Scheduling Social Media posts is essential in any social strategy for brands – so many websites provide tools to do so, but its either has to be paid or it doesn’t allow enough team members to collaborate on the Content Strategy Calendar.
I’m not going to go through why do you need to plan ahead and schedule the year’s content strategy calendar, because if you haven’t figured out already how important it is, then you shouldn’t be in Social Strategy business and this article is not for you.
How to Plan Content Strategy Calendar
So many articles would provide you with Content Calendar where you would place your planned events, which then you would write your big moments of the year and then later on start scheduling them on your scheduling tool.
To be perfectly honest; this is pure waste of time!
I honestly think we should only add our events to calendars and schedule it at the same time from the same tool! Google Calendar can certainly do this!
- So go ahead and visit your Google Calendar and “Create New” calendar.
- Name this Calendar “Content Schedule”
- Share it with UNLIMITED numbers of members on your team as long as they have a Google Account.
Start Adding your evants
- In the title field of the event, add the hashtags of each social network. For example if this a scheduled post for twitter, then the title must contain “#twitter“
- You can add as many events as you want for each social network
- Timing – there is a trick, schedule your posts 15 minutes before you want it to be posted!
- Images – add a url to your image in the “Where field”
- Post Content – Add you post content in the “Description Field” making sure to note the characters counts as Twitter is different than other networks
- Finally, Save the event.
You now be wondering, how many times should I be posting on each platform? Well, so many websites got that covered! here’s Buffer’s
I’ve got news for you! Right now, You’re now 90% done with scheduling your year’s content strategy!
Let’s move next to a one time step that you will need to do once in your lifetime! Connecting your Google Calendar with IFTTT
How To Schedule Social Media Posts
Before we go forward, What type of content should I be scheduling/sharing ?
To answer this question we have to know the difference between Content curation and Content creation
What is Content Curation
Content curation is content that is not originally created by you or your business, for example an external article by other people.
here’s an example tweet from STC business case study
— Amged Osman ??? (@Amged) November 2, 2015
I didn’t create the content of the article, I only shared it on my profile. That is content curation.
What is Content Creation
Content creation is content you created by yourself, something you actually own! for example a blog post or a photo of your products or a video you created.
Created content can be either engaging content or direct sales/offers
Here’s an example
— Amged Osman ??? (@Amged) November 22, 2015
Engagement vs Direct Sales Ratio
The best ratio between engagement content and direct sales is 80/20 percentage.
80% of your shared content should be to keep your followers engaged. engaging content can be curated or created.
20% is for your products content/ sales offers should be your very owned content (Created content)
Enough already! How to actually schedule social media posts?!!
I though you’d never ask 😀
When connecting Google Calendar, make sure to select the newly created calendar that we just created in step 1 – mine is called Twitter Posts
Important Note: Please note that even if you had Google Calendar already connected, you have to reconnect it so you can be able to chose the newly created calendar
Use the below recipes that will search for events names that you previously created in Google Calendar and then them into scheduled posts.
I have already created couple of recipes for you that are ready to be used.
You can create more recipes on IFTTT itself just make sure that
Rules for creating new recipes that work with this Calendar Setup:
- Images are urls added to Where Field
- Content are the Description Field
- Search Term/Hashtag must be in title field
Here’s an example
How to add unlimited team members
Brands usually have more than one Social Media Manager, a whole team can and should handle this, with Google Calendar permissions, a Brand can give both agencies and in-house team members access to add events (scheduled posts) to this specific calendar they just created.
PLEASE NOTE: that adding members will give access to post on you social networks from your accounts.
I use Greenshot to upload my photos directly to imgur so I can use them as the post image in the “Where” field of the Calendar
I’ve created this Twitter Text Counter for you to measure your post characters. 🙂
Over to You
This is it, you now have complete Planned Content Calendar scheduled for a year ahead, planned with your in-house team or with your agency!
Also published on Medium.