Content is the centerpiece of a brand – it sets the tone and mood for a brand when interacting with its customers. So creating fresh content and posting regularly on the digital space, and getting it into the news works like a charm to bring more traffic to the brand.
In that context, editorial calendars spin the clockwork. Scheduling posts and spacing them out evenly over a period of time works to ensure that a business stays a step ahead of SERP algorithms and enables a brand to draft compelling pitches for journalists.
In a flood of pitch emails that a journalist deals with every day, the pitch that stands out takes the trophy. Editorial calendars are a must-have for professionals, the ultimate schedulers, the big-picture makers of the content publishing goals of any brand, especially if effective pitching is the goal.
This blog explores the capability of editorial content calendars to give that magic touch to content that helps it catch the attention of journalists.
What are Editorial Calendars?
It is known that posting relevant information online at regular intervals ultimately helps drive the bottom line.
Posting content online must not depend on that random surge of creative energy where a ground-breaking post is created – neither should it depend on waiting around for content inspiration. There is a need to get active and sorted out about this.
A good content strategy involves planning ahead.
An editorial calendar is a tool for writers and publishers, businesses and brands to place their content strategies in one place, enabling them to look at the bigger, long-term picture. In addition, the calendar allows these professionals to effectively schedule digital and print-media content pieces so that no marketing opportunity is ever missed.
Editorial calendars are helpful as they help professionals plan their writing or media posts in a way that works best with their brand promotion goals.
Why are Editorial Calendars Important For PR Professionals and Pitches?
An editorial calendar is a display of a brand’s content writing plans, strategies, ideas and various stages of existing writing projects. It is a comprehensive calendar that shows the time of scheduled post, which posts are in the pipeline and what the lead times are.
When pitching to journalists, editorial calendars aid PR professionals in the following ways:
1.) Pitching Timely. As busy as they are, journalists typically do not spare time to go over pitches that miss important news milestones. In keeping with a journalist’s news schedule, an editorial calendar helps a brand push relevant content to newsrooms. It maximizes the likelihood of a pitch getting selected for airing.
2.) Preventing Redundancies. An editorial content calendar keeps the pitching topics of a brand in monthly-view format. This enables the PR specialists to avoid wasting a journalist’s time by pitching topics they may already have covered before.
3.) Staying Relevant. It is a calendar’s job to ensure the viewer notices the important dates. Designing a brand’s pitch around these important dates helps them stay relevant to the season’s hottest news – this, in turn, increases a pitch’s favorability in a journalist’s list.
4.) Synchronicity. Every newsroom has an editorial calendar. Synchronizing a brand’s editorial calendar with a newsroom helps create a topic schedule in sync with the journalists to which a brand is pitching. This lessens the load on the journalist, encouraging them to favor the pitch thus.
Editorial calendars encompass all the writing goals of a business for a particular period, and they aim to reach and engage more audiences so that the brand is noticed. When a publicist has their editorial calendar all caught up, and in place, it goes a long way in getting journalists to talk about a brand with relevant references.
Where to Find Newsroom Editorial Calendars?
Most publishing entities typically have their editorial content calendars uploaded to their website, publicly available. Doing this casts their schedule in stone, thus helping them stay committed to this calendar. They can be downloaded online easily or through logins or subscription options.
Alternatively, a brand can place a call or shoot an email to the offices of a newsroom or media outlet to request their editorial calendars.
How To Read Editorial Calendars
A well-designed editorial calendar can have all or a few of the categories below for content in different stages, such as:
- Ideation projects. This head lists all the ideas a team has for a particular project. This head can be effectively utilized to draft a calendar that sits well with the newsroom to which the brand is pitching.
- Currently writing. All the WIPs are listed here.
- Editing. Content currently in the stage of editing is reflected here.
- Revisions. Content that has been reverted for revisions is highlighted in this column of an editorial calendar.
While the fields are self-explanatory, a trained PR person can glean useful inferences from these fields to plan current and future pitches in accordance with the turnaround times of the content on the calendar.
Editorial Calendar Examples
Above is an example of an editorial calendar. The image shows:
- Month views. These views in a content calendar help the user tabulate content according to their publishing schedule.
- Content. From the image, the user can glean the titles of content planned for the entire month. This helps brands plan ahead.
- Publish Date. In this column, users can see the date that every piece of content is scheduled to go live to the public – whether in print or digitally.
The worst kind of pitch is one that isn’t planned well or followed through with. PR professionals avoid these mistakes by using editorial calendars. They are high-utility tools for publishers, writers, publicists, and professionals who need content to market themselves. This tool enables a brand to effectively mobilize a content plan and keep the momentum going. Businesses have the potential to significantly improve their conversion rates by utilizing editorial calendars.
Want more information like this about the media? Read our guide to the media, which dives into the different types of media, journalists, publications, and more!