Isn’t it frustrating to see your marketing efforts don’t get the positive results you want? Maybe you need a bit more organization. If you’re struggling to plan your marketing strategies, do not panic! You’re in the right place.
In this guide, I’ll tell you all about marketing calendars. I’ll not only help you to choose one but to create one of your own. Besides, if you’re already aware of the importance of having a marketing calendar, I’ll share some useful techniques on how to better manage it.
In this post, I’ll cover from the basics to the most advanced tactics as regards marketing calendars. Ready to boost your engagement in 2023?
Let’s get started!
What is a marketing calendar?
A marketing calendar is a written roadmap for marketing activities. It visualizes your planning and when to complete each of your marketing strategies. In other words, it is an actionable tool to achieve your marketing goals in a certain period of time.
A marketing calendar is a plan that comprises all your marketing activities for a year, month by month. Not surprisingly, it will take some time and resources to create a marketing calendar. However, it’ll pay off later.
Besides, a marketing calendar is vital to avoid missing deadlines. You’ll know who is responsible for completing each task. Not to mention that a marketing calendar is not only useful for managers, it helps team members too.
Thus, having a marketing calendar will help you to ensure your team members are coordinated. You’ll also be able to better manage your budget for the year. But, above all, a marketing calendar is critical to get a big picture.
Having a concrete schedule is mandatory to run your marketing campaigns. You’ll be able to set objectives and check whether you achieved them. A marketing calendar is a must to get an overview of your team’s tasks, deadlines, and achievements.
If you don’t have one yet, what are you waiting for?
Marketing Calendar Purposes
For marketing success, a marketing calendar should contain the following six purposes:
Plan ahead to meet your goals.
It comes as no surprise that you need to plan your marketing strategies in advance. This will help you to meet deadlines. Besides, each strategy needs to have some goals assigned. Once you’ve put a strategy into place and given it enough time, you must check its effectiveness.
Use your marketing calendar as your team’s hub for your marketing activities.
If you document everything in your marketing calendar, your team members will be aware of what’s going on. It’ll help them to keep on track and be more productive. A marketing calendar is vital to manage assignments and timing.
Notify workflows and progress status to get your team on the same page.
Likewise, a marketing calendar is mandatory to know about the project’s progress. Everyone would know who is responsible for what and how it’s going. This allows others to better coordinate and work together. If someone has too much on his/her plate for the week, you can reassign some tasks to another team member much easily.
Share information for campaigns with your team.
You can also use your marketing calendar to share relevant campaign details with your team members. When people are familiar with what’s going on, they can help you make it happen.
Track the performance of your marketing actions.
It is thanks to a marketing calendar that you’ll be able to track your marketing efforts. First, you’ll need to establish some goals for each of your marketing campaign strategies. And, then, once you’ve given enough time for them to be fulfilled, you could check what worked and what didn’t and needs improvement.
Make it easy to develop a strategic plan for the future.
Lastly, but not less important, a marketing calendar is critical to plan ahead. When you are immersed in your day-to-day obligations, you just want to get lots of tasks done for the day. However, it’s vital to know what’s next. Being aware of next month’s assignments or three months ahead tasks is mandatory too.
Anyway, a marketing calendar provides a clear overview of what and when your plans take place. So you can plan ahead and produce better work and results.
Even when you analyze your performance, it makes it easier because you prepare your metrics in advance.
Why is a marketing calendar important?
A marketing calendar keeps your team stuck and focused on your marketing plans. It has all the information for your strategies, and your team works according to the plans.
You can keep your team informed through the calendar and push projects to completion. It gives you more control over your goals. Also, this helps you to get your marketing activities organized.
Thus, it will save a bunch of your time and bring your goals one step closer to you.
Coschedule share some interesting marketing statistics insights about organizing your marketing activities:
- Marketers who document their strategies are 313% more likely to succeed.
- The people who document their process are 252% more likely to succeed.
- The people who set goals are 376% more likely to succeed (70% of those who do goal settings almost always achieve them).
As you can see, documentation is critical to your success. And a marketing calendar is a perfect way to organize tasks and take action for your goals!
Then let’s jump into the next chapter.
Types of Marketing Calendars
A marketing calendar is more than a document with dates and topics. It identifies all the information that your marketing activities need in one place.
The right marketing calendar makes a positive impact on your marketing performance. Marketers use editorial calendars to organize different marketing campaign strategies.
These are the 4 main types of marketing calendars:
Content marketing calendar
A content marketing calendar is useful for organizing your content marketing plans and strategies. Since multiple people work on content creation, you can use it to inform your team of what to do and when to do it. The bigger the project, the more detailed information you should add to your content calendar to ensure good performance.
Besides, a content calendar is a living document that needs to be frequently updated. It also serves to keep stakeholders informed and organized. You should include future marketing responsibilities but also relevant past accomplishments that can be useful.
What’s more, a content calendar is key to ensure consistency. It’ll help you to plan for regular but varied content creation that matches your audience’s needs. If you consistently provide useful content, you’ll get more loyal customers.
A content calendar is a must to keep a busy but successful publishing schedule. Once it’s done, it’ll save you tons of time and effort. You’re probably quite convinced right now about the importance of a content calendar. Yet, creating one from scratch takes a lot of time. Don’t panic! There exist lots of already made templates.
Content marketing calendar templates
A content marketing calendar template is a tool you can use to plan and schedule your content. A content marketing calendar template enables you to improve your content planning and publishing.
Instead of having to create your content calendar once and again, a content calendar template is already structured for you. The only thing you have to do is to fill in the details as you wish. There exist many content calendars on the web.
Thus, it might be a bit challenging to choose the one that matches your needs. Some content calendar templates are organized to give you an overall picture, others focus on SEO, others on social media networks, etc.
An example of a content marketing calendar template is Coschedule’s Content Calendar Template, which you can use to map up your content all year long, plan what you’re going to do in the future, meet deadlines, and much more.
Which template is best for you depends on your content marketing strategy and what you plan to do. If you’re interested in learning more about content marketing calendar templates, you should go to the last chapter, where I’ll explain them in detail.
A blog calendar is the best way to manage and keep your efforts on track, particularly for blogging. Depending on your blog style, you can customize your calendar using filters and metrics. This will help you to produce engaging content and entertain your readers.
A blog calendar will help you to develop the consistency you need to get more readers. A blog calendar will help you keep track of what’s working and what doesn’t. It’s vital to build a blogging strategy.
It’ll no doubt help you to attract new customers and establish a relationship with them. You would be able to keep track of your blogging schedule, blog post ideas, important holidays, etc.
You can even include links, set some time for research, decide what to share on social media, keep record of what you need to do and what you’ve already done. It’s the best way of organizing yourself and making the most out of your time.
On top of that, a blog calendar is mandatory to keep track of SEO keywords and deadlines. Neglecting your blogging strategy can be negative for your website traffic. So, if you aren’t using a blog calendar is high time you consider doing it.
Don’t have a clue where to start? Do not panic! I’m about to share some information as regards blog calendar templates below.
Blog calendar templates
A blog calendar template is a tool you can use to help you publish blog content consistently, meet deadlines, record creative ideas, and plan ahead to ensure you do not miss anything important.
A blog calendar template is generally a spreadsheet you can save and customize as you like. Not all enterprises have the same blogging needs. You must adapt your blog calendar template to your own needs.
Webfx has created a blog calendar template that works for both beginners and experts. They even provide tips and tricks to help you if need be. It’s a worthy resource. Why don’t you give it a try?
Anyway, if you’re interested in templates, you should jump to the last chapter, where I’ll cover templates and software more in detail.
Social media marketing calendar
A social media marketing calendar is a useful tool to plan your posts and organize tasks ahead of time. Mostly when you post several times in a day. It gives you an overview of which posts work well and helps you to improve your content based on its performance.
In other words, a social media marketing calendar consists of a spreadsheet or an app that you can use to plan and schedule your social media posts in advance. You can also use it to manage your social media campaigns better and meet deadlines.
There is no one size fits all as regards social media calendars. Some brands will need professional services, while others will do well on their own. Thus, there are social media calendars in paper, spreadsheets, and specialized software services.
What to use is up to you. I mean, it depends on the volume of posts you have to manage, your budget, the number of social media networks you use, etc. Not to mention that a social media calendar will help you to save time, post consistently and measure your performance.
Social media marketing calendar templates
A social media marketing calendar template is a tool you can use to manage your social media content creation. It also serves to arrange your publishing schedule, remember important dates and events, make sure your content is fresh, collaborate with team members, etc.
As it happens with other templates, you’ll need to adapt and customize your social media marketing calendar based on your needs. A social media calendar allows you to have all your social media content in one place. This is key to automate your posts and ensure your posting frequency is optimal.
I’ll deal with social media marketing calendar templates and software in depth in the last chapter. Still, if you want to have a look at an example of a social media marketing templates, you should check Hubspot’s. They even explain how to use it to get a higher impact.
Email marketing calendar
An email marketing calendar shows when and what you’re going to send to your subscribers. It helps you to improve your email marketing strategies and keep track of your metrics. Email marketing is one of the top ways to retain customers. To improve your email subscribers’ experience, you should create an email marketing calendar.
In other words, an email marketing calendar is critical to plan and execute your email marketing strategy. It doesn’t have to be too elaborated to be effective. An email marketing calendar will help you to establish a better relationship with your customers and push your sales.
If you do not plan your emails in advance, they can end up being ineffective. What’s worse, they can cause you a bad reputation. It comes as no surprise that planning ahead is key to produce better emails.
Besides, an email marketing calendar is crucial to keep your team members informed. Not to mention, it can be as flexible as you wish. I mean, if you realize about a new opportunity, you can exploit it and reschedule other emails for the future.
Planning ensures you have more control over your goals. An email calendar is vital to check your performance and improve it when necessary.
Email marketing calendar templates
Email marketing calendar templates will allow you to schedule your emails to get a higher impact. You can customize them to include holidays and relevant industry events so that you do not miss them.
What I mean is that you can use email marketing templates for many purposes like scheduling email campaigns, informative newsletters, promotions, special announcements, follow-up emails, etc.
There exist loads of email marketing templates to make your job easier and ensure you send emails at optimal times. Which template to choose depends on your needs. Sounds interesting? Have a look at Hubspot’s email marketing template.
Anyway, if you want to know more about templates, you can jump straight away to the last chapter of this guide. There, I’ll cover templates and software in detail.
Marketing Calendar Formats
Here are the five main types of marketing calendar formats:
Excel / Google Sheets
Excel and Google Sheets share many features. Both are customizable and allow templates to adapt easily, they save content automatically, and you can use them for team collaboration.
Word / Google Docs
Likewise, Word and Google Docs share many characteristics. Still, it is unquestionable that Word has more features than Google Docs. But, for basic word processing, the latter might be more than enough.
A PDF displays the same content no matter where it is viewed. Besides, you can integrate various types of content. However, PDFs are hard to edit, and it’s difficult to extract information from them.
Google Calendar allows you to schedule meetings and events. You can also get reminders of upcoming events. It’s designed for teams. Thus, it’s easy to share information with others. You can even create multiple calendars if you wish.
Marketing calendar software refers to tools that allow businesses to organize and schedule their marketing campaigns, goals, budget, and content so that they can get optimal results. They help marketers in the planning of content. It is easy to assign tasks to writers, editors, and designers. This software can not only be used for management but also for team collaboration.
One advice for formats:
Choose a customizable calendar. One that you can add information to, multimedia and color labels. You will have many changes as time passes and it’s better to start with a flexible calendar to revise and update yours.
You don’t have time to create your marketing calendar from scratch?
Don’t worry. I have you covered in the last chapter! More about this later.
Now, let’s review the filters that will save you time.
What kind of Filters to Include in Your Marketing Calendar
As you can see in some of the marketing calendar templates, the filters are different. The more information you include, the more likely you can deliver your content as planned. Define what information to include for collaboration, and what metrics to track.
Let me show you the filters I use on my own Instagram marketing calendar that help me organize my work successfully.
Instagram marketing calendar
I use the following filters for content creation, tracking performance, and more.
- Date to publish.
- Status (open, in progress, pending review, scheduled, ready, published).
- Assigned to.
- Image description.
- Text on the image.
- Profile visits.
- Website clicks.
- From hashtags.
- Profile visits.
- Website clicks.
- Promotion clicks.
- Weekly review.
- Monthly review.
- Follower growth.
- Engagement growth.
Have you already chosen your calendar?
In the next chapter, I’m going to show you how to collect all the information you need for your marketing calendar.
Review Your Marketing Goals and Strategies
First… Let’s check your annual marketing plan. It makes it easier for you to create a marketing calendar.
Your calendar employs the same strategies as your marketing plan, but it plans out with dates. Review your marketing plan and keep it in mind.
Then, list out your marketing strategies and check if there are specific dates to include. This will help you to plan in advance and deliver your strategies when needed.
Before you get yourself into the nitty-gritty, you must define your goals like gaining new leads, increasing brand exposure, or improving your sales, to name a few. On top of that, your goals must align with your strategies.
Only then will you be ready to create your calendar. There are lots of strategies you can include. These will differ depending on what you what to achieve. You may have strategies to improve your email marketing, social media marketing, and content marketing.
Understand better who is your target audience and influencers
Without knowing your users, it is very difficult to run successful marketing campaigns.
If you know who your audience is and what are their interests, your marketing plan is more likely to work. You can create content that your audience will like. Also, it is easier to make adjustments to your strategies.
Let’s go deep down a bit more to understand your target audience better. It is critical to get social shares and backlinks when you publish content.
Yet, it won’t happen without audience research.
How do you get more information from your target audience?
That’s easy! I can show you how to get a better understanding of the potential of your content.
1. How to see how many shares your type of content gets and who shares it.
Go to Content Research of Buzzsumo. Then, type your keyword in the search of Content Analyzer.
You will see top engagement posts and how many shares on each social network they got. It also shows you who shares the content by clicking the social channels.
2. How to identify who links to your type of content.
Check your keyword in Ahrefs Keywords Explorer. In the overview, there’s a “SERP overview” that shows the top 10 search results.
Here you can see how many backlinks each page got and who linked to them. These linkers can be your publishing influencers if you create top quality content!
List out all your channels (How to reach your audience)
To build solid strategies, it is critical to limit your channels.
The use of different channels shapes how you engage with your audience. But each channel performs in different ways and requires different strategies.
Your intended marketing channels can be:
Select your channels depending on your goals and develop your channel strategies accordingly.
Collect important dates
You’re a few steps away from the completion of the planning phase!
The last thing in this chapter is to collect all the key dates for your company.
The followings are some ideas for your data gathering:
- Federal holidays.
- National holidays.
- Company events.
- Company milestones.
- Industry-related events.
- Your product/service launch.
- Deadlines for content.
- Season-related campaigns.
- Local events.
US Holidays for Your Business
A holiday is a great way to increase your visibility and improve your engagement and CTR rates.
You can also include some fun national holidays as well as major holidays in your marketing calendar. There are many days when you can catch the attention of your audience in a fun way.
Now that you know what to include in your marketing calendar, the question is:
How do you get started with all the information you collected in this chapter?
Well, that’s what chapter 4 is all about.
1: Choose your marketing calendar template/software
Whether it’s a template or software, you should choose the one that works for you. Either way, you need to know what you want to do with your calendar.
For example, if your priority is to collaborate with 20 team members, you need to look for software that allows you to access from 20 different user accounts. Or find an editorial calendar template and create your own calendar.
Then, if you choose a template, you should add filters and metrics that matter to you into the marketing calendar. This way, you will be able to keep your goals in mind and commit to them.
You can always do some research and choose one of the multiple editorial calendar tools available out there. This could drastically reduce the time spent creating and setting up your marketing calendars.
Don’t worry too much! You can add more information later as needed unless you choose PDF format. A PDF calendar is nice to use when you’re brainstorming though.
2: Define who is your marketing calendar team and their roles
Now that you have most of the information, you can dive into creating a marketing calendar. So it’s time to define who will be your team for the marketing calendar.
There are 7 key roles for a marketing calendar.
- Team lead – The lead participates in from planning to improving and gives final approvals on each phase.
- Editorial manager – This is the person who oversees marketing calendars and contacts people when your plan isn’t carried out as planned.
- Content creator – Content creator transforms content ideas into written content and gathers data.
- Content editor – The editor modifies and improves the pieces the content creator produced.
- Designer – The designer turns the content creators’ work into visually appealing to the audience.
- Developer – This developer visualizes and controls the complete content on the website and software.
- Analytics manager – The analyst tracks metrics for the content and analyzes for improvements.
Don’t forget to define the roles and duties, especially when you have more than two people in one role. This will prevent double-dealing and boost team productivity.
3: Identify your target audience
As I talked about the importance of understanding your target audience in the previous chapter, it is essential to develop your content and communicate strategies.
Knowing their interests and pain points helps you to create valuable content for them. And that will increase the likelihood of your audience interacting with your content and sharing it on their feed.
So, dig deeper into your target audience and understand their social behavior as well as their interests.
4: Brainstorm your content ideas strategically
When it comes to content marketing, investing time on content creation matters.
If you choose a keyword with low search volume, your content may not drive traffic and engagement.
If your topic is too boring, nobody would want to share or link to you.
It can get even worse:
If you don’t do it properly, you won’t get anything from your efforts, even though content creation requires lots of time and energy.
I’m going to show how to develop your content ideas to have a great impact on your online visibility.
Creating content with well-researched keywords spreads your marketing messages efficiently. Without keyword research, it is difficult to deploy an engaging marketing strategy.
Here are my quick keyword research tactics you can use:
1. Seek what topics your audience likes to search.
Start researching your best keywords. You have two easiest ways using Google suggestions. First, enter your keyword in the Google search box, and you’ll see the 10 exact matching long-tail keywords. Second, after searching your keyword on Google, the related search keywords will appear at the bottom of SERPs.
2. Check the keywords that you’re already ranking on search engines.
Go to your analytics and find the organic keywords you’re ranking. These keywords are good for you to dig deeper. You can refresh or upgrade the existing content that worked. Or create different types of content with the keyword.
3. Spy on your competitor’s organic keywords.
Another way to stay ahead of the competition is to find out your competitor’s strategies. You can get content ideas that are performing well from competitor research. Then develop better content so that they cannot beat you.
4. Pick keywords that have high search volume and low keyword difficulty.
If you want to rank in search volume, you need to pick your keywords strategically. The key is to find a keyword with a high volume search and low keyword difficulty.
5. Use keyword research tools.
There are many keyword research tools that can help you find the best keywords. The following are my favorite tools that work great:
If you’re looking for advanced keyword research techniques, you’ll love this video.
Expand your content idea
Then, it’s time to combine those keywords with a content type.
These are 14 types of content for your content creation:
- How-to (tutorial).
- Resource (data-driven).
- Case study.
- Controversial topic.
- Guest post.
5: Determine what metrics to track
Before adding data to your calendar, you should choose the right metrics that determine your success.
Make sure that your key metrics help you to achieve your goals. If your chosen KPIs are not the right metrics for your goals, you will track the performance aligning with other things.
For example, if you want to generate leads but you’re monitoring reach and followers, those KPI somehow drive leads but they are not directly related. In this case, you should calculate the click-through rate and the conversion rate.
6: Calendarize your content with enough preparation time
Now that you have planned your content into your marketing calendar, it’s starting to look more like a calendar.
When you schedule your content, you need to set aside enough time for content creation. Don’t forget about your capability to complete the tasks and plan ahead with enough time to be prepared. To do so, you can prioritize your tasks, be prepared for any changes, and make adjustments.
Also, when you input your status on marketing calendar, make it as specific and clear as possible. That helps your team understand the workflow better and work on the next step.
Remember to update your status every time you progress your tasks.
7: Execute your marketing strategies
It’s time to test your marketing strategies. By identifying what works the most, you’ll come up with better ways to go. These ideas help you to improve your marketing and analyze it deeply.
Keep records and feedback as much as possible. And be always clear about your goals and strive for the best.
8: Analyze your marketing strategies
This is the last step and the most important part of your marketing calendar. Analyzing how your marketing strategies are working is crucial to improve your performance.
Give your team these questions after execution:
- Was there anything your marketing calendar missed (functionally)?
- Did any of your team members miss deadlines? And why?
- Did the communication system with your marketing calendar work?
- Does your team have any complaints about your marketing calendar?
- Any suggestions for improvement?
My advice on this step is to set up your evaluation periods like monthly or quarterly. It is key to keep your marketing calendar records as much as possible for the future. Those notes will be helpful for leading your marketing strategies to success!
9: Upgrade your strategies and editorial calendar
The data-driven approach helps you to classify what needs to be optimized and what is unnecessary in your strategy. So, all you need to do here is to improve your strategies and update the calendar for future use.
If you leverage the data you got from analytics, it could all be resolved. Don’t waste the opportunity to upgrade your strategies and editorial calendar to the next level!
Content creation is vital for your business to reach and engage your target audience. And this will be the core of your marketing calendar fuel.
However, most businesses struggle to drive people to their web pages and grow.
Today I’m going to show you how to effectively create content that catches attention online.
When it comes to online content, you cannot neglect the power of SEO.
If you miss optimizing your content for SEO, how can your audience find you?
This is a very important topic in content creation, so I will explain what you have to do for engaging SEO content.
There are 6 elements you should take a careful look for on-page SEO:
This is one of the most important elements for your SEO performance.
A title tag displays your page title in SERPs and triggers searchers to consume content.
To craft a perfect SEO title, you need to keep several things in mind:
- Include your keyword.
- Start with your keyword.
- Most search engines cut meta titles to 70 characters.
- Make sure your title tag uses an H1 tag.
The meta description is a brief summary of a web page.
Search engines show it of up to 155 characters in SERPs. Write marketing messages that match your content.
Remember to include your keyword in the meta description.
A shorter URL improves your ranking on Google.
Keep it SEO friendly and don’t forget to add your keyword.
Media (visual content)
Visual content keeps your audience engaged to your messages.
You can provide multiple-media experience like images, charts and videos.
These media improves time on page and reduces your bounce rates.
Be sure to add alt text with your keyword onto your media.
The body of your content will influence its visibility. It helps you to engage better with your audience. Write as many details as possible until it makes sense.
The following are key elements you should include:
- Keyword – An introduction is a great place to get attention. Add your keyword in the introduction to show you’ll deliver what they want to read. It applies to the last paragraph too. Add your keyword in your conclusion. Make sure that you haven’t used the keyword previously.
- LSI keywords – LSI keywords help search engines figure out what your page is about. Add them into the entire content.
- Subheadings – Heading structure entertains search engines and your audience. Use them with H tags and make them stand out.
- Outbound links – Outbound links help search engines understand the relevancy of a relationship. Make sure the link has higher authority.
- Internal links – Adding internal links can boost your SEO. But don’t forget they show your website architecture.
- Readability – For content success, improving readability is a must. Use bullet points and make your content scannable.
If you don’t have great content, you won’t drive traffic. And if your website doesn’t perform well, people won’t stay on your website. Thus, you need to optimize not only the content but also the website.
To improve your website, you should consider:
- Develop a responsive design for mobiles and tablets.
- Speed up your web pages.
- Make social sharing easier for your audience.
- Provide user experience.
- Improve accessibility.
- Include call-to-actions.
You can also improve your website usability for user experience.
Content marketing strategies checklist
Here’re my top 15 content marketing strategies that you can apply today:
- Insert your killer CTA that leads your audience to your goal.
- Develop content that makes your target audience want to share.
- Spy on your competitors for their traffic sources and strategies.
- Do your content audit to see what kind of content pages work for you.
- Conduct enough research for your content.
- Add statistics and proof resources to your content.
- Add more supporting images and graphs.
- Use subheadings wisely for readability.
- Make sharing options easy for your audience.
- Include lead magnets like cheat sheets and video training.
- A/B test your headline to convert your visitors.
- Offer a multimedia experience.
- Proofread after giving some time away.
- Redefine your strategies if needed.
- Think about mobile users for the length of a paragraph.
To publish content successfully, you need to know when is the best time to publish. This is when your audience is active in your target channel.
Use analytics tools to see when they interact and engage with you. These results should have a great impact on your publishing schedule and performance.
Also, consistent publishing is key to influence your traffic and SEO. Without frequent posting, you will never know what day of the week works. Even your analytics tell you the optimal time to post, many times it works average.
Consistent scheduling helps you to understand what types of content work and when.
Content Promotion Strategy
Let’s face this:
Even if your content reaches the right audience, if they don’t engage with it, your hard work won’t pay off. That’s why you need a strategic content promotion strategy.
When it comes to content promotion, there are many ways to advertise your content:
- Social media.
- Your Subscribers.
- Direct Message to influencers.
- Blogger Outreach.
- Contact people who share similar content on social media.
- Submit to content share communities.
- Guest blogging.
- Digital Advertising (paid ads).
- Transformation to target other audiences.
- Inbound links.
- Search Engines by SEO.
In fact, all the strategies above work great if you execute them properly. Try all at once and focus on what’s working for you!
Now you know how to use your marketing calendar to maximize your marketing efforts. Let’s move on to optimize more your calendar after publishing your content.
Tracking Marketing Campaigns
Let’s check what’s working or not for you!
Marketing metrics are very important factors for the success of your business. You can measure your performance and develop better marketing strategies with these metrics.
For example, if you want to drive traffic to your website in a marketing campaign, you may want to track the following marketing metrics:
1. Website Analytics
- Organic search.
- Direct search.
- Social search.
- Referral search.
- Paid search.
- # of sessions.
- Av. of serssions per user.
- Av. session duration.
- Unique pageviews.
- Av. of pages per session.
- Bounce rate.
- Exit pages.
Behavior flow users
- User types:
- New users.
- Returning users.
2. SEO Analytics
Organic search traffic
Click through rate (CTR)
- Domain rates.
- URL rates.
- # of sessions.
- Av. of serssions per user.
- Av. session duration.
- Unique pageviews.
- Av. of pages per session.
- Bounce rate.
- Exit pages.
- Page crawling.
- Crawl errors.
Desktop vs Mobile
3. Social Media Analytics
- Social networks.
- Follower growth rate.
- Post reach.
- Potential reach.
- Social share of voice (SSOV).
- Av. engagement rate:
- # of followers.
- # of likes, shares, and comments.
- Amplification rate:
- # of followers.
- # of a post’s shares.
- Virality rate:
- # of a post’s shares.
Social return on investment (ROI)
- Conversion rate.
- Click-through rate (CTR).
- Bounce rate.
- Cost per click (CPC).
- Cost per thousand impressions (CPM).
- Conversation rate:
- # of followers.
- # of a post’s comments.
- Volume of hashtag mentions.
- Volume of interactions that a hashtag accumulates.
- Social media reach of mentions with a hashtag.
- The most influential users.
- The most interactive users.
- # of users who reached a post from a hashtag.
4. Email Analytics
- Email delivery.
- Open rates.
- Click-through rate (CTR).
- Action rate over time.
- Bounce rate.
- Complaint rate.
- Subscriber growth.
- # of unsubscribers.
- Unsubscribe rate.
5. Paid Advertising Analytics
- Paid search.
- Cost per thousand impressions (CPM).
- Click-through rate (CTR).
- Cost per click (CPC).
- Bounce rate.
- Conversion rate.
- Cost per conversion (CPC).
- Av. cost per acquisition (CPA).
Lifetime value (LTV)
- Goal completions per user.
- Pageviews per user.
- Revenue per user.
- Session duration per user.
- Sessions per user.
- Transactions per user.
Return of advertising spend (ROAS)
Marketing Campaign Analysis
This will take all your marketing efforts to the next level. If you skip this step, you are losing the opportunity to perform your best.
Marketing analysis is essential to identify problems and opportunities for your marketing. Make sure that you analyze the data as much as possible and improve it if you can.
Those findings will upgrade your future campaigns.
Improve Your Marketing Campaigns
Above all, this is the most important step that improves your marketing efforts.
You might be wondering:
How do you improve your marketing campaigns?
To make it easy for you, here is a checklist for marketing campaign improvement that you can take right away:
- Make any adjustments whenever and wherever possible.
- Conduct alternative strategies for those that aren’t bringing results.
- Experiment and switch to new techniques.
- Analyze competitors deeply.
- Target the right audience.
- Focus on the top-performing channels.
- Add clear call-to-actions.
- Create a landing page.
- A/B test to find the best headlines.
- Use Digital Advertising to get the most out of your marketing.
- Optimize your conversion path (improve your bounce rates and CTR).
- Leverage and test hashtags.
- Maintain a consistent posting schedule.
- Provide quality (value) content over quantity.
- Upgrade your customer services.
There are many marketing tools that can help you automate those tasks and improve your campaign.
Free Marketing Calendar Templates
If you don’t have a marketing calendar, you can consider free marketing calendar templates.
Most marketing calendar templates are in Excel sheets or Google Sheets formats. They are easy to customize and you can make your own calendar based on them.
Here are my 5 favorite free marketing calendar templates in 2023:
Hubspot offers 3 types of editorial calendars. To get them, you need to fill out your name, email, phone number, website URL, company name, and # of employees.
These templates enable you to customize and add detailed information to make them insightful. So if you’re working as a team, they will help you to improve your content marketing performance.
- Blog editorial calendar templates (excel, Google calendar, and Google sheets).
- Social media calendar templates (excel).
- Editorial content calendar templates (excel).
These free marketing calendar templates are in Excel and PDF formats. It requires your name, work-email address, company name, and website. Then you will have extra questions about your company that you need to answer to get their templates.
These templates help you to see in one place everything you’re working on for content marketing. Moreover, CoSchedule has software that gives full visibility and helps to keep projects on track! I’ll give you more details about its software later.
- 2023 annual content marketing editorial calendar template (excel).
- 2023 social media editorial marketing calendar template (excel).
- Annual calendar template (PDF).
- Idea worksheet template (PDF).
- Monthly calendar template (PDF).
3. Bob Angus
Bob Angus provides 4 ungated templates in both excel and Google sheets formats. You can track key activities and check deliverables and status for each piece of content.
Also, you have a content idea tracking template and a list of your best-performed content. So, it is easier for you to control all the content creation process and improve.
- Editorial roadmap (excel and Google sheets).
- Editorial calendar (excel and Google sheets).
- Idea Tracker (excel and Google sheets).
- Completed / Published content (excel and Google sheets).
4. Vertical Measures
Vertical Measures gives you 3 different types of marketing calendar excel templates. To get them, you need to fill out a simple form – at least you need to provide your name and email address.
These templates allow you to identify who’s responsible for the content and expand your content ideas. You will be able to prepare valuable content to succeed according to your roadmap.
- Content roadmap (excel).
- Ideation (excel).
- Calendar (excel).
Smartsheet offers 9 ungated marketing calendars in excel format. Depending on what marketing calendar you want to use, you can choose the one that fits your needs better. Since they are all easy to customize, you can manage your activities in an effective way.
- Simple marketing calendar template (excel).
- Annual marketing calendar template (excel).
- Marketing editorial calendar template (excel).
- Social media marketing calendar template (excel).
- Blogging editorial calendar template (excel).
- Email marketing calendar template (excel).
- Marketing campaign calendar template (excel).
- Monthly marketing metrics calendar template (excel).
- Marketing plan calendar with the budget tracker (excel).
Marketing Calendar Software
Marketing calendar software saves time for collaboration work and the workflow tracking.
I’ll show you 7 marketing calendar software:
This is a cloud-based collaboration software that organizes projects the way you like. It keeps your team involved and tracks workflow from content creation to publication. So, you can get some help and assign new tasks to writers according to the status. Besides, this tool integrates with most of the apps you use.
CoSchedule is an all-in-one marketing platform that organizes all your marketing activities. You can share weekly schedules with your entire team and ensure who’s working on each task. Also, it creates cross-functional calendars and shows you the progress of each task. So, you can set realistic goals and approach the problems to complete on time.
- Business/Agency plan starts $80~per month
Kapost is a content marketing platform that organizes content by sorting and filtering. Also, it visualizes your content strategies and tracks the workflow. So, you can always execute content marketing effectively. Above all, Kapost integrates with many apps. Thus, you can share these detailed works and communicate with your team in one place.
- $3,500~per month
DivvyHQ is a content marketing tool that streamlines your process and improves content collaboration. It allows customized calendar configurations and communication through comments and attachments. It tracks both team and content performance in one place. You can increase the productivity of your team and create better content with teams.
- $30~per month
Markodojo is a marketing management software that increases your team’s productivity. It creates marketing calendars with an easy interface and visualizes tasks. Also, it allows you to annotate documents and share them with your team. So you can highlight specific modifications and improve them with your team.
6. Trello + Slack
This combination is one of my favorite ways to keep organized and track my daily work. If you have already used these apps, why not using them for marketing calendar use? You can use Trello to map and track your workflows and Slack to share with your team.
That’s it for this Marketing Calendar guide. I just hope you’ve found it useful!
In this guide, you’ve learned about the importance of using a marketing calendar. What format you use is up to you. Well, it depends on your needs, goals, strategies, etc.
What’s unquestionable is that you can significantly improve your marketing efforts if you use a marketing calendar. Since creating a calendar from scratch is feasible but time-consuming, you can use software and templates to make your job easier.
Now I’d like to hear from you:
What are you doing to manage all your marketing activities?
Are you already using a marketing calendar? What for?
Which strategies from this guide are you going to apply first?
Have you got any questions about this post?
Leave a comment below to let us know!