If you’re in charge of managing content strategy, you might struggle with generating content ideas to fill your calendar. Various articles out there propose different approaches, such as:
- Theme-based approaches (“football” vs. “basketball”)
- Format-based approaches (four videos, three podcast episodes)
- Channel-based approaches (three posts for LinkedIn, six for Facebook)
But in today’s post, I’ll discuss a simple time-based model of content creation that you can apply to your current or future content strategy. It’s called the SET model, and it stands for Seasonal, Evergreen, and Timely.
The Seasonal bucket reflects content that is only relevant during specific times of the year, like The 8 Best Winter Jackets To Buy Right Now or The Ultimate List Of Valentine’s Date Ideas This Year. Seasonal content affords you plenty of time to plan ahead.
Evergreen content is relevant throughout the year. It provides value during a slow news or content cycle and can drive conversions for years to come. Think Ultimate Guide and Best Practice articles.
The Timely bucket indicates news that is currently happening – short-term bursts of activity that you can report or write content on. You may lean more heavily into the Timely bucket depending on your industry, e.g., PR, celebrity gossip, or current affairs.
You do need to quickly churn out Timely content to remain relevant to your audience, but the benefit is that you don’t struggle for content – it avails itself.
Content flow using SET
Content naturally flows from one bucket to the other throughout the course of the year. A seasonal piece on How To Record Your Expenses This Tax Season might cite an evergreen Best Practices for Business Accounting post – which in turn might be cited in an announcement that The Business Expensing Act Just Changed (Here’s What You Need To Know).
The SET content creation flow also informs your social media strategy. With a solid base of Seasonal and Evergreen content, you can fill out the major parts of your social media content calendar and be assured of social activity throughout the year. Timely content then adds a spontaneous feel to your feeds.
Split your content into three time buckets
The SET content creation model gives you three new ways to achieve content variety throughout the year. Use it in your content planning sessions to generate content ideas that remain relevant over time.
Mohammed Shehu, Ph.D. writes on content and marketing for creators and brands. You can find him online @shehuphd everywhere.