How to Create a Social Media Calendar Plus 5 FREE Templates

Social media is important for marketing and it’s likely you are seeing an increased demand to get your business or personal brand on it.

However, many things can get in the way of creating a steady stream of good social content. Time, resources, and more than anything else, the never-ending task of what to post next.

A social media calendar allows you to plan for the long-term and the short-term future. It takes into account trends, seasons, other events related to your business and connects them with posts and updates you’ve already created. With some clever thinking ahead of time, a social media calendar makes the process of creating content much easier.

The whole idea of creating a social media content calendar is to build relationships with your audience by providing insights and information that revolves around you, your products/services, and your audience.

If you are …

  • frantically trying to coordinate your social media posts
  • feeling like you’re constantly unable to cater to all of your social media accounts
  • missing out on potential leads due to inconsistent posting times.

Then we are here to help you!

Why Use A Social Media Calendar

Learning how to create social content calendars will enable you to stop wasting time and resources so you can get back to focusing on growing your business and plan your content creation for months ahead of time. But first, let’s look at the reasons we should use social content calendars;

Organised content saves your time

Your social media efforts are suffering because you are all over the place, posting whatever comes to mind, leading you to create hastily put-together updates. A social content calendar makes creating engaging content a breeze so that you can focus on what matters – growing your business!

Post content consistently

You know you should be blogging or posting on social media to grow your audience, but life gets so busy. You’re short of time, ideas or simply finding it difficult to keep up with the ever-changing algorithms.

But a social content calendar gives you an overview of all your post ideas so that you can publish quality posts on a regular basis without having to worry about coming up with topics or research. It helps you post consistently on all channels, keeping the best content on all your profiles.

A social content calendar gives you a consolidated view of all of the social media channels you are already using but lets you organise them by date and allows you to post automatically on each channel without having to manually input the updates.

This way, your social media campaigns are streamlined and easy to manage and you don't have to waste time struggling to find time to post regularly across multiple platforms.

Make fewer typographical errors

When the post is seen by millions, even the smallest of typos can turn into a big deal. Even if no one notices your mistake, you’ll still feel terrible that you didn’t proofread.

Typos are frustrating and they could cause your brand to be perceived in an unprofessional light. And of course, we all know how that can go down when other people see them.

A proper content calendar can keep you from committing these types of mistakes, by planning your content out several days in advance.

Keep relevant moments with your audience

When your customers are engaging in conversations on social media, you've got to be there too. Don't miss out on relevant moments in the online conversations – and drive more traffic to your website - by creating a social content calendar.

A social content calendar takes the guesswork out of content creation and eliminates the potential of missing a moment that could have customers knocking down your door because you took so long responding to their concerns.

How To Create A Social Media Calendar

Managing multiple social media accounts can be confusing, and if you are already struggling with scheduling all your posts, then creating a full-scale social content calendar can seem like a headache you’d rather not deal with.

Not sure how to create a social content calendar? In this section, we will teach you everything you need to know to create an easy content calendar for your business.

1. Audit your social platforms and content

A social media audit is the fastest way to figure out if you're on the right track with your social media efforts. This involves compiling vital information about your various social media accounts, all in one place.

Look at the posts you share, who replies, and what other users are saying. You can even analyse the discourse around certain posts to uncover if there is a deeper conversation going on with some other users in the group.

A social media audit creates a clear picture of your current social efforts and shows you the best way to improve results.

Here are aspects you should look out for as you in auditing your social media platforms;

  • Your goals
  • Audience
  • Demographics
  • Personas
  • Successful posts
  • Tactics
  • Key metrics

2. Choose your social media channels

It can be a struggle to find out what is the best platform to communicate with your customers. Spread too thin and you’ll look disorganised, but focus too much on one platform and you might miss out on others.

It's important to select social media channels that resonate with your brand and target audience. Here are some aspects to look out for when choosing a social media platform for your business;

  • Create a customer avatar
  • Identify your target audience’s pain points
  • Figure out where your desired customers are
  • Determine your company’s personality

3. Decide what your calendar needs to track

Running your social media profiles without a content calendar makes it hard to measure results. But now you know you need to create a social media content calendar, what specific data should it track?

Track your data by looking into these two sections - basic things to track & more advanced things to track.

Examples of basic things to track includes

  • Social media platform
  • Date and month
  • Time
  • Visual content eg graphics, carousel, gifs, polls, videos, etc

Examples of advanced things to track includes

  • Social media platform-specific posts eg ads, stories, tweets, Livestream, IGTV, poll, shippable posts, newsfeed, etc
  • The campaign it’s associated with eg brand awareness, customer service, testimonials, product launch, contests, events, conversion-based post, etc
  • Location-based targeting eg is global/universal, Asia, UK, specific city or street, etc
  • Paid or organic reach
  • Analytics and results eg advertisements, hashtags, comments, number of views & saves, etc

4. Make a content library for your assets

Not using a content library approach can lead to the following issues:

  • A lack of content consistency and branding across the social media channels
  • Gaps in companies’ social media strategy and marketing efforts.

A content library is simply a bank of all the content assets owned by any organisation or business that is placed in a central, internal portal so various departments within that company can access that content.

You should create a content library so that everyone in your company knows when what kind of content is going out, and what type of audience is viewing the information. The content library will help to improve the internal efficiency within an organisation and allow you to build up an effective strategy for social media content.

5. Establish a workflow

Delegation helps determine what your team needs to do, who needs to do it, and what needs to be done by when. Creating an easy-to-follow procedure and relevant social media content strategy ensures your message is consistent across all channels.

It's time to lay bare the bones of your content strategy process and force your organisation to think strategically about each post. Major things you need to consider are how often to post, the best time to post, who to approve, content ratio, etc

6. Start crafting your posts

At this point, it’s time to start pulling out ideas and creating content. First, you need to have a content goal in mind, create a strategy on how you plan to achieve that goal, and pursue it.

7. Ask your team to evaluate and use their response to make improvement

Your team needs ways to get to know your content strategy; to know what is expected of them moving forward.

Share your work with your colleagues. Ask them for their input, and have a meeting to interact on findings. Schedule times for your team to share their progress with one another, find new interests through cross-promoting content, and get people placing commentary on the content you share.

You’ll discover that this is a great way to build relationships within your company, too.

8. Start publishing/scheduling

Now that you’ve built the foundations of your business empire, it's time to implement those content strategies, always review and analyse, optimize for best results, and always make improvements!

What A Social Media Calendar Actually Looks Like

You’re probably wondering what content calendars really look like. Here are some examples.

Nat Geo Social Media Calendar

Here’s an editorial calendar from the renowned Nat Geo. It gives viewers an idea of the upcoming content, showcases simplicity, aligns with their mission, and suits their target audience/demographics.

nat geo content calendar

Hootsuite Social Media Calendar

Hootsuite utilises both the Hootsuite Planner and Google Sheets for their social media content creation. The Google sheets feature dates, time, social media platform, content and so much more.

hootsuite content calendar hootsuite content calendar

After brainstorming and creating rough drafts on the Sheets, they make use of Hootsuite Planner next. This is where the final social media posts are thoroughly mapped out with their graphics and other assets attached in readiness for scheduling and uploading.

Luova Digital Media Social Media Calendar

This social media content calendar is easy to create and understand. This content works because it outlines essential dates for the month of March, these ideas are key in sparking creativity.

Luova Digital media content calendar

5 Best FREE Social Media Calendar Templates

It seems that almost every day another social media tool comes out with a new way for you to share and grow your business. You want to use them all but now you are spending more time trying to figure out what works best than you are growing your business.

To save you time, we compiled the 5 best social media calendars.

1. Hubspot

hubspot content calendar

HubSpot provides a well-equipped platform that covers sales, marketing, customer management, and CRM software including various methodologies, resources, and guidance that allows businesses to perform customer management effectively.

Their customisable social media content calendar will allow you to organise your social media activities far in advance—making your social marketing efforts and strategies more manageable, and effective.

With their easy-to-use Excel template, you can plan your updates and content on social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest. It also provides helpful tips and tricks along the way.

2. Google drive

google drive social content calendar

Google drive has several unique features that make it easy for businesses to build out an effective content calendar. It features modern collaboration tools for supercharging teamwork activities.

Google Workspace Essentials includes Docs, Sheets, and Slides. It boosts teamwork with collaboration, communication, and cloud-based tools known and loved by billions of users. It is useful for teams that need to work together even when they’re spread across offices and time zones.

Whenever your team needs to connect, Google Meet provides secure, reliable, and simple video conferencing services. With Google Drive, you can store, share, and access your content from any device.

3. Loomly

loomly social content calendar

Loomly is a brand and content management tool that allows you to manage all your assets in one place. It provides post inspiration and content ideas to kick start your creativity. It helps you store, organise and use your photos, videos, links, post templates, and notes in one single central, intuitive library.
You can also schedule posts seamlessly. Loomly’s Analytics permits you to assess your posts’ performances in real-time once they have been published. Highly suitable for SMEs to large corporations, agencies, and non-profits, teams of all sizes that desire to foster brand success.

4. Trello

trello social content calendar

Trello is a productivity tool with features such as board, lists, and cards. You can customise and expand with more features as your teamwork grows.

With this, you will be able to manage projects, organise tasks, and build team spirit—all in one place. Assigning tasks to your team members can be done via email or contact with dues dates, task details, and requirements outlined as well. You can also track progress by creating and completing a checklist.

Other features available include

  • Timeline view for project planning
  • Calendar that helps with time management
  • Table view connecting work across boards
  • Visible board stats with Dashboard

5. Sprout social

social media calendar

Sprout social helps you overcome content creation obstacles and gives you the tools you need to replace time-consuming tasks with automated ease.

Some of its distinct features include;

  • Makes the manual logging in and out of various platforms to schedule and post content outdated
  • Enables you to plan your content strategy and monitor from a central hub
  • Optimise outcomes of the final published contents
  • Maximise results using scheduling and monitoring tools.
  • Automatically publish content at times suitable for your target audiences
  • Ability to receive real-time engagement updates.
  • Content Suggestions feature to spark your creativity

Conclusion

It's no secret that social media marketing has become more important in today's digital world. Using a content calendar can really help lead you to success. With the already outlined examples and tips, you will be able to skyrocket your content marketing efforts and see effective results!

Need help with your social media content? Look no further, Heroes of Digital is a renowned social media agency in Singapore. Get your free digital marketing consultation today and see your results improve!

Xavier Tan
Co-Founder
Xavier is the Co-Founder of Heroes of Digital. He started social media marketing and SEM long before it became popular in Singapore. His passion is in helping businesses grow through effective lead generation. He has overseen campaigns for Amara Hotel, NTU, Marina Bay, L'Oreal, and 100+ SMEs.
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