The way that I know that I’m using the right content marketing tool for the job is when I do my best to replace it and can’t find an alternative — at any price.
I run a content marketing strategy and that means that I spend the bulk of my time and marketing efforts creating content, promoting that content across my social profiles and managing an editorial calendar — all by myself.
Granted, it’s a lot to ask any one marketing tool to manage all my scheduled post, marketing campaigns, and social media marketing — all for less than $50 per month. Well, what can I say?
CoSchedule is that marketing tool.
What is CoSchedule?
CoSchedule is a content marketing platform and social media marketing tool that serves as an editorial and content calendar, social media scheduling tool and content management system.
I’ve been using CoSchedule since they launched in 2013. When I asked my CoSchedule friends what they think is the best thing about their platform, they all say “the all in one calendar” and “team workflow management” — I disagree.
CoSchedule is the ONLY digital marketing and content marketing tool that allows you to schedule and promote your content across all your social media accounts in one sitting.
7 Critical Content Marketing Functions ONLY CoSchedule Can Do
There are several unsung features that make CoSchedule so good, that they’ve become the obvious (and only choice) for anyone who is a solopreneur and doesn’t have the time or the resources to devote to promoting their content 24/7.
1.Schedule and article and social media promotion campaign in 10 minutes.
In 2013, CoSchedule launched its calendar with one simple function — the ability to schedule social media promotions for an article BEFORE it is published.
I bet you probably thought there were lots of social media platforms that could do this — but NO.
No other platform allows you to streamline this blog posting and promotion process. NONE.
CoSchedule’s Secret Weapon is its magical permalink technology that allows you to write a blog post, schedule it and create an entire social media promotional campaign in one sitting. Once the post goes live – your social campaign will run without your having to do anything else.
You’ll want to check this article and download the social media posting bundle — this will save you weeks of headaches. Just use their templates to create your social media promotion template.
2. Upload an article from Evernote or Google Docs with loads of images directly to WordPress
Google documents are awesome, except for one flaw — it’s extremely difficult to download images directly from a document. You will need to use an add-on to download those images or you will need to take a screenshot of each image. Both options are time-consuming.
Luckily, CoSchedule allows you to upload an article from either Evernote or Google Docs and get this — it uploads the images as well!!! This, my friends, is worth the price of admission. This one feature alone has saved me at least an hour at the keyboard every time I have to post an article.
3. Create a “bank” of campaigns to promote specific events
Here’s what makes marketing so difficult these days — the most successful campaigns are a mix of content with email with social with an event. If you’ve tried to manage all of those things manually, you know how difficult it can be.
Using CoSchedule’s social campaigns and social templates features, you can map out a successful campaign; everything from social shares, to emails to blog articles and save them. Whenever it’s time to launch the campaign, you open up the templates, update the content and press “apply”.
This is yet another feature that has saved me — not hours, but days! Granted, we had to come up with a campaign and flow we were happy with, but having the entire thing saved as a campaign and on the shelf is priceless.
4. Recycle older content for an extra boost.
If you haven’t had the chance to write a new article today – no problem, go into CoSchedule analytics and pick an “older” article, use your social template and in 10 minutes, you’re promoting a rerun of a great piece of content.
5. Post directly to Instagram
I’m not sure if CoSchedul is the only tool that can do this. Let’s just say it’s the only tool I’ve run into that does this easily. Other platforms say they post to Instagram, but what they do is push a reminder to your mobile device and then you have to do it yourself. CoSchedule has this function as well, if that’s how you want to do it.
6. Create clickable, traffic-driving clickable headlines and engaging social shares
One of CoSchedule’s growth strategies was to create insanely-useful tools to improve your content marketing
CoSchedule Headline Analyzer, email tester and social media optimizer are three tools that will help make you a content sharing pro. Simply brainstorm a series of headlines (you really should do about 25) and then paste them into any of the analyzers. You’ll get a “grade” from 1-100 as to the overall quality of the headline, subject line or social share and a little assessment that will tell you how you can improve.
7. Run your MailChimp email campaigns directly from CoSchedule
When you’re promoting your content, don’t forget about email. Your audience isn’t sitting on your web site waiting for you to publish something. The best way to get your content in front of your customers and prospects is to do it via email.
CoSchedule integrates with several popular email platforms; Active Campaign, Constant Contact, Campaign Monitor and Hubspot (but those are “read-only”) meaning that once you’ve connected these platforms, you will SEE the campaigns, but you won’t be able to edit them.
MailChimp, on the other hand, is fully integrated with CoSchedule. This means that you can create and schedule emails in MailChimp the same way that you can create, edit and promote content on WordPress. (This feature is only available with the Marketing Suite Plan)
What You Need to Know (the unspoken subtleties)
Content marketing = CoSchedule. It took me a while to figure out how CoSchedule thinks. The mistake I was making was focusing on individual spokes and tasks — when I should have been focused on content and promoting the content.
Think of your content (article, infographic, blog post, webinar, feature launch or other project) as the hub of all your promotional activities. That’s where CoSchedule starts – the content.
Then, think about all the different ways that you want to get your content out there. This is what CoSchedule DOES — it gets that content out there. They call it a “project” – but it’s CONTENT.
Everything starts with content:
- Write the blog post or article
- Promote it with social
- Send out an email
Once you understand that, the entire system suddenly makes sense. Not only that, but your content marketing strategy gets much more focused around what really matters.
Solopreneurs and DIY’ers: As CoSchedule has gotten more popular, they’ve been shifting their focus toward marketing teams. Don’t let this scare you or dissuade you from using this powerful platform. There are “individual” plans and you can even customize your plan to a degree.
My recommendation is to start small – focus on promoting your blog content and be sure to get the plan that includes the “social templates”. The individual plan starts at $20 per user and that is a great way to get your feet wet.
Run through the tutorials: I’ve been using CoSchedule for years and I’m still learning new things. The CoSchedule team has put together fantastic resources that include tutorials and infographics. USE them because they’ve done the research and created best practices templates for you.
CoSchedule is a Marketing Team on Your Computer
Whenever people ask me how I’m able to publish and promote so much content, I secretly smile and wait — then I tell them that it’s all CoSchedule.
While CoSchedule is a great content marketing tool for marketing teams — it’s a vital marketing tool for solopreneurs and DIY marketers. Using the social templates to pre-schedule posts and promotions will save you at least two hours for every piece of content. And that is worth the price of admission.