How Far in Advance Should You Plan Out Your Content Marketing Strategy?
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It’s no surprise that you planning your content ahead of time can make an actionable timeline for your team to work with. It helps them unlock the ability to continue working on their next piece of content after they finish the one they are working on. This kind of process preparation unlocks your team’s ability to be autonomous. That’s great for your productivity.
The real issue comes down to how far out you need to plan your content marketing strategy. Should it be for one month? Three months? Maybe even a year? Really it comes down to many factors when deciding how far out you need to plan.
Let’s take a look at the factors around planning your content strategy and figure out how far you should plan ahead.
Number of Employees
One of the biggest factors in deciding how far out you should plan comes down to how many people you have on your team. The more people you have for a single task, the more you can produce. Depending on your timeline for posting, that means you have more people to take care of more content should you choose to plan out further in advance.
If it’s just you and a few employees making your content marketing blog post ideas, you might want to plan month to month. It will help you as you continue to grow. When you have more hands-on-deck, you can up the amounts you’re making. When you have a larger force behind you, you can plan out longer periods like a business quarter.
Media Channels You Need to Prepare For
Another major factor to think about when figuring out how far in advance you should plan your content schedule is the media channels you plan to use. It takes longer to make a structured piece of video content than it does to produce a blog. You need to think about the steps necessary to complete the task at hand, and make sure you plan enough time for your teams to complete the content without rushing.
If you are making video content, you need to plan for the entire process. Think about how long it takes to get the footage, edit the footage, and post it to YouTube.
How Often You Plan to Post
Your post frequency will also affect how far in advance you can plan out your content. The more you post in month, the harder it will be to plan in advance. If you don’t post as often, planning a content schedule a few months in advance will be easier.
Although the amount you want to post can affect how you far in advance you should plan in advance, it’s not always like that. Some companies will plan to post multiple times a day, and still feel the need to plan their content marketing schedule really far in advance.
How Quickly Your Industry Changes
The industry your company is in can change the amount of content you want to plan ahead. If you are in a newer industry, you might not be able to plan as far into the future. The reason being, the constant changes in the industry means your team will have to make content the revolves around the changes and important points in your industry. Take digital marketing as an example. There is a lot of content you can plan ahead and use, but with the constant changes in Google’s search algorithms, your content ideas might have to change with the search changes.
If you are in a more established industry, you might be able to get away with planning further into the future. This is because the changes in your industry aren’t happening as often, so you can plan out tons of content without shooting yourself in the foot if a major change does arise. Since the content you were planning to release at that time can simply be shuffled around, you have more opportunity to adapt to the changes to join in on the new information making waves in your industry.
How Far You Plan Your Content Depends on Comfort Level
It’s no surprise that planning your content in advance can give you a leg up on your competition. By preparing your employees for the months of content they need to produce, you can help your team get ahead of the curve. This is a great idea because it lets them keep working on their projects without having to wonder what happens next. How far out you plan really comes down to your comfort level with the planning process and the needs of your company.
If you haven’t done any content marketing planning up to this point, try starting with one month to help your team adapt to the new structure. By going month-by-month, you can help your employees understand how to get used to the content timeline. Once they are used to the timeline, you will find that it doesn’t take the entire month to get your content marketing plan ready. This is when you can start to expand your planning process and push further into the year with your planning.
Having a marketing plan on hand will help your team get ahead of the curve.
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