Before I ever started Blaugust 2021, before I ever started creating posts for this blog, one of the first blogging utility plugins I ever installed was a content calendar.
Despite that being one of the first plugins I installed here, it might surprise you all to learn that I didn’t even really know what a content calendar was before 2020. I knew some creatives used calendars to schedule social media posts or when they were going to post videos if they were vloggers, and while I had tried that myself at one time, the idea of them never really clicked for me. That all changed in April of 2020 (yes, during Blapril 2020) when Chestnut posted about trying one out with her blog. While I hesitate to say that she sang its praises at the time as she was still trying it out, she did mention that it had helped her immensely when it came to planning posts for the month.
Given that this was my first time attempting a Blaugust, I figured I could use all the help I could get.
When it came to choosing a content calendar plugin, it turned out there was a variety to choose from. Before I chose one, though, I sat down and actually had to think about what I wanted out of a plugin like this.
First of all, I knew I needed something built into the site itself. I had considered a Google calendar, but I also knew I’d never look at it if it wasn’t integrated into the site itself. Sometimes, if I’m not directly looking at a thing, I can forget its existence entirely, so I knew having it somewhere that wasn’t attached to my blog itself would never work for me.
Second of all, I needed something basic. Too many bells and whistles, and I’d get too bogged down in trying to set it up in a way that made sense to me, and then I’d never get anything done at all. What I needed was something that allowed me to drag things around if needed and just gave me a very simple overview of the entire month.
I wound up installing and trying a couple, but this is the one that I ultimately settled on.
Hilariously enough, this turned out to be the same one that Chestnut and the person who recommended utilizing a content calendar to her, Endalia, also used. By the time I settled on this as the content calendar plugin that I actually liked, I had tried so many that I had completely forgotten the name of the one they were using. I didn’t even realize it was the same one until I went to write up this post.
Keeping Me Motivated
I will be honest with you all. When I initially installed this plugin, I thought of it as a useful tool, but not particularly motivational.
I was wrong.
Before Blaugust 2021 began, I sat down and immediately started adding various post ideas to the content calendar. This was especially nice because it allowed me to not only quickly get the post ideas I had on the calendar itself, but I could also easily see how many days there were that I didn’t have content lined up for. Seeing the blank days made me have to think a little harder about what to put there, and oddly enough, I really liked that.
Having everything laid out like that also takes some of the stress out of writing because I know what days I have solid ideas for and I know those are days I can churn out a post relatively quickly. And Let me tell you all something: stress is a very strong demotivator for me. Anything that can remove that stress is a winner in my book.
Once Blaugust is over, I can not only see myself continuing to use this plugin, but also using it as a motivational tool to get social media posts and related content done ahead of the post’s release.
All in all, I would absolutely recommend getting yourself a content calendar plugin if you haven’t yet. It’s helping me a lot, and it may actually help you, too.