Microsoft Excel is an incredibly versatile tool that can help you with every aspect of your business process. It’s full of formulas and functions, features and add-ons, templates, and macros. Did you know you could create a social media calendar with Microsoft Excel? There are several ways you can use Excel dynamic array functions to organize your social media.
Excel for Digital Marketers
While Excel isn’t a social media management tool, it can be used by digital marketers or social media persons to keep track of their online presence. It enables you to keep track of all your posts, likes, comments, and mentions in one place.
Another useful feature of Excel is that you can create a social media calendar. By putting your content schedule in an Excel spreadsheet, you can easily see when your next post is coming up. This also helps you to organize what type of content you will post, who will write it, and where it will live.
Having Excel as a useful skill means that there are plenty of resources out there to help you learn the basics. Taking the Excel course by Acuity Training will help you enhance your career prospects and skills, by teaching you how to use Microsoft Excel like an expert. The benefits of taking the course include:
- Preparing spreadsheets
- Improving data visualization
- Managing projects with ease
- Making reports look more professional
- Managing social media campaigns effectively
Tips for Using a Social Media Calendar
A social media calendar can help you execute your strategy and ensure your posts are having the impact you want.
- Do research. The more you know about your audience, the more effectively you’ll be able to reach out with your social media posts. When they’re online, which posts do they interact with most, and what industry news they find interesting. This will help you create a calendar that targets their needs and interests.
- Set objectives. Having specific goals in mind will help you determine what content is most appropriate for your social media posts.
- Plan ahead. Use your calendar to plan. You can use it to schedule regular posts, such as daily updates on Twitter or weekly updates on Facebook. It can also mark important events in advance, such as a product launch or special promotion.
- Keep it flexible. A social media calendar is a great way to organize and plan your content, but you don’t want to get so caught up in the schedule that you forget about staying relevant and responsive. Leave room for flexibility so you can respond to breaking news as it happens.
- Use a team approach. If more than one person is responsible for your social media content, ensure you all have access to the calendar. This way, everyone knows what’s planned and when it’s scheduled to go out.
Creating a Social Media Calendar
These are the steps you can take to create a content calendar in Excel:
1. Create Your Worksheet
The first step is creating your spreadsheet to plan out your posts. You’ll need at least three columns: one for the date, one for the account on Facebook, Twitter, etc., and one for the content you want to post. You’ll need as many rows as necessary to cover your period or number of posts. You may also want additional columns for other details, such as tracking links and hashtags.
2. Add-In the Data
Once your worksheet is set up, you can start filling in the information. Enter the dates into the appropriate columns, followed by the account name and the content you want to post on that date for that account. In some cases, you may want to schedule different versions of a post for different accounts; for example, if you’re posting about an upcoming event, you might want to include a link on Facebook.
3. Mapping Out Topics and Themes
Before figuring out what content to post, map out the different topics and themes that relate to your business. This will give you ideas for the type of content you should be posting and ensure that you’re not posting about the same thing multiple times in a row.
The easiest way to do this is to list out some of your products or services and any industry-related information or news that might be interesting to your customers. From there, brainstorm any related topics appropriate for your audience. Think about how your themes should vary based on which platforms you’ll use.
4. Identify Key Dates
Also, look ahead at the calendar for important dates that might influence your content strategy. In this spreadsheet, you’ll create a new tab for each network Facebook, Twitter, etc. This is where you’ll plan out your content strategy month by month.
Start by identifying key dates that you want to plan content around. These can be holidays like Christmas and Halloween. The dates could be specific to your business, such as customer appreciation day or product anniversaries.
5. Create Drafts of Posts/Tweets
Next, draft posts for each date on your calendar. The frequency with which you post will depend on the social networks. It’s best to plan out several days’ worth of posts at once so you aren’t scrambling to create content the day of.
You can easily schedule 30-days worth of posts in advance if you take the time to brainstorm them now! It’s also helpful to come up with the actual copy for each draft rather than just writing down an idea for each post. All you have to do is copy & paste it into Facebook when it comes time to publish!
6. Create Your Posting Schedule
Based on when you have time to post, identify which days of the week would be ideal for your business. For example, consider posting on Monday morning when people catch up on emails after the long weekend. Or maybe Tuesday evening is better because people are less busy at work and more likely to check their social media accounts.
Benefits of a Social Media Calendar
There are a lot of benefits that come with creating a social media calendar.
- You will become a better storyteller and will be able to build your brand’s voice, tone, and aesthetic.
- You’ll have peace of mind knowing what you will post and when.
- You’ll be able to write content faster if you have a template to follow.
- You can plan for holidays or special events and promote your business in advance.
- You can identify the best time to post on social media.
- Also, you can track results and optimize as you go.
Get Organized With Excel
Microsoft Excel is the ultimate app for creating spreadsheets. And with intermediate excel skills, it’s a great asset if you want to create a social media calendar. If you want to lose the headache that comes with managing your social media profile by keeping everything up-to-date with the latest posts, then using a social media calendar is your solution.