cos-logo-no-tagPart of what we do here is to find and implement resources that help our clients increase their productivity and efficiency. We are always looking for new products or services that can help to quickly streamline our own day-to-day activities, especially when a process feels clunky.

Recently, we have been focused on our own blogging and marketing process for FabulouslyBalancedLife.com and have tried several different products to help support this.

What our process use to look like:

This is a process we have been trying to fine-tune for months. Here’s what our process looked like:

  1. Topics and events are added to our marketing calendar

This has been done in various forms. We have tried word documents, Google Sheets, even our Teamwork Calendar. At one point we even added Trello to the mix, which worked well until we added on team member #2 to help support me with social media.

  1. The initial draft blog post was uploaded to Dropbox to be proofed. Once that was completed, it was then sent back to me for review.
  1. Next, tasks were set in Teamwork to create images which were stored in Dropbox.
  1. Social media posts were created in Google Drive to be proofed and/or scheduled into social media using Buffer.

This entire process involved three different people collaborating on various aspects of our editorial calendar. The process was incredibly bulky, involving at least 6 different tools. As a result, there were inefficiencies and confusion showing up for everyone.

What we were looking for:

We’re a small team of three right now but even with small scale of things, the disconnected and inefficient “process” we were using was creating additional stress and wasted time for everyone involved. Since blog posts are so closely related to social media and all of our other marketing, we became focused on finding a better solution for everyone.

We needed to tighten things up if we wanted to continue to grow and focus on other projects. We also needed to be more efficient with our time and address some quality control issues.

I hire people for their experience and expertise and want everyone working in their own brilliance. I respect their opinions and suggestions and want their input when things don’t feel right. The entire process for blogging and social media was one of those things that just wasn’t right for any of us.

I also try to be very careful not to be distracted by all the bright shiny objects out there, yet CoSchedule kept catching my eye. Maybe it was a case of selective attention, but I was now very aware that we had a problem to solve and had a heightened awareness of the various tools available to me online.

Why CoSchedule:

After discussing our struggles during a team meeting, we decided to give CoSchedule a try. I admit that I wasn’t very excited to try it, as other programs had let us down, but given that our previous system was no longer fitting our needs, I was willing to try. So we dove in and were pleasantly surprised! The more we used it, the more excited we became. It appeared that CoSchedule was going to be the one tool that solved all of our concerns.

Editorial Calendar:

CoSchedule is more than just an editorial calendar. We are able to list blog posts, events, notes, and tasks on our editorial calendar. This helps with the planning process. As we plan out our calendar, by dragging and dropping the various entries we are able to rearrange content in order to find the perfect schedule.

CoSchedule

Content Creation and Collaboration:

Creating content inside the CoSchedule content editor makes collaborating on content easy. Once created, we can set the content to draft, mark it for review, and even schedule content – all in one tool!

CoSchedule Pending

CoSchedule Tasks We can also assign tasks and workflows connected to each piece of content and communicate within CoScheule. This beats our old system of drafting a blog post in Word, uploading to Dropbox for proofing, then copying and pasting the post into WordPress and managing the entire process in Teamwork. We have cut down on the number of steps as well as the number of tools used, saving both time and money.

 

Social Media:

With CoSchedule, we can schedule the promotion of our blog posts right from our calendar. This is allowing us to schedule posts for the same day, the day after, the week after, and even the month after the post is published. We can also set our own dates. The simplicity of scheduling from within the blog post has allowed us to repurpose our content more effectively.

Social Media Templates help us to create content utilizing reusable templates and Best Time Scheduling makes it easy to schedule social media posts at times that are shown to increase traffic and engagement.

CoSchedule-Social-Queue

Amazing customer service:

Finally, I can’t help but mention the amazing customer service. During our trial, I have been super impressed with the excellent tutorials and training that walk you through all the features. I’ve also been impressed with the email support, which has gone above and beyond to answer our questions and make sure we have the best experience during our trial. They even asked about features we would like to see, drilling down to get very specific on how various features would be helpful.

Trying CoSchedule:

There is a 14 day trial of CoSchedule which is more than enough time to see how truly functional this resource is. To learn more or to start your free trial click here. <—- Yes that’s an affiliate link! One more cool thing about CoSchedule is their great referral program that may provide a discount toward my own CoSchedule subscription!