Content calendar. Creating fresh relevant content is more than a good idea for companies. Today it is an important step in achieving success in business. Thanks to the content, you can attract potential customers, fuel user interest, increase search results for your site, improve branding and much more.
So, where to start?
It all starts with creating a content calendar based on an overall content strategy.
Below is a description of how to match your content with the sales cycle for both current and potential customers and use this information to create a strategic content calendar.
Step 1. Look at your sales cycle.
The first step in creating a content calendar is to understand the stages of your company’s sales cycle. Let’s say you have a travel agency. Ask yourself how people become your customers. Do they find you through contextual advertising in search engines? Maybe through targeted advertising on social networks? Advertising on radio/television? Recommendations from other clients?
Talk to your sellers and find out what your typical lead-to-conversion cycle looks like. As a rule, this is online marketing from your sales team, then a meeting with interested customers, and then personalized options offering various tours. It is necessary to identify key demographic data on the timeline, for example, new potential leads (those who see your online ads), interested leads (those who will contact you for more information), new customers, returning customers, former customers, etc. These should be the categories into which you distribute the topics.
Take the time to find out as much information about these different categories as possible. If your new search queries come mainly through online ads, make a portrait of the audience that responds to them. Once you have collected data on these customer groups, you are ready to start content planning.
Step 2: Brainstorming and linking to categories
After you have identified the stages of your sales cycle and made portraits of customers at all stages, your next step is brainstorming. If you are a travel agency, think about the problems that potential customers may have that would encourage them to contact you. For example: will you be able to plan their vacation carefully? Will you be able to save their money? Provide qualified advice?
Bam! You already have ideas on how to fill your content calendar with topics that meet their needs. So your list for this stage of the sales cycle might look like this:
- How to plan your best vacation in life
- The best warm countries for holidays
- TOP 5 exotic countries with non-standard holidays
- How to save money on excursions, shopping and rest inside the tour
- 10 mistakes of a travel agency consultant that should be avoided
You will make lists like these for each stage of the sales cycle. Once you have exhausted all your ideas, you can move on to the third step.
Step 3. Set the content calendar.
Put a calendar in front of you, paper, or in a computer and start planning a schedule of posts. There are many different types of content, so don’t think that the list should only include blog topics or only email newsletters or only pay-per-click ads. Consider all these different types:
- Cases and reviews
Think for yourself, or consult with your sellers when it is better to post this or that information (time of day, day of the week, which frequency is better) so that your content is consumed in the best way. Based on this data, plan a calendar.
It is important to consider which topics will meet the needs of your audience. So, for example, the selected topics that are intended for interested potential leads may possibly be seasonal (the directions in which the rainy seasons are now, or the hottest period). Consider the following factors:
- How Seasonality Affects Your Business
- Main trends, trends, events
- The political situation in the country
After you have completed the three steps described above, start posting your content on the selected sites. Write articles, create videos, plan advertising campaigns, etc. Monitor the results of your efforts and constantly refine and adjust the type and schedule of content accordingly. For example, if you see that potential customers respond particularly well to your video with tips on choosing a tour, but less to your pay-per-click ads, focus more on useful informational content.
There will be no better time to start!
What do you think about the content strategy and schedule? Have you postponed creating a content calendar for your business due to lack of understanding, or other obstacles? If so, it’s time to do something. Using the simple steps described above, it’s easy to take the first steps to plan and launch your content campaign.