Planning and social media don’t always seem to go together. Since social media is seen an in the moment activity, planning can often be see as a hinderance to social media’s spontaneity. However, without planning your social media can lose it’s voice and momentum. How can planning help prevent this from happening?
One planning tool that can help is a social media content calendar. Essentially, this is an excel grid where you map out all of your Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest posts. This may seem time consuming, however the time you spend it on it will be well worth it. I can say that it has helped me in my role as a Social Media Director. Here’s a few reasons why:
It Keeps Social Media Going
A social media content calendar can help prevent our staff from forgetting Social Media. I know that may sound silly, however there have been times when we are in a meeting or worship service and realize, “Oh, we really should have put that out on Twitter”. The social media content calendar allows us to take a look at the week ahead and strategically think through what goes out from our social media channels. We then can plan for those events and what key social media moments might happen.
It Keeps Your Church on Message
If your church focuses on a few key themes every month, then you want your social media channels to reflect those themes. By planning ahead with a social media content calendar, you ensure that will happen. A calendar helps you look at the landscape and see what messaging is coming out of your social media channels and if it aligns with your overall strategy and themes.
It Keeps Your Media Team on the Same Page
You might have multiple people running your social media accounts. If so, you know it can be sometimes difficult to make sure that content is timely and on message. A social media content calendar ensures that every one knows what is flowing out of your social media channels and when it is coming. This is also helps if you have built a volunteer social media team who cannot meet regularly.
Prevents a “Slow News Day”
There are moments in church life where you might think there isn’t anything social media worthy going on at church. With a social media content calendar you make sure that something is always constantly flowing from your social media accounts. (Note: In this situation, a social media content calendar along with a tool like Hootsuite or Buffer is an very effective.)
So do you think you are ready to use a social media content calendar? If want to give it a try, jump over the resources section and look at some of free templates that I have found online for you to use.