When you work with editors and writers, one of the industry jargon you’ll run into is “editorial calendar.”
Boiled down, it’s a schedule. Nothing too fancy about that, right? If you write your own blog, you probably stick to a certain topic, and post on a certain time/day of week. That’s your editorial calendar, simplified.
But there’s an art in creating and maintaining an editorial calendar. A big part of why it’s important to maintain a calendar is so that your regular readers know when to expect certain topics. Being consistent can help create return visitors, and that in turns creates repeat customers. An editorial schedule establishes a specific theme/topic that can be utilized to bring in customers at a set time of year. It serves as a way to remind people that you exist, and shows why you’re valuable to them.
As an example, you run an auto shop and want to create a newsletter for your customers. Your editor might devise a monthly calendar that looks something like this:
- June: road trip prep and related shop promotions, tire reviews, auto detailing tips
- July: local auto events, fireworks safety, picnic bbq recipes
- August: tailgating recipes and tips to prep for football season, heat safety tips (pets and children in cars)
- Sept: back to school/teen driving safety tips
- Oct: Halloween safety tips, car decorating ideas
Based on this calendar, your editor will create a series of articles that centers around cars, safety, and maintenance mixed with some fun topics. The newsletter articles, depending on your needs, will go out on a set schedule – usually weekly.
Earlier, I mentioned that by planning your topics ahead of time, it can help bring customers in. June’s topics centered around road trip prepping could be written to encourage customers to come in before their summer vacations. “Check your oil and make sure your tires are in good shape.” It serves as a reminder to them, and gets your customers to think: “oh, gee, I should call Fictional Auto Shop for an appointment before my family trip.”
By explaining how and why auto detailing is important, it establishes your street cred. You are an authoritative figure, and you know your stuff. Therefore, you can be trusted.
By providing tire reviews, you present information in an easy to understand format, and establish yourself as an authority on this topic. When people need to buy tires, they will buy from you instead of a competitor.
That’s how you get repeat business.