Content calendar

How to create a content calendar in Asana

There are a few ways to create your content calendar. To get started quickly:

  1. Use our content calendar template.
  2. Import an existing spreadsheet where you currently track content work.

How to access all Asana templates

GIF demonstrating how to access templates in Asana from the +button in the top bar

If you’re a free user, prefer to build your own content calendar from scratch, or want general best practices for Asana projects get started with these steps.

Tips for managing and doing content calendar work

1. Visualize all content work in a single calendar (and other ways)

If you’re managing a content calendar, you probably want to see it in a Calendar View. That way, you can see your entire publishing schedule in one place and adjust dates without using a separate tool. Calendar View saves you time, because it’s populated by your existing content tasks with deadlines.

GIF of how to use calendar view in Asana and reschedule on calendar

To use Calendar View:

  1. Click the Calendar tab at the top of your project.
  2. Drag and drop any task to reschedule it.
  3. Sort your calendar to see it by category by clicking the filter icon.

In general, project views give you different ways to visualize project data, from deadlines on a calendar, to status updates, to seeing all attachments in your project.

SCREENSHOT showing all different Asana project views and tabs

2. Save time and prevent mistakes by templatizing common content processes

Most content teams repeat processes like the drafting and review cycle. Instead of losing time by starting from scratch and potentially forgetting steps or leaving gaps, you can create template tasks that have dependencies.

  1. Create a new task in your content calendar project and name it “TEMPLATE - copy me for new content.”
  2. Add subtasks for the activities you do each time you create the content piece. For example, outline, first draft, review, incorporate edits, publish, share with sales, etc. Create subtasks by typing Tab + s
  3. Ensure stakeholders start their part of the work at the right time by adding task dependencies. Click the icon then Mark as Dependent on. Task assignees get notified when the task they’re waiting on is completed so they can begin without repeatedly pinging someone to see if the work is ready or accidentally missing a handoff.

SCREENSHOT of how to create a task dependency in Asana

3. Capture relevant creative brief details and action them faster with forms

Creative briefs help content teams capture important details about an assignment’s goals, audience, and requirements, but they can slow down the creative process if they aren’t completed properly or get lost in a doc. Instead, create a creative brief form that’s directly connected to your content calendar project to ensure your team starts with the information they need (in terms they understand.)

SCREENSHOT of creative campaign project brief form created in Asana

Forms can be submitted by anyone—even if they don’t use Asana—by sending them the form link. Once submitted, the form becomes a task in your content calendar project so it can get prioritized. When you’re ready to work on the new content piece, create a copy of your content template task. Then paste the creative brief details from the form submission into the task description.

Set up a form by following the steps outlined here.

4. Hit deadlines with clearer handoffs and approvals

Content deadlines are tight and unclear handoffs or confusing review cycles are costly. Instead, keep all working files, feedback, and expectations clear with an approval workflow:

GIF approval workflow with custom fields in Asana to show when work is ready or already approved

  1. Add the Asana-created “approval stage” custom field to your project by clicking the blue Add Custom Fields link at the top of your project.
  2. Once content is ready for review, the creator sets the field to Ready to review.
  3. The reviewer will get a notification that they can now start their review.
  4. Once they’re done reviewing, they set the custom field to Approved or Changes needed.
    • If changes are needed, the reviewer can leave a comment so the drafter knows what changes need to be made.
  5. The creator gets notified that their work is approved or needs to be updated. From that notification, they can see the feedback, and jump back into the file where they need to incorporate it.

Voila! Your reviewer knows exactly what to review and when, while your creator gets the feedback they need on time. Best of all, everybody avoids the “…is this ready yet?”

To see more tips about running reviews and approvals with Asana, check out our approvals article.

5. Prevent duplicate work by tracking content tasks in more than one project

Often times, you aren’t creating content in a vacuum—maybe it’s part of a larger campaign, or work another team is relying on. Without Asana, teams might not be able to see work happening in other projects or initiatives, meaning work gets duplicated or they spend more effort coordinating.

GIF multihome the same task into multiple Asana projects for content calendar and launch project

Instead, you can add tasks to multiple projects to save time—without duplicating work or managing it in different places. It’s the same task across every project you add it to, so all the files and comments stay put, while stakeholders see it in a context that makes the most sense for them.

Tips for reporting on content calendar work and progress

To learn how to create reports to analyze your content production start here.

To get updates on content you’re publishing and its status start here.

Know where your content stands to spot blockers or at-risk work

In order to publish each piece of content on time, editors need to also make sure that everything is pacing properly toward its deadline. By using custom fields for things like “content stage,” “priority,” and “approval stage,” you can sort your project by these categories to check in on content at various stages, and monitor priorities proactively.

SCREENSHOT of advanced search report results in Asana

  1. To sort your project, click the filtering icon in the top right.
  2. Select the custom field you want to sort by.

For example, if a blog task due tomorrow is marked as “not started,” you can @mention the assignee right from the task to see if you need to shift deadlines. Or if a high priority brochure isn’t approved yet, you don’t have to ping everybody in a panic asking if you can print it yet.

Resources for planning and managing a content calendar

More of a visual learner? Want to see how our customers run their content calendars? Check out these resources:

Resources Link
Content calendar template Use template
Video tutorial Watch How to Asana
On-demand course Register for Asana Academy
Case studies See how Autodesk run their content calendars with Asana
Connect with Community Attend an upcoming training or start a thread on our community forum
Content calendar tips blog Read blog
Social media calendar tips Read blog

Planning a content calendar in spreadsheets and separate calendars makes it difficult to see deadlines, know content statuses, and keep track of files. Instead, teams can plan, manage, and work on content pieces from one project so they can publish their best work more easily.

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Asana Lessons

Learn the Asana basics in less than 15 minutes with these quick lessons

Tasks

Tasks Lessons

Track all of your work

3 Minutes

My Tasks

My Tasks Lessons

Always know what to do next

3 Minutes

Projects

Projects Lessons

Work with teammates

3 Minutes

Inbox

Inbox Lessons

Communicate even faster

3 Minutes

You can use tasks to track, collaborate on, and organize all your work.

Tasks can be to-dos, ideas, notes, or reminders.

Assign a task to yourself or a teammate.

Press Tab+M to quickly assign a task to yourself.

Add a due date so your deadline is clear.

Add instructions and expectations in the task description field.

Type @ to link to other tasks, people, conversations, or projects.

When you @mention someone, they’ll be added to your task as a follower.

Followers get notified when new comments or attachments are added.

Add anyone who needs to stay up to date on your task as a follower.

They can always unfollow to stop getting notifications on your task.

Add comments to ask questions or give followers updates.

Heart a comment to let followers know you’ve seen it.

Add relevant files or irrelevant GIFs as attachments.

You can also attach directly from Dropbox, Google Drive, or Box.

Create subtasks to break your task into smaller steps.

When you’ve added a subtask, press enter to add another.

Subtasks can contain all the same details as regular tasks.

Click the comment bubble to add comments or attachments to a subtask.

You can create tasks from any screen using your top bar.

Every Task has a unique URL to easily copy and share.

Congrats! Looks like you’re up to the task.

On to the next lesson!

Always know what to do next with My Tasks.

My Tasks is a list of every task assigned to you.

It makes managing your work simple.

Click on your My Tasks list and start typing to add tasks.

Like a text document, add a new line for each new task or paste in any list.

Forward to x@mail.asana.com to turn your emails into tasks

Asana will translate your email into a task, including your attachments.

New tasks will appear at the top of your list in New Tasks.

Tasks you add to My Tasks are private to you.

Click Make Public to share them with your team.

Prioritize tasks as Today, Upcoming, or Later.

Click on the blue dot next to the task, to quickly sort it.

Mark the tasks you’ll have time for Today.

Teammates can view your My Tasks list to see what you’re up to.

They’ll only see tasks you’ve made public or shared in a project (more on projects later).

Mark tasks due within a week as Upcoming so you can see what will be due soon.

On its due date, your task will move from Upcoming to Today.

Just like magic.

Mark tasks due in more than a week for Later.

They’ll be out of your way until their due date approaches.

Your tasks will move from Later to Upcoming a week before they’re due.

Keep My Tasks prioritized to always know what to work on and what’s coming next.

Now you know how to track and plan your work!

Next, learn how to work with your team in Asana.

Work together on groups of tasks with projects.

Projects help you track and organize the steps in a process or initiative.

Like an event plan, product launch, or editorial calendar.

Like My Tasks, simply click and type to add tasks to your project.

If you have your steps in a document or email already, paste in that list.

Add tasks to your project from email.

View your project’s unique email address from the project dropdown menu.

Add your tasks to other related projects.

Tasks can be included in multiple projects.

Add sections to organize tasks in a list project.

Type : at the end of any task title to make it a section.

Or, add columns to organize tasks in a boards project.

Drag and drop tasks between or within columns to reorder.

Assign your tasks and set due dates.

Never miss a deadline with your project calendar.

Drag and drop tasks on your calendar to change their due dates.

Add everyone who needs to stay updated on your project as members.

Project members will get notified of new conversations, statuses, and tasks.

Post conversations to make announcements or start discussions.

Your post will be sent to all project members.

Use Progress to see how your project is moving forward.

Set a project status to update your team on how it’s going.

The Project Owner will be reminded to set a status once a week.

Open and organize projects from your sidebar.

Favorite projects to pin them to the top of your sidebar.

Click the star button on the left of your project name to favorite it.

Create new projects from any screen using your top bar.

Now you can move projects forward with your team.

Just one more lesson before you dive in.

Communicate and coordinate faster with Inbox.

Check Inbox to quickly read and respond to your latest updates.

Inbox will notify you when you have a task due…

and when teammates update tasks, conversations, and projects you follow.

Open and respond to updates without leaving Inbox.

Click an update and you’ll have all the context you need to respond.

Archive updates you’re ready to dismiss.

Click the X that appears on the right of an update to archive it.

Open Archive to move dismissed updates back to your Inbox.

Click the arrow that appears on the right of an archived update to move it back to Inbox.

Unfollow tasks or projects to stop receiving updates about them.

In the end, you have control over the updates you receive (or choose not to receive)

When you’re ready, you can turn Asana’s Email notifications off.

Most communication with your team can be more easily managed from Inbox. Just remember to check it often.

Congratulations! Now you’re ready to have a great work day with Asana.