He who controls the spice controls the universe.
Now swap spice for content and universe for Internet, and you'll begin to understand just how important content has become in the digital age.
Planning, assigning, creating, scheduling and publishing content – the five major stages of content production – can quickly get out of hand if not organized properly.
This is why we have editorial calendars. An editorial calendar streamlines the content production process so the right content goes to the right place at the right time.
But which editorial calendar software should you put your faith in?
It depends, of course, on multiple factors such as business needs, budget and content strategy. But even then, there are so many editorial calendars on the market that you need a separate editorial calendar just to organize all the available editorial calendars. An Editorial Calendar Calendar, if you will.
No such calendar exists, however, so for now you’ll have to settle for this article, which will help you avoid falling into the editorial calendar rabbit hole. We've narrowed the list down to five platforms, at least one of which should fulfill all your content production needs.
DivvyHQ is specifically designed for high-volume teams, and is one of the most comprehensive platforms on the market. Its multi-calendar architecture allows users to create, customize and share schedules across their organization, and with a focus on content management and online collaboration, DivvyHQ makes it easy to assign, schedule and track projects.
One of many standout features is the DivvyHQ Parking Lot, which allows users to “park” content ideas for future use and collaboration. An editorial planning meeting, for instance, is a great opportunity to bust out the Parking Lot, because not only can team-members view, discuss and edit the Parking Lot’s content, they can also schedule it from the very same interface.
Getflow is the middleweight champion of editorial calendar platforms. Not too basic, not too complex, it accomplishes the tricky balancing act between multi-user capabilities and simple, intuitive user experience.
This sleek content management solution has every base covered. Need to prioritize certain tasks? Easy. Need to add comments and attachments to items? You got it. Need to filter tasks by person, keyword, or tag? Done, done, and done.
While anyone in need of an editorial calendar will find CoSchedule a powerful ally, the platform is especially suited for users focused on content marketing and social media. Among its many features is a marketing workflow tool, a marketing calendar, and a social media content calendar, the last of which displays a post's social media metrics.
CoSchedule also plays nice with other services, seamlessly integrating with external content marketing tools, such as WordPress, Google Docs and Google Analytics, as well as social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Trello’s motto is “organize anything,” and it does so by focusing on visual organization techniques.
The platform relies on a unique system of boards, cards and lists to conceptualize, collaborate on, and schedule content.
For example, an “Inspiration” card might contain news articles, images and comments for brainstorming purposes. Team members could pitch ideas in a “Pitch A Story” card, and everyone could monitor a project's progress in an "In Progress" card.
Once a team’s cards are in place, a quick glance at the Trello board can immediately tell you what stage a project is in, and who’s working on it. Furthermore, users can easily switch between Trello’s list view and calendar view, so it’s as simple to brainstorm and collaborate as it is to establish what’s due and when.
Gather Content wants a world devoid of cumbersome Word documents and spreadsheets, and is doing its part by inviting users to create content directly on its platform.
Built into the software is a content production tool, similar to WordPress, which enables teams to execute the entire content production process from a single platform.
Gather Content is also a neat freak, and prides itself on its clean, uncluttered virtual workspace. The design is minimalistic, utilizing white space and a limited color palette, and the built-in production tool means no attachments are being passed back and forth. Just simple, completely cloud-based content management.
Different businesses have different needs when it comes to editorial calendars. Large teams working with a wide and diverse range of content might find DivvyHQ serves them better than Getflow.
Businesses relying on multiple social media platforms may feel more comfortable with CoSchedule than Gather Content.
But whether you're a large company requiring multiple levels of calendar access, a small startup more concerned with idea storage and collaboration, or a deadline-oriented publication with rigid scheduling demands, one of these platforms will get the job done.