In this online world of content marketing, those tools should also be digital.
When I got my first job managing content for a large medical department six years ago, I didn’t know this. I am embarrassed to say, I printed out emails and organized sources in manilla folders back then.
Thankfully, I soon found a better way. Now, I hope to save you a little time and money by sharing the tools I have found that help me the most: Trello, Google Docs, and DropBox. All three integrate perfectly and, as it happens, they are all FREE.
I am still in the honeymoon phase with this app (I switched from Omnifocus this year*), and I’m hoping we’ll be one of those couples holding hands into old age.
Trello is a web-based project management tool with the look of lists and cards on a cork board. You can create multiple boards, invite members to collaborate, and use custom colored labels to your heart’s content.
I love this app because it is so visually oriented. I can look at one client board and immediately see which posts are being written by whom and where in the editorial process they are.
On each card (I use one per blog post) I have checklists and any images or sources relevant to the post. Each card also has a handy comments section for notes and team collaboration.
Another great feature on the Trello card is the ability to directly link to items in the next two tools: Google Docs and DropBox.
Google Docs solves this problem and more. It is free and web-based so anyone can use it. It is also highly compatible with Pages and Microsoft Word, which everyone DOES seem to use. It even integrates well with track changes.
But, I love Google Docs most of all for version control. Multiple writers and editors can collaborate on the same document. This saves time and confusion and more importantly, minimizes the chance of posting the wrong version of a post. The one without the edits and quote you got from your practice doctor, for example.
If you ever deal with files too big to attach to an email, DropBox is for you. I use this most often when I am getting raw materials, like videos, powerpoints, or huge collections of images from doctors I write for. The app is free and you get more storage space the more people you invite to join.
Files from DropBox are easily attached directly to each Trello card. This is also a good workaround to keep the free version of Trello (you need to upgrade to the Pro version for more file storage).
*I happily used Omnifocus for years and it is a terrific desktop app but not so great for collaboration. The learning curve is a bit steep, but this app is powerful. It is really popular among the David Allen Getting Things Done crowd. If you want to learn more about OmniFocus, AsianEfficiency is a great resource.
To be clear, I have no affiliation with the companies that make these apps.