How to Create an Instagram Content Calendar

on Aug 27, 2019 with No comments yet

Introduction

Planning something is a demanding task to squeeze in our busy daily schedules. Especially in this generation, where people compete for attention through social media, effective tactics and strategies are needed to capture the netizens’ interest. Planning a social media calendar might be tough at the start, but brainstorming ideas ahead of the posting date can buy you time to create better content. I mean isn’t it cool to have your social media account filled with themes connected to your previous or future posts? 

Calendar planning is an old but effective method way back before social media takes the global stage. It gives you a lot of advantages. With an ample amount of time, you can write ahead posts based on what seasons are celebrated on the time you publish it. Imagine the horror of writing a 150-word text on December 25 for a Christmas Day update? Without a pre-planned post, you just missed the chance of good engagement with your niche. 

When planning posts, having a creative and innovative approach is essential for better engagement. Most importantly, including your brand’s trademark adds a unique touch to your posts. By having this, your present and future followers can distinguish your brand from others. We understand that calendar post planning for the year can be overwhelming. Thus, we suggest that you can start first on monthly schedules. For example, you started planning your posts for February. The most celebrated event during the month is Valentine’s Day, this gives you the idea to write posts about love. 

Let’s dig deeper and see what are the benefits of planning your content ahead of time.

Organization

Posting in social media for the sake of updating is never a good thing. Unless, there is a piece of groundbreaking news related to your industry, posting without thorough preparation isn’t a great strategy. Planning your posts in social media calendar keeps the subject consistent, helps you stay on track, and gives you a good amount of time to add more information and review the content before queuing it for publishing. 

In our official Instagram account, the social media manager creates draft posts for 1 week of daily updates, a week before. And if you can see the page, our photos have a pattern to look ‘Instagrammable’. Not only are the images preselected, but the captions are also written in advance too. It gives the social media manager the opportunity to review and edit posts before placing it on the buffer. 

Authority

Having a consistent subject on your posts gives you the opportunity to write well-thought content. Posts with regular content boost engagements and reach your target audience, and that’s not all, it also gives you the authority. You are an expert on whatever you do, therefore, gives you the chance to attract the right audience to be your followers. For example, you are a chef and post on IG short video sequence about how to cook easy and quick recipes for beginners, you may want to boost this post to reach a larger audience and get your brand well-known in the culinary side of Instagram. 

4-1-1 Rule

If you’re not familiar with the 4-1-1 rule, this method started on Twitter but later on adapted to other social media sites too. Originally coined by Andrew Davis author of ‘Brandscaping’, the 4-1-1 rule is a sharing concept consisting of 4 self-written content, 1 shared post, and 1 self-promoting post. Following this method can guarantee that you’re putting a great quality of content on your social media account without being sales-pitchy. This rule is highly recommended to social media accounts for businesses. Remember, one of the main goals, why you have a social media calendar, is to convert these target audience to followers and convert these followers to clients. To make this goal a reality, ensure that your posts are informative and helpful to pique your audience interest. You can quote trivia or statistic research for factual reference on your content.

For example, you’re a beauty guru and started selling your own brand of skincare products, you may create content similar to this: 

‘Did you know? The best time to apply moisturizer is right after a bath? The product traps the water that’s still on your body and hydrates your skin! Learn more about the best skincare routine by going to our official website: www.exampleskincare.com!’ 

Trivia source: https://celeteque.com/ 

Posting content like this is a great way to engage audience due to the valuable information you deliver on your post with the subtle promotion of your brand, to let these people know that your business is expert for what it is offering.

Consistency 

Have you ever come across a social media profile where the posts are irrelevant to the brand’s mission or product/service it offers? Yup, same here. In fact, when I come across these pages I wonder if they’re a real business page or just personal account because I can see more random posts than the product’s info *facepalm*. One of the best ways to strengthen your brand in social media is the consistency of your posts. Consistency in every post ensures that your brand’s identity can be distinguished by your followers when they check updates on their feed. When making graphics, make sure to add your brand’s color scheme to add a unique touch on your updates and also to be recognized easily. Remember, create or share posts that are not only consistent but also complements to the brand and brand’s message. 

Time-Saving

Planning your posts ahead of time through social media calendar saves your time. With an already pre-planned theme and content to post saves you the hassle of posting updates on the fly. To save your time more, you may schedule your posts ahead of time through 3rd party platform like Hootsuite. Hootsuite allows the user to queue its contents and publish it on the date the user wants it to post. It also has a feature that will automatically schedule a post on peak hours. Take note, if you want to schedule your Facebook and Instagram updates in advance through Hootsuite, then expect that your engagements and reach are lower than when you update manually on your actual IG and FB account. Instagram and Facebook want you to spend time on their platform. Thus, if you’re aiming for a larger audience in these 2 platforms, you need to manually post your content. But don’t worry, you may still pre-schedule your updates on Hootsuite for other social media accounts.

Manage Time-Sensitive Events

Never miss an opportunity to keep your followers updated with your brand’s upcoming events. Guesting on an event is a golden ticket for boosting your brand’s image not only in person but also in the social media world through reviews and recommendations. For example, you’re a pediatrician and will speak on a seminar, then have free consultation afterward about proper healthcare for children. Therefore, including this post on your social media calendar can maximize audience appearance on the event. Remember, the more audience on the event, the more potential clients for your business.

Where to Find Them

Getting calendar exclusively for social media is easy. You don’t need to look for a specific calendar just for your pre-planned posts, in fact, any calendar will do! As long as you use a few your organizational skills then you’re in for a good start! If you haven’t picked a particular calendar yet, then why not use Google Calendar? Yep, you read it right! Google calendar is a great way to start your social media calendar planning. This calendar can be adjusted on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly view. You can assign a specific color to distinguish your posts,  like Monday motivational posts are Orange, while your TGIF posts are purple. It also has a time frame, where you can place your posts around the specific time. For example, you always post your TGIF posts on Friday at 5:00 PM, you may place it at that time on the calendar. Bonus tip, allow notifications from the calendar, your PC will get a notification at least 10 minutes to remind you about your schedule. It’s a great help especially if you’re still a beginner and sometimes missed the right time to post your updates. 

Conclusion

Great! We have now listed the reasons why you should start a social media calendar. It might seem hard at the start (because nothing’s easy from the start!), but with your ability to plan and organize, your team will appreciate your hard work because you will be a rockstar team member to them. 

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