Marketing calendar templates

Marketers manage a lot of deliverables. There are date-driven efforts, such as launching advertising campaigns, publishing new content, and posting to social media. You also field ad-hoc requests from the entire organization. Keeping track of everything in motion can be all-consuming. And if teammates are working from their own project lists, details can get out of sync quickly.

You need a shared marketing calendar that makes it easy to navigate dependencies and adjust dates when needed. A well-organized calendar allows you to zero in on important details for each marketing activity and also see the big picture. It is even more powerful when you can customize to label with colors, tag with key details, and add images to designate activities by type and team.

The Excel templates in this guide give you a blueprint for creating a shared calendar — each template is tailored to a different marketing function. If you are part of a small marketing team, these templates may be enough to help you stay on schedule.

Larger teams typically need a more robust solution. A purpose-built tool like Aha! gives you a collaborative, drag-and-drop calendar that can be filtered by activity type, assignee, and more. These are ideal for dynamic marketing teams that want to link planned work to strategy and need to collaborate across other teams, such as product management.

Marketing calendar example.

What should be included in a marketing calendar?

Dates matter when there are a lot of moving parts. And marketers work cross-functionally with most teams in the organization — the product team for product launches, the sales team for training material, the customer support team for documentation, and so forth.

An effective calendar helps you:

  • Visualize upcoming due dates and activities

  • Define what team members are responsible for

  • Arrange deliverables in a logical order to support key initiatives

  • Provide visibility to other teams about what is happening and when

A marketing calendar filled with activities that are not driven by an overall strategy will be ineffectual. Of course, if you do not include the right information — or include too many details — calendars become unwieldy too.

Let's look at some elements that make a calendar usable and actionable. Some of these core building blocks are also included in the templates below.

  • Time frame: Daily, weekly, monthly, yearly — designate a timeline view that matches the level of detail that you need.

  • Goal: Provide a shorthand way to show the broader goal or initiative that the work serves.

  • Campaign: Include the campaign or launch that the deliverable is part of.

  • Persona: Help your team understand the target customer for each marketing activity.

  • Start and end dates: Include internal start and end dates for work as well as a go-live date.

  • Type: Specify deliverables by team or format. For example, use different labels for the content team vs. the product marketing team or for blog posts vs. case studies.

  • Channel: Tag deliverables by marketing channel (e.g., social media, email, website, search engine marketing).

  • Status: Include status labels (e.g., "not started," "in progress," and "scheduled") that make it easy to spot progress.

There are many ways to customize these details. Be sure to balance the level of detail needed with the effort it takes to maintain the calendar. Do not feel like you have to include everything — find what works for your team and your marketing goals.

What are the most common marketing calendars?

The calendar templates included here are tailored to functional groups in marketing — events, content, social media, and communications. There is also a calendar for go-to-market launches and an integrated calendar to use across groups. Download and customize further to fit your needs.

Event calendar
This event calendar allows you to map out in-person or virtual events for the year. Use the daily view to outline a schedule for the day of the event. Duplicate the daily calendar to reuse it for each individual event.

Content calendar
This calendar can be used by content marketers as an editorial calendar. Use different colors to designate different types of content — blog posts, customer stories, white papers, etc. You can copy, edit, and move the colored boxes to customize the calendar for your team.

Communications calendar
This calendar can be used to plan customer communications, such as emails, newsletters, press releases, and in-app messaging. Separate icons let the team see the balance of messages across the month.

Go-to-market calendar
Launching new products and features requires advance planning. Use this go-to-market calendar to visualize all the product releases happening over the course of a year. Pair it with a more detailed view to show the cross-functional activities required for a successful launch.

Integrated calendar
This integrated calendar brings all marketing efforts together into a single, high-level view. This format is useful when presenting your marketing mix to leaders and other stakeholders.

Aha! is a trademark of Aha! Labs Inc. All other company and product names may be trademarks of the respective companies with which they are associated.


Related articles

Marketing dictionary
White text on blue background promoting Aha! academy classes
Sign up today!
Start your 30 day trial. No credit card required.
© 2020 Aha! Labs Inc.All rights reserved