5 tips for creating a blog calendar

Writing a blog becomes a lot easier when you have a framework to follow. (Hey, it sure beats scratching your head each week trying to figure out what to publish.)

What I found for most clients is that, at a minimum, it’s best to set a quarter as a goal for your plan. Even better is to look at a whole year and create a roadmap of topics that are seasonal, newsworthy and topical.

While many of the tips I’m giving here relate to the blog calendar I created for Organic Beauty Now, online retailer of organic beauty products, you can use them no matter which industry you’re in.

Here’s what I recommend:

1. Tackle seasonal topics. In the beauty industry, there are obvious seasonality topics, such as solutions to the dry skin of winter, sunscreen for spring and summer (although sunscreen is actually a year-round topic), fashion trends for each season as well as the trends for the coming year, holidays, weddings, etc. But you can find seasonal topics for any industry.

For example, on the other end of the spectrum, B2B technology has new product releases and upgrades, yearly tradeshows and industry events, and budgetary cycles. You can also follow the seasonality of industries that use B2B technology products and services, such as education, travel, and retail, which is pretty much every industry.

2. Cover industry-specific topics. In the organics industries, there’s still much education to be done for consumers seeking to avoid harmful chemicals and new information is coming out all the time. The key, for any industry, is to be tied into several good sources of news and information so that you can educate yourself and share them. I find it to be helpful to use a reader service such as Google reader to keep abreast of news throughout any sector.

3. Look abroad. By seeking sources of news outside the US, you get an interesting angle on any sector or topics you follow. In the organic beauty industry, for example, there’s a widely divergent set of standards in Europe and Australia than here at home. Often, I’d find news that impacted the kinds of products being imported into the US (as many organic beauty products come out of other regions) as well as regulation of the term “organics,” types of ingredients used, sustainability, etc. It pays to look beyond US borders.

4. Follow the personalities. In the world of beauty, there are flocks of celebrities hawking products and brands and the organic sector is no exception. By following the personalities in any industry, you can keep on top of the trends and topics many people will be interested in.

5. Be ready for late-breaking news. There are news flashes in every industry. In organic beauty, for example, when a new report came out that a sunscreen ingredient actually caused skin cancer, it was all over the news—and in our blog.

All this said, being a professional copywriter has a lot of advantages in both planning and executing a blog because, of course, you already know how to craft a topic as well as how to write. It is a skill that, like all others, gets refined the more you do it.

So if you need ideas to plan your blog calendar, what to publish in your blog, or just want a copywriter to take over the task of writing so you can focus on your other responsibilities (which are legion, no doubt), email me. I’m always happy to help.