Ep 215 | Create Your Social Media Publishing Schedule
Do you get frustrated trying to figure out what to post each day? Putting together a quick and easy template can help you get more consistent and connect with your audience. Grab the quick and easy template to come up with what to post on social media whether you're on one platform or all the platforms!
What you'll learn:
→ creating your core categories.
→ easy ways to schedule your posts.
→ how AI can help create copy for your posts.
→ why team communication is important for creating posts.
→ what to do during promotional periods.
Want to skip ahead? Here are key takeaways:
[3:55] Create 3-5 categories that you can post about regularly. These will be value added podcast like a Tip Tuesday or highlighting a sponsor or volunteer. It could also be impact stories. Then as you plan out your week or month you can batch create posts based around those categories.
[7:41] Map out your posting schedule. Create a doc that has your posting schedule for the core types of posts lined out by platform. That way you aren't necessarily posting the same content at the same time on multiple platforms.
[9:50] Use social holidays to fill in some gaps. There are so many fun holidays you can play with. The ones that are relevant to your mission are great to include on social media. They are also fun ways to create connections with your followers.
[14:17] Talk regularly with the team to understand what else needs some additional attention. It could be registration for an event or program you run. Maybe you need extra volunteers or emergency in-kind contributions. Social media can be a great place to add in those extra posts to get more community engagement.
[16:20] During promotional periods you'll post more frequently about your promotion. Still make sure you're changing up your posts to they aren't just asks but are connecting with your audience in a way that gets them to ask for more information or to learn the impact.
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[Sami Bedell-Mulhern] Hello, hello. So excited to kick off our month on social media. We're talking social media all month long. And I know it's a topic that y'all love to hear about. But it's also a topic that sometimes is overwhelming. How what platform how often should we be posting what should we be posting all of the things. And so in today's episode, I'm going to be walking you through how to create your schedule. So whether you're on one platform, or five platforms, you know what you're posting. And it can make it easier for you to batch that content that you need to create in order to publish and get things out consistency consistently. because consistency is the name of the game. That was a mouthful. It is critical on social media platforms that you show up regularly. And remember that we want to show up with value add, it's not about always asking people for the sale or the donation, we want to make sure we're showing up providing value sharing impact, engaging and building community, being social on social, that's really what we want to try to do. So that we can build deeper connections, take those connections offline, take them to email, whatever it might be, so that we can further engage with the audience that we're talking to get them to convert. Remember, a conversion on social media might look very different. It might be that our goal is to get more conversations, not necessarily to get more donations, we're building relationships. We're building partnerships, we're looking for opportunities for collaboration. And we're highlighting the people that are lifting our organization up, we're lifting them up alongside us. So that's what we're going to talk about today, I'm going to give you the strategy that I use to kind of map out my social media so that it's easy for me to kind of figure out what I'm going to post on the days that I want to post and use multiple different types of content to create it. Like static posts, or videos, all of the things. So if you're listening to this while you're in the car, if you're listening to this on a walk totally fine. But you might want to come back when you can listen to it at your desk with a pen and paper so that you can actually work through this in real time. But regardless, we're going to help you build out your social media plan so you know what types of content you need to be creating. Okay.
But before we get into it if you want one on one support, this episode is brought to you by our digital marketing therapy sessions. These 30 minute sessions are one on one with me. And we can sit down and talk through some of the things we're going to go through in this episode. You can bring the plan that you've created, we can flush it out, we can add certain things we can brainstorm, we can do whatever you need in this 30 minute one on one session. So head on over to https://thefirstclick.net/officehours. So you can book your time with me one on one, so we can really finalize your social media strategy. Or if you have other things you want to talk about from content to website, email marketing, I got your back, I'm here for you. But for now, let's get into the episode.
[Intro] You're listening to the digital marketing therapy podcast. I'm your host, Sami Bedell-Mulhern. Each month we dive deep into a digital marketing or fundraising strategy that you can implement in your organization. Each week, you'll hear from guest experts, nonprofits, and myself on best practices, tips and resources to help you raise more money online and reach your organizational goals.
[Sami Bedell-Mulhern] Okay, so let's jump into how to create your social media publishing calendar. This is something that I love, it has saved me so much. Because there's nothing worse than sitting down at the computer and being like I need to post to social media, I have no idea what to talk about. And we're going to start off assuming that you're in a just an awareness stage, we're in between events, we don't have any more any major promotions going on right now we want to just build that core calendar first. So it doesn't matter what platforms you're on, we're just going to start by creating the core categories that we want to talk about. So usually three to five categories that are important to your organization. And these are all value add. So it could be a tip Tuesday, I do a website Wednesday, maybe it is a highlight of a sponsor or volunteer that you want to do regularly things that you want to shout out all the time. Maybe it's like a pet adoption graphic that you want to share it, whatever it might be. So what are the things that you know you want to talk about on a regular basis, and just put those categories down? We do like a product feature. We do a, like I said a website Wednesday, which is a tip or Tip Tuesday, just depending on the platform. We usually like to include some personal posts in our stuff so that people are getting to know us and the team. So just really think about who you are, what your goals are for your organization. And then what kind of big bucket category Do you want to be sharing impact stories? Donor highlights staff highlights a day in the life of somebody on your team. Super fun stuff. And you can break it down into a bunch of different a bunch of different things. So you want to have at least three to five, especially, you know, depending on how often you're posting, if you're posting seven days a week, then maybe you need to have a little bit more, but let's have three to five categories. And you're gonna just write those down, make that list, have that list somewhere. Okay? Then once you have those categories, you kind of know what content you need to create. So now, when you sit down to plan out your social media, it's not just okay, I have no idea what to post, it's okay, I need to create three adoption stories this month. So I'm going to go out and grab three graphics, and I'm going to grab, right three pieces of content. And you can just put all that together, you know exactly what you need to create. And so when you batch it, it makes it so much easier. You're not sitting at your desk thinking, Okay, what is it that I'm supposed to be creating. So you have your buckets. That's great. That's your big picture strategy. So when it comes to actually creating your calendar for social media, there's a couple of different ways that you can do this. When I'm just getting started, I like to think about in two week chunks, because you're testing you're seeing what's kind of working, you're figuring it out. And you know, things are just kind of nimble, we got to kind of figure things out as we go. So to do a whole month feels overwhelming as you get really good at it, you might say, Okay, well, we're gonna just go ahead and do a whole month's worth of planning, have it all done ready to go, then you can either publish it live or use a scheduling tool, whatever you like. Speaking of scheduling tools, I'm most active on Facebook, and in our I'm sorry, on LinkedIn, and Facebook. But I also post to Instagram, I use Meadows business platform. For my scheduling for Facebook and Instagram, I scheduled directly into the LinkedIn app, you can use whatever platform you want. But just know that there are free native options within those platforms that you're using. So sometimes different forms of content, like you can't schedule reels on Instagram, for example, but just play with it and see what works for you. So now we're going to build out our actual calendar for the two weeks. And there's a couple things that I like to do. And again, we'll talk about the promotional side of things here in a second. What I like to do is really figure out my template for posting, I have a Google sheet that I've created. And it lists on the left side, Monday through Sunday. And across the top, it has a platform, so I can look at. I know on Tuesday on Facebook, this is the core category that I'm posting. And it doesn't mean that it's hard and fast set in stone, there's always things that are going to kind of change that up. But I like to kind of place things where I want them to go. So for example, on Monday, I might have a behind the scenes photo that goes on Facebook. But that same post is going to go on Thursday on Instagram, I rarely post the exact same content on all the platforms at the same time or on the same day, because I wanted to kind of space them out to increase the chance that people are seeing my content at different times on different platforms when they're most active on that platform. And usually, if you're on Facebook, you're checking your Instagram or you're checking your LinkedIn all at the same time, right. So I like to kind of spread it out. So it's not happening at the same time. And since I'm a visual person that Google Sheet helps and I'll try to remember to link that up here in the show notes. So you can take a look at what that what that is because I also have multiple brands that I'm posting for. So I have my first click brand. I have the nonprofit bootcamp, I also have easy style with Sammy, which is my fun lifetime or lifetime lifestyle blog and podcast and I have personal LinkedIn and personal Facebook so I can share that spreadsheet so you can see kind of what it looks like. But then I know very quickly These are the days that I'm posting this particular type of content makes it super easy for me to just kind of dive in and create it. Then when it comes to actually crafting my two weeks of posts. I try to do that in click up or I'll do it directly into the scheduler if I want to if I'm feeling up for and what that looks like is sitting down and first starting with a couple of things so I will look at I love like the days the week calendars. I think they're fun. There's always new holidays that are happening like blueberry pie day And don't cash you day, whatever, every day seems to have like 10 or 20, different holidays, month seem to be themed as well. But these are a fun way to be social and have some more fun on social media and help fill in your content calendar. So what I do when I'm actually crafting content is first go to a social calendar.
And I'll link some of those up in the show notes as well. And I like to just kind of see what's coming up in the next couple of weeks that's relevant to me, my brand, my personality, what we do, right. So for example, if you're a pet adoption agency, you're probably not going to get real heavy during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, right? Well, it's a great cause. And there's a lot of visibility around that. It's not necessarily in alignment with the work that you do. So you want to make sure that things are in alignment, or that there is a connection to your organization in some way, shape, or form. So if it's national popsicle day, and you run an after school program, what a great way to share great images of your kiddos at your facility, having popsicles, maybe even shouting out a sponsor that provided those for you. You know, it's fantastic. And it doesn't even have to be a just in time photo, it could be you know, a photo you took last year or a photo you took last week, when you had all the popsicles there. It doesn't have to necessarily be something that happens on that day, but that you have a reason to shout it out and have a conversation and engage in the conversation around that national taco day and guacamole day, those happen to be a couple of my favorites. And I try to be proactive, so I can make sure that I'm putting that content out there. So I start by saying, Okay, what are some fun days that I can pop into my calendar, you might only want to do one or two. Don't overdo it here. But I put those in. So I know that those posts are happening on those days, I can create content around it, then I fill it in with the categories that we created the three to five categories, I can kind of disperse them out. And then you can start to really visually see where you have holes where you're missing things where you might need to have some additional things created. So I love to do it either in a calendar view in clickup, where I can see the different platforms and where everything is being posted. You could do it in a Google Doc, you could do it in Google Calendar, whatever makes sense for you totally makes is gonna make your life easier to be able to visually see where things are happening. Then if your full your full great, like no worries, you're done. And you can just start writing captions and getting the graphics that you need for that. Now, when it comes to writing copy for your social posts, I have been doing a combination of sometimes it's super easy flows off the cuff, I can just write my own content. Sometimes I need a little inspiration. And I have been loving Chet GPT for helping me write social media posts. Again, make sure that you're editing, adding your own personality to it putting in the specifics for your organization. But it could a prompt could look something like write me a social media post with emojis in a conversational caught like a quirky way that will encourage people to adopt kittens that are good with kids. So very specific, it will pop something out. And then you can use that as your inspiration. Right. So that's a great way to kind of get things started. And then you can massage it from there. But sometimes the posts will come easy. And sometimes you'll need a little bit of help. And that's a okay, no worries there. So then you have your posts already, you can get them approved, you can have somebody else, take a look at them, make sure the grammar and everything is good, you know how to have them all scheduled across all the platforms that you have, you're good and you're ready to go. So that's like really down and dirty, how I kind of schedule and organize my social Gen social media posts. Now the other thing like I always like to make sure that I'm doing is, especially if you're in a bigger team or a larger organization is either at your weekly team meeting or having it in your weekly calendar reaching out to people to say, Okay, what do we need a little extra push on? So let's say you have a bunch more kittens that came in versus what you normally have available for adoption. Or let's say enrollment for your summer camp is a little bit less than what you're looking for, or normally at at this time. And so you really need to do an extra push there, or ticket sales for an event or a silent auction, whatever it might be checking in with those members on your team to say okay, where else do we need to be highlighting right now or talking more about the socials a great place to add that extra plug and they're great posts to just add into your calendar. So asking your executive director or your development director or your Programs Director, whomever are kind of those key elements and just say, you know, is there something else that you're needing to push right now that we can get out there? Are there new friend razors that are happening that may have popped up that you're not aware of all of these things can be awesome. So you can add those in your calendar. And here's the beautiful thing, because you've already populated a couple of weeks of content that is general content value add engaging with your audience. If you need to fill that slot with something else, don't just post twice in that day, for example, you can just move that post. So the next week or the next week, because you know that the standard posts that you've created are not time sensitive. So now you've just freed up that spot and freed up. Now you don't have to create that content in one of the following weeks. So that's a great kind of way to think about those those content pieces when they come in, still plan out your two weeks, then have the conversation with your team, if there's anything specific that needs to highlight, and you can always drag and drop and move things around. Which is why I love my clickup calendar. So at some point, once I get it refined, I will have to share that with you if any of you click on Users and how we kind of create that content to have it available to see. Okay, so now let's talk about what happens when we're in a promotional period. Because we know that people need to see messages about 17 ish times before they make a buying decision. So we do need to talk about anything that we're promoting in events, often. And we don't want to confuse people with too many things. So it might be that there's a week or two where you're talking all about your golf tournament, or you're talking all about your Gala. And so thinking about how that plays into your social media, again, you don't need you just put a pause on your standard calendar, right doesn't mean that you need to double up and start posting twice, put a pause on that social calendar to focus on the promotional side of things, and you know what it's going to be okay. Because you spent so much time in the nurture phase and the brand awareness phase in the providing value phase, you haven't been asking you haven't been pitching people to give, you've just been highlighting and building community. Now when you go into this promotional phase, it's going to be okay, and people are going to be excited to kind of see a way that they can engage with you further. So at that time, you're going to want to change up your post to be specific to what it is that you're promoting, while still making sure you're providing value. So what might that look like, it might look like a post about your event, but sharing the impact story of how those funds are being raised. You know, so the top part of the post is talking about the kids that you serve the environmental cause that you're working towards, like what is going to what are the funds going to support, and then asking for people to buy the ticket or to share or whatnot. You know, it's not necessarily that people are going to sign up because of the social posts, but they might engage and get excited and interact with you. Because they're hearing all of the amazing ways that by them participating in this event is going to support your organization. Okay.
And then there's lots of ways that you can also still connect by shouting out your sponsors, but sharing why it's important for them to give so asking your sponsors for more information about their relationship with you and why it's so important. And including that making the sponsor the hero. So you're sharing about your event without having to be, you know, asking all the time. So even when you're in a promotional period, still think about ways that you can make it about the the reader about the person who's engaging with you on social and not just about, donate by give silent auction, right, we want to make sure we're building all of that into the package and so that we're building the community. So this should make it super easy for you to create your social media calendar. Remember to start with those core categories. build out any social holidays that might make sense. create those posts, batch those posts, get them scheduled and get consistent on social media. Now, these are all static posts that I'm talking about. When it comes to creating stories or any of the videos that you need. Remember, you can batch those as well and have them ready to go. Make sure that you are aligning your stories and your reels with the kind of core themes that you're putting into place for the rest of your platform. Have fun with it. We have an episode coming up in a few weeks that will really share a little bit more about Tiktok and Instagram and videos specifically, but I think you understand the concept. Get out there, get consistent and get scheduling. If you found this helpful, make sure that you are subscribing wherever you listen to this episode. I will make sure to link got additional resources and other episodes where we've talked about some of these elements in the show notes at https://thefirstclick.net/215 . But I really appreciate you listening and taking your, you know, social media to the next level. Let's get consistent. Let's get after it. And let's not stress about what it is that we should be posting right now because we already know that we've got it in the bag. So I hope this quick episode was helpful for you. Thank you so much for listening, and I will see you in the next one.