A social media content calendar is a critical part of your social media strategy and execution.
One of the most complicated tasks when executing social media strategies is ensuring that your content is meeting your objectives. Tools exist to consolidate and pull data from multiple social media platforms for reporting purposes (Such as Sprout Social and Hootsuite) but when it comes to a content approval process and really taking control of your social media content strategy you need to create a social media content calendar.
A calendar will assist your community managers, copywriters, content writers, and anyone else contributing to your social media content the ability to schedule and draft posts for approval. It will also then provide your management teams or approvers with a quick place to periodically check in on what’s coming up and the ability to approve content before it’s actually posted.
I recommend creating a Spreadsheet in a cloud based solution such as Google Drive\Google Docs and then sharing it with all of your stakeholders and content contributors.
Your content creators (those responsible for writing and posting your social media content) and pre-schedule posts and then wait for their managers or stakeholders to go in and initial their approval before scheduling the content to actually be posted on platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIN.
Here is an example of a standard social media content calendar template that I often have used or built a calendar from:
A calendar like the above also can be utilized for summarizing your “types” of content that you post on a regular basis. For example, based on the data entered above, you could quickly create a bar graph to show all of the different types of content you are posting and what initiatives at your company they are supporting.
If you want to automate the process even more, tools like Hootsuite enable you to import content from spreadsheets and you could tweak your content calendar to include the right columns (fields) so that you could simply export it from google and import it to hootsuite which would automatically schedule all of your posts for you. This isn’t necessary, but its a great feature you can utilize if the workload becomes too much.