So maybe waking up at 5 a.m. on a Monday morning wasn’t the best idea ever, but the need to quickly brainstorm this week’s blog ideas supersedes the need for sleep. A fresh and deliciously fragrant cup of coffee by your side, you pray the caffeine gods strike you with a bolt of brilliant creativity. Instead, you find yourself caught up in the vicious cycle of jotting down blog ideas, crossing them out, and writing down new ones again.

For the content creator, developing new ideas for your blog, Twitter, Facebook, etc. can become grueling. It’s not every day that you have the perfect concept, and in some cases, you might even end up spending more time contemplating ideas than actually executing them. Unfortunately, falling behind on your content is one of the worst things you can allow to happen.

Cue the entrance of the editorial calendar. 

With the variety of marketing platforms available today, the need to keep your brand top-of-mind is  stronger than ever. As a result, simply adding a couple of blogs or Facebook posts here and there no longer cut it. Yes, the channels of communication are saturated with brands—but in order to keep up with them, you have to act as though you’re always center-stage. This means pushing forward relevant content that is unique, thought-provoking, and entertaining.

Mashable recently published an article outlining brands that have been capitalizing on major “cultural events,” such as the Super Bowl and the Academy Awards. In order to have a voice in conversations on micro-blogs like Twitter and Facebook, many businesses are now developing relevant content prior to an event.

By being prepared for this year’s Academy Awards, brands like Purina and Oscar Mayer only had to worry about publishing tweets from their arsenal of content. This also gave them the opportunity to stay on their toes for the unpredictable moments that can occur during any live airing (à la the infamous Oreo ad during the Super Bowl Blackout of 2013).

Beyond major events like award shows and major sports championship games, editorial calendars are necessary to help you organize quality content ideas and to aid impeccable execution.

However, this doesn’t mean you’re allowed to turn off your radar for content inspiration, or that your schedule is set in stone. Instead, keep track of ideas for future ed cals, and jump on breaking news that’s relevant to your brand or purpose. Flexibility is important in today’s world, but it doesn’t hurt to have a plan.

So why not give it a try? Build an editorial calendar and see how you can maximize the potential of your content strategy. You’ll be surprised to see the result.