I think of blog posts when I’m on a run, when I’m about to go to sleep, when I’m stuck in the car driving somewhere. That’s not to say it’s something that is always on my mind, but perhaps at the back of my mind. Discovering how to create content for your blog can add purpose while freeing you up to focus on the bigger picture. I’ve discovered a method that helps me blog regularly and create content each month and I wanted to share it with you.
First let me step back and say figuring out what your blog is focused on, who your readers are and what you are (or want to be) an expert on is a helpful exercise. When I started my business I started blogging and it was both a way to share work and create a conversation. I found that as I wrote about the things I cared about and was interested in, it attracted more like minded readers. So, rather than spending all of my time figuring out what everyone else wanted to hear, I focused on what I wanted to write about and wanted to share. The great thing about attracting readers and eventually clients that have a similar perspective as you is that you will probably work really well together. I love being able to create a conversation in this space that allows friends to stay in touch and newcomers to get to know me.
Knowing the purpose of my blog, and that I wanted to include both personal and professional elements, I created four general categories for my posts and they are :
Photography | Business | Personal | Recent Work
If you were to look at the categories of my blog – or any blog – you would get a sense of the topics that were covered. I decided to go even broader in my planning categories and here is a look at what is covered in each.
Throughout the month I write down ideas and then I spend some time at the beginning of the month charting out what will be posted when. This is obviously fluid, and easily changed, but knowing what I have on the schedule, what’s coming up, and what could be posted is so helpful. If I’m organized, I get the writing and photos ready in advance and sometimes prep a few posts for the week. Condensing the time spent on my blog so that it doesn’t take over each day allows me to use my time elsewhere. Hooray!
Another way I save time is by having a routine. I have a few recurring posts that show up each month and highly suggest you do the same. Even one monthly post of the same thing will encourage you to be consistent and provide you with regular content. My regular posts are : image downloads, goals, and daily snapshots.
You can see above the different posts I have brainstormed and the time consuming method I chose of cutting up post its… but it looks so pretty! Also it’s easy to glance at the month or week and see what I’m writing about and if there needs to be more balance.
So how does this help you get started? First know what your blog is about, then determine a few different content categories. Spend and afternoon outside – taking a walk, sitting by the lake (definitely not in front of your computer) – brainstorming the different things you could write about. Spend a set amount of time planning your calender, writing a few posts, prepping images. Don’t do it all at once, but take breaks… as my husband reminded me yesterday before kicking me out the door to go run (I needed the kick) you are much more productive after being active.
For those of you interested in one-on-one consultations, advice, opinions and a reason to drink more coffee, get in touch and I’ll share more about mentor sessions.