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You’ve got a blog on your website—either because someone told you it was a good idea, or you wanted one, because you have so much to tell your customers, and you know that blogging is a great way to increase visitor engagement, and attract more leads—but it is, as of yet, pretty empty. Maybe you wrote a welcome post, promising all sorts of hot topics, but since then, you haven’t had the time or—let me guess—the inspiration.
“I’ll write a blog post when I come up with a great idea,” you think. “I’m just waiting for inspiration to strike.” Oh, you beautiful dreamer. Waiting for inspiration to strike is a sure-fire plan for never getting started! But fear not; I’m here to release you from this trap.
The most prolific and successful novelists, poets, and other writers will tell you that they sit down and write every day. Whether or not they have an idea, whether or not inspiration has struck, they stick to their writing schedule—and that’s how their books, essays, and articles get written. They don’t wait for the muse to appear; they get to work.
Now I’m not about to tell you that you need to get up at 5:00 and free write for an hour every day. You’ve got a business to run; kitchens to remodel, pipes to unclog, air conditioners to install, dogs to walk. But if you want to keep your blog brimming with regular posts (which is a proven way to engage your audience, make your site an authority, and draw more visitors to you), you’ve got to have a plan. And the best plan we’ve found to ensure consistent blogging is to make an editorial calendar.
How to Create an Editorial Calendar for Business Blogging
I promise you, you’ll be surprised at how easily the ideas come once you sit down and commit to creating an editorial calendar. You can ask your team members for ideas too. Here’s how you do it.
- Decide on a schedule for your posts. Let’s say three blog posts a month. That’s a good number to commit to for your remodeling firm/ HVAC repair/dog walking website.
- Start with topics you are very knowledgeable about. Maybe you’re an expert on split-duct A/C systems. Or you like educating your customers about the benefits of fiberglass doors. Write these ideas down.
- Then think about the kind of questions your customers ask. “Will I really have to eat at Wendy’s every night while you remodel my kitchen?” “Why can’t you give me a discount on those custom exotic burl cabinets?” “Does this gurgling noise mean I should replace my toilet?” You can use some of these queries as starting points for blog posts.
Don’t be intimidated! Once you write them all down, and then plug them into a calendar, you have a plan. That’s right. YOUR PLAN IS DONE! Now, you can A) scribble said plan onto a yellow legal pad, tear the page off, and tape it up next to your Dell; B) type your plan into a Word doc and look at it whenever you like; C) write your plan down on your Field & Stream wall calendar; or D) load it all into Google calendar.
Blog Calendar Example
Here’s an example of an editorial calendar for a remodeler/HVAC or other home service business.
Remember, in this example, you’ve committed to writing three blog posts a month. You can change this depending on your needs—but you should commit to a number, or else you’ll find yourself slacking.
You should also specify when you’re going to publish each post. This builds deadlines into your schedule to make sure you’re publishing on a consistent basis. This consistency is good for your blog and for you—you’ll know when you need to make time to write your posts, and soon they’ll become a regular part of your own schedule. Let’s say, for the purposes of this example, that you’re going to publish a new blog post on the first, second, and third Wednesday of every month.
- How to Check Your Home for Snow/Ice Damage
- Dealing with Winter Leaks
- Winter-proofing Your Roof and Gutters
- Home Storage Solutions
- Insulated Siding
- Innovative Drainage Ideas
- Spring Painting: Colors and Ideas
- Bathroom Product Roundup
- Planning a Backyard Vegetable Garden
- Screened Porch/Sunroom Ideas
- Spring Cleaning
- The Kitchen Triangle: Why it Works
- Deck Ideas
- Outdoor Fireplace/Fire Pit Maintenance
- Prep Your HVAC for Summer
- Set Up a Pantry Space to Make Outdoor Dining Easy
- Windows that Keep the Heat Out
- Perfect Porches
- Installing French Doors or Sliding Doors
- Storage for Pool Equipment & Other Outdoor Tools
- Making Room for Guests
- Organize Your Mudroom/Entryway for the New School Year
- Kitchen Remodeling Trends
- Easy Ways to Increase Curb Appeal
- Trick Out Your Garage
- Prep Your HVAC for Fall
- Gutter Maintenance
- Finished Basement Ideas
- Weatherproofing Your Home
- An Explanation of Common Remodeling Costs
- Bring the Family Together With a Great Room
- Energy-Efficient Windows
- How to Use Cultured/Engineered Stone
- Best New Entry Doors
- Thinking About an Addition?
- Trends in Cabinetry
There you go! You just made that. Well, in this case, I did, but…you can copy it and use it as a framework for your own.
Benefits of a Blog Editorial Calendar
There are MANY benefits to having an editorial calendar.
- You’ll feel confident that you have content for your blog for AN ENTIRE YEAR—or a three- or six-month period; you can choose the time span that works for you. No more worrying or waiting for an idea to come to you.
- Having this list keeps the topics in your mind at all times. You’ll come up with examples and notes for them without even trying. It’s psychological! And once you make this calendar, I guarantee you’ll come up with more topics.
- It’s a schedule, but it’s flexible. If you come up with better ideas, you can always switch them out.
- Even if some (or all!) of your ideas aren’t fully formed, write them down. As I mentioned above, once you’ve got even the tiniest kernel of an idea down on paper, it’s very likely to grow into a fully-developed idea.
Stick to Your Calendar and Succeed!
Are you fired up? Ready to blog regularly about siding and windows and geothermal energy? If you answered “yes,” then my work here is done. If you answered “no,” well, give me a ring and I’ll write your blog posts for you. Hurry up, though, before I use all those great ideas above for my current clients…
About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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