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Better Content Management Using Your Online Calendar

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Content Calendar

Whenever marketers talk about marketing and begin to construct a content calendar, there’s a phrase they like to throw out. And that phrase is “Content is king.”

It’s believed that Bill Gates coined the phrase back in 1996. And, it turns out, he was right. When you consistently create valuable content, it builds meaningful relationships with your audience. It also improves brand recognition and establishes you as an industry thought leader. Content is also crucial for SEO and marketing your products and services.

Here’s the thing, though. For content to reign supreme, you need to take a strategic approach. In other words, you can’t just wake up and wing it. For instance, by sharing random social media posts or writing a blog post for the sake of having content on your site.

Instead, it needs to be relevant. And more importantly, it needs to sync with your long-term goals.

While it is essential, this can be time-consuming. Thankfully, you can use your calendar for better content management.

Content Calendars: What Are They and Why Do You Need Them?

In terms of content planning, a content calendar is simply a spreadsheet or calendar that details the content you will be publishing over the next few weeks, months, or even years. Besides giving you a quick overview of your content schedule, your content Calendar can also be shared with your team to keep them informed.

Your blog probably doesn’t need a content calendar if it’s just a hobby. However, staying organized is crucial if you’re using content marketing to grow your business.

Your content marketing strategy can benefit from content calendars in the following ways:

Keeps you organized and saves you time.

You can compile your ideas with a content calendar whenever you have the time. As a result, you won’t need to multitask. As a result, you can spend your time on other things instead of wasting time on ideation and creation.

Ensures you post regularly and on time.

In social media and SEO, consistency is the key and is rewarded with better metrics. As well as keeping your audience hooked, consistent content can help you recall your brand more effectively. For example, to make your audience feel more personalized, you can select specific events, holidays, or seasons that are important to them and post accordingly.

Collaboration is made easier with your content calendar. 

With most calendars, you can collaborate with the calendar and have multiple editors and creators on the same calendar by using team collaboration tools. Team members can stay informed and work together more effectively this way.

Errors and mistakes are reduced for you and your whole team.

It is easier to proofread multiple times when everything is planned and organized well before time. Furthermore, since numerous eyes are on the content calendar, mistakes are spotted quickly and corrected immediately.

You can develop your strategies for distributing content and using social media.

By keeping everything in one place, you can keep track of all the activities on your social media. By thinking long-term, you can devise strategies for what to do next.

It keeps you up-to-date on the latest trends.

A comment on a trending topic will always get you more traction than a non-trending one. You can make content according to all the trends when you use a content calendar. Instagram hashtag contests could be a simple example.

Tracking and improving content performance is made easier with it.

You can identify gaps and improve upon them quickly when you keep track of your daily or weekly activities. A/B tests can help you determine the content mix that gets your audience the most attention using your calendar.

Content Calendar Best Practices

Content management strategies can be made more successful by developing a content calendar. These tips will help you create steady content that meets your marketing goals and elevate your organization’s content calendar.

Pick a format you like.

For hosting your content calendar, you can use a variety of platforms. For example, you can use a spreadsheet, content management software, or a calendar app. It really depends on what works best for you and your peeps.

If you want to track more than just deadlines, a traditional calendar may not be the right tool. If this is the case, a spreadsheet might be a better alternative. Why? Because you can neatly organize everything into columns and rows. And this lets you include more information about each piece of content, such as the author, keywords, current status, and links.

Calendar and project management functions are included in content management software such as Asana and Trello. To improve your team’s efficiency, you can also use spreadsheets alongside these tools.

Come up with content ideas.

After identifying the correct format and tools, the next step is brainstorming content ideas. In addition to being topics that fit your brand persona, they should address any concerns your audience may have and demonstrate your expertise in your field.

Looking for some inspiration? To get you started, here are some ideas:

  • Regular blog posts.
  • Videos, webinars, or how-to guides.
  • A recurring post, series, or theme, such as Motivation Monday.
  • Case studies.
  • Customer success stories.
  • Business-related infographics, statistics, press releases
  • Make use of popular culture, news, holidays, or trends.
  • Reading lists.
  • Product or service launches.
  • Interview with a leader in your industry or business.
  • Business behind-the-scenes.
  • Business-related infographics, statistics, press releases
  • Upcoming industry events

Also, to save time, look for ways to repurpose existing content. A blog post on how to use your product could be turned into a video, for example.

To schedule content as far in advance as possible, you should come up with enough ideas. At least a six-month supply of ideas is ideal for me. But, there are some content ideas that I can plan further out. For instance, I can map out a content marketing strategy for the holidays a year or so in advance since key dates are pretty much set in stone.

Identify the channels and frequency of your publications.

Decide where and when to publish your content once you’ve brainstormed ideas. After all, there will be a different purpose for each channel. Using varying content means your content is written and relevant, uniquely suited differently to each channel.


Your business and industry insights are published as “how-to” content. A blog post should be published every day, ideally. The best thing you can do is share 1 to 3 quality posts a week if this isn’t possible.


Using landing pages, videos, and gated content can improve your credibility. In addition, it improves your search engine optimization. If your business or industry changes, this type of content only needs to be updated once it is created.

Social Media Networks

You can promote your new content on these channels, build brand awareness, and engage your audience through social media channels. Depending on the channel, the frequency changes; Facebook once or twice a day, Twitter three times daily, LinkedIn once per day, Instagram 1.5 times per day, and Pinterest five times per day.

Video Sharing Sites

YouTube has become a great chance to mix your content up a little. YouTube is used to upload explainers, training, and interview videos (or even something funny about your company or brand). You can publish videos as often as you feel necessary. Don’t start thinking you can do a video every day if you haven’t made these vids before. Making YouTubes are hard to keep up with every day. Choose a weekly or every other week schedule to start out — depending on your audience. You will need to plan long video sessions where you get several done for your upcoming calendar obligations.


Content such as newsletters, press releases, surveys, and seasonal content should be tailored to specific audience segments. Find the best time for your emails through A/B testing. Avoid annoying your audience by sending arbitrarily timed emails.

Develop a content marketing strategy.

A content marketing strategy will help you achieve the best results from your content calendar. The first step is to determine your goals each quarter or year. Then, if you’re stuck, ask the following questions:

  • What is a content creator, and why do you create content?
  • Do you want your blog to attract more traffic?
  • Are you looking for more leads?
  • Do you want to be a thought leader in your field?

It is crucial to identify your goals before creating any content, determining where and when it should be published and how often it should be published.

Next, determine who will be involved in the content. Setting up team roles will help you determine how much content you can put out based on your team’s capacity, whether you have a dedicated content marketing team or outsource. During this stage, a content planner can be helpful.

To determine your context mix: and the type of content you will create, you need to identify your goals and establish who will be involved in the process. In order to get the best results, you should set up a consistent posting schedule.

Map out your content calendar.

The next step is to create a content calendar based on your content creation process and content marketing strategy. Depending on your business, your calendar will differ. To keep everything cohesive, you should only plan 2-3 months ahead. It’s also possible for content ideas and goals to change.

Here are some things you might want to include in your content calendar:

  • Title or Topic
  • Due Date
  • Publish Date & Time
  • Writer/Author
  • Target Keyword
  • Content Description
  • Promotional Channels
  • Notes & Resources
  • Status
  • Links

A calendar may also help map everything out. As Choncé Maddox explains, “I like to set up days dedicated to brainstorming, outlining, creating/scheduling, polishing, and promoting. Yes, the content production process is pretty tedious, but having a solid plan laid out in writing can make all the difference.”

Additionally, you can use your calendar to “set reminders to hold yourself accountable for meeting specific deadlines and allowing yourself enough time to prepare what you need to complete the content.”

Schedule posts.

“Once you’ve organized everything in your editorial calendar, you have another useful tool at your disposal,” suggests Max Palmer in a previous Calendar post. “Most blog platforms allow you to schedule posts to go live at a specified date.” Content for the upcoming weeks and months can be created by your team and scheduled to publish at the appropriate time. You can schedule posts for social media as well.

“Dashboard services like HootSuite allow you to enter posts and schedule them to go live on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, or all three at the same time,” he adds. “By always working in advance, a team also has the opportunity to tweak posts as needed before they go public.”

Promote and measure.

The final stage of creating a content calendar is promoting the content. Again, the most effective way to achieve maximum results is to plan a consistent posting schedule. Also, figure out what promotional channels you’re using and when.

You can measure your content’s success in a variety of ways. For example, you might measure brand awareness, lead generation, or SEO depending on your content marketing goals. Then, to plan for the next quarter, track these metrics consistently every quarter.

Be sure to leverage both web and social analytics, as well as revenue data. With this information, you can optimize existing content, such as titles, introductions, outbound links, etc., to increase visits and engagement.

The Bottom Line

There is no one-step formula for creating a quality content calendar. However, to achieve the best results, you must plan, create, complete (along with the image and SEO), and post steady content regularly. With a content calendar, you will remain organized, facilitate team collaboration, keep on top of deadlines, and increase your content marketing success.

This article was originally published on Image Credit: Judit Peter; Pexels; Thank you!

The 10 Best Calendar Apps (What You Should Look For)

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Online Appointment Software Says a Lot About Your Business

Perhaps the number one reason why we’re addicted to smartphones is that they contain our entire lives in the device. You can check-in with friends, family, and clients, while booking a flight, running your business, and listening to a podcast. Here’s what you should look for in the ten best calendar apps.

But, they’re always useful in organizing our lives. Especially when you have the following ten calendar apps.

1. Calendar

Tired of those back-and-forth emails when scheduling a meeting or appointment? If so, then Calendar has got you covered.

This handy app lets you share your availability with others through an embedded link or email. This way, they can find a date and time that works for them. Once they do, the event is added to everyone’s online calendars.

Calendar can also harness the power of machine learning. Machine learning means that it uses previous data to make smart scheduling suggestions, such as when, where, and what types of meetings you should schedule.

You can also easily create an event using natural language, while the map view gives you a glance at your upcoming schedule.

2. Fantastical 2

This iPhone app has often be cited as the best calendar app for the iPhone. That’s because it’s packed with features, such as:

  • Multiple views including a list view in portrait mode by either week or month or a landscape mode for a week “block” view.
  • Supports multiple languages, like English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, and Japanese.
  • Ability to create event using natural language.
  • Also, it works with the iPad and Apple Watch.
  • The addition of the view widget — replaces the stock iOS Calendar widget. With this extension, you get a snapshot of your day without opening the app.

You will have to purchase Fantastical 2 for $4.99.

3. Google Calendar

While this stock calendar comes preinstalled in every Android device, Apple users can download it as well. They probably should go ahead and do that.

With a free account, this powerful app will events and schedules from your Google account. If you used your Gmail address to book a flight, hotel room, or doctor’s appointment, the date and time would be added to the calendar. You’ll then receive a reminder through a push notification on your phone when the event approaches.

When creating events, you can color-code your calendar so that you can quickly identify the various types of activities you have scheduled.

4. Calendars 5

If you’re curious, this is the fifth version of Readdle’s Calendars app. That explains why it’s called Calendars 5. It also means that the developers had plenty of opportunities to make this iPhone app as high as possible.

Calendars 5 comes with features like several view options; list view, day view, week view, and month view, as well as an integrated task manager and ability to enter events using natural language. Additional features include being able to create custom alerts, recurring events, and sharing your tasks and activities with others.

5. Microsoft Calendar

For business owners, it’s tough to find a better suite of tools than Microsoft Office 365 — although Google is pretty much right at the top as well. That’s because this app combines your emails, calendar, and much more into one convenient location.

The calendar itself is loaded with functions like being able to import or export to other calendars and share your calendar with others. You can also personalize your calendar using add-ons, like getting a weather report, automating responses to invites, receiving reminders, and receiving an agenda in your email every morning.

6. Tiny Calendar

If you want a simple calendar app that’s available for either Android or iOS, then look no further. Tiny Calendar is a straightforward calendar app where you can view multiple layouts. You can create emails or push notification reminders, and make edits offline. You can even use your device’s GPS to add specific locations to events, and it syncs with other calendars, such as Google Calendar.

The free version should be enough if you need the basics. The paid version — which is $7 — comes with additional features like accepting and sending invites. It also exports other calendars and can create recurring events.

7. Jorte Calendar

Jorte isn’t just another calendar app. It’s also an organizer where you can take notes and manage tasks. It also integrates with Google Calendar, Evernote, and Microsoft Office to make your life run a bit smoother. And, it works for Android and iOS.

As for the calendar itself, it’s pretty solid. There are daily, weekly, or monthly views, the ability to create recurring events, and there are even countdown features that let you know how much time is remaining for a specific event.

For the more robust features, you’ll have to select the Jorte Premium option at $3 per month or $30 for the year.

8. SolCalendar

SolCalendar is known for being one of the most well-designed calendar apps on the market. Some people claim that it’s more of a life management tool than just your standard calendar app.

This app comes with a widget so that you receive a summary of your most important activities. There are stickers and emojis for marking select dates. You can also receive weather reports, share your calendar with others, and integrates with Google Tasks.

Best of all? It’s free for Android users to download.

9. TimeTree

Do you need an app to keep your family or team on the same page? Then download this free app for both Android and Apple users.

With TimeTree, you can share everything from work schedules to tasks to notes. This way, your team knows when you away on travel while your family knows when your flight arrives. It also ensures that every family or team member stays on-top of assigned tasks. You can also send reminders to others.

10. 24me

Finally, there’s this handy personal assistant that comes equipped with a calendar, to-do list, and notes. This way, you can automate everything from paying bills to wishing a happy friend’s birthday. It has reminders — like calling a client or scheduling appointments — by linking to your contacts. You can link to Facebook, TaskRabbit, and your bank account.

Put, if you want to stay on top of your bills, remember birthdays, schedule events, and manage your to-do list, this is the app for you.

The free app is available for Android and iOS.

Criteria for an Amazing Calendar App

What makes these apps considered the best? It’s because they fit the following criteria:

  • Can easily and quickly view appointments — preferably in a click or two.
  • Can easily add, edit, or search for appointments, like being able to use natural language.
  • Integrates with the apps you use daily, such as Calendar or Google Calendar.
  • It is compatible with all of the devices you use. For example, if you have all Apple products, then go with Fantastical 2. If you have a Samsung phone and iPad, then you’ll want an app that works on both Android and iOS.
  • Comes with a clean and contemporary design.
  • Integrates with your email — not a problem if using Calendar, Google Calendar or Microsoft Outlook.
  • Allows you to schedule an unlimited amount of appointments.
  • Has the features you need. If you work with a team, for example, then you need to be able to share your calendar with others. If not pre-installed, then look for an app that can be customized to meet your needs.

What criteria do you look for when choosing a calendar app?

5 Ways to Use Scheduling Software Outside of Work

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Why Online Appointment Software Should Be on Your Christmas List

We typically think of work as more hectic than our home lives. But is it?

Outside of work, there are chores to get done, meals to prepare, and finances to manage. Parents have kids to raise. Homeowners have a house to upkeep. 

Compounding those challenges is the limited structure of home life. Without a system, it can start to feel aimless and overwhelming. 

That’s why scheduling your day — your full day, not just your workday — is so important. The same scheduling software you use at work can actually help you get your home life in order. Here’s how to do it:

1. Create clear boundaries.

A strong work-life balance is the first step to reeling in your home life. It’s an ideal to strive for, but it’s complicated by our ability to work even when we’re not in an office space. The devices we use to complete projects and communicate with employees and clients are often the same devices we use at home. 

Using scheduling software can help you establish the healthy boundaries you need. Maintain separate schedules for work and home. That way, you won’t be looking at work-related tasks outside of work and vice versa. By intentionally leaving spaces in each respective schedule, you can accommodate irregular work schedules more easily.

Another smart idea is to designate a transitional period between work and home. Half of that time can be represented in the work schedule and the other half can be represented in the personal schedule. 

During the transition, you can do some reading, listen to a playlist, or even meditate. Whatever it is, shift your attention from work to your personal life. 

2. Let friends and family put time on your schedule.

One of the best parts of scheduling software is that others can claim slots in your schedule. If you know you have an open weekend coming up, why not send a scheduling link to friends and family? That way, they can schedule social time with you that works for them.

Ask them to do the same for you. If they want to have a one-on-one chat with you, then courtesy dictates they should let you choose the time. 

As hectic as schedules can be, you shouldn’t let your social life suffer due to a lack of structure. Scheduling software makes getting together during your precious time off easier. 

3. Distinguish priorities from everyday tasks.

Everyday chores aren’t the same as real priorities. You may have a pile of clothes on your floor, but doing laundry is less important than having a hard conversation with your financial advisor.

Your financial advisor is busy. If he or she isn’t already using a scheduling tool, invite him to book you through yours. Fixing your finances is a great example of taking care of what is important rather than just what is urgent in a particular moment.

With scheduling software, you can use different color schemes to distinguish different types of priorities. Perhaps you color social events yellow — a happy color — and stressful ones in blue, which is calming. 

Taking care of what’s important can be stressful. Scheduling what’s important shouldn’t be. 

4. Establish routines.

Routines give structure to our days and help us stay on top of our priorities. Scheduling software makes it easy to add recurring appointments to your calendar.

Say you’re a student. If your tutor always wants to meet at 9 a.m. on a Saturday, ask her to book you for that time every weekend. You’ll never fail to remember when tutoring is, and you’ll make it easier for other people to schedule you, too. 

You can also establish a routine by blocking time for similar kinds of activities. Maybe you start to decompress at 9 p.m. on every weeknight. You probably don’t want people asking to meet with you that late in the evening, so mark yourself as unavailable in your scheduling tool. Pop on your favorite mystery show, and let yourself unwind. 

5. Organize others to do good.

The very fact that you have a job and free time means you’re fortunate. Why not use some of that free time to give back to a cause you care about?

Sure, you could join a volunteer organization or donate money to charity. But to maximize your impact, a better idea is to organize your own volunteer group.

Say you’re organizing a litter pickup. Sign up a few volunteers, and send them each a scheduling link. Ask them to pick times that work best for them. That way, you know exactly when to get them a pair of gloves and some trash bags. You can maximize the team’s time by ensuring that everyone doesn’t decide to volunteer on the same Saturday afternoon. 

Life outside of work should energize you, not stress you out with all your different appointments. Letting other people book you provides certainty and takes the stress of making decisions off your shoulders. Why should appointments only be part of your work life?

Why Scheduling Software Is Critical for Modern Companies

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Today’s workers have a wide range of priorities competing for their attention. Clever ways of setting your calendar can certainly help. But meetings, deadlines, and minutiae can overwhelm even the most organized among us. 

With more firms concerned with employee engagement and work-life balance, initiatives like compressed working weeks, flexible schedules, and remote work make the juggling act all the more complex. 

Fortunately, there are tools designed to help. If you’re trying to create a more productive work environment, scheduling software can be the answer. Here’s why modern companies invest in it:

1. Keeping everyone on the same page

Scheduling software cuts down on human error and improves the flow of communication. Switching to a centralized scheduling system lets team members ditch their messy manual methods of trying to keep a handle on where resources are.

With a digital scheduling solution, everyone in your organization can log into a dashboard and, at a glance, see what’s going on. With remote work on the rise, having the ability to sync employees across time zones and geographies is critical — another key benefit that scheduling tools provide. 

What’s more, a software system automates reminders. Should a meeting time change, it can notify staff of changes. This lightens team members’ mental load, and it decreases the amount of time wasted by missed meetings or canceled appointments. 

2. Driving efficiency 

Whatever the size of your team, keeping things running smoothly can be tough. There is almost always room to increase efficiency. 

With a mobile-optimized tool, you and your employees can check and create new appointments on the go. Analytics features can tell you which people you’re meeting with most. The “what gets measured, gets managed” adage is as true today as it was when Peter Drucker wrote it. 

Team members, not just leaders, need scheduling data to minimize fatigue. Fatigue impacts nearly 40% of U.S. workers and costs employers billions in lost productivity.

3. Enabling prioritization

One of the benefits of using a scheduling system is the ability to define and track priorities. This allows you to focus on those tasks that are more important or have near-term deadlines.

Labeling systems are a simple but effective solution. Labeling lets other team members know what’s important and encourages them to row in the same direction. 

A digital prioritization system also minimizes errors. Trying to keep track of things mentally can make you feel like you’re buried beneath a mountain of work with not enough time to get it all done. The more you stress, the further your quality of work is likely to fall. 

4. Creating a competitive advantage

Scheduling tools don’t sell products, but they can help you solve a lot of related problems. This includes internal issues as well as customer-facing problems.

Start with the customer experience. Nearly a third of customers say that they would leave a current service provider if a competitor offered online scheduling. This is particularly true of service companies, such as hair salons, therapists, and mechanics. 

The employee experience also benefits from scheduling software. Say you need to set up a one-on-one conversation with someone on your team. Scheduling software lays out the options, generates notifications, and lets either party switch with a few clicks. 

5. Saving money

Again, a scheduling software can’t stop you from swiping your card, but it can save you money in all sorts of quiet ways. 

Labor is many company’s biggest expense category. Scheduling software can help your team spend more time serving customers and less on things like scheduling meetings and sending time-off requests.

Consider, even implementing scheduling software saves a 100-person team half an hour per person per week, that’s 50 extra working hours. That’s more than a free week of labor. 

Scheduling software is powerful. Don’t underestimate how its small boosts to productivity add up to a big advantage. 

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