A lot of people are of the opinion that creating a content plan for an entire year is a waste of time. These people often point to reasons like random inspiration, breaking news, and current trends as to why it may be a waste of time.
While we agree with all of the above-mentioned statements, we would like to say that whenever inspiration comes, just write it down. You will obviously also need to keep up with current trends and breaking news as well. However, what we will try to explain in this article is the value of still having a content calendar and one that is a bit flexible. It is mainly about making sure that you are aware of the overall picture of the content you are planning to put out into the world. It is also about proper guidelines and making sure that the best possible content is produced.
How to Properly Make a Content Plan for a Year
Now, we are in the execution phase of the content planning process. You will have an empty content calendar to work with. So, you will be able to really strategize blog ideas and brainstorm.
Formula that Works
In order to calculate the number of blog posts that will need throughout the year and to understand how best to properly organize them, we have to talk a bit about math, unfortunately. First, decide on the number of posts you want to make in a week, and then you need to multiply it by the number of 52. This will give you an idea of how many total posts you will need to write within the year. This is one of the most crucial things when you learn to plan your content. This will probably be a very big number but don’t be scared or overwhelmed. At this point, you need to take the total number of content needed and then divide it by the categories you ought to have made by now. This will give you a much better understanding of how you will be operating throughout the year.
This is really the most fun part of the whole process. In this phase, you need to list all the strategies from the above section and write down as many possible ideas as you can think of. You really need to understand your audience and let it inform your decisions and will really let your creativity loose.
After you have compiled a lot of ideas, you can then organize them in such a way that you will know which one should be prioritized at what times. Let us take a look at how exactly to do that.
- The ones that have the biggest impact when it comes to beginners: A big advantage of this approach is that it lets you create content straight from the ground up.
- Your expertise level - Try to get to understand the time you will need to research in order to produce content that delivers. A good practice is to write those content that does not really need a lot of research first. If you do this, you will be able to write many contents at the very beginning of the process. This can help you get ahead of schedule.
- According to the theme for your next month - This is a particularly good way to set up a sort of template where you will think about your whole year. When you are working with themes, you will be able to incorporate a lot of different blog posting ideas that will span across all the categories you work with. It will bring them all together in a more organized manner.
Fill Up Your Content Calendar
After you have successfully organized your list of ideas, it is not time to actually start putting things into your particular content calendar. As you can imagine, things get a lot simpler after this point. All you need to do is to take the ideas you have and then put them into the calendar according to when you need to publish them. There is no pressure to fill up your content calendar in just one setting. At this point you ought to be able to see and figure out what kind of content gaps you have in your content calendar. This will help you in generating blog ideas or you may even reach out to guest bloggers.
Remember, just because you have something in the form of a calendar, you will obviously have realized that the actual content will not write themselves. After you have spent so much time on making your calendar, the last thing you want to happen is to not properly follow up on that schedule. Realize that you will have to show up more or less everyday, even if you are not feeling that great. However, having a proper plan will put you in a much better position and will give you a significant head start. Content plans are the best idea in order to make sure that you stay on top of regularly publishing content and generate value for your audience. Finally, remember that just because you have put something on the schedule, it does not mean that it has been set in stone. For example, you may have put down some sort of blog post idea but when it comes to writing the actual content, the subject matter may not be relevant any longer. It is pretty normal to get inspired and then write a completely different post and shift things around just a bit.