Creating & Maintaining a Blog Posting Schedule!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Let's first admit to the problem, we've all sat down in front of our computers brought our blog screens up to write a post and....nothing. You've planned nothing, you've taken no images and you have no ideas flowing through your creative brain. Now let's admit to another problem, you probably don't have a schedule or you probably haven't been maintaining one. You're a spontaneous blogger who usually has lots of ideas and you never thought you would run into this problem. Well, today is the day to face your problem and to start blogging in a whole new way. Yes, I was that spontaneous blogger once too and until now I never realized how destructive that process can be for a newbie blogger or a blogger expert. I've spent several months getting a schedule down and being able to maintain the schedule not only so I could post content, but so I had genuine ideas that I wanted to put onto your screens. Creating and maintaining a schedule can be overwhelming, challenging and just plain boring. Today I'm going to share with you the ways I got smart, got organized and got serious about keeping on a schedule. 

#1) Think about the times of day you are most active or the one's that you might be the most active.
The first thing I thought about when planning out a strict blog schedule for myself was the times that I was going to be able to be the most active, not only on being able to publish posts but also being able to spend time on social media. I'm lucky because I currently am a student and due to my school schedule I am unable to work. This mean's that many of my days are completely free (with the exception of my school days) and this allows me to produce content any day that I would like. At this stage, I also did a lot of thinking about how often I would be able to post to produce the best content I possibly could. After narrowing down the days and amount of content I could produce I integrated this into a rough idea of what my posting schedule would look like.

#2) Think about who your audience is and when they want to see your content.
The next thing that was really important for me to think about was my audience.  This included what days and times these readers were the most active. I studied my feeds on social media and keep records of times and days I noticed the most activity. Studying my readers or the people I followed or the people who followed me made me more aware of when the best days and times were for me to post content. After doing this research, I then took my rough drafted schedule and implemented in on my blog to test out the difference between regularly posted content and my spontaneous schedule. I noticed an instant difference with my traffic almost doubling immediately. 

#3) Get a paper based planning system.
While your personal schedule and your audience are two of the most important things when it comes to creating your schedule, maintaining your schedule can be the challenging part. To help me keep on track with planning, note taking and being productive I implemented a paper based planning system. I went out and purchased a $10 planner from Staples and an affordable and cute notebook from the Dollar Store and I was set. Using this paper-based method allowed me to have visual goals and guidelines to follow. For example, I write all of my blog posts in my planner depending on my blog schedule (which usually doesn't change now). I also use my planner to have constant to-do lists and things that need to get done for my blog. As for my blogging notebook, I use this to keep any ideas. For example, right now I'm in the process of thinking of writing an e-book! (hint hint) So any ideas I have for that go right in my blogging notebook. I keep both my planner and notebook handy and beside my computer at all times because you never know when an idea will come to my head that I want to record.

#4) Its easy to pick days you want to post, but it's harder getting your productivity in line.
I think the hardest part of implementing any system is staying on track of everything that you need to do. When I starting my blogging schedule I had no idea how or when I was going to produce my content or if I even would. I produced some content at night right before I went to bed. Other content sat in my drafts area and didn't make it to your screen. Recently being productive has been my main goal and I'm happy to say that I have reached it. For me, I produce the best content at night, between 9pm-11pm when I have the time to sit down and focus on what I'm writing (despite me writing this post at 1pm in the afternoon)! I keep myself on a strict schedule and make sure that every night before I go to bed I take the time and at least write one post. It doesn't have to be perfect but my ideas need to be down on my screen and everything needs to have some flow. The next day I come back and I edit the post, add the images or do the finishing touches. I then add this post into my planner as completed and ready to go. 

Here is a little sneak peek at how Little Beauty Bug is going to run from now on. As many of you know I choose to post content three times per week usually on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays. Well because of my school schedule being Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays I've had to switch some things up a bit in my schedule. I will still be posting three times per week but instead I will now be posting on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays. While Sunday's aren't super active days for me or my readers these posts will be a little bit more tame, and I will make up for these posts on the more active days on Wednesdays and Friday's. I'm also a big believer in separating my posts. I know that I write many posts in advance, but it's impossible for me to post three days in a row. I think to space my posts out so that I have more time to edit them if needed, change things up in the post or retake some shotty images. At the end of the day, it's always important to remember that you created your blog for yourself and your blog should never become a burden. However, it's also important to remember that you produce content for people to read and engage with. It's about finding the happy medium and being able to produce honest, good quality and reader-friendly content on your own schedule.

Here are some other important things to remember about blog scheduling:

Try and produce content on a consistent basis. Each week try and produce content on the same scale as previous content and then make sure to post it on the same days and times are previous. Your readers will get used to this schedule and keep returning to your blogs. 
#2) Use social media to your advantage. If one day a post is going to be later than usually let your readers know my posting about it on social media. Or if you run into technical difficulties and your not going to have a post up at all, use social media and let your readers know.
#3) If for some reason you start lacking ideas use the things around you to get inspiration. For me, this means scrolling through Pinterest or enjoying the outside and refreshing myself from the vicious downward cycle that bloggers can easily fall into.
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Embrace and Ignite is a beauty blog run by Krystal-Marie which is dedicated to being the buzz-hub for the latest and greatest beauty products.

Thank you all for sharing my love of beauty and makeup and I look forward to connecting with you all in the comments section!