Dafine Cholet Calendar

The 2014 LightBox Collaborative Editorial Calendar has arrived!

When we first launched our Editorial Calendar four years ago we had no idea it would become so popular. Since its release in 2011, our free content scheduling tool has been downloaded and embraced by hundreds of do-gooders and nonprofits across the nation.

Beautifully done–thank you for this excellent planning tool!” “…we are taking a much more thoughtful approach to our outreach strategies using your editorial calendar!” Elaine Chen, 2013

 In order to help focus their online communications, I recommend every nonprofit have an editorial calendar. This is a great tool to help them do just that, thanks for sharing it!John Kenyon, 2013

 “Kudos to the sharp minds of the LightBox Collaborative for creating such an intuitive and useful tool! Great idea! Great implementation! A must for any organization of any size.” Erin Fogg, 2011

Thanks to user feedback, we enhance and evolve our Editorial Calendar every year. We hope that the latest version helps you become your own publishing powerhouse, able to achieve even greater communications impact in 2014.

What is it?

If you’ve ever worked in public relations or in a newsroom, you have undoubtedly used an Editorial Calendar. For those who have never been a journalist or pitched a journalist, an Editorial Calendar (“Ed Cal” for short) is a 12-month schedule that magazine and newspaper publishers use to plan which topics will be covered in each issue of their publication for a given year. Journalists and editors use them to plan stories up to months ahead of time, and PR practitioners consult them to craft story ideas and determine when to pitch them to targeted media outlets.

Today’s savvy nonprofits have become their own publishers, sharing their stories across various media channels (newsletters, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, action alerts, etc.), all with different deadlines, writers, and content parameters. We developed the LightBox Collaborative Editorial Calendar to help you plan and schedule collaborative content, assign and share tasks, establish deadlines, review and approve content, and track the status of posts.

How do I use it?

The 2014 LightBox Collaborative Editorial Calendar is available as a Google document, which you can download and customize for your organization. We’ve organized it by month and loaded it with “calendar hooks” you can use or replace with your own. Our hooks lean toward social and economic justice, LGBT and reproductive rights, environmental activism and public health. We hope our suggestions will spark ideas for additional hooks to feed your content strategy and engage your audience.

As you use the tool, we’d love to hear what works for you. Please share your experience and additional hook ideas in the comments section below. You are also invited to share the 2014 LightBox Collaborative Editorial Calendar with fellow do-gooders who can use it to do their good work, better!

Photo courtesy of flickr user DafneCholet.

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ReneeRenee Alexander is a LightBox collaborator and hopes the LightBox Collaborative Editorial Calendar helps you become your own publishing powerhouse in 2014.