Recently I mentioned my editorial calendar and I got a lot of questions about it. I decided it would be a great idea to share with you guys how to create and maintain an editorial calendar.
How To Create and Maintain An Editorial Calendar
Decide what form of calendar works for you: Some people like paper planners and calendars, while others work better digitally. I can tell you there is no right or wrong answer to this. The first step in creating an editorial calendar is to decide which way is better for you. I personally keep most everything digital these days. As much as I love my paper planner and use it most everything blog related is done digital. I use Google Docs for my editorial calendar. I have it set up this way:
Week of 9/12:
Monday- Post title (notes about post)
See, nothing crazy. Nothing high tech. It’s very basic, but it’s what works for me. I like having it this way because it’s VERY easy to move things around. Things WILL change. You will not have photos done and edited, or something crazy will happen you need to address, or your kiddos will get sick. Something will happen and a post will get moved. You have to roll with it and be able to move things around. I also specifically put a due date next to a post title if it’s sponsored and has a due date. The easiest way to do this is digitally. If you use a paper planner use pencil!!! Who wants to see a bunch of scratched out stuff in their pretty planner?
Write down ideas as soon as you get them: Ideas come to you at strange times. Sometimes you’re in the shower, driving, or working out. You get an idea. Aside from being in the shower, I add it into my calendar right then. That’s the best part of using Google Docs is that it’s on on my phone! This includes sponsored post dates. If I get a sponsored post and know the due date I add that to my calendar right then! This is also helpful if I need to ask them for a different date if I already have a sponsored post due that day. This happens a lot around holidays and summer which are really busy sponsored blog post times. This approach is also helpful to plan out your posts to make sure you have a good variety. If you write about a lot of topics you can visually see that you have one beauty post, one fashion post, one recipe, etc instead of scheduling 3 recipe posts one week and none the next week. If you write ideas down as soon as you get them you will be shocked at how fast that calendar fills up. In early June I had 4 months of ideas. Now I have ideas through January. Once you start the ideas just roll in, I promise!
Don’t be afraid to adjust as needed: Y’all like I said above things WILL change. Do not be afraid to adjust. That may be because a brand is late sending items and they want to move a post date. Or maybe you had a busy or hard week and just don’t have that much time some weeks to dedicate to your blog. Move things around and make it work for you!
Always keep a running list: I keep a list on my phone of ideas. That way if I can’t open Google Docs right then because sometimes the notes section is easier I can still write the idea down. I used to use a cute little notebook, but pen and notebook take up more room in my purse than my phone which is already there. Plus there are A TON of great note apps. I personally use the Simplified Planner app which is also where I make daily do to lists. Evernote is another great one.
Learning how to create and maintain an editorial calendar may seem daunting but it will save you so much time and headache in the future. If you currently do not have an editorial calendar I highly suggest making one!
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I hope you found this post helpful! If you enjoyed hearing my tips on how to create and maintain an editorial calendar, make sure to check out my other blog advice posts!
I agree–Evernote is great for making notes. Having a calendar of ideas is very helpful when you’re brain dead and trying to come up with something interesting to write about.
I love how simple you make it! Creating and maintaining an editorial calendar does NOT have to be as complicated as some people make it out to be. Thanks for sharing this!
Thanks for the tips! I have just stayed blogging this year so still gathering as much info and learning on the fly!
I love the idea of writing ideas down as soon as you get them! I think that is so key! I am trying so hard to get more organized!!
The simplicity is great! I have to have my calendar simple 🙂 Thank you so much!
Great ideas! I make notes, but would like to try Google Docs. I also find a simple calendar works best for me.
Agreed! Editorial Calendar plays an important role in my blogging life. It really helps on planning. Like the idea to write down new ideas .
I’m always going in and out from keeping a consistent editorial calendar. Lately it’s been out. But I will save what always keeps me on track the most is keeping that running list of blog ideas in my phone!
SO MUCH great info here and you’ve given me the confidence to finally put my own calendar together. Thank you for this!!
Google Calendars are my favorite thing ever! I love also syncing them with my phone!
I have just started planning out my blog posts using my planner!
I’ve had to play around with quite a few formats, but I think I have finally found a calendar that works for me. But I also keep a running list on my phone since ideas usually come to me when I am out and about and doing things.
Excellent advice! I can’t stress how important an editorial calendar is, and I would definitely be lost without mine 🙂 For the longest time I used a paper planner for mine, but I’ve started using Trello instead!
I really need to start doing this! I lose track sometimes of what I have planned for each week/month and this would totally help!
Yes to all of this! I use a paper planner currently but I have been thinking about moving over to Google Docs. All great tips!
I don’t have much of a editorial calendar but I do keep a list of possible posts in my purse. I definitely need to get more organized though!
I like these ideas. I think this is really important when you’re trying to be consistent about posting. My daughter and I keep one together.
Thanks for the helpful suggestions. I have trouble writing things down and then I forget. Your ideas will help to keep me organized and on track!
Love these pointers! Thank you for sharing 🙂 I followed and liked on Bloglovin’ too!
I don’t have an editorial post – I Just save a bunch of things in a drafted e-mail, hahaha. I guess we all have an organization system that works for us!
Great tips, Neely! My editorial calendar is my Google Calendar.
YES! Yes to all of this! I always have a note on my phone where I throw ideas and then when I build out my calendar, I open the note and just piece things together!
I used to use a complicated calendar but now I mainly use Evernote too. I love that I can add notes to it on my phone and then have everything I need whenever I’m back on my computer. Great tips!
Totally agree with this! Google Cal is my go-to!
I used to have a running list until I had to hard reset my phone 🙁 I need to put ideas in calendar form and stick with it though!
I learned the hard way to write ideas down as soon as they come because they will go away. I heard this thing from Sarah Kay I want to say it was, last week about how stories come to you and you grab them or they float on to the next creative. You always have to be prepared.
I love this! I find it hard to stick to my calendar sometimes for sure so this is helpful. I try and make a rough draft at the start of each month to follow! Great post girl!
When people write about their editorial calendars, I always feel like they must be doing something more professional than I am. But this makes me feel a little better. I do keep a running list on my phone, and I have learned that if I don’t write an idea down I’ll for sure forget it. I think my next step towards being a more professional planner would be to start deciding the day to publish the post and adding more details to the ideas.
You know, it’s funny, I prefer a paper planner for everything else in my life, but for some reason when it comes to blog stuff I like to keep it all on the computer. Of course, I have lots of notes all over my planner for those moments when ideas come to me quickly. 🙂
I would be lost with out my editorial calendar!! It is such a great feeling to know your month is all scheduled out a head of time.
I don’t have an editorial calendar. I never thought that I need it, will make one so soon!
Doesn’t everyone do this? I’m surprised, as part of running a blog is having a clear calendar on what we want to make sure we cover. I must say that it helps me stay on top of my schedule on/off line. We can mix things up and be flexible with what we do but, it helps a lot to have one as a foundation. 🙂
I *sort of* keep a calendar, but I haven’t quite gotten my technique down yet. Thanks for the great advice!
I’ve been trying to figure out a calendar. Someday I’ll figure it out. This is a great set of resources! Thank you!