Connecting your Tagboard Graphics to Google Sheets is a powerful and robust way to ingest data from different sources, including websites, RSS feeds, and more! You can save time by using this data to automatically populate text & image elements in your graphics.
If you're new to Tagboard Graphics, first check out an initial overview & tour of the template builder. This article will cover how to:
Connect your Google Sheet
In the Element menu on the left side of your Graphic template builder, click to add a new 'Data Connector' element to your Graphic. Select 'Google Sheet'.
You'll have two options:
Add data from a Private Sheet: this will require you to authenticate your Google account in Tagboard. Each Google Account can only be connected to one Tagboard account. To manage your Google Account connections, click on 'Account Connections' on your dashboard.
Select 'Add a New Google Account'
A new window will open prompting you to log in to your Google Account
Login to your Google Account & select 'Allow' to connect to Tagboard
You will now see your Google Account as an option when you click to connect a Private Sheet
Browse & select from your available spreadsheets
Once you've made your selection, choose which sheet (or tab from your Google Sheet) you'd like to map data from
Add data from a Public Sheet: pull data from a publicly available Google Sheet using the URL. The General Access levels for the Google Sheet must be set to be available to anyone with the link. You will not need to connect a Google Account to connect a public sheet.
Enter the URL
Choose which sheet (or tab from your Google Sheet) you'd like to map data from
Map your Data
Once your Google Sheet is connected, you will automatically see a screen prompting you to map data to your graphic elements. (The column titles will match Row 1 of data in your spreadsheet.)
Select which Columns of data you'd like to create elements for in your Graphic and whether that data is Text or an Image. (By default, Tagboard will predict whether an element is text or an image, but you can always override with your own selection.)
Don't worry if you're not sure which data you want to map yet, you can always add additional data elements to your graphic template later!
Once you've made your selections, click 'Map Data'.
Text & Image elements will automatically be created and added to your Graphic Template. You will now see a new Google Sheet layer in your Layers panel, as well as a Dynamic List. The Dynamic List is how you can control settings, such as spacing and filters, for the data set as a whole.
Add Additional Data
You can add additional data to your graphic at any time, even once you've done the initial mapping.
If you want to add a new Dynamic List, click the plus sign next to Google Sheet.
Why would you use an all new Dynamic List? Great question. 💪🏼 Some common use cases: if you want the spacing & alignment to be different for different lists of data, you want to show a different number of rows, or you want to be able to show & hide entire lists at one time in Producer.
To add a new data element to an existing Dynamic List, click on the plus sign next to Dynamic List. In the dropdown, choose between a Text or Image layer. This will open up a new modal where you can choose which column of data from your Google Sheet you'd like to add to your graphic.
Update your Data Mapping
You can also update what data is mapped to an element at any time. In the Layers panel, click on the individual layer you want to update. In the right sidebar, click on 'Map Data' in the Content menu, and select the new column of data you'd like to map.
Format your Graphic
Now that you've got text & image elements that are automatically populating with data from your Google Sheet, it's time to make your graphic beautiful! 🎨
In addition to formatting the styling of your text & image elements, you will have a number of additional controls when using Google Sheets in your Graphics.
Google Sheet Formatting Options
To access these options, click on the 'Google Sheet' in your Layers panel. This will open the Google Sheet formatting options in the right rail.
Updating the Sheet: switch to a different sheet, or tab, from your already connected Google spreadsheet
Syncing Data: re-sync your data at any time & see when the data was last synced with your Google Sheet
Dynamic List Formatting Options
To access these options, click on the 'Dynamic List' in your Layers panel. This will open the Dynamic List formatting options in the right rail.
Direction: choose whether you want your data to be displayed vertically (default) or horizontally
Spacing: controls spacing between each row of data
Start from Row: by default, your graphic will display all data from your Google Sheet starting with row 1. You can choose to start from another row (commonly used to hide a title row)
Rows per Page: choose how many rows you want to show per page (by default, your graphic will show the first 10 rows)
Current Page: flip through pages of data, if your Google Sheet has more rows of data than will be displayed on your graphic template
Animation: add effects to animate your Dynamic List on & off screen (This will animate the entire Dynamic List as a whole. You can also build animations for each individual layer in your Dynamic List.)
Formatting your Text & Images
Each layer in your Dynamic List can also be customized on its own using all of the usual options for Text & Image elements, such as fonts, color, and styling. You can find a full breakdown on customization options below:
Manually Sync your Data in Producer
You can automatically refresh data upon request, to ensure you have the most up-to-date data in your graphic at the time you go live.
Drag & drop a Graphic with a connected Google Sheet onto your Playlist. Select that Graphic to open the Graphic Editor in the lower right quadrant. Click on the Google Sheet layer. Click 'Sync Data'. Here you can also see when the data was last synced.
Auto Sync your data in Producer
You can auto-sync for a graphic from the connected Google Sheet. Grab a coffee, make a snack, and feel free to take a break, as long as you manually click 'Sync' to keep the data up-to-date.
You can set the automatic refresh to happen every 15 seconds, 30 seconds, 60 seconds, and 120 seconds.
** Remember when you check the box to auto-sync, you much also click Update Preview or Update Live to have it kick into action.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I see what Google Account is connected to my Tagboard account?
Click on 'Account Connections' on your dashboard to see what Google Account is connected.
Can I connect more than one Google Account to Tagboard?
Yes, you can connect multiple Google Accounts to your Tagboard account, as long as that Google Account has not been connected to another Tagboard account.
Can team members connect Google Accounts to Tagboard?
Yes! Admin Tagboard account holders and team member Tagboard accounts can each connect their own Google Account(s) to their Tagboard account.
I connected a Google Account to use Private Sheets. Can everyone on my Tagboard team see everything on my private Google Account?
If you connect a Private Sheet, your other Tagboard team members will be able to view, access, and update the Graphic Template that the Private Sheet is connected to. They will only have access to data from the private sheets that are connected to a Graphic Template; they will not be able to access any other private sheets from your connected Google account. If a team member deletes the Private Google Sheet layer from the graphic, but they are not the owner of the Google account, they will lose that connection and will not be able to re-add the Private Sheet.
I'm getting an error when I try to connect my Google Account. Why can't I connect my Google Account to Tagboard?
Each Google Account can only be connected to one Tagboard account. If you're getting an error, first thing to check is if that Google Account is already connected to another Tagboard account.
Do I need to have a Google account in order to use this feature?
No! You only need to have a Google account if you want to use Private Sheets. If you are using a Public Sheet, all you need is the public URL for that spreadsheet. In the 'Share' settings for the Sheet, the privacy must be set to 'Anyone on the internet with the link can view, comment, or edit.
What type of data can I link from my Google Sheet to my Graphic Template?
You can link text & images from your Google Sheet to your Tagboard Graphic.
How often can I update & sync my data? Is there a limit?
You control how often you sync your data, to make sure you have the most current data every time you take a Graphic live!
There are, however, limits to the number of requests per minute that a third party, like Tagboard, can make to Google to fetch new data. Every time you set up a Google Sheet, that requires 3 requests. Every time you sync the data, it requires 2 requests.
Google allows 60 requests to be made per minute. So we don't anticipate you hitting this limit unless you have dozens of people making graphics and hitting refresh at the same moment.