Organize Your Content Calendar With These 4 Tools

It is the new year, and many of us are tweaking our content strategies. Maybe you want to add different types of content to your current process or change the way you handle social media.

The HIPBlog team is currently in the process of reworking the way we organize and handle social media and content creation. These changes include not only when and what content we create, but also our internal workflow and the platform we use to manage it.

Regardless, all these changes need to be documented and reflected in a content calendar. In today’s post, we look at some of the tools you could use to organize your editorial, content, and social calendars.

We compare factors like pricing options, views, available, and more.

Trello  

Trello was one of the first project management tools I was exposed to and uses a digital Kanban method of project management.

The Kanban method is the idea that you have three columns on a board. The first is the “Need to do” section, the second is the “doing” section, and the third is the “done” section.

Users of the system create cards that they move between lists as they’re completed.

Trello allows users to make boards that contain whatever lists they’d like, alongside cards that users can move from column to column.

You can also include lists of cards you never move, which could consist of reference information used for making task cards.

Paid or Free?  

Trello is free for individuals, and many individuals would never even need to consider the paid tier. Trello does make a paid version of its services that looks worthwhile. Check out those options here.

All users get unlimited personal boards, cards, and lists. The paid services include:

  • Unlimited “team boards”
  • Larger maximum attachment size
  • The addition of custom fields and “power-ups”
  • Custom backgrounds

The free view looks like:

An expanded card in the free view looks like this:

Template Options 

Trello has a variety of templates. Business and Enterprise Class teams can make unlimited private, team-wide, and public templates.

Here is one of the project management Trello templates.

When it comes to streamlining your team’s processes, templates are valuable guides. Use examples of what the team that created this offering made to inform your board creations.

Views Available  

In the free version of Trello, you only get the card view. There are two additional options for views in Trello. There are Calendar and Map views available to paid users.

The Calendar View looks like:

The map view tags location you input into cards and places them on a map. It also shows your current location and times between each location.

Trello is made to accommodate the needs of everyone from individuals to large companies. I use Trello’s free offering personally because it does what I need it to. I’m sure the paid capabilities are worth it for more complex project management.

Asana  

Full disclosure, the HIPTeam pays for Asana. The team uses Asana for much of its production and content creation work.

Our team has spent a ton of time with this tool. We started using it as a free version, then had a real business case to upgrade to the paid version.

We are continually working and reworking the way we use Asana. We have used several different templates and shifted between various styles of use to accommodate our team’s fluctuating needs.

Paid or Free?     

The free version of Asana accommodates teams of up to 15 individuals. It allows you to use list, board, and calendar views as part of the Basic plan.

The paid versions have features like:

  • Advanced search
  • Forms
  • Custom fields
  • Admin console
  • Private teams and projects

These are just some of the differences. Here is one of our current test boards, which we’re experimenting with as the team reworks its content strategy for 2020.

Template Options

You can create custom templates in the paid versions of Asana. You can use or view the premade templates on the free version, but like Trello, some of the features in the template might be disabled.

Views Available

With Asana, you get Calendar view and the board view (similarly styled to Trello) as part of the free version. The paid version gives you the timeline view.

The view above is the List view, and the Calendar view looks like this:

I like the way it zooms the Calendar to a 5-day work week since that is the conventional time when teams are working on content together. It will be interesting to see how this looks as we shift our content calendar into Asana.

Wrike

In one of my other jobs, I used Wrike. I must admit it didn’t leave much of an impression at the time.  I did find it somewhat unwieldy to find the work I needed to.

Wrike might be the oldest project management solution on this list. It was created in 2003 and reflects some of that early 2000s business mentality. That includes pricing.

Paid or Free?

There is no free version of Wrike, only free trials of the paid versions of the platform. It is much more expensive than the other options on this list. Wrike starts at nearly $10 per user.

There is no Wrike for individuals. This platform is designed for teams only to collaborate on tasks.

Template Options

Wrike has several template options, including this social media option, though they’re hard to access without an account.

Because Wrike is an older work management system, it structures its templates to create campaigns with specific goals. This differs from the individual projects and boards in the other tools we’ve covered.

Views Available  

In the prior sections, I described views in terms of free and paid versions. Since there is no free version of Wrike, these are the available view options according to this page:

  • Gantt Chart
  • Table View
  • Timelog View
  • Files View
  • Board View
  • Analytics View

Google Calendar  

For a few months, the HIPB2B team used Google Calendar to manage its time off and content calendars.

It worked reasonably well.

That is until a wrongful keypress overwrote our carefully planned content calendar. We lost the entirety of the month we had just planned out with no way of undoing the mistake.

Another issue is that we had to create the Calendar on our personal Gmail accounts, instead of using out Outlook-based business emails. This means the Calendars were built on a personal Google account, and we all had to add our personal accounts to use it.

Paid or Free?

 

We all know the price of Google is our data. When you look at the G Suite business options, you see that there is the shared calendars feature as part of all three pricing tiers.

Personal calendars are shareable as well, but Google’s Business Calendar page previews features like:

We don’t have access to G Suite, but it would be interesting to investigate the ways that Google Calendar is improved upon for team collaboration.

There’s also no way to assign others to a Google Calendar event. We color-code each of our blog posts to identify the author.

Template Options

There doesn’t appear to be any template options available for those that want to use Google Calendar as a content calendar.

However, this is a handy guide from a G Suite user that describes how they set up a content calendar. We created reoccurring events in our Google Calendar for our weekly blog posts, then filled those events a month in advance as we planned.

Views Available  

Google Calendar is not a tool specifically designed for project management, so it gives you a calendar view and not much else. Google Calendar can be an okay option, especially for those teams on a budget.

We created this post to give you an idea of some of the options available to you as you consider how you will organize, create, schedule, and post your content and social media in the coming year.

Here at HIPB2B HQ, we are currently reworking our content strategy and using Asana as our primary content project management software. We’ll continue to share with you our processes as we learn and evolve. We hope you’ll do the same.

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