A Simple Content Marketing Process in Trello Ideal for Distributed Teams

Hello, my name is Lus. I’m the guy that brings you the Works, so you’ve undoubtedly heard of me.

One thing you probably don’t know about me is that I’ve spent the last 15 years overseeing remote editing teams in the gaming business.

Although it is not often acknowledged, it is important to recognize that many members of the gaming community receive very little, if any, remuneration for their work. This is primarily due to the fact that they are undertaking the activity as a hobby, given their passion for video games. As a result, it can be an arduous process to ensure that tasks are completed on time, with it being likened to herding cats.

Since that time, I have utilized the knowledge I had gained to create a content marketing approach for Works, which has been highly successful. I am now able to pass on this information to you, to enable you to implement it with your own distributed content marketing team. Allow me to provide you with further information.

Yes, by all means, please do feel free to adjust the solution to better fit your workflow. It would be great if you could provide me with the details of any substantial changes you make. I have customized the solution for Trello Blogging Process, which is suitable for those who solely focus on blogging. However, it could also be used as a marketing calendar. I have designed it to be very flexible, so it can be adapted to your specific needs.

How Trello Works, in Brief

When it comes to managing processes, I have found that Trello is the most useful tool available.

Trello has proven to be an ideal solution for me as it has the capacity to fulfil my needs without requiring a great deal of investment in terms of resources. When I refer to “overhead”, I am referring to the amount of time and energy that must be devoted to ensuring that the workflow is both organized and kept up-to-date, something which requires active engagement from the user. Although there are more comprehensive options out there, Trello is an excellent choice in this context.

At its essence, Trello is a digital tool that allows users to create virtual ‘post-it notes’, which can be organised on a virtual ‘corkboard’. By providing minimal information, users can add additional details to each note as and when required.

Check out the Works Content Trello board:

Creating good content can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be overly complicated. It is essential to reassess your requirements if you are looking for a tool that is more powerful or adaptable.

For the past year, I have been taking advantage of Trello’s Gold membership; however, I found that I didn’t actually require all the additional features that come with it. Consequently, I reverted to the free version. If you are an avid user of Trello and spend a lot of time reorganizing cards and adding information to them, you may find that the additional features of the premium membership are beneficial. Therefore, you should consider subscribing to the premium version. However, it should be noted that such a subscription is not necessary to follow the procedure outlined below.

Your Tables / Rows

Use them to build a foundation for your content marketing process.

You can create as many columns as you need on your Trello board. Each of these columns is referred to as a “list” by Trello. By this, they are referring to a set of cards on the board.

It is more accurate to refer to the components of this workflow as ‘columns’ rather than ‘task lists’, as the intention is not to describe the content but to provide a step-by-step guide for the creation of the product.

The essential sections for your Content Marketing board are as follows:

  1. Resources
  2. Backlog
  3. Present Week/Month (1)
  4. Draft (2) (2)
  5. Editing/Quality Control (2)
  6. Scheduled/Delivered
  7. Published

To ensure that your content marketing plan is effective, it is advisable to identify the ideal frequency for publishing content. If you have a sizable and widespread content marketing team which is responsible for consistently producing a large volume of content, then it is recommended to publish something once a week.

If you are looking to go through multiple rounds of review and would prefer not to move cards between columns, you can simply replicate the columns (which we will discuss in more detail later). For instance, when working with content from the Works Marketing team, we need to go through the process twice. This can be broken down into two key stages: the first draft and quality assurance (QA) #1, and the final draft and quality assurance (QA) #2.

Resources

Detailed and generalized guidelines that your remote content marketing team may need to adhere to are outlined below. These could include the creation of writing manuals, brand bibles, SEO keyword lists, style guides, and to-do lists (which will be covered in further detail later).

They’re clustered together on the board’s left side to avoid getting in the way of operations.

Backlog

As a team, we should take the opportunity to put some of our ideas into practice. Let us think of this as a collective ‘bucket list’ of content marketing tasks. Any member of the team is welcome to contribute their thoughts when they feel it is appropriate. The content marketing schedule will be based on the ideas we generate here. When it is time to create the concept, we should move the task to the next column and add further details to it. We will shortly go through the steps to accomplish this.

This Week and This Month

Your team will be utilizing this board for the entirety of the production cycle. (Those who are particularly keen to show off their knowledge may refer to it as a ‘sprint’, but only because they have had some exposure to Agile methodology at some point.)

Draft

At this point, a card is drawn and given to the team member who will be responsible for completing it.

Checking for Errors and Making Corrections to Content

If a job is complete or if more feedback is required, the corresponding card gets moved here.

Scheduled/Delivered

Once a piece of content has been completed, it is moved to this location in order to make it available for release or, if it was created for a third party, it will remain here until any further action needs to be taken.

Published

A card should be moved here once an external link can be added to the finished product. Apply it to:

  1. Celebration
  2. Comments made after the fact
  3. Engaging customers through social media can be a great way to start conversations and build relationships. To do this, one can create a to-do list on the card itself or transfer the card to a board that has a specific social media process in place. This can be a great way to ensure that users are engaging with each other on a more personal level.

See How Everything Connects in This Trello Workflow Diagram

In the stack of unplayed cards, a new card is born, untainted and unblemished.

The Marketing Director or Manager may assign the task to be completed at a later date, or a team member may make a suggestion to be taken into consideration. At the end of a production cycle, the Manager reviews the backlog and selects the tasks that should be prioritized during the following cycle.

In the column labelled “Current Month/Week,” they assign tasks to team members, set due dates, and provide further detail, as appropriate.

Once a content creator has initiated work on a task, it is moved to the ‘Draft’ status, thus indicating that progress is being made on the assignment.

Once the individual responsible for the task has evaluated it and established that it is either completed or ready to receive further feedback, they will forward it to Quality Assurance and Editing for further review.

Upon completing their review, the editor will assess whether the content is ready to be published (in which case they will set the status as “Scheduled/Delivered” and notify the necessary personnel) or if further amendments are needed (in which case they will move the card back to the “Draft” column, or the next “Draft” stage if multiple columns are being used).

When the material has been verified to be live, the CMS administrator will move the card to the “Published” column.

Now is an ideal moment to add the live link to the card and inform the relevant social media accounts’ promotional teams. Furthermore, it would be beneficial to recognize the contributions of everyone involved, and hold a discussion about what worked well and what could be improved for future projects. When the card is ultimately completed, it would be wise to store it in a safe place.

And you’re finished!

It is straightforward to gain an understanding of the performance of your distributed content marketing team by using this method. This can be used to identify any areas where improvements can be made; a useful hint is to analyze the columns which have the most cards.

Managers, it is highly recommended that you make frequent use of the ‘Watch’ switch on each card. This will enable you to receive notifications whenever the card is amended or changed. Once you become accustomed to checking your Trello notifications, you will soon appreciate how much easier it is to keep up to date with the information and how much less material you need to trawl through.

Advice on How to Use the Content Management System Trello

A card labelled “Instructions” should be placed at the top of each column.

The title of the column should succinctly summarize the content and how often it is updated. This is especially beneficial when a team is just starting out or when freelance contributors are hired.

Develop a “Resources” card labelled “Task Lists.”

All the different kinds of to-do lists you could need for your procedure are on one single card.

As an illustration, I maintain a list of tasks to be completed relating to Social Media Marketing (SMM). To clarify, SMM stands for ‘Social Media Marketing‘ and not ‘Sexually Explicit Shopping List’, which I’m sure you can understand why it may have been misinterpreted.

This document contains a comprehensive list of all the channels we utilize for regularly publishing content, so when it is time to mark a card as ‘Published’ I can simply copy the list and tag the Social Media Manager. In this context, ‘SMM’ is an acronym for a specific job role. Advertising can certainly involve its share of abbreviations – not always the most convenient!

Tags: Yes or No?

Labeling cards on Trello is a beneficial practice, both conceptually and in practice. This is because it allows you to make use of Trello’s filtering feature to selectively find certain types of projects and discard unneeded cards. Nonetheless, while this can be a useful tool, it also adds another factor to consider when creating and organizing individual cards.

It could be beneficial to have a specific title for each type of content that is created by your remote content marketing team (e.g. video, audio, blogs, infographics, etc.). However, given the cost implications, it would not be economically viable to only produce a limited amount of this content.

When and how should targets be established?

Different opinions:

  1. The deadline for the article’s release has been established by you.
  2. In order for the card to progress to the next stage of the process, it is recommended that the recipient provides a deadline for its completion. This due date will then be reset by the recipient when the card is next rotated.

Having a bird’s-eye perspective of when material needs to be released is a useful starting point. What I do is create a marketing or content calendar in Trello, but I must stress the importance of monitoring the board daily to identify any potential issues that could prevent the deadlines from being met. It is also advisable to be proactive in making sure everyone is up to date with their tasks.

The second choice clarifies timeliness of tasks, making them more manageable. The catch is that if you choose this path, you must ensure that:

A) Everyone in the team is aware of when they should aim to complete the current task.

We utilize a distinct technique to ascertain the ultimate deadline for a specific material. This can be written into the title of the card, which can be inconvenient, yet is still effective.

Get Out There and Create Fantastic Content

That’s the method I’ve developed and perfected over the course of nearly a decade of editorial writing. It has done me well; I hope it does you, too.

Content is essential to success in an online business, as it is often said that the best SEO is achieved with great content. However, if you want to have a truly successful content strategy, you must ensure that you have a dedicated team that follows your procedures and understands your company’s culture. Having a strong understanding of your organization and its values will ensure that your content is in line with your goals and objectives.

Whenever we discuss the importance of having successful remote teams, we always emphasize the need to recruit individuals of a high calibre who have the capability to work independently. If you are looking to do this, or if you wish to add to your existing staff, please get in contact and we will be able to provide you with the most suitable candidates.

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