I started blogging 6 months ago… man how time flies! For the first 3 months of blogging I would literally plan the post 5 minutes before I began writing it and then post it as soon as I was done. Three months ago I realized that this was no longer working for me. Although I have always posted consistently, I have not always had post ideas ready……
I Needed To Make Changes
I knew I needed to make changes. I love blogging however when things were not planned in advance, I felt stressed, overwhelmed and wasn’t enjoying the process which I really do love! I needed to become more organized! I have big dreams for this blog. I realized that if I wanted to reach these goals, I needed to get organized and have a solid social media plan.
I searched Google, Pinterest, and Facebook groups to find a tool/ method that would best suit my needs. I found many social media management programs, but I didn’t want to get into using to many different programs/platforms as I felt this would only complicate things. Then it happened… I finally found a platform that would allow me to easily schedule my post using an editorial calendar and then would share those same posts to my social media accounts for months on end. I could set the messages up, walk away, and know that every so often (depending on how I set it) this post would continue to be shared on social media!
I Love CoSchedule
This wonderful creation is called CoSchedule! It is an editorial calendar and social media scheduling tool all in one! I decided to sign up for the free 14 day trial period to see if I liked it. It turns out that I LOVE it! I subscribed before those 14 days were up. The time I saved and the increased frequency of my social media posts (because I could schedule everything all at once) made subscribing to CoSchedule a no-brainer!
What is CoSchedule?
CoSchedule is a magical saver of sanity an editorial calendar and social media management tool all it one!
CoSchedule provides you with a wonderful editorial calendar that allows you to plan your posts in advance. Before CoSchedule I would plan a post 1, maybe 2 nights prior to the post going live. I was so stressed about trying to pick a topic and I felt the time constraint which I feel affected my creativity. This was getting old VERY fast and it was taking the fun out of blogging. I am very proud to FINALLY say that since Mid-September, my editorial calendar has been scheduled until the end of November. I know some bloggers plan for a year in advance but as a new blogger, this is pretty exciting for me and it is definitely the most organized I have ever been!
Now let me clarify, that you still have to do the work and come up with your blog post topics/ideas. That being said if I didn’t have an easy to use program (did I mention that you can enter blog post titles directly into the coschedule calendar and it will create the drafts in WordPress for you???) I wouldn’t have been motivated to get planning.
Here is a peak at my calendar from the past two weeks (excuse the light colouring, after a day is done the date on the calendar turns lighter)
After I finish writing a blog post and have it scheduled, I move on to scheduling my social media. You can do this two ways:
- Schedule social media directly in the post using the CoSchedule plugin for WordPress… cool right?!? Just scroll to the bottom of your post and let the scheduling begin!
- Go to the CoSchedule website and enter your social media message using the calendar
I usually choose to schedule social media directly in the post as there is less chance I will get distracted by something else.
How Do You Schedule Social Media Using CoSchedule?
- When you get started, you go in and link up your social media accounts. Currently CoSchedule is compatible with Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn and Google+ Pages.
- Select the social profile you would like your message to go to- you can choose one or select multiple profiles (if you would like the same message to be shared across all platforms)
- Choose whether you want a text, image (it will automatically pull images from your post for you to choose from) or link post. Add in the message you would like displayed (CoSchedule auto populates the post link for you) and then choose the date and time you would like the post to be scheduled for.
My favourite part is that you can schedule social media posts for months and months in advance. I recently wrote a post called DIY Soothing Essential Oil Cough Drops which is one that readers will connect with all through the winter months. I have gone in and planned tweets and Facebook posts for this post all the way up until March 2016. You just set it and forget it… unless you look at your editorial calendar in which case you can see all the social messages you have scheduled for each day.
Other Cool CoSchedule Features:
Share Evergreen Content
I am working on going back into old posts (from before I had CoSchedule) and I am adding in my social media messages. For example I don’t want to forget about my post called Spring & Summer Uses for Lavender, Peppermint & Lemon so I can go in now and schedule times for it to be shared next spring and summer… how cool is that?!?
Your dashboard will show you your most shared posts of all time. On the right you will see my top 4 shared posts. Although you can’t connect CoSchedule with Pinterest, any shares on Pinterest are counted as part of your total shares. Also included in the count are shares on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. There is a few reasons why I love this. First it is nice to see that a post is resonating with your audience and it is exciting to see the number continue to grow. Secondly, since these posts are doing so well, I want to make sure I have shares scheduled for upcoming months so that I can keep up the momentum on these posts.
Do you see why I love CoSchedule so much?? I know that was a lot of information all at once, so if you prefer to learn by hearing and watching, then check out this quick 2 minute video which gives a wonderful overview of what CoSchedule is all about!
If you are a blogger, I would seriously consider giving CoSchedule a try! Plus it is risk free with the 14 day free trial (you don’t even need to enter your credit card)!
How do you organize your editorial calendar and schedule your social media?