At Stripe we’ve put together a simple FREE Content Planner for 2019, which you can download as an Excel file further down in this post. This document includes key UK dates for 2019 (plus a few extras), which you can amend as needed for your own requirements. There will inevitably be other dates that are relevant to your own industry sector and these can easily be added to the spreadsheet for your own use.
We all know that content is King, but we don’t always manage to find the time to plan, create and publish the information that is most relevant to our business and our target audience. Positioning your company as a thought leader within your industry helps to ensure a strong, impactful identity for your brand. It also means that your company will be front-of-mind for any potential customers who need the products/services you cover within your content.
The Content Planner we’ve created is a simple template, which will help you to organise your content ideas for the duration of 2019. There will inevitably be some requirements over the year for unplanned, reactive content to industry or world news, but this planner will enable you to build a structure on which you will be able to add any additional content.
As you fill out your content planner, take your time to consider the flow of the content you are sharing: the dates and tone of each piece can greatly affect its success.
To help you on your way, we’ve listed below, some top tips to help you get started with your own Content Plan for 2019.
Top tips for planning content
1. Find out where your target audience ‘hang out’, whether that is online or offline and see what type of content seems to be working well there for others. It’s just as important to also take note of what doesn’t seem to be working!
2. Consider what information your audience is likely to look for during different time periods – think about key events, seasons, holidays, etc.
3. What time of day and which day of the week should you publish your content? E.g. motivational content may work best on Mondays for the start of most people’s working week. Look at your digital statistics to see when the most popular times are for your own target audience to be interacting with you online and adjust your timings accordingly. It’s crucial to adapt your plan depending on these results.
4. It can be difficult to think of topics to cover off in posts sometimes. It may be helpful to consider having an overarching topic each month and to generate a series of posts over the month around this area. Use the FREE planner that I’ve linked to below to help you work out what you could say and when – making sure that the flow of the information will make sense for your audience.
5. Don’t forget to include SEO – a great headline or even great content won’t work nearly as well if you haven’t given it the best chance by taking the time to work on your SEO for each and every post.
6. Share your content across your social media platforms and analyse the statistics so that you can see where the greatest traffic/conversions are coming from.
7. Write about what YOU believe to be best practices in your industry. If you really own the content you share (and, crucially, it makes sense to others) then you’ll be more likely to be seen as a thought leader in your area of business. This can also be true if you share and comment on the thoughts of others in your business area – add your own commentary to the topic and state why you agree with what is being said.
8. We all know the expression ‘If it ain’t broke then don’t try to fix it’, so when something works well, repeat, repeat, repeat. Just make sure that you keep an eye on the success of each piece of content as trends can change regularly and without warning.
9. Mix up the type of content you share. It can get boring for your audience if all they see is text, text and more text. Videos are extremely popular at the moment, so why not consider starting a YouTube channel, if this could be at all relevant to your business. Otherwise, livening up your content with infographics (we can help you with those!), photography, videos and eye catching graphics/images could make all the difference to the amount of interaction you get on your posts. Don’t let all your hard work go to waste by being too repetitive.
10. Make the time to interact with your audience online. If someone responds to your posts, answer them promptly and professionally. Let your audience know that you’re listening to them and that their thoughts and feedback are important to you.
11. Lastly, remember to make sure that you only share content that is relevant to your audience so that you ensure you are seen as a serious contender in your field. Sharing pictures of your nights out, pets or children with your audience only really works if this is relevant to your business.
Lynne is the owner of Stripe-vs.com and Co-Founder of the West Wirral Business Network.
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