Are you thinking of adding a digital planner to your planner stack for 2021? Or dare we say, going digital all together! For a long time digital has been a “dirty” word in the planner community (side eye) because of our devout love of all things paper. But several things have come to pass that have made digital planning more appealing than ever before.
Here are a few:
📱The never ending expansion of technology and development of computer tools and software
📱The influx of a new tech savvy generation of planners
📱The ease of use and portability of a tablet vs. paper planner
📱The increasing demand for customization in planner systems
📱More planner brands releasing digital versions and/or accessories
To clarify, for the purposes of this article, we are talking about digital planners in the sense of full digital planner downloads not digital planning on a Google Cal or iCal. That said, let’s get into what you need and what you need to know if you are starting a digital planning journey.
Anyone can use a digital planner and it is not as complicated as it may seem. Similar to paper planning, digital planning doesn’t really require much to get started. Considering most people have a variety of devices and tools at their fingertips already, it is not that much of a stretch. Here are the basics you need to jump in and get planning:
📱a tablet (preferably an iPad)
📱a pencil/stylus tool
📱a digital planner of your choice
📱an app to access and use your planner (Good Notes, One Note, Notability)
There are many ways to set up a digital system with more designs coming out all the time. You can choose to purchase an entire digital planner and upload it to your tablet, just purchase templates, build your own or subscribe to a online app. The best thing about it is that you can make updates, changes, move things around or insert pages where ever you want and of course there are stickers.
We are taking a look at a few options to help you get started:
Passion Planner introduced it’s first digital planners this year which feature the same layouts as the popular print versions. The Weekly Planner (dated and undated) and the Daily Planner (undated) are all available in digital versions plus four awesome sticker books. The digital versions also have interactive tabs which help you navigate through the planner easily plus Note sections for dot grid, lined and grid. And if you need more pages, not a problem, just add them in. The popular downloads from the Passion Planner library can be used in the digital planners as well.
Bloom Daily Planners first jumped into the digital world by offering their fun and colorful sticker packs through their Etsy shop. Recently, they have expanded their digital product line up to include the Classic Planner (dated), the Teacher Planner (undated) and the Dot Grid Journal. The products have been very popular so more digital versions are in the works for 2021 including a new Classic Planner and a Vision Planner (a favorite among the Bloom community). The files are most compatible with the Good Notes app but PNGs are available as well. For 2021, all the digital products will be compatible to use across multiple apps. Bloom also has a collaboration with Notability where some of their stickers are available directly inside the app.
The Zinnia Journal App is designed with the bullet journal lover in mind. Zinnia Journal is it’s own app available in the Apple App Store which includes everything you need in itself to begin your creative digital journaling/planning journey. Once you download the App there are two digital planner options, a pre-made journal with planning templates already designed or a blank page to start from scratch. The app is easy to use and features a variety of cover options for your journal, writing/drawing tools and color palettes to work with. In The Studio, an online library in the app, you will find an endless amount of elements that can be added into your journal including stickers, templates, frames, dividers, washi strips and more. There are even some templates designed by Amy Tangerine (@amytangerine) and Nicole Barlettano (@plansthatblossom). The user interface is so simple and fun to use plus you don’t have to worry about messing up your pages and wasting an entire notebook. You can watch tutorials and inspiration videos on their YouTube Channel, some of which are hosted by Mark from @menwhobullet.
While paper planning is not going anywhere, digital planners will probably continue to expand as far as options. A quick search on Etsy will turn up a large variety of digital planners and even more digital sticker options. The Instagram community is also up and coming with more people beginning to explore digital planning and shops and brands beginning to offer more digital products.