Collaboration is important when podcasting with guests or cohosts. These free and premium tools will help your plan your episodes and show notes better!
1. Google Docs
This is the “king” of real-time, document collaboration. It seems that everyone knows about Google Docs!
With Google Docs, you can create documents or spreadsheets to share with your podcast cohosts or guests. This makes it really easy to coauthor notes and give feedback on ideas.
Honorable mention: Zoho
If you like lists, then you'll love this tool! Workflowy gives you a single, bullet-point list with infinite depth. You can share any level of points.
Workflowy is my favorite for taking simultaneous notes, such as for a TV-show-fan podcast. Each episode gets its own bullet point, then themes or segments are subpoints, each cohost gets their own named subpoint under each theme, and then they make additional subpoints there.
Mix Google Documents and Workflowy together and you'll get HackPad. A modern, feature-rich collaboration platform.
HackPad focuses a lot on team-collaboration features, making it really easy to see who edited what. You can also easily embed multimedia from simple links.
Slack is my new favorite tool. It's designed around communication, but can be used for much more.
Think of Slack as a group instant-messaging program. You can have open or private channels (like chat rooms) for specific conversations, or communicate one-on-one. I use Slack now for all communication with my Noodle.mx Network team. It's fast and easily accessible from multiple platforms.
There are many app integrations that also make great for collaboration. You can draft notes together, share Google Documents, upload images and files, and more.
Need an app for collecting or remembering things? Then you've probably heard of Evernote.
Evernote lets you create individual notes to hold almost anything—photos, text, files, links, and more.
The collaboration comes in by sharing a whole notebook, where you can create, collect, and edit notes together and have a “work chat” channel built in.
If your show primarily discusses links, then Delicious might be the tool for you! Users can tag and share links with each other and add their own comments.
If you want something quick and simple, consider Sync.in. Like other services, it offers real-time collaboration on basic notes. But it doesn't require an account. (However, free public note creation is currently disabled as of May, 2015.)
Most of these methods are either linear- or collection-based. Mind-mapping is another way of thinking. Start with a core idea and start branching out.
This is a great way to brainstorm as it allows you to easily follow multiple paths of thought.
Honorable mention: Mind42
Pick what's easy and meets your needs
All of these tools have their places and could be fun and powerful for collaborating. But a podcasting collaboration tool is no good if no one uses it. So I suggest that you go with what's easiest for your entire team to use. Any tool that makes collaboration happen is better than no collaboration at all.
What are your favorite tools for collaborating with your guests or cohosts?
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- The Audacity to Podcast: "How-to" podcast about podcasting
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- The Productive Woman: Productivity for busy women
- ONCE: Once Upon a Time podcast
- Welcome to Level Seven: Agents of SHIELD and Marvel’s cinematic universe podcast
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