How to Use Trello as a Blog Editorial Calendar
If you blog regularly or manage one, editorial calendars are essential. It helps you develop and deliver useful, varied content on time. It’s especially useful for blogs with multiple authors. There is no shortage of Google spreadsheet templates, WordPress calendar plugins and other tools – many of which I’ve tried and found lacking – for writing and managing more than one blog, and collaborating with multiple authors. (DivvyHQ is widely recommended, but subscription rates start at $60/month. I may give it a test drive at some point.)
Then I discovered a few bloggers using Trello (free), including Mr. Williams: How to Create an Editorial Calendar Using Trello (and Why You Need One. Joe goes into great detail about how to set up a Trello-enabled editorial calendar. But, be aware that there are as many editorial calendar variation as there are people creating them. Here’s my simple setup for managing a blog with multiple authors.
First, the blog specs:
- Three blog posts per week published Monday, Tuesday/Wednesday and Thursday/Friday
- Around three authors share writing duties with each assigned one or more unique topic (or blog category)
- Editorial calendar will consist of current three months
On to Trello which is not a core editorial calendar application, but a tool to manage and collaborate on projects. It comes with great mobile apps for phones and tables. Trello works with Boards (projects), Lists (columns) and Cards (units)
Start a new Board (project) and name it “Editorial Calendar.
Create three Lists (columns) for the current month and next two. Add a fourth for blog post ideas.
Create a Card for each Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday for every month – around 12 cards per month. Each card represents a post and should have the publication date, author and topic or category to cover.
Here’s where the magic happens: assigning authors and topics and attaching due dates. Click on any card and you’ll bring up a dialog box that allows you to enter a topic and comments, assign a member (author), due date (a couple of days before publication date), labels, attachments related to the post, and a host of other information.
This is where I’m at with the project: I’ve filled in topics, assigned members to each, color-coded cards, and will report back in a month on how it’s working out. Meanwhile, if you’re using Trello as a blog editorial calendar, or using another can’t-miss tool and have tips to share, please add them in the comments below.
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