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If you’ve ever used social media or email for marketing--which chances are, you have--then you know that figuring out what you’re going to release day-by-day can be chaotic and frustrating. People aren’t on the same page, crucial updates can be missed, and it can even cause tension with your teammates. Utilizing an email marketing calendar will help keep all of your strategic marketing plans organized and ready to go. Whether you or someone else is in charge of the specific releases, the marketing calendar can keep everyone on the same page. But how do you go about creating one, you ask? Well, it’s not as daunting as it might seem, and once you try it, you’re going to wonder how you ever lived without it. Here are some of our tips and tricks to get you started.

Be Thorough But Flexible

Your email plans should include pre-written copy, CTA links, send information, and whether or not email should be fully designed and fleshed out, or just plain text. See? It takes out all the guesswork!

Just bear in mind that plans can and do change all the time, so you should always factor in a certain amount of flexibility in case you need to pivot in a new direction. The calendar can’t cover everything, but it can sure come close.

Have Ideas? Write Them Down

While you’re planning out your content, you’re more than likely to have some thoughts and ideas that you want to be included in an email. Of course you are! You’re on your way to becoming a marketing mastermind!

Those cogs are always turning, baby! So what do you do when that golden inspiration hits and gives you one of those ideas? Write. Them. Down. Assume that something else is going to come along and push it out of your mind any second, and act accordingly. Ideas come and go, and the ones you’re letting go can be game changers. Even if you don’t end up using them for the calendar, that doesn’t mean they don’t have a place somewhere else in your strategy.

Plan Ahead, But Don’t Go Too Far

It’s recommended to plan for a minimum of one month in advance and a maximum of three months in advance. Going any further than that, you risk stretching beyond your own knowledge.

Things change, and they are changing all the time. If you’ve planned out four months of content, and something revolutionary happens in month one, you risk not getting that important information to your recipients in a timely manner. One to three months in advance. Try to keep your calendar within that sweet spot, and remember our first point. Stay flexible in case you need to make room for something new and momentous.

Add Diverse Content

When planning a large group of emails all at once make sure to include diverse types of emails. Both plain text and designed, campaign-specific, and just check-ins. Your email marketing can be so much more than just planning newsletters.

Some people will even give each month of their calendar a theme that they stick to. This is fine, but remember to have balance. You don’t want to send a month full of content and find that you essentially sent the same kind of content over and over. Loose connections work well, and keep people invested. The more different kinds of things you try, the more likely you are to find something that resonates with your readers. You’re never going to find a goldmine if you keep digging in the same spot.

Pro-Tip: Email marketing calendars can be particularly helpful when planning out an engagement studio as they can help you visualize your map.

Start planning out your email marketing, download your copy of the SalesLabX Email Marketing Calendar Template.

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