This is a route for the content creation team. The editorial planning promotes more efficiency in the work and avoids the white page syndrome. It is an essential tool for ensuring consistency in the choice of subjects, formats and publication rate.
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What is an editorial plan?
The editorial schedule or editorial plan is a planning tool that distributes the topics to be covered on different platforms.
It covers the themes to be addressed over a defined period, depending on the platforms and the editorial line. It is both a strategic tool and an essential operational tool for monitoring a content strategy. Marketing and communication professionals use it to manage, plan and anticipate the content to be created over a year or a quarter.
The editorial calendar thus favors the dispatching of the tasks to be carried out according to the period.
The benefits of editorial planning
The creation of an editorial calendar has multiple advantages for both the project manager and the service provider.
Having an editorial schedule is the best way to keep a regular rhythm of publication.
You know the topics already covered and those that remain. This task is essential to stay consistent in your publications. This is an important advantage when you know the interest of search engines for regularly updated sites.
In addition, you will more easily manage to retain your customers by keeping a constant pace of publication.
A 360° view of your strategy
Editorial planning will be very beneficial to you, whether it is for your brand content strategy, content marketing or simply to regularly supply your various communication channels with content.
This tool offers you a complete view of your content production and distribution.
Benefits for SEO
In addition to facilitating the organization of content, editorial planning is also an essential weapon for implementing an effective SEO strategy.
It serves as a reference to classify your articles by rank based on the keywords searched. This is also essential to organize your pages in silos with the internal linking.
More efficient monitoring of content production
Thanks to an editorial calendar, you know exactly how much content to produce for the coming months.
From then on, you can plan the time and the human and financial resources to be deployed. This not only makes it easier to track the content strategy, but also to track the budget associated with it.
What should an editorial plan contain?
It is important to understand above all that editorial planning is a unique marketing tool for each company.
It should match the needs of your business, and those are certainly different from those of similar businesses. However, effective editorial planning necessarily has a number of common elements:
- the person responsible for each content,
- content titles (preferably SEO friendly titles),
- the type of content to create (blog articles, videos, infographics, etc.),
- SEO elements (primary keywords, secondary keywords, etc.),
- the date of publication,
- the destination of the content (website, Facebook page, etc.),
- the statute,
- any comments for the editor.
How to create your editorial schedule?
The creation of an editorial calendar follows a strict procedure. Here are the main steps to achieve this:
1. Define your personas
The first step in building an editorial plan is to define your “buyer personas”, the targets you want to reach.
To do this, take into account a number of elements such as:
- socio-demographic characteristics,
- their needs,
- their research methods for finding information.
The identified targets will then be ranked in order of priority. In this way; you get the characteristics of the ideal buyer (the priority persona) and those of the secondary personas (opinion leaders, influencers, etc.).
2. List the questions your personas ask themselves
Personas are constantly looking for quality information on specific topics.
You must therefore identify the questions they are asking in order to provide relevant answers through your content. The most effective method to successfully complete this stage of content marketing is to ask the customer directly. But you can also look for content ideas from your competitors using a tool like SEMrush.
3. Organize your content ideas
The key here is to categorize content ideas by stage of the buying cycle. You can then proceed to:
- Quantitative ranking based on SEO data such as search volume. Use specific tools like YoodaOne or Google Search Console to do this.
- A qualitative ranking based on the business score to establish a relationship between the product you offer and the content to be created.
4. Format the editorial schedule
This is about building your editorial schedule with an appropriate tool.
The most widely used is Excel due to its great flexibility. But there are other project management tools like Airtable, Asana or Trello.
5. Evaluate and readjust
An editorial plan is not an eternal instrument.
Study it and readjust it if necessary. For example, you can modify formats, optimize your content, add comments, etc.
Which tool to use to create an editorial schedule?
The choice of your editorial calendar tool depends on the complexity of the schedule to be formalized.
Among the most used we have: Excel, Google Sheets, Trello, Outlook, etc.
What period does an editorial schedule cover?
The duration that an editorial schedule must take into account depends on the objectives of each company.
It is usually organized on an annual basis, but it is possible to build editorial plans on a quarterly basis (at least).
Our agency advises you to make a half-yearly schedule: over the last month, do an audit and according to the information that comes back, you readjust! This can be content optimization or creation.
Who uses an editorial planner?
When you hear about editorial planning, bloggers are the first people you think of.
But the editorial calendar is a multidisciplinary tool. It is also a favorite tool for community managers, editors, copywriters, video editors, etc.