Having a content plan is a crucial part of developing your content that can engage and convert. As we’ve talked about before, creating content and promoting it is hard enough. It's not that hard to get overwhelmed when you add the element of not knowing when or how to publish your content. For that reason, we’re going to help you understand why it’s so essential to think weeks ahead about your content plan, how to create such one, and look at different content planning tools that have been proven to be super handy for several creators.
Also, you want your content to be as effective as possible, right? This piece will focus on doing exactly that, why you need a content plan, and how to create one. Finally, we are going to show you real-life examples of content planning tools and a couple of alternatives.
Ready? Let’s get into it.
What is a content plan?
A content plan defines all the content assets you’ve created or will create in the future that will be published. This includes:
- all social media channels that your (personal) brand uses
- the tools that help you create, publish, and manage your content.
Before we go any further, don’t mistake your content plan with a content strategy. The latter outlines your company’s content marketing goals and how you will achieve them. On the other hand, content planning is guided by a high-level view of your content creation effort.
Why is a content plan essential?
As discussed before, creating engaging content is the first step of successful marketing. Though, it’s also crucial to plan your content to make it easier for you, or your team, to collaborate with, generate new ideas, and share content.
A good content plan will:
- help you create content that drives traffic, leads, and sales.
- help you and your team think ahead about your essential strategies, such as preparing a budget or requesting resources.
It’s so good to know what you have to develop and share your content in advance to avoid unnecessary costs or delays easily.
How do I create a content plan?
To create a content plan that will show results, you’ll need to ask and answer the following five questions:
- Who is your content intended for?
It doesn’t matter the channel; your content always has to be in line with your audience to be successful. Thus, the most crucial first step is to understand your audience.
For that to work, you should gather as much data on your customers as possible. You can either conduct market research or use data from Google Analytics. If you don’t have a website, you can always check the analytics of the social media platforms that you’re using.
- Where will you publish your content?
Now that you know your audience, you must understand where they spend most of their time. You can check that by seeing the channel where you gain the most engagements.
- What problem does your content solve?
Great content not only reaches your audience but also inspires them to take action and shows them how to benefit from your (personal) brand.
You can ask yourself if your product or services helps answer questions of potential customers. Or how it motivates them to take a step in the better direction.
The most simple tool to see what people ask is Google search itself.
- How will you deliver your message?
It’s crucial to consider what’s actually suitable for your audience and the message you want to send. The format of your content should take in mind your audience, message, and platform.
- How will you create the content?
Finally, it’s up to you to show your creative side! Should you create creative photos, innovative reels, or any content, you can use tools like Canva, or Placeit, for example. This would be very helpful to you if you don’t have any Photoshop or any other creative software knowledge.
Content planning tools
Good job on creating your content plan! If you also succeeded in creating your content week(s) in advance, you can make your life easier by using content planning tools. There are quite a lot out there, from planners to schedulers; you just need to see which one suits you best. Firstly, I will show the two tools we use at Fangage to plan and schedule our content, and then I will talk about others with really positive feedback online.
Asana is a great tool that we’re using for several reasons.
The tool has several features. In general, it organizes work, so teams know what they need to do, why it matters, and how to get it done.
In our case, we, at Fangage, also use it as a content planning tool. As you can see on our example of social media content calendar, you have the content idea, the person responsible for the task (in most cases, our content manager Jim), the due date, and channels that the content has to be posted.
Other very well proved alternatives to Asana are Trello, ClickUp, and many others. It’s best to do your own research, look at what features match your goals & desires, and decide for yourself.
Another tool that can be quite useful is Iconosquare.
Not only that you can view the analytics of most of your social media accounts, but you can also use the Scheduler tool to plan and schedule your content in advance. What’s pretty cool about it is that you can see what is celebrated each day, which will help you bring that organic traffic and engagement to your account.
Other tools that our partners use, or have mostly positive feedback on their reviews, for scheduling content are CoSchedule, Airtable, and others.
Having excellent content planning will benefit your (personal) brand massively. Knowing your audience, the message you want to send, and the problem your content will solve will help you plan your content. Of course, you should always keep an eye on what’s currently trending in your niche and the world in general. Thus, you can leverage the organic traffic and interest in your position.
Doing this will help you maximize the biggest audience you can attract to your social media accounts. Then, it’s a great idea to convert them as fans on your Fangage platform. Thousands of creators are already taking advantage of our features. Why not give it a try yourself?