Blogging is not just a personal hobby but a way for businesses and brands to actively engage with their customers, clients and industry peers. An online community is a powerful tool and whether you blog for fun or it is part of your livelihood, the process of blogging can be time consuming and confusing.
As you track your readership and get to know your audience, it makes sense to deliver your content accordingly. It is all about being reactive and following the trends which start to present through the information in your Google Analytics account. Once you are familiar with trends and patterns in demographics and hits, you can tailor your posts accordingly. Good blogs don't happen by accident, they are well considered and thoroughly prepared through practice, patience and planning.
Break Up Your Topics
Obviously this breakdown depends entirely on your topics and angle but the important point is that the content is varied but in a structured way. Week in week out, this method provides consistency, interest and a method to what would otherwise be madness. Spread your topics in a way that works for your time scedule but a good example would be:
Monday - Product Review
Tuesday - rest
Wednesday - Personal Post
Thursday - rest
Friday - Outfit Post
This obviously is entirely dependent on your blog topics but I have created this based off a fashion/beauty/lifestyle blog. If your blog topic is more niche, say fitness, you could break it down this way:
Monday - Workout Plan
Tuesday - Rest
Wednesday - Receipe
Thursday - Rest
Friday - Body love/confidence
Whatever you blog about, whether broad or more specific, breaking your content down in this way will ensure your blog flows well and reaches your following in a cohesive, structured way.
Factor in productivity
If your blog posts are taking too much time then your wasting your time! You should aim to produce quality content in a set time frame. Much the same way a business looks at productivity (dollars per hour against expenditure per hour) you should be looking at your posting productivity.
It is no good creating an epic, amazing, ground breaking post if it took weeks to create. You need to have a life in between blogging! Plan out your blogging time, for example - 1 hour photographing time, 2 hours writing, 1/2 hour proofing = 3.5 hours per post. This will also help you decide on rates when you work with brands. Decide what is reasonable. Quality over quantity is absolutely true for blogging, however, don't spend your entire life working on quality and only post once a month. Your readers will disengage and you will exhaust yourself.
Keep a list of possible blog post ideas, either in your phone, or in a notebook. List any items or product you need for any upcoming posts and list other bloggers you want to collaborate with or brands you would like to approach. Lists are everything! Don't fall into the trap of "oh, I will remember that and come back to it later" because our brains simply can't be relied upon to remember that amazing, crazy idea that came to you while sitting in your car in traffic. Be a passionate list maker, it will pay off!
Get A Blogging Planner
Finding the right Blog Planner can take some time but once you discover it, everything becomes much easier. Having a blog schedule benefits you time management and also your readers as they can come to understand what to expect and when to expect it. Keep a blog planner handy and refer back to it regularly, track your posts per day, with subsequent to-do lists for that post and watch the whole process become faster and easier. You can download free Blogging Planners or create your own. Find what works for you and start to plan your blog passionately. As I said earlier, good blog posts don't happen by accident.
Follow The Calling, Not The Crowd
Your blog might be a little different from the ones you regularly trawl. You might have different topics, a different layout or a different voice. This is great! To stand out you need to stand clear of the crowd. Find your point of difference - maybe you don't do minimalism and you love decoration, the over the top stuff, the opulent, the dramatic. Maybe you offer advice from your own mistakes. Maybe your not airbrushed, but an honest, open, relateable and beautiful mess. Own it. Maybe your damn good at makeup and have some things to teach your followers. Maybe you transformed your body and want to share with the world exactly how you did it. Or maybe you know what looks good with what and aim to show others how to put together an outfit. Whatever you love, whatever your best at or passionate about, should be your blog. A blog is a digital scrapbook, a magazine which is entirely yours to do what you want with. Make it your own.