Name me one business owner who doesn't struggle with blogging consistently.
Go on, I'll wait.
In business, there are a million things to do and blogging is one of the easiest tasks to push to later. Unfortunately for many, later usually means months later.
However, consistently publishing content can help improve SEO so a stale blog with inconsistent publishing frequency may not be doing your search engine rankings any favours.
In this post, I'll give you some tips to improve the consistency of your blogging.
Why Blog Consistently?
Consistently blogging has several benefits for your business. It can help:
- Establish you as an authority in your space,
- Gain clarity around your intellectual property,
- Improve your SEO, and
- Grow your business.
Research from HubSpot has shown that businesses that blog more than 16 times per month generate 3.5 times more traffic and 4.5 times more leads than businesses that publish 0 to 4 blog posts per month.
I don't know about you, but more traffic and leads are enough to keep me blogging consistently.
Here are 11 tips to help you blog consistently.
1. Create Content Clusters To Identify Themes & Topics To Write About
Blogging consistently is hard, especially if you don't know what you're going to write about. Your blog can also get messy if you don't dedicate some thought to how you will structure the themes in your blog.
This is where creating content clusters come in handy. Going through the content cluster creation process will help you to build a structure for your blog where you are writing about specific topics under various themes.
The topics that you document in your content clusters will form the basis of your blog writing.
2. Schedule In Time To Write
To blog consistently you will need to plan in advance. Life gets busy so there is going to be plenty of competing priorities. To get around this, it's important to schedule in a specific time to write. Get into the habit of time-blocking, where you put some time into your calendar to write.
Don't let anything jeopardise this writing time. Don't reschedule or move your 'writing appointment'. Once it's in there, it stays in there.
Another important point is that writing time is writing time. This means that you shouldn't be writing and editing. Write until you think you have covered the designated topic sufficiently, then go back over it and edit it for spelling and grammar.
This also means no designing on the fly. Don't worry about banners, infographics or logos until you've finished writing. Also, don't go down the stock photo rabbit hole. I'm sure we all know someone who has decided to add a stock photo into a post, only to be still searching for the perfect photo 30 minutes later.
Remember, writing time is writing time.
3. Capture Ideas On The Go
If you're anything like me, you'll get ideas when you are away from your computer. Don't miss out on anything by capturing blog ideas on your phone. I use an iPhone so I will often use the Voice Memos app or Evernote to capture ideas on the go.
Other people I know will carry a notebook with them everywhere and jot down notes or draw pictures of any ideas they have.
Find what works best for you and start gathering those ideas.
4. Make Blogging A Habit
The hardest thing about doing anything consistently -whether it's exercise, diet, or writing - is to get started. Once you've started, the process becomes easier as it becomes a habit.
A good way to make blogging a habit is to start with a challenge. For example, I'm currently on a 31-day blogging challenge where I need to write at least 500 words every day. So far, I've written much more than 500 words every day and I can already feel the blogging habit taking effect.
If you want to make blogging a habit, find someone to keep you accountable and start with a challenge.
5. Create A Content Calendar
If you've followed this list, you should have already created content clusters and scheduled time to write. Now you need to decide what to publish and when to publish it.
This is done by creating a content calendar.
It's important to decide on a realistic publishing frequency when creating your content calendar. If you're a solo-preneur, you've probably got a million things going on, so find a frequency that you can commit to. If you've got a team, you can probably increase the frequency as you'll have some extra hands to help you get everything done.
A content calendar can also be handy to help you decide on a theme for the week, month, or quarter. For example, my content calendar has me writing about SEO for this entire quarter.
6. Batch & Schedule Your Posts
Humans are terrible at multi-tasking. I'm even worse than most humans so I know how important it is to batch your work. This is where you will produce a few blogs during your scheduled writing time.
Likewise, batching your work means that you will have dedicated time to:
- Edit multiple blogs at once,
- Organise multiple designs and graphics at once,
- Gather stock photos for multiple blogs, or
- Publish multiple blogs in one batch.
The last point can feel a bit weird if you publish a month's worth of blogs at once, so this is where scheduling comes in. Sit down once a week and schedule your blogs to go out on days that you already decided when you created your content calendar.
7. Write Within A Framework
I'm a big believer in frameworks. They make everything easier - including writing blogs. Create - or adopt - a framework that works for you when it comes to writing blogs.
I plan out my blog content using my Fast Blog Framework and then I write the post in a specific order. I'll write the body first, then the conclusion, followed by the introduction.
For me, this makes the writing process flow, and it just works.
Find what works for you and stick to it.
8. Ditch The Distractions
We are surrounded by distractions. Many apps on our phone will "notify" us of everything and anything - messages, emails, tweets, Facebook likes, retweets, new snaps etc - so make sure that your notifications are turned off. Do Not Disturb mode works well for uninterrupted writing time.
Another source of distraction can be people - workmates, employees, friends and family - from time-to-time they may inadvertently interrupt your blogging schedule.
Put yourself in an environment where you minimise distractions.
9. Get In The Zone
The Zone is where writing feels effortless - your fingers fly and words appear on your screen with very little thought and, before you know it, you have penned some prose that surpasses your own expectation.
Wouldn't it be awesome if every blog writing session was like that?
Well, unfortunately, it doesn't always pan out like that. One way to improve the likelihood that you'll be in the zone is to adopt a 'totem'. A 'totem' is a small item that you hold or wear that initiates your inner writer. Activating your 'totem' puts you in writing mode and helps you identify as a writer. I learned about totems from Todd Herman's The Alter Ego Effect, which I strongly recommend that you read.
A great interview with Todd can also be heard here, where Todd is interview by Ash Roy for Ash's Productive Insights Podcast.
10. Build A Team
Having a team to support your blogging efforts will help you focus on your strengths. If you love writing, then your team can handle the design, SEO, and uploading to your site. This will free up your time to grow your business.
Depending on where you are at in your business, this may not be possible yet. Keep building your business until you can bring on some help.
If you already have a team, think about how they can do some of the tedious blogging tasks away from you. Get your team to:
- Research themes & topics
- Conduct keyword research
- Design infographics
- Create banners
- Upload to your website
- Input meta description
- Syndicate your published content
- Share to social media
- Build backlinks
- ... and much more
Delegate what you can and consider outsourcing if you don't have the team to handle the heavy lifting.
11. Celebrate Your Wins
If you are committed to blogging consistently, then it is important to celebrate your wins. These can be:
- Milestones (e.g. 100 blogs published)
- Traffic (e.g. first 1,000 visitors)
- Readers (e.g. an increase in returning visitors)
- Bounce rate (e.g. a decreased bounce rate indicates a more engaged audience)
- Subscribers (e.g. first 100 subscribers)
- ... etc
Take some time to define what you regard as a 'win' and reward yourself whenever you reach an achievement.
If you're serious about improving your SEO then consistently creating content should be high on your priorities. Implement these 11 tips to help you blog more consistently and give search engines more content to index. This, in turn, will improve your chances of getting ranked for your target keywords.
Your business' blog is a robust platform that can be the home to content that you can syndicate across the internet so don't neglect it.