Many people have asked me how I keep track of the tips I share in The Useletter. Here’s a basic rundown of my process.
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My Editorial Calendar Show Notes
Edit your spreadsheet and make it pretty by dragging and dropping column/row dividers, adding color to cells, changing fonts and text sizes, etc.
My first set of columns is a calendar with months and days. I also have a column that lets me keep track of the edition number (ex. Useletter Edition No. 31).
I use the calendar mostly for reference, but it’s also nice to be able to see things at a glance. For example, when I have written and scheduled The Useletter to go out on a particular day, I change the color of that box on the calendar. Not only can I see at quick glance that an edition is scheduled, it also gives me a quick overview of the day I send The Useletter out. (This was especially helpful in the beginning when I was testing different days I was sending each edition out.)
Topics or Categories
Across the top of the next set of columns, I indicate the general topics/categories of the tips I share. I do this to make sure I share a balanced variety of tips. I cover 8 basic topics and split those in half so I share 4 different tips each week.
The notes column is for anything I want to remind myself of. For example, “I used a checkmark in the subject line this week.”
The last column is a shortlink to the web version of each individual edition. This is handy to have so I can easily grab the link if I want to reference that particular edition. I manually enter the shortlink every week after subscribing to The Useletter myself. When it arrives in my inbox, I open it, check to make sure it looks good and then click the “Web Version” button and copy the link URL. I go back to my editorial calendar and paste it in to the last column.
Putting it all together
To flesh things out, if I have an idea for a tip, I type in the main idea of the tip in a cell under the appropriate category. If I have additional notes to add to that tip, I can click on that cell, go to Insert –> Note which gives a lot more space to write additional info regarding that tip. Cells with notes are indicated with a small triangle in the top right corner.
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