The marketing planning calendar is one of the most powerful tools that any online marketer can use.  Veteran online marketing professionals will tell you that expertise in email marketing, social media outlets, and content marketing is just the beginning – coordinating all of these tools together into an overall online marketing strategy can make each one vastly more successful than the sum of their parts.

In addition, many cross functional teams need to work together on deadlines or coordinate work schedules.  For example, copywriters working on email copy and blogs may unexpectedly be asked from two different stakeholders to meet a deadline for both projects on the same date.  On the other hand, if planned in advance, that copy writing might be able to be effectively leveraged as an effective email and a quality content piece with a minimum of effort.  The content calendar can show those managing online marketing where there will be potential problems and potential opportunities.

Never miss a promotional opportunity

Have you ever suddenly realized that it is a holiday, but have nothing planned to share on social media platforms?  Or do you struggle with content ideas?

And what is better than getting a free online marketing planner?  Access our free Online Marketing Content Calendar and never struggle with social media content creation again!

How to use it

The free online marketing content planner is a simple Google sheets spreadsheet.  Why a Google Sheet?  While Excel spreadsheets can certainly be used (and the one referenced here can be converted to an excel spreadsheet), a Google Sheet is a live, living document that can be shared within teams.  Access can be given to any contributor or manager with a Google account via an emailed invite.  Multiple users can be active at once on the document, and one can even see what other users are editing by colored highlights.  We find that this makes it especially effective during conference calls where there is not a web sharing component.

Another nice feature of the Google Sheets across team members with access is the ability to track changes. This holds everyone accountable.

To access the 2018 Online Marketing Planner, find the link below.  You must have a Google Account to access and use Google Sheets.  When you click on the link, the Google Sheet will open and under “File” in the menu you must choose “Save a Copy”.  This copy will be yours to edit, use, and share.  We recommend bookmarking the link in your browser for easy access.

Access the 2018 Online Marketing Content Planner Here

The setup for teams

Start by opening your saved copy of the Google Sheet and invite your team to members to join the sheet by clicking the share button at the top. Make sure the invitation you send is for someone who “can edit” the sheet so that your team members are able to insert social media content and make edits to the document as well.

Customize it to fit your team. Every business has different processes and different fields that are uniquely important for what they do. Get a feel for the variables that come in our downloadable social media content calendar, then delete the ones that are unnecessary and add new fields that you think are important for your social media process.

Begin using it

Now you are ready to populate the content calendar. Let’s say you want to start by scheduling a bi-weekly blog. In the cell that correlates to the day you want it to be posted, insert the name of the blog into the content field. If you do not know the name yet you can put June Blog, July Blog 1, etc.

Buyer Persona: The Buyer Persona is the target person you plan on reaching with this post. For example, if you are a plumber, you have multiple target customer types. On Pinterest, you may want to target the “female head of household“, whereas on LinkedIn you may want to target “business owners“.

Owner: Next, you input the owner, which is a very important field when working with a team. The owner might be the internal person who is responsible for the creating, sourcing, and / or sharing of the social media content.  It also may be a marketing manager – ultimately it is the person responsible for completion of the content.

Status: Come up with status options that suit your teams process. Some examples are: opportunity, planned, pending, approved, declined, scheduled, and posted. This is also an important field for when working with a team. It lets the other team members know if something is ready to be posted or already scheduled in situations where the owner is out sick or unavailable.

Finish this process by checking off where the content will be shared. If it is a blog post you may want to share it on Twitter and Facebook. Get ahead of schedule by filling in all the important dates for your business. Maybe you are a jewelry company with Valentine’s Day promotions or a doctor’s office that wants to remind people to get their flu shots. Start by having your team fill in all the important posts you can come up with for the next few months. Make sure that every post has an owner assigned to it.

Access The Loop Marketing Marketing Online Marketing Content Calendar 

Questions on how to plan and implement your 2018 online marketing schedule?  Call The Loop Marketing at (312) 569-9449 or contact us for more information.