Running a blog is time and energy consuming. Just writing the posts alone takes a lot of effort and dedication, and that doesn’t even include monitoring comments, dealing with technical issues and coming up with ideas for posts.
This is exactly why so many blogs are started with good intentions, but abandoned soon after. Or just sporadically updated with no real focus.
That doesn’t mean you can’t do more with some preparation, however.
You can get more blog-efficient and start posting more while cutting down the time you spend doing it. Just imagine being able to keep the pace of a well-known and updated blog, without having to spend countless hours doing it.
So busy bloggers rejoice! Here are a few tips on how to maximize your blog efficiency.
This is crucial, but so often missed. Every blog should have a publication schedule, working out what they are going to be writing for the day.
I prefer to do a monthly calendar for my own blog, setting it up at the end of each month for the next month.
This usually takes me about an hour, but cuts out endless hours of scrambling for topics on the day.
Planning ahead keeps you organized and stress-free. You can use free web apps like Google Calendar to create your monthly editorial schedule and set up reminders to come to your email and phone to never miss a deadline.
You can also create recurring events in Google Calendar, for example, “Write a new article every Friday” and set a reminder to never forget. Fridays tend to be quieter days for me, but you can select the day of the week that will work for you best.
Some days you just feel like writing. You are inspired, clear headed and eager to go. Other days you would rather not bother, and find it so hard to focus that you waste a lot of time procrastinating.
The trick is to take advantage of the former so you are covered on the latter. Whenever you feel a bit more inclined toward writing, do an extra post or two and keep them in drafts.
Make sure the topics are “evergreen” …meaning they are relevant any time. Then, on the days you can’t focus, take a much-needed breather and just post one of your extras. Saves time, energy, frustration and will ensure a quality post for your readers.
Automation is a great way to free up some time and focus on more creative tasks.
WebCEO lets you use automatic SEO content checks to run on your site on a regular basis and alert you of any new SEO issues to fix.
Google Search Console is another great idea because it will email you monthly digests of your site organic visibility for you to keep an eye on your growth.
Email marketing automation helps you set up newsletters to come out automatically to your subscribers whenever you have a new post published on your site.
Recently, the common advice is to write so-called “long-form” content. There have been claims that longer content ranks better and attracts social media shares.
Well, it is a myth.
In reality, you need to write as much as it is required for your content to be helpful. Specific short tips do great in Google for long-tail queries.
It is helpful to find those long-tail queries people use to solve their specific problems or answer their specific questions. Just about any keyword research tool allows you to filter search queries by the number of words they contain. You can then pick any that inspires a content idea.
As a blogger, you probably feel the need to give your readers as much content as possible. So, you write long, drawn out posts that are good, but probably not necessary. When it comes to online writing, it is better to be short and sweet.
Make long posts the exception and not the rule, and post most of your articles at between 500 and 800 words. This will take less time while giving your readers what they want more succinctly.
Likewise, it is always a good idea to update and re-publish your older article instead of writing a new one. Updating old content allows you to take advantage of already acquired link equity and improve your declining rankings.
One of the best methods of generating quick but relevant content is to go with something interesting happening within your chosen industry.
For example, a technology blog might post a quick explanation to a new model being announced, give the link to the original source and then provide their view on it. Fast, simple and also great for generating traffic when the topic is trending.
Google Alerts can be set up to notify you of daily news on your relevant topics. You can set up the frequency of the alerts to avoid being overwhelmed.
Using content curation to monitor and publicize news is another good idea. It keeps you updated on what is going on in your niche and allows you to be well-connected to other content creators and bloggers by linking to their articles.
Covering time-sensitive content is tricky but it can get you links if you learn to do that fast. It is also a great way to become THE source in your niche, so people will start subscribing to your newsletter to easily monitor what is going on in the industry.
“What makes my news coverage?” This is one of the questions you need to ask yourself prior launching your news blogging strategy. Namify lists more important questions to answer.
Failing to remain active and consistent is one of the top reasons why bloggers never see solid results and ultimately quit.
It isn’t difficult to write more in less time when you are more focused on how you go about it.
These five tips will be sure to make you more blog-efficient. You will be able to post more than even, yet do it in less time than you are spending even now. Just imagine what you can do with that free time!
Ann Smarty is the Brand and Community manager at InternetMarketingNinjas.com as well as the founder of ViralContentBee.com. Ann has been into Internet Marketing for more than a decade, she is the former Editor-in-Chief of Search Engine Journal and contributor to prominent search and social blogs including Small Biz Trends and Mashable. Ann is also the frequent speaker at Pubcon and the host of regular Twitter chats #vcbuzz and #myblogu.