For most of you folks, blogging probably began as nothing more than a hobby. Writing, sharing and hearing other peoples feedback brings a great sense of accomplishment
But the fact is you can make money blogging, if you play your cards well. That is namely the reason why lots of amateur bloggers so to say, start taking their efforts more seriously in the hopes to make some residual income.
And that is when things get a little harder!
If you want results, you need to start putting a lot of effort towards content creation, building an audience, promotion strategies, connection with readers and so on.
And although some of those tasks arent all that time-consuming, once you bundle them up, you end up spending several hours a day. And time is a big factor after all one of the main goals is to spend as less time as possible, while generating as much ROI as possible.
That is exactly what I will cover today friends!
The ten creative tips you will see below are all about helping you become a more productive blogger and a marketer.
I really hope you enjoy them and dont forget to take a minute and share your feedback. Let’s get started!
First up its writing. After all one big part of successful blogging is all about producing quality content.
Here are some of the best ways to make that process a little more effective and finish your posts faster:
1. Read Relevant Blogs
You know that might seem obvious, but do you really take the time to see whats going on in your niche?
The one simply truth about blogging is that you don’t really have to reinvent the wheel. Yes, everything that you cover has probably already been covered. So what makes the difference is not that much the topic itself, but your point of view.
Looking at that angle, you should absolutely check out what your competition is up to and take notes. The more you read, the more ideas will start floating in your head. And as we all know, coming up with the idea is often times tougher than actually writing the article.
Sam Ovens says there’s nothing more important for an entrepreneur than acquiring new knowledge. He suggests you should read as much as possible, sticking to read content that fall into one of four categories at all times—mindset, sales, marketing and business strategy. And if he’s reading one book per week (that’s 52 books per year), I’m sure you can dedicate some time to improve your knowledge too!
2. Create a Plan of Attack
Spontaneity and writing go hand by hand.
Initially you might not have a clue as to what you are going to cover in your latest post. Once you begin to write, however, the first sentence leads to the second, the second to the third and after some time you end up with the finished piece
Or maybe not. Unfortunately the above is not always the case.
So what do you do if spontaneity doesnt work?
Simple. You first create the backbone of the article and then start filling the blanks!
Heres an example:
II. Actual Content
1. First Idea Youll Talk About
1.1 First Takeaway
a) Additional specifications
1.2 Second Takeaway
2. Second Idea
3. Third, etc.
III. Conclusion and the place to ask people to comment
3. Use a Countdown Timer
One of the biggest problems when writing are distractions. Over time, I found that one of the best ways to focus entirely on the article you are currently working on is by setting yourself a time limit.
For counting minutes you can use a timer on your clock or smart phone. Even a kitchen timer may be good for this purpose.
The thing is once you start the timer, you start writing and dont stop until the countdown is over. That is why you should find a good balance between doing enough writing, but not getting frustrated by a too long time-frame.
My advice is to go for thirty to forty minutes. And before you get going, close all apps and sites that might prove a distraction. Social media is NOT an option. Open up the full screen no-distraction WordPress word editor, click F11 and get going!
4. Dont Leave for Later
Yeah, I know, sometimes you just cant help it, but the fact is procrastination kills ideas. Sometimes you might have an excuse (although excuses work against you rather than help you) like you’ve had tough day, you’ve been redesigning your blog or you’ve been doing something else important.
The real problem is putting off writing when you have the idea, you know what you are going to write and how are you going to write it. You basically say to yourself: Nah, I know exactly what I am going to write, no need to rush.
And then once you finally decide to write the first lines, you are like: Hmm, Ive had an awesome idea, only if I could remember what it was!
Don’t procrastinate today’s work for tomorrow, get used to that!
Moving on to the more general blogging part.
Here are some ways to help you manage your content better and improve results:
5. Use Sticky Notes
In a few words, Sticky Notes is a great free Windows tool that is exactly what the title suggests a sticky note that stays on your desktop.
It’s super simple: you just create the note and write down whatever you want. No need to save it and you can edit it straight from your desktop.
With the keyword list (included in the post about Sticky Notes) you have a full range of formatting, if youd like to use such. Other than that, the main ways I use the notes is to collect blog post ideas, to create a daily to-do list and to make sure I’ve done things like proofreading, adding meta tags and so on before I publish a new post.
Definitely give that one a go!
6. Take Advantage of Infographics
Throughout the last years, infographics became quite a trend. And although they aren’t as much of a hit as they were in 2012, I believe using infographics is a great content marketing strategy.
Why is that so?
Because infographics are mostly visual content, where you dont have to write much. The only thing to write is a short introduction and a summary of what readers are going to see.
So you only have to spend a fraction of the time youd need for a traditional blog post. At the same time, however, you end up with a piece of content that has a great chance of going viral.
The fact is people love infographics.
7. Get the Editorial Calendar for WordPress
One of the things I don’t like about both Blogger and WordPress is the way your blog posts are structured in your admin dashboard. You basically get a chronologically ordered list and that’s it.
The problem with that is that it makes it difficult to get an idea of how your posts are structured over time. That makes it hard to manage your drafts, schedule articles and look at the big picture of your posting schedule.
Fortunately, there is a great plugin simply titled Editorial Calendar that changes the boring layout.
Once you get it up and running, you end up namely with a calendar and your articles placed on that calendar. From here, you can easily move your posts around and add new ones.
Thanks to this tool, you will be able to write a lot of posts in advance and schedule them accordingly and without wasting time, figuring out dates and days.
8. Prepare Your Call to Actions First
All the writing, promoting and socializing are worthless if you don’t first have the right call to actions. If you want to generate sales, get more subscribers and increase conversion rates in general, you need to be prepared.
So in short, here is a list of the places where I’d advice you to include a call to action:
- At the top of your sidebar
- Under your blog posts
- In your About page (About page importance)
- In your New Here or Start Here page
- In your footer
Here is the social media part of this post.
As we all bloggers (should) know, having a social presence these days is an absolute must or you are missing out on a lot of traffic and clients:
9. Sign Up for a Triberr Account
In short, Triberr is a great way to get your content seen by a lot more eyeballs and also get to know new bloggers in your niche.
On Triberr, you enter different tribe and share the posts of the other tribe members. In exchange, they do the same for you.
You could expect to bring anywhere between 100 and 1,000 additional clicks on your latest blog post. So, you should give Triberr a go.
10. Start Using HootSuite
If you are into Twitter, then you are probably using or at least have heard of HootSuite. There are lots of advanced features, including scheduling social media updates.
Once you set it up, you create a posting schedule (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, WordPress, Instagram and YouTube are supported, as of now) and you simply start adding your updates to the buffer. All else is done on autopilot.
I really hope you found useful some of the tips I shared.
Now, I’d like to hear your thoughts!
What are your ways to increase your productivity as a marketer?
Have you tried some of the strategies I talked about?
If so, what are your thoughts?
I look forward to reading your comments!