      Reply
  2. Shayla D.

    This is so helpful. I have so many places where I scribble down ideas for blog posts, then I seem to blog a lot about one topic (or category, I guess it is) and my views go down. This is exactly the structure I need. I’m on it!!!!

    Reply
    1. Online Amplify

      Glad it’s helpful. And good for you that you are using your analytics to see which of your blog post topics are attracting visits!

      Reply
  3. Daniel S.

    Wow, did you ever hit the nail on the head for me. I am constantly promising myself that I will post my blog and then I get busy with other things and it just never happens. I’m going to try your approach. The picture is very helpful. Hopefully I will get this homework done before you send the next blog post in 2 weeks.

    Reply
    1. Online Amplify

      Good luck Daniel. I hope you’re able to get the homework done too!

      Reply

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