​Planning Your Content Marketing Calendar for 2016

11 January 2016

Planning Your Content Marketing Calendar for 2016

It’s that time of year when we’re all full of new ambitions and goals, and any brand that is engaging in content marketing could benefit from firming up their content plans for the new year with a robust new content calendar.

Content marketing calendars allow businesses to set their own marketing goals and create a roadmap to achieving them. Whether you want to reach new customers, position yourself as an authority, create awareness of your products or improve your website’s SEO (or all of the above and more), a detailed content plan can help.

Here are our top tips for planning your content for 2016:

Decide on your goals

Content marketing campaigns that are not firmly anchored in a set of goals risk achieving very little. Identifying what you want to gain for each piece of content – both individually and overall – will make it more likely to succeed.

So, if you decide that your main aims for Q1 will be to create useful content around your products and to attract attention to your social media channels, you might choose to dedicate one blog post a week to each goal.

Decide on content topics ahead of time

While you won’t know yet what the hot topics in your industry will be in November of this year, you can start to plan out what you want to create content about, and when you want to publish that content.

The topics you choose, as with every aspect of your content planning calendar, can be adapted as time passes to fit new trends and data. However, having a set plan to start with will help you to stay focused.

Choose what format your content will be in

Do you want to concentrate your content creation efforts around a blog or would you rather diversify and work on infographics, videos and podcasts, for instance?

Incorporate the format your content will be in into your content calendar so that it fits your goals for the year.

Learn from the past

What have you had success with in the past that you could replicate this year?

And what have you tried and failed to make an impact with?

Although you do not have to carry on with what you have always done, it is possible to learn from your past experience in terms of what your customers respond to and what has been a big hit.

Plan for content promotion as well as creation

Promoting the content you create is essential if it is to be seen by your audience. Writing a blog post or publishing a video and expecting the world to know it’s there is naïve, so incorporate a plan for how each new piece of content will be publicised into your content plan for 2016.

Get input from all departments

Content strategies can fail when the marketing team never speaks to the sales team, and the PRs don’t know what management are planning for the year. Make your content planning a collaborative effort between all interested parties.