Choosing the right content planning tool for your business is crucial. It can help you be more strategic with your business’s content needs and eliminate the stress of managing multiple things at once. There are plenty of different tools on the market available to entrepreneurs, which is a fantastic thing. But, how do you choose the perfect tool for you when there is so much to choose from?
We have you covered—here are some things you want to consider when choosing the right content planning tool for you:
4 things to consider when choosing the right content planning tool
There are tools that are for free, and there are tools that have a hefty price tag. The good news is that your budget doesn’t have to compromise the quality of the content planning tool you choose.
If you’re on a budget but want to take your content marketing seriously, you can simply stick with the easiest options such as Google Sheets or Google Calendar, which are available to anyone, forever free.
Of course, you have to know that free planning tools most often have a simpler setup and won’t offer some of the more advanced features, like analytics. But, for the majority of content creators, basic content planning features are more than enough.
If you have a team, you might need to consider how easy it’s going to onboard all of your team to the said content planning tool so that you all can work on your business.
Or, even if you work alone, you might not be as tech-savvy and simply want a reliable tool that would allow you to manage your content calendar with ease. Functionality and how easy the content planning tool is are both very important to consider when choosing the right software.
Before making the final decision, check out the tool’s UI and features. Most have extensive pages on their websites explaining all the details. And some even offer free trials, so you could get a peek before you commit. Use that to your advantage.
How much flexibility do you want to have with your content calendar tool? Are you a fan of customization and creating your own templates? Or do you prefer to have set templates that you can use without a hassle?
Some tools might be more rigid and only have set templates in place. This allows for very little room for customization and creativity. Other tools might have so many customization options that for the majority of creators, it would be too overwhelming.
Each content creator has different preferences on how creative and in-depth they want to go with their content calendar. Pay attention to the flexibility of the content planning tool you’re thinking of choosing.
A lot of great software and tools come and go. That is something to consider when choosing the right tool for you because changing from one software to another requires time and energy.
Some creators might want to choose a tool that’s established in the industry. If you’ve spent the time and energy setting up a content calendar and don’t want to be doing it every year or so, this is a wise choice.
Of course, if you don’t mind hopping from one content planning tool to another, then you have more options and could find many different tools that are developed by smaller, indie developers.
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Best choices for different needs
Now that we discussed some of the most important factors to consider when choosing the right planning tool, it’s time to dig deeper into different needs creators have and which tools work best for each:
If you’re looking for the best free customizable tool, try Notion
Notion is by far one of the most popular and loved content planning tools out there. It’s used by many course creators and YouTubers. It’s free and has so many different customization options that anyone can create any template and content calendar.
Notion’s extensive customization is the reason why it’s become so popular in recent years. Many creators love to have the ability to create templates, planners, and lists that are visually appealing while still being useful.
With Notion, you can create different types of pages, create categories for your work, set up automatic transfers between the lists of your tasks, and you can also share templates with your team.
If you’re a visual planner, try Trello
Trello is another free content planning tool that’s perfect for content creators who want a solid, visually appealing planning tool. Trello has a unique UI that allows you to easily see all of your tasks, plans, and notes in columns or “cards.”
You can create multiple boards for different parts of your business. From course creation, community management to marketing strategy, you can easily move around all the notes in your boards as you wish. There’s also an option to work with a team. So if you’re not alone in your business, you can bring in teammates and share boards and information.
If you’re looking for something accessible for all, try Google
One of the most popular choices for content planning tools is Google. And Google has not one but two options for creators to choose from—Google Sheets and Google Calendar.
Both tools are forever free and can be accessed by anyone with a Gmail account. Google Calendar allows you to add different calendars and color code them. You can easily track your tasks, deadlines, and important dates in one place and share all of them with your team. They even have an integration with GoogleMeets, so you can schedule meetings without leaving Google Calendar.
Google Sheets are perfect for those who want the flexibility to create whatever calendar they want. You can play around with the templates Google has—or start blank and adjust your templates however you find comfortable. You can then also share those templates with others and allow them to edit and change them. If you’re looking for a tool that allows you to easily share, create and curate your content calendar, Google is a perfect choice.
If you’re looking for analytics, try ContentCal
If you’re looking for a more advanced content planning tool, then ContentCal might be a great option for you. It’s an all-in-one software that allows you to manage your content as well as your social media/ Plus, it has an analytics feature.
Having access to this feature can be useful for many different reasons. You can save time by having the analytics tracked for you instead of manually measuring how your content is doing. Also, seeing which content performs the best is also great when you’re trying to increase the ROI of your content and grow your business more efficiently.
ContentCal is a paid software. However, there is a free Pro account option, which allows one user, one calendar, and 150 scheduled posts per month. If you want more options, their prices start at $17/month.
If you’re looking for a smart marketing calendar, try CoSchedule
CoSchedule has a very sleek and interactive UI and allows you to plan your content calendar similar to how you would in Google Sheets, but without the hassle of creating the calendar template yourself. This option is great for those content creators who don’t want to spend the time setting up templates as CoSchedule has that taken care of for you.
It’s also a professional tool that’s perfect for content creators who have a team, as this tool allows for easy management of content between people. You can create categories for your to-do lists, move them around the calendar, assign people to certain tasks, and even track progress so you can see how your team and you are doing.
CoSchedule is a paid tool, and their prices start at $29/month.