For a small business, a content calendar can be a vital planning tool. Particularly if budget is tight and focus on marketing is – in the politest possible way – ad hoc!
Strange really when you’re probably used to planning every other part of your life outside of work with a military precision – from play dates for the kids to catch up with old friends and even overdue date nights with your partner.
The fact that you’re even in business today means you’re a good planner. You’ve focussed on forecasting your stock, training your employees and co-ordinated logistics and operations with suppliers and your wholesalers to name but a few business challenges you’re delivering on each day – but with options a plenty in marketing – there is a fear over lack of skills or in deed control over the costs so invariably marketing falls down the to do list and is done on a piecemeal and often reactive approach.
Putting yourself in control of the process and with a little forward planning and organisation you really can achieve quite a lot with a relatively small investment. All hail the Content Calendar…..which put simply is a timetable that gives you routine and structure to your marketing (even if light) and more importantly helps to focus your outputs on converting that prospect and getting sales.
So where to start? Look for example at the seasonal events, product deliveries, important milestones for your business and take it week by week or on a monthly basis thinking about the budget you can assign to each time period. In this way you can start to harness control of what happens and when and most importantly it’s aligned to your overall business objectives. Once you have done this you can then decide what marketing is the right approach for what’s in your calendar and more importantly what’s the right sort of marketing for your audience at that time.
What hopefully this illustrates is that even though you’re primary goal is to sell your products, you are engaging with a particular audience, with a particular message in the way that resonates best with them. You’re building it around local, national events that enable you to showcase your product in a non overt salesy way and helps position your brand as a thought leader as well as one that sells great products.
Of course you may need to change and adapt this if unexpected things arise, and that’s ok, but by having an organised and focused approach, broken down each week, marketing will become part of your business day – and rather than a never ending to do list that you never get round to – you will actually achieve week on week and best of all, when you are super busy, the marketing will take care of itself.