Part 2: How to create a social media calendar

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Thumbtack Writer
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Going with the flow is fun in life, but less advisable in social media. Figure out your posting calendar to understand of how much time social media will take you. Then you can save time by scheduling posts. 


But first you need to know what to post, which means you need to figure out your brand voice. Your brand’s voice is its personality. It needs to be consistent across all of your marketing efforts — otherwise you’ll just confuse people. Here’s how to figure out your voice.


Choose three adjectives that best describe the voice you want.

Will it be professional? Authentic? Quirky? Lively? Empathetic? What does the adjective you pick mean and how is it going to translate into your brand’s personality? How you describe your voice should help you determine how you deliver your message, including the rhythm and vocabulary you use.


Define your brand’s tone.

Voice is personality. Tone is how that personality behaves depending on the circumstances. How you talk to your mom versus your landlord sounds different — but you’re still the same person. Once you know your brand’s voice, figure out which tone that voice will have in different situations. What’s its vibe? If your brand voice is authoritative, you might be formal, assertive or calm. Depending on the content you’re creating, the tone can and should change. A meme, for example, would be more playful, while a case study would be more straightforward.


Once you have your brand voice and tone, you should have a general idea of what content fits your brand. Now you can build your social media calendar. Here’s how:


Create a posting schedule.

At first, plan your schedule for just a couple of weeks. Don’t go any further because it will definitely change as you see the days and times when your audience engages the most. The schedule keeps you posting regularly and holds you accountable.


Plan to post frequently — but not too frequently.

According to the pros, this is a suggestion of how often and when you should be posting on different social media platforms to get you started:

  •      Facebook: 1-2 times a day; start by posting between 1-4pm
  •      Twitter: 3-10 times a week; start by posting between 1-3pm
  •      Pinterest: At least 5 times a day; start by posting between 2-4pm and 8-11pm
  •      Instagram: 1-2 times a day; start by posting between 5-6pm
  •      LinkedIn: 1-2 times a week; start by posting between 7-8:30am and 5-6pm


Categorize your content.

Assign each post on the schedule a content category. You don’t have to know exactly what you’re going to be posting, but try to figure out if you’ll be sharing someone else’s content, posting original content that’s promoting your business, posting original content that is business-related but not a direct promotion, sharing something simply to entertain, etc.


Follow the 80/20 rule.

The 80/20 rule says that around 80% of your content should provide your audience value of some sort, while 20% of your content can be used to promote your business.


So now you have your strategy, your brand and your calendar. It’s finally time to start posting. Check out Part 3: How to post on social media, to learn best practices and how to track your progress.


How often do you like to post on social media? Let us know in the comments.


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