How do you determine the ROI of your social media campaigns? 30+ social media marketers weigh in with their expert advice.
| Aug 10
Masooma Memon on May 4, 2021 (last modified on April 29, 2021) • 11 minute read
Want to level up your Facebook engagement? Want to make sure you’re consistently creating content that your audience loves? There is a simple solution. Use a Facebook content calendar.
Why does it work? Because the written schedule gives you an overview of the content you’ll publish and when you’ll publish it, providing you a plan to stick with.
The catch? Making a content calendar can be pretty easy, but managing one so you’re following it regularly can be tough.
Fret not though as we’ve got 6 tips from the experts to help you create and manage your Facebook content calendar.
Here’s what you’ll learn today:
Let’s dive in.
A Facebook content calendar is a written schedule of what you’ll post on Facebook and when you’ll post it.
It guides content creation for your social media so you can get a birds-eye view of what you’ll post, the formats that you’ll publish, and when the Facebook posts will go live.
Think of it as a detailed timetable of what you’ll share with your audience on the social network. Here are the main details to cover in your calendar:
If you’re creating a social media content calendar for all your social channels, add a fifth pillar to the calendar: destination or which channel the post will go live on.
Editor’s note: Get an overview of how well your Facebook page is doing by tracking all important metrics such as likes, page engagement, and more on this Facebook pages dashboard.
The simple aim is to post consistently. That’s how you’ll stay on top of your audience’s minds and engage with them on a regular note.
Getting into the specifics: about 32% of the experts who contributed to this piece shared they post 2-3 times per week. 30% say they post multiple times a day.
Whatever frequency you settle on though, make sure you don’t compromise with the quality of your content.
Here’s a brief look at the tips to create and manage your calendar, followed by the details:
Let’s kick these tips off with planning what you want to share on Facebook – an essential aspect of growing your audience on the platform.
A good starting point here is revisiting your audience persona to revise their interests. Doing so will help you jot down topics that’ll interest them, followed by creating content around those topics.
You can also call in your team to host monthly brainstorming sessions on what to post on Facebook every month like the team at Twelve Three Media does. Megan Thielen explains, “we have monthly brainstorms that build out a topical calendar, thinking through what the end result will be once published live, the value-add, and key takeaway.
We identify topics that will be larger social activations and require additional brainstorms and unique asset buildout.”
Once a list of topics is ready, Thielen shares they get to creating “evergreen pieces first, scheduling in our social media management tool, before going through an internal review process followed by client review.”
“Then we focus on the larger social activations. Throughout the month, we listen to our audience and watch trends and what’s happening on social channels for real-time and future content creation,” Thielen adds.
Janice Wald from Mostly Blogging also advices you start with deciding the type of content you want to post. “Make sure you post content people have opinions about to start active conversations,” Wald suggests. “For instance, inspirational quote posts are great for getting social shares. Posting about the news is effective for getting people to share their opinion about the news.”
Don’t forget to “end the post with a Call to Action – ask people to state whether they agree or disagree with what you’ve posted and why they feel that way,” summarizes Wald.
Lot of the experts we surveyed shared using a social media scheduler to manage your Facebook account(s).
Take a page from the team at Breaking Into Wall Street, for example. Brian Dechesare explains, “We schedule our social media posts a month ahead using a scheduling tool to keep images, written content, and timing well-organized.
Planning ahead helps to create a better overall flow, but planners should leave space to include spontaneous posts related to current events and relevant news.”
Here are some scheduling tips to keep in mind:
Alice Anderson from Mommy to Mom takes the same approach. “I run a Facebook Group for mom bloggers called Mom Blog Network,” says Anderson. “I post daily sharing threads so bloggers can interact and help each other grow their businesses.
We have different posts each day where you have an opportunity to share your website and social media pages. This would be a lot to take on if it wasn’t for the scheduling tool Facebook offers for groups.”
And, here’s how Anderson does it every week: “I set aside about 15-20 minutes every Sunday to schedule all of my posts for the week. When I wake up in the morning, there are already bloggers posting their links and interacting with one another!”
When selecting a social media scheduling software though, make sure it meets your requirements. Research, give the free trial a shot (majority offer this), and then invest.
There’s another bonus for using a scheduler to post on social media: it helps you manage multiple Facebook (as well as other social) accounts from one platform. This makes it a great choice for agencies managing multiple client profiles.
As you plan what to post, it’s also essential you settle on the post’s purpose and format.
To this end, Factory Furnace Outlet’s Melissa Haws suggests you ask the following questions:
Editor’s note: Get a full summary of how well your Facebook page is performing using this Facebook (Page Insights) Dashboard Template. You can grab page shares, clicks, comments, reactions, and other engagements all on screen with this dashboard.
Once you’ve worked out the purpose, think of the format that’ll best convey your message. Would a text-based post do or an accompanying infographic will help? Should you knock out a short video or a GIF will help attract more eyeballs?
“When creating your calendar be sure that your posts have a variety of pictures, videos, and text,” recommends Haws.
“Try a collage of three to four images in one post these will typically perform the best. Posts with videos should be around one-minute long, have closed captions, and catch your viewer’s interest within the first few seconds. Live videos will also increase engagement exponentially, but don’t overuse them.”
Whatever format you decide, ensure you “incorporate all different types of media into your posts when creating a calendar,” Haws concludes. After all, variety is the spice of life.
You can also use color-coding to manage your Facebook content calendar.
Alex Cascio from Vibrant Media Productions shares this tip, explaining: “We color code our content calendar through Google Calendar so we put together a consistent feed that mixes in photos (with graphics), videos, client testimonials, blogs/case studies, etc.
This way we can keep track of what we’ve been posting and need to post so we can develop content based on these needs. This has helped us schedule/plan ahead and know exactly what we need, along with testing different styles/times of posting certain types of content.”
Jonathan Aufray from Growth Hackers Company shares another great tip to manage and keep up with your Facebook content calendar. Aufray advises you “get a few people involved.”
“To manage our content calendar, we’ve actually got a few of our team members involved in content ideation, creation, and publishing. We’ve got someone better at creating visuals, one better at creating videos, one better at copywriting, and one better at finding content ideas. So, we work as a team to produce engaging content and we tend to vary the types of content.”
Aufray’s team isn’t alone in splitting work. Most respondents shared they’ve at least two people working on planning and creating Facebook posts. So you can either make it a two-person job or divide the workload among more teammates.
That said, this tip is pretty helpful for being consistent with your content production. However, to make it work for your team, make sure everyone involved in the process is aligned with your Facebook marketing strategy’s goals and the aim behind each post you create.
Lastly, plan ahead if you want to ensure you’re managing your calendar well and sticking with it too.
The question now is: how far ahead should you plan? Our experts have mixed opinions – weekly, monthly, or so on.
A few points to remember, however:
Let’s now look at how other businesses approach planning ahead. Most of them plan a month’s worth of content.
Case in point: Explainerd. Natasha Rei shares they “usually plan one month ahead. So, we know what and when to post each content. However, we try to make one or two dates available for special occasions, e.g., hot topics of the week.
That’s how we connect with our audience more closely. The tip is to spare your time planning a content calendar, whether it’s for a week or a month. This keeps you being persistent with the update, and the audience likes it.”
At Clarify Capital, on the other hand, Kim Smith shares content is planned weekly. ”While we have considered scheduling further out, the one-week time frame works best for us, as it leaves room for changes based on trends and news.
That way, we can ensure we’re creating content that’s current and fresh. Sometimes we may need to make a few changes or tweaks to our content queue within that one week, but this time frame is usually the ‘sweet spot’ for ensuring timeliness and relevance.”
Stephanie Gutierrez from Online Optimism also recommends weekly planning. “Try to plan your content out a week or so at a time. This will keep your content fresh and flexible to adjust as new priorities arise.”
“The content should be relevant to your brand and something that your audience will find useful. It’s best to schedule your week of content at once so nothing falls under the radar,” Gutierrez adds.
And, in case, you don’t prefer a social media management app, “set alarms and task reminders to remind yourself to post on time,” Gutierrez notes. “Here’s a tip: take a look at your Audience Insights to see when your audience is the most active to determine when the best time to post is!”
Creating and managing your Facebook content calendar takes a bit of trial and error until you identify the system that works best for you. To refresh, start with understanding what interests your audience then dive into content ideation, followed by creating content, and scheduling it.
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