Managing Your Nonprofit’s Communications Calendar

NTEN CHANGEI highly recommend that you subscribe to the Nonprofit Technology Network’s quarterly online journal, NTEN: Change.  I’m on the editorial board, and it’s free. It’s written in plain English (i.e. for non-techies) to help nonprofit leaders make sound decisions about how they use and invest in technology. I’m reposting here a short article I wrote for the current edition on using technology to manage your editorial calendar.

Long gone are the days when a quarterly print newsletter was all you had to think about it. Today, nonprofits are mini media moguls, publishing and broadcasting in multiple channels, from print and email, to social media and the airwaves.

Reaching out to more people, more often, demands an integrated approach to your marketing and fundraising communications. Otherwise, you’ll send mixed messages and end up with “all action, no traction” communications.

That’s where an editorial calendar comes in. That simple word processing table or spreadsheet might still work. But to properly manage the overall communications flow coming out of multiple staff members and being delivered to your supporters through multiple channels, you need something a little more robust. Strongly consider a web-based solution that allows out-of-office (and ideally mobile) access to the files.

The next decision is really one of personal preference: do you prefer to see topics, assignments, channels, and dates at a glance in a spreadsheet layout, or do you prefer to organize this same information on a calendar? Both can work equally well, but your viewing preference will help decide which tool to use.

If you prefer spreadsheets, the simple solution is a shared Google Docs spreadsheet. Use a new tab for each month or quarter. If you want to upgrade to a tool with more project management features, but still in a spreadsheet framework, consider something like Smartsheet.

If you prefer a calendar view, set up several Google calendars within one account (e.g. one for each communications channel). This allows you to layer the calendars on top of each other so you can see everything at once, while using the color of each calendar to identify the channel. To upgrade to a calendar-based project management system, try something like Basecamp.

Want More?

Watch our series of video interviews on how nonprofits are managing their editorial calendars

Order a copy of Kivi’s new e-book, The Nonprofit Content Marketing Cookbook

Join us for Rethinking Your Newsletter: Making It More Relevant for Today on September 20, 2011.

Share This Post On
  • http://twitter.com/ifdyperez Ifdy Perez

    Good suggestions, Kivi. I really like how Google Docs works, especially its shared settings. When documents are edited, Google moves them to the top of your list and puts them in bold so you know someone made a change. It’s also great in that it lets you edit the document right on there, without having to download it first (certainly helps any issues with version control). For some reason, I feel files can get lost after a while in Basecamp; it doesn’t work as well for file management but I do think it’s good in project management (assigning tasks, milestones, brainstorming). I haven’t tried to access Basecamp on mobile though, so I’m not sure how it works in that case.

  • http://thesistown.com/ thesis writing service

    very cool post! thnaks alot!

  • Annaliese

    Thanks for contributing this birds-eye view and tips to the journal, Kivi, and sharing them here! At NTEN, we use our organizational google calendars to manage our messaging schedule.  We have a single calendar displaying  Email messaging, and another calendar assigned to social media.  We use those calendars to request messaging from the staff who manage those channels, and also to make sure we don’t over-message any group.  We also have an overall “editorial calendar” — which is really a spreadsheet in google docs that identifies major organizational events and milestones across the 12 months of the year, so we can coordinate messaging and complementary content and programming.

  • http://www.portent.com/ lockem

    Great and useful
    post! I would add that if you like the functionality of Google docs, but still
    prefer having a calendar layout, you can download a calendar spreadsheet
    template.  Search for the calendars from
    your Google docs homepage or click on “Browse template gallery.”  Because it’s a spreadsheet, it will allow you
    to house a collection of tabs in one document. Within that, you can keep
    additional notes or calendars for different months.

  • Pingback: communications calendar | | CALENDAR SCHEDULECALENDAR SCHEDULE()

  • Pingback: 5 Key Factors for a Successful Nonprofit Engagement Plan()

  • Pingback: 5 Key Factors for a Successful Nonprofit Engagement Plan()

  • Pingback: Get Ready for Successful Holiday Fundraising! — Tools & Training()

  • http://fiverr.com/ fiverrr23Jz

    Thank you ever so for you blog post.Much thanks again. Cool.
    fiverrr23Jz

  • http://crork.com nice penalty removal

    gUTm6k Thank you for your blog.Really looking forward to read more. Keep writing.

  • http://www.cbsexe.com/12/teniendo-sexo-con-una-chica-amateur-tetona/ resource

    I just want to say I am just beginner to weblog and truly enjoyed this web blog. Likely I’m planning to bookmark your site . You certainly have tremendous articles and reviews. Thank you for sharing your website page.

  • http://www.ourcoloradoclassifieds.com automobile accessories

    I think this is one of the most significant information for me. And i am glad reading your article. But should remark on few general things, The site style is wonderful, the articles is really excellent : D. Good job, cheers

  • http://www.sepulveaduu.org Kristen Ondrusek

    Spot on with this write-up, I absolutely believe this amazing site needs much more attention. I’ll probably be returning to see more, thanks for the advice!

  • Pingback: Brian Lock Highwood()

  • http://www.atourhands.com Barry Eagon

    I was suggested this web site by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as nobody else know such detailed about my difficulty. You’re incredible! Thanks!

  • http://www.hospitalesseguros.net health supplements

    Thank you a bunch for sharing this with all of us you really recognize what you are talking about! Bookmarked. Please additionally consult with my web site =). We may have a hyperlink change arrangement between us!

  • http://www.sirjohn.info Drema Neace

    It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I have read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you some interesting things or suggestions. Perhaps you can write next articles referring to this article. I wish to read even more things about it!

  • http://www.cumshotsurprisetgp.com learn more

    Very good write-up. I absolutely appreciate this site. Keep it up!

  • http://xxxkylierose.com/43/disfrutando-de-follar-a-una-rubia-inglesa/ discover more

    Right here is the perfect web site for anybody who wishes to find out about this topic. You understand a whole lot its almost hard to argue with you (not that I really would want to…HaHa). You definitely put a brand new spin on a subject that’s been discussed for a long time. Great stuff, just great!

  • http://www.sexovisa.com/9/follando-por-dinero-a-una-peluquera-tetona/ good article

    I’m excited to uncover this great site. I want to to thank you for ones time for this fantastic read!! I definitely loved every little bit of it and i also have you bookmarked to see new information in your blog.

  • http://www.albumsexo.com/9/reventando-el-culo-de-una-portuguesa-rasurada/ follow this website

    Zune and iPod: Most people compare the Zune to the Touch, but after seeing how slim and surprisingly small and light it is, I consider it to be a rather unique hybrid that combines qualities of both the Touch and the Nano. It’s very colorful and lovely OLED screen is slightly smaller than the touch screen, but the player itself feels quite a bit smaller and lighter. It weighs about 2/3 as much, and is noticeably smaller in width and height, while being just a hair thicker.

  • http://www.sexoilustrado.com linked here

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

  • http://www.sexo-cam.com/49/haciendo-gemir-a-una-cubana-con-las-tetas-grandes/ great article

    The new Zune browser is surprisingly good, but not as good as the iPod’s. It works well, but isn’t as fast as Safari, and has a clunkier interface. If you occasionally plan on using the web browser that’s not an issue, but if you’re planning to browse the web alot from your PMP then the iPod’s larger screen and better browser may be important.

  • http://www.sexoviajes.com/33/susy-gala-desnuda-gozando-en-la-furgoneta/ read link

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

  • http://www.flipflopphilosophy.com search jobs company

    Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again very soon!

  • http://www.hot-porn-site.com/17/corrida-en-la-cara-de-blanche-bradburry/ check post

    When I initially left a comment I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now every time a comment is added I recieve four emails with the exact same comment. There has to be an easy method you can remove me from that service? Kudos!

  • http://www.dans-porn-links.com click to read

    You are so awesome! I do not think I’ve truly read through a single thing like that before. So wonderful to discover somebody with genuine thoughts on this subject. Really.. thanks for starting this up. This web site is one thing that is required on the web, someone with some originality!

  • http://www.spankschoolgirls.com more bonuses

    The Zune concentrates on being a Portable Media Player. Not a web browser. Not a game machine. Maybe in the future it’ll do even better in those areas, but for now it’s a fantastic way to organize and listen to your music and videos, and is without peer in that regard. The iPod’s strengths are its web browsing and apps. If those sound more compelling, perhaps it is your best choice.

  • http://lesbianporns.net/13/colombiana-tetona-haciendo-una-mamada-caliente/ good article

    Spot on with this write-up, I truly believe this amazing site needs a great deal more attention. I’ll probably be returning to see more, thanks for the advice!

  • http://www.please-bang-my-wife.net/32/tremenda-mamada-de-una-francesa-pelirroja/ follow this content

    Apple now has Rhapsody as an app, which is a great start, but it is currently hampered by the inability to store locally on your iPod, and has a dismal 64kbps bit rate. If this changes, then it will somewhat negate this advantage for the Zune, but the 10 songs per month will still be a big plus in Zune Pass’ favor.

  • http://www.radiospective.com automobile auctions

    I really appreciate this post. I have been looking all over for this! Thank goodness I found it on Bing. You’ve made my day! Thx again

  • http://www.freshfreepornvideos.com/14/mucho-semen-en-la-cara-de-lili-lou/ browse link

    Can I simply say what a comfort to uncover someone that really knows what they are discussing on the web. You certainly realize how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More people should check this out and understand this side of your story. It’s surprising you are not more popular given that you most certainly have the gift.

  • http://www.zugs-teen-xtacy.com/38/dando-duro-a-la-actriz-porno-jasmine/ check link

    You’re so cool! I do not suppose I have read through anything like that before. So wonderful to discover another person with genuine thoughts on this topic. Seriously.. many thanks for starting this up. This web site is one thing that’s needed on the internet, someone with a little originality!

  • http://pornarmy.net/16/jenny-hard-le-encanta-tragar-mucho-semen/ great article

    When I initially left a comment I seem to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on every time a comment is added I receive 4 emails with the same comment. There has to be a way you can remove me from that service? Cheers!

  • http://www.sluttymilfmom.com/18/madurita-pelirroja-con-ganas-de-correrse/ good page

    Zune and iPod: Most people compare the Zune to the Touch, but after seeing how slim and surprisingly small and light it is, I consider it to be a rather unique hybrid that combines qualities of both the Touch and the Nano. It’s very colorful and lovely OLED screen is slightly smaller than the touch screen, but the player itself feels quite a bit smaller and lighter. It weighs about 2/3 as much, and is noticeably smaller in width and height, while being just a hair thicker.

  • http://www.smutlinxxx.com/29/penetrando-el-chocho-de-una-rubia-extranjera/ great info

    May I simply just say what a relief to uncover somebody who really knows what they’re discussing online. You definitely understand how to bring an issue to light and make it important. A lot more people really need to read this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised that you are not more popular since you definitely possess the gift.

  • Pingback: sex toy websites()

  • http://www.sexonfire.net/18/corrida-facial-en-la-cara-de-una-universitaria/ discover more

    A fascinating discussion is definitely worth comment. There’s no doubt that that you ought to write more on this issue, it might not be a taboo matter but generally people don’t speak about these topics. To the next! All the best!!

  • http://nudeporngalleries.com/12/disfrutando-de-las-tetazas-de-ana/ browse post

    When I originally left a comment I seem to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now whenever a comment is added I recieve four emails with the exact same comment. Is there an easy method you are able to remove me from that service? Appreciate it!

  • http://www.b-media.us Dominick Weisfeld

    Howdy, I do think your site could possibly be having browser compatibility issues. When I take a look at your website in Safari, it looks fine however, if opening in I.E., it has some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Aside from that, excellent blog!

  • http://www.beyourporn.com discover more

    A motivating discussion is worth comment. There’s no doubt that that you should publish more on this subject, it might not be a taboo subject but typically people don’t speak about such subjects. To the next! Many thanks!!

  • http://www.womensphere2013.net modern bedrooms

    I¡¦ve been exploring for a bit for any high-quality articles or blog posts on this sort of space . Exploring in Yahoo I at last stumbled upon this website. Studying this info So i am satisfied to show that I have an incredibly excellent uncanny feeling I found out just what I needed. I such a lot certainly will make certain to do not overlook this website and provides it a glance on a relentless basis.

  • http://www.fistinginactiontgp.com browse around here

    Aw, this was a very good post. Spending some time and actual effort to produce a great article… but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and don’t seem to get anything done.

  • http://www.THEBUBBLECOLLECTOR.COM comercial property for sale

    I think this is among the most important information for me. And i am glad reading your article. But want to remark on some general things, The web site style is wonderful, the articles is really nice : D. Good job, cheers

  • http://www.freepornrevenge.com/12/extranjera-borracha-con-ganas-de-correrse/ discover more

    A fascinating discussion is worth comment. There’s no doubt that that you ought to write more on this subject, it may not be a taboo matter but typically people do not talk about these subjects. To the next! All the best!!

  • http://www.teennudesite.com/6/follando-a-una-rumana-madurita-de-la-red-social/ great article

    Can I simply say what a comfort to discover somebody that truly understands what they are talking about over the internet. You actually know how to bring a problem to light and make it important. A lot more people have to read this and understand this side of the story. I was surprised you are not more popular since you surely have the gift.

  • http://www.weareteens.net click now

    Sorry for the huge review, but I’m really loving the new Zune, and hope this, as well as the excellent reviews some other people have written, will help you decide if it’s the right choice for you.

  • Pingback: amazon video games()

  • http://www.plumppornstars.com/15/convenciendo-a-una-madurita-para-follar/ great info

    I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

  • http://www.MOONEYLTD.COM commercial real estate atlanta

    Hi there, just became aware of your blog through Google, and found that it is really informative. I’m gonna watch out for brussels. I will appreciate if you continue this in future. Numerous people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!