I’m a big advocate of using social media scheduling tools to plan and manage your social media posts. It saves you time, it helps you to be more consistent and, most importantly, it allows you to zoom out and take a birds-eye view of your content strategy as a whole.

Over the years I’ve trialled many different products on my search for the best solution to social media scheduling and, for a long time, I settled on using Hootsuite, mainly for its usability, functionality and affordability. My main frustration with Hootsuite, however, was the calendars or ‘streams’, as they’re called, as they aren’t as visual or intuitive as I would like them to be.

The other downside, in my opinion, is that Hootsuite doesn’t collect past posts into a content library of any form. So, alongside Hootsuite, I have created my own systems of spreadsheets and Trello boards. This works absolutely fine, but I’ve always felt that there must be a better way and so my search for a more comprehensive social media scheduling tool continued.

Introducing ContentCal…

was introduced to ContentCal when co-founder, Andy Lambert, reached out to me and offered to demo the system that his social media company had developed. Andy explained that they had encountered similar issues to me and believed that there must be an alternative to using complex spreadsheets to plan content alongside expensive scheduling tools.

As he showed me around the visual content calendar, which can be used to schedule posts to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn (Instagram has recently been added into the mix as well) I immediately got the sense that this was the solution I had been searching for.

Having used ContentCal for the past month or so, I am finding that posts already take me less time to schedule and I love the fact that they can be moved around with a simple drag and drop. On a post level, there is the option to preview posts to get a feel for how they will look on the platform. I can then look at the content schedule as a whole, ensuring that there’s a great mix of content.

In fact, you can add categories to posts which makes it even easier to visualise how the different types of content will fit together, although I’m hoping that the category feature will be made accessible when drafting posts as currently, you have to go back into scheduled posts to add a category which, in my opinion, isn’t ideal.

Reusing and Repurposing Social Media Posts

On my search for a better social media scheduling tool, one of the things close to the top of my wish list was the ability to collect posts into a content library of sorts. The content we create for social media becomes a valuable asset to our businesses and re-using and repurposing content is just as important as creating new. Spreadsheets and Trello boards are great for this purpose as they allow you to keep a log, as it were, of your content but that also means more steps in your process and more time taken up.

I have tested out various different solutions, most notably Zoho Social and Meet Edgar, but none quite fit the bill for me. One of my top priorities was to ensure that whatever solution I chose it was not overly automated; it’s not about churning out the same content again and again but rather taking what’s worked well in the past and tweaking it, or repurposing it entirely, to get more value and even better results from each and every post.

ContentCal does a great job of this within the activity feed; a simple chronological list of posts, and where they were published to, and the option to re-use posts (with edits to the original if needed) is exactly what I’ve been looking for.

ContentCal hasn’t replaced my spreadsheets entirely, and I may well keep them around in some form as I believe it is important to have your own offline schedule and content library, but it has certainly streamlined and improved my social media planning and scheduling processes, both for my own business and for my clients.

I have to say, I feel that I’m only scratching the surface with ContentCal as I’ve yet to explore features such as the Organise / Campaign tool, and I’m only just starting to test out Instagram scheduling on ContentCal.

So, you’ve been looking for a more efficient and intuitive way to plan and schedule your social media posts, have a look at ContentCal and see whether it’s the right solution for you.

Beckie Coupe signature

 

 

 

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and I am not an affiliate of ContentCal in anyway. This is an honest review based on my experiences of using ContentCal in my own business, both for my own social media and for that of my clients.

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