There are a select few people who are just naturally gifted at running off the cuff with their marketing. The rest of us have to work at it, and we have to work hard. Planning your media in advance is one way to help leverage the time you do have by accomplishing more of your marketing before it needs to happen.
Setting up a Blogging Plan
After talking with Jon Gilson of the AF Project, on how we could take our blogging from zero to sixty, he mentioned that he liked to use what he called “blog starters”. This didn’t resonate with me very much initially, but after a couple weeks it started to sink in. Eventually I knew we wanted a way to give helpful tips to CrossFit gym owners. We’ve told our clients and prospects these things many times in a one-on-one setting, so I decided to sit down one evening and start writing them all down. Two hours later, I had over 100 marketing tips for CrossFit affiliates. That gave me enough content for 2 social media posts every week for a full year! Then I worked on creating our own meme graphic that we could use to roll out each of these marketing tips for a WOW factor. We ultimately decided to write a full blog post for each of these and let the website post them to Facebook & Twitter for us automatically.
Steps to Creating a Blogging Plan:
- Decide how many topics you want to post about. Injury prevention? Mobility? Weight Loss? Nutrition? Member Stories? Performance?
- Decide how frequently you want to post to the blog. Daily? Twice a Week? Once a Week?
- Decide how you’re going to set your schedule. If you’re blogging 3x a week, and you have 3 topics, then you could designate a day for each topic. Example Topic A on Monday, Example Topic B on Wednesday, Example Topic C on Friday.
- Decide where your content is going to come from. You don’t have to write original content, sometimes it’s best just to share what others have written.
- Create a schedule spreadsheet. Each row is a post date that you know you want to post on. The date is in the 1st column, the topic is in the 2nd column, and the blog title/teaser is in the 3rd column. If you want to get crazy, put in a status column, and after you write a blog post in WordPress and set it to post on it’s scheduled date, then you can update the status column to “Scheduled”.
- Start gathering content. This is where the rubber hits the road. If you know that once of your topics is going to be “member of the week”, then create a survey that you can send out to all your members…and then send it to all your members. As you get them returned, start writing the member of the week post (which doesn’t have to be anything more than the survey you just sent them). If you want to post about Nutrition, research your top nutrition blogs and find the blog posts you want to share.
If you set aside 1-2hrs per week, you can generate enough content for at least 1 full week. And when you can get ahead, do it! You never know when you’ll get sick, or when you’ll be on vacation and run out of time. Planning ahead will save you the trouble and everyone will think you’re a marketing genius.