Do you struggle with juggling multiple creative entrepreneurial outlets and wish for a way to streamline your ideas? Trello is just the tool to bring peace and harmony back to your creative workflow to boost your artistic output. Let me show you how!
If you’re like me you’ve always got several thousand ideas bouncing around your brain - but sparse on those spare minutes to make it all a reality. Getting the ideas out of your head and into some kind of tangible form is the first step, and in the past I was an obsessive fan of lists and sticky notes. Anyone who’s tried this method can attest to how quickly that begins to look like a mad scientist escaped a mental ward and let loose a bunch of random gibberish all over your workspace…not pretty. Plus more than half those ideas get wasted when you don’t notice them because they become a crazy person’s wallpaper to your space. (Also not good).
The solution that saved me from myself was from my fellow idea-generating guide Kirby. She suggested Trello when we first started working together so we could coordinate ideas (teams can share boards and ideas on Trello which makes it incredibly useful for group work) and it made my brain finally feel like I had a grip on the whirlwind of nonsense that surrounded me.
Initially I used it so we could coordinate on what I was posting for the Curious Kirby account - so for this tutorial I’m going to show you how to do a simple “Instagram Workflow” like we used to do for that account. I still utilize this setup personally for planning my business posts - it takes the strain out of wondering what you’re going to do to keep your account current and where you stand on what you have going on. Simply plan out your ideas for posts a couple weeks or a month in advance in Trello and copy/paste the content each time that you wish to post in your IG account. There are also due date reminders to help you stay on target.
There are an innumerable amount of uses for Trello that go far beyond the basics I’m showing you here, but this is just to get you started. Feel free to play around with it to use it as a management tool in all areas of your life. It will astound you how handy it is!
If you weren't in the Art Chat on Monday or didn’t have a chance to set it up yet - go to Trello.com and create a new account. There is a free option - so make sure to select it. The first part you’ll come up to after creating an account is setting up a workspace for your boards.
I set my workspace up as Heidi’s Workspace, though you can call yours whatever you choose. Once that is created, you’ll move to the screen where you have access to the boards you set up (you get 7 for free). Click on the big blue “Create your first board” button and a side panel will open up as seen in the image. You can choose a background photo or color to make it appealing to your aesthetic, then give it a title. I set this example up as Social Media, but you can call it the name of your business or anything else you like (it can be changed anytime later on too).
After you created your board, we’re going to set up a list* for Social Media (yes, again. Remember for any part of this workflow, you can rename things to suit your preference later on). *You will notice it automatically created 3 lists for you - To Do, Doing and Done. Feel free to keep these for your personal use or delete them, but for now we will be creating a unique list for your Social Media flow to get you started on how to use this tool. Scroll to the far right and click “Add another list” and type the name as Social Media.
Next up we’ll be creating the cards. Select “Add a card” under Social Media and name it Monday. For this example we’ll be setting it up how I’ve used it in the past for Kirby - with a time-centered plan for Monday, Wednesday and Friday cards for your posts to be scheduled on each of those days. After you’ve added Monday, click “Add a card” under that to add Wednesday, and again for Friday.
Once you have those 3 cards under your Social Media list, we’ll set up the Checklists. This is a visual way to keep tabs on how much remains work-wise before you can post your idea. Click back into your Monday card by clicking on it. On the right hand side you will see a series of options - select “Checklist”. A new box will pop up with the Title option to rename the Checklist - name it IG. Now you will see a new section pop up where you can add the Checklist items.
Click into the text bar that appeared that says “Add an item”. You will type Image for this first box then hit enter. It will drop down with “Add an item” again and this one will be Caption. Hit enter and the next one on this checklist is Hashtags, then the last one is Posted. By the time you are done yours should look like this:
Congrats - you have created your first Checklist on Trello! The best part about this is the ability to reuse this exact Checklist on other cards on your list. We’ll go over how to copy this same list to your other cards right now. Click out of this card by clicking on the board in the background. Click into your Wednesday card and click Checklist to the right again. This time however we are going to go down to “Copy the items from…” under the Title option. There is a down arrow to the right, click that to select your already created “IG” Checklist. It will auto populate to your card. Go back and do the same thing for your Friday board and you’re all set.
The next important part to mention is the ability to set up due dates so you can get reminder emails when it’s time to post. Click into any of your cards and head over to the “Date” tab. Click on it and it will pull up an option to select a date for your due date. Click dates that coordinate - so for the Wednesday board here I selected next Wednesday 4/6 at 7:43 am as the due date with a reminder 5 minutes before. In the drop down you can select reminders for any amount of time up to 2 days prior to your due date. Once you click save you will see it show up under the header of your board to be checked off when done.
So now you have the basics set up and are ready to plan your Monday, Wednesday and Friday posts. Use this space as a planning board to type ideas in the description box until you’re sure of what you want to post. Once you get a grip on what you want, you'll put your Caption and Hashtags in this description box for easy copy/paste action when it's time to post.
Just a note - I called one of the Checklist items “Image” - but this setup can also be for a Reel, Video or Carousel of images. It’s easy and convenient to upload Images to this card so you can visually see what you are planning too. Unfortunately a preview of videos does not show in the same way, but you can still attach them for ease of use and having it ready to go.
Those are the bare necessities of beginning on Trello - now go make some organizational boards and cards for yourself and tell us what you think! If you’d like to see a video walkthrough of this, be sure to join our private Facebook group Curious Kirby Creatives!
Till next time <3 Heidi