The New Year is just a couple days away and that means many website managers, social media managers and bloggers will be making lists and promises about how they will be updating their website on a more consistent basis.
I have been blogging on my mommyblog website, Redhead Ranting, for seven years and have yet to keep any consistent schedule for my blog posts. When I first started blogging I wrote every day, sometimes twice. Of course back then no one was reading my blog and without any comments for feedback it was challenging to keep writing.
Thankfully, I had a lot to say and found myself a network of bloggers who had similar style of blogs so we all read each other’s writing and left comments on each other’s blogs. Facebook changed all that but many of us are still writing. Not nearly as frequently but with nearly 1000 posts there’s plenty to read.
On the other hand I also write for many, many business websites and on those I post at least twice a week, every week, every month, without fail. It’s much easier to keep the pace when you’re paid to do it but finding interesting topics can become a challenge after several years and several thousand posts. Coming up with interesting and unique post topics is probably more difficult than the actual writing of the articles.
For my business blogs a New Year’s Resolution isn’t really necessary. I write consistently on those blogs. For my own websites like this one, my personal site and my web design business I find it much more necessary.
If you are new to blogging or managing a website choose a schedule you can maintain. Every blogger I know started out strong — posting daily or more – only to lose steam within 6 months (which just happens to be the average lifespan of a blog). Look at most business blogs or personal blogs and you see they have been abandoned. Often because there is no quick feedback anymore (and most don’t understand how to use Google Analytics so can’t see the return on their blogging investment).
The general rule of thumb is to write daily or more for a new blog but for more people that’s just unrealistic, especially if your website isn’t paying the bills and is more a labor of love. The problem is, if you want your website to pay the bills you’re going to need to add content to your site daily, especially in the beginning.
A longer post is better but if all you can manage is a 200 word post then go for it. Don’t worry so much about length of your post. It’s an added worry that can hinder your creative spirit.
Create a blogging schedule, or hire someone to manage your blogging schedule, and shoot for at least three posts a week but remember more is always better. You can’t add too much content to your website. Period.
I like to do all my writing in the beginning of the month so I spend the first week of each month doing nothing but article writing. I do it that way for the same reason I do all my chores before I go out and have fun — I don’t want any tasks hanging over my head and after 7 years of blogging writing is sometimes a test (though, I still love it more than anything).
If you’re more creative in the morning, then set aside an hour or two to do your writing then. Preferably when you have little or no distractions such as children or co-workers. If nighttime is better then write then. Do you work better at a busy cafe? Then make the time each day to get your cup of joe and do your writing.
It’s more about consistency than anything else at this point. Get into a writing habit and you’ll never hit the writer’s wall. Okay, you might still hit the wall but if you write on a regular basis you aren’t as likely to get sidelined by a bout of writer’s block.