editorialcalendarWhen it comes to succeeding with online marketing, often a major emphasis is placed on building an email list. This is absolutely crucial—but staying in touch with and nurturing that list is just as important.

This is why business owners need a communication plan in order to connect with their market strategically and consistently. This plan is truly the engine that drives an online business forward.

The best way to stay in communication is by sharing valuable content related to your expertise. It’s been said that “content is the new currency,” and this is because it’s one of the most effective ways to build lasting trust and connection.

In other words, the fortune is indeed in the follow-up! (Keep in Touch = Know, Like, Trust.)

Free content is key for many reasons: it establishes your expertise, it’s leveraged, it puts you miles above your competitors, and it allows you to impact people at all levels (even if they can’t afford your highest-priced offerings right now.) Best of all, it makes them more likely to buy from you later.

It comes down to reminding your market that you exist–it’s YOUR job. Ultimately, you’re making it easy for them to buy from you and refer you by staying in front of them regularly.

You can stay in touch in many different ways, including via emails (don’t be shy), an email newsletter (my favorite method), your blog, video, or a combination of several of these. (Yes, you can begin with just one, but be consistent. Communicating at least once a week is highly recommended.)

However, even though they KNOW staying in touch is so important, many business owners still struggle with doing it consistently.

The solution? Using a simple editorial calendar to keep your content marketing on track. You can create your own in three simple steps:

First, brainstorm at least 40 topics based on your ideal client or customer. Think about it in these terms: what are their biggest questions? What are their biggest challenges? What is confusing to them? What would they be entertained by?

Next, narrow down the topics to the 25 best ones by considering which would resonate with your audience the most.

Finally, calendar out your publishing schedule by transferring your “best” topics to specific dates. I personally use iCal on my Mac and sync it with Google Calendar so I can share it with my team members.

For bonus points, boost your “omnipresence” factor by leveraging any one piece of content multiple ways–this is how I got my name out there and got known so fast. For example, take one article and turn it into a blog post, post it to article sites, break it down into social media status updates and create a teleclass out of it.

Take action now by brainstorming and creating your own editorial calendar. Do the work upfront so that you’ll never be stumped for what to share with your community again. You’ll love how it makes your content creation stress-free!

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