Are you an aspiring professional blogger, hoping to join the ranks of those who get paid to blog every day about specific topics like tech, social media, gadgets, or even other topics like celebrity gossip, health, or fitness? Many of those who make a living — or even supplementary income — from their blog have at some point in their career dedicated a routine, time, and method to blogging every day. Even if you just blog as a hobby, you may find yourself looking for tips on how to blog every day to develop expertise in your niche in hopes to propel yourself in your career, or to leverage your blog to supplement your regular income. I recently had a chance to sit down with Liz Strauss, who was named one of “The Top 10 Women Social Media Influencers” by Forbes, to talk about how she’s managed to blog every day for years — and her tips for you to do the same.
Just like exercise and diet plans, sticking with a common plan and a routine is critical for ensuring you can stick with your goal of blogging every day. Liz says that “most people think that blogging takes a lot of time, but it doesn’t need to.” Liz says “you just need to start with a plan and it needs to suit who you are.” While Liz says that five days a week is more than enough when committing to the goal of blogging “every day,” she warns that it is better to be consistent than to blog frequently. Liz explains that “people who blog five days in a row and then never blog again cause problems for both their audience and search engines,” as the audience has come to expect a blog post every day and will stop reading if you stop posting. Also, search engines will become confused and potentially penalize you for the sudden lack of content. As a result, Liz says it might be better to blog once every five days than to do what she calls “binge blog.”
If you haven’t started blogging, consider getting into a routine of blogging certain types of posts on certain days. Liz started with the “FOB Cafe” on Friday, routinely linking to other blog posts that she thought her audience would find interesting and important. Liz says that this was “important and useful because this preselects the Internet for other people and automatically raises you the level of other experts.” If you do this routinely, this can take care of one blog post a day, every week.
Liz then suggests to choose another day of the week week, such as Wednesday, to do an interview with someone who represents your audience such as a customer, a reader, or a reader you want to attract. She suggest to set up up three routine questions that are typical of someone who reads. Liz started this habit, which became a series called the “BAD Blogger,” in 2005, opening up her calendar to those who wanted an hour long phone call with her. Though the phone calls and questions asked of her were routine, each individual story was unique, making it a popular feature for her readers. She suggests that if you take the same approach, consider asking the same three questions; though you could ask three unique, interesting questions, eventually these will become difficult to come up with. Instead, come up with three interesting questions to ask for the first person, and continually ask those questions. Again, if you decide to create this type of blog post regularly, you will have easily created another blog post once per week.
Many bloggers who have ambitions to blog every day question those who already do blog every day how they find the time. Liz explains that that “you find time for anything you want to,” continuing to add that she started to blog every day because she wanted to keep up with the writers discipline of writing every day. Many bloggers approach blogging as if they are writing a thesis, or as if they are writing for a teacher. She stresses that “a really good blog post is one idea.” While you may find some posts here at LockerGnome or other blogs fairly lengthy, there is no maximum or minimum on blog length. Often, bloggers who blog every day keep blog posts limited to one idea — and, as a result, keep posts short. Liz suggests that if you find yourself starting to use subheadings, start a new blog post with that idea, instead. If you like to outline your ideas before you start writing, you may find that you can actually break up what might otherwise be one blog post into five or six smaller posts, allowing you to to blog every day that week. Whether you publish them all at once is up to you; you may find you only have time to write blog posts on Saturday morning, but can use the scheduling feature in many blog platforms to spread out your blog posts throughout the week, making it appear as if you are blogging every day.
On that note, many bloggers who strive to write every day often ask how to find ideas to write about every day. Liz suggests paying attention to the questions people are asking you. For example, if you own a business, consider looking at your FAQs, as each of these can provide content for a blog post. Additionally, if you write a blog post that has bullet points or lists, consider expanding on each of these points as blog posts of their own. Liz also suggests writing in series, picking a topic like productivity and writing a blog post on every related topic you can think of. Many bloggers who blog every day are always considering the problems, topics, and experiences in their life and considering how they can translate into a blog post. Be sure you always have a way to document an interesting idea, whether it’s an app on your phone or a notebook in your pocket or purse to jot down ideas.
Don’t Focus on the Wrong Things
Liz mentions that “your 8th grade teacher doesn’t read your blog.” Be sure not to get caught up in being a perfectionist, and also not to treat your blog like a thesis paper. Liz explains that “there’s a difference between blogging and other types of writing. Blogging is about making a connection.” She continues to emphasize that “blogging is really meant to be a conversation,” pointing out that that’s why there’s a comment section, after all. She advises to be complete, but not thorough, sharing your personal experiences and not just information and allowing room for your readers to join the discussion. Liz compares successful bloggers to movie critics — anyone can write about a plot, setting, and characters, but Liz says “what makes movie critics useful is their experience of the information.” She explains that by writing our own experiences, readers can extrapolate their own experience. She emphasizes that “people come to your blog for you.”
Do you blog every day? What tips do you suggest for those who try to? Feel free to share your ideas in the comments.