How an Editorial Calendar Can Save You (And Your Blogging Sanity!)

Happy New Year!

It’s 2011 and I know that as a blogger I am super pumped to start the year off right, putting into place things I learned last year as a blogger, and expand my creative horizons. It’s a blessing to have been blogging for over a year now and it’s only right that I start off this year sharing an important blogging tool that I’ve learned to use.  I can clearly remember how exciting and daunting starting a blog was!  I was all over the place, not having a clue how to go about things.  To add to the scary state of confusion, I was also starting to deal with brands and PR agencies, receiving news, doing interviews, and reviewing products.  I knew that keeping my posts consistent was important but it was overwhelming! It seemed as if I was scrambling to get posts done and found it very hard to keep track up everything that needed to make the blog. Once I got this one very simple thing into my life,  my world became a whole lot brighter!

An Editorial Calendar

If you are serious about blogging and are either starting out or wanting to take it to the next level, an editorial calendar is essential! It can be anything from an Outlook calendar on your computer to a notebook with dates written in (like mine!)  No matter how you set you up, it is important to have one and here’s why:

Manage Your Ideas:

Have you found yourself having so many ideas for blog posts it made your head hurt? I know I’ve been there!  By having a calendar in front you, you can jot down and schedule your ideas for blog posts.  You can schedule them out over a week or spread them out over a few months if those ideas aren’t time sensitive.  If you’re already thinking about blog posts for the summer,go ahead and write them down! When the summer finally rolls around, your blog post topics are already there and you don’t have to spend time thinking them up!

Manage Types of Content:

You may have a blog that covers more than one type of content.  You may be like me and cover both fashion and beauty.  You may be a daily outfit poster who also likes to write editorials.  In any event, when you take a look at the ideas and topics you jotted down for a particular week or month, you have a visual of  the types of content you will be covering for a patricular week.  Is this week all about fashion and you want some beauty content in there?  Need more outfit posts? Too many product reviews ?  Take time out and re-schedule your topics so you can achieve the content balance you want.  It’s a lot easier to do that when you have everything laid out in front of you!

Manage Holidays and Special Events

If I had to say to name the two busiest times of the year for me as a blogger it would be New York Fashion Week and the Christmas Season.  Though last year these eventscrept up on me, this year I can be better prepared to cover it and so can you!  By blocking off time on your calendar from now, you can be ready and prepare yourself ahead of time so when these two events roll around  you can cover them effectively on your blog.

Makes Pre-Posting a Breeze

If I couldn’t schedule my posts out in advance I would cry!  I’m into so many different projects that this is essential to my sanity!  However, if I don’t know what I’m going to write about in advance, it kind of defeats the purpose of being a time saver.  As we speak, I have my calendar right beside me and when I’m done writing this post, I will move on to the next three for this week.  I don’t have to sit and think about what I’m going to write about this week because it’s already there in my calendar.  I can easily sit here for the next hour or two and get all of my posts written and scheduled for the week.

I don’t know where I would be without my calendar!  Just taking the time once every other week to work on it makes my life so much easier and keeps my blog current and consistent. It gives me more time to spend networking, commenting on other blogs, and researching for upcoming posts. 

 

Your turn!  Do you use an editorial calendar?

 

Photo courtesy of:  meds.queensu.ca

48 thoughts on “How an Editorial Calendar Can Save You (And Your Blogging Sanity!)

  1. This post definitely help me put a few things in perspective! I created a blog where I talk about fashion, music & some lifestyle pieces. I feel at times my content can seem jumbled and unorganized. I wanted to figure out a way with how to keep the content level & an editorial calendar is definitely the IT! I started making one but I really need to make it a point to stick to it!

    THANKS LOVE!
    Check out my blog if you have the time!!
    THE-MODERNjunkie.com !

    • Awesome!! I’m so glad I was able to help! I felt the same way too at first, feeling so overwhelmed with ideas. Getting it all down in one place makes life so much easier! :)

  2. This is a good wake-up call for me to be more organized. I have all these ideas floating around in my head and sometimes they actually make it to my blog (!) I especially latched on the idea of balancing out my posts. Usually, I only see my the flow of my topics in hindsight. Better blogging ahead — thanks!

    • You are so welcome! The calendar does help with the balancing of content so you can ensure your readers get a good mix of the topics you cover a week. I’m glad you found it helpful!

  3. OOF! I neeeed to do this. Currently I write down post topics for the week in my Moleskine, but often I veer away from this. I should really plot out posts in a more consistent manner. Thanks for a great post!

    • Magazines have to use calendars! I can’t imagine how much content they have to manage on a daily basis!

      Let me know how the calendar on your IPhone works out for you and thanks so much for sharing! :)

  4. Excellent advice – I find I either have six ideas for posts or none at all, so keeping a record is essential. Scheduling your posts and spreading out topics is a great way to keep things running smoothly…

    • Thank you! I’m never have a “balanced out” set of ideas either. I have a million ideas or I don’t have any! Never in-between!

  5. I tried to use an editorial calendar a few months ago and was trying to make it so my content was always fresh but included the items I wanted to cover (e.g., outfit posts on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, editorial content like reviews on Wednesdays and Links a la Mode on Fridays) but I just couldn’t stick to it. I really want to get back to using it because it allows me to work on features longer in advance and not feel like I’m neglecting my husband every night as I blog.

    Thanks for the inspiration/push! :)

    Rachael at http://styleeveryday.com

    • You are so welcome! Yes, I have to manage to set aside time with my husband also and since using the calendar it’s easier do that as well as post everything in advance. Sometimes I don’t stick to the calendar 100%, especially if a story comes up that’s very timely. However, at least for those days you have absolutely no idea what to write about, you’ll have something there already!

  6. This totally makes since!! I’m a newbie to blogging and I find that I’m all over the place or I don’t have anything to write about!! I think a calendar is perfect to keep me on track. I’m thinking about breaking down what I write about by day. I have so many interests, therefore so many things I would like to write about. But I would like to keep them spread out and my blog more versatile. Thanks for this great post!!

    • It’s perfect to get all those ideas down because there will come a time where you can’t think of anything to write about. That’s when the calendar can come and save you!

  7. I dont currently use an editorial calendar but you’ve sold me. I have been struggling with organizing my ideas for blog posts and staying prepared for big events like fashion week. Now I feel like I have a handle on fixing that. Thanks for the informational blog post!

    • You are so welcome! For big events like Fashion Week it helps out tremendously, especially when the schedules come out ahead of time!

  8. i decided to start using a calendar this year. it’s only been a week and it’s already paid off tremendously. it makes life SO much easier.

  9. Thank you very much for this. Love the way you’ve broken it down so succinctly. BTW well done for being IFB’s top 20 blogs of the week. My blog made it too :)

    Camillea of Karma-Style

  10. When I interned for CollegeFashion.net, we were scheduled on an editorial calendar. I couldn’t imagine trying to have a blog without one! It helps me keep track of special posts that are specific to a certain event and to keep track of weekly series posts. Using a calendar helps ensure that I don’t post too often, too.

    I agree about loving to schedule my posts ahead of time! Working and going to school full time while trying to make sure posts get out in time is definitely challenging. This tool lets me write posts in advance and just let them publish themselves!!

  11. I’m having a “why didn’t I think of that” idea? No, I don’t use an editorial calendar, but I will be soon! And it’s a brilliant thought to schedule what you want to write about each weeek. Sometimes I have jillions of ideas, and sometimes none – this should really help with writer’s block.

    • I thought the same thing when a friend of mine first suggested it to me! LOL.

      It helps tremendously with writer’s block. You get to take advantage of the times you have a million ideas so when you’re having a day (or a week) where you can’t think of a thing, you don’t have to. The work has already been done!

  12. Great tips! I keep a whiteboard next to my desk and jot down post ideas whenever I get them. Then, when I have time, I have a whole list of ideas to write about!

  13. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU, FOR THIS POST! As a new blogger and a part time worker in the retail world, I had a hard time posting during the Christmas season. Your suggestions will help me to get more organized for 2011.

    • Girl you are sooo welcome!! I totally understand where you’re coming from! I work a full time job and write for other blogs besides this one, so staying organized is super important!

      If you need any help, always freel free to hit me up!

  14. Hi- This is so true. I actually have a complete business planning guide that I got from Internet Marketing Sweetie. Melissa (the owner) is wonderful! She teaches a lot of stuff on blogging and ways to make your business more successful.

    She offers a free planning sheets and much more at http://www.internetmarketingsweetie.com/blog/planning-sheets-2010 (includes a blog post planning sheet)

    They are for 2010 but you can update them for 2011 or make your own. It’s just a good thing to look at.

  15. i dont use an actual editorial calendar, but I will write and schedule posts ahead of time which is a life saver, especially the days when I had to go to my job that doesn’t have computer access.

    • Scheduling ahead of time is a definite life saver! There’s soo much that goes into blogging that it’s important to be efficient with our time

  16. So true! I made an editorial calendar for October last year and it was really, really helpful. I need to get back into using one again this year.

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