Another strategy for planning ahead that many bloggers use is to create a postings schedule for themselves. This can happen on a range of levels (from informal to very structured) but is often a great way to give some level of structure and motivation for posting. Here’s a few quick ways that I’ve seen bloggers do this:
- Numerical Goals – set a daily/weekly/monthly posting level that you want to achieve.
- Topical Goals – set yourself a number of topics that you want to cover over a period of time. These can be ‘general’ topics (ie you want to write 5 posts this week in a certain category on your blog) or can be quite specific (ie you want to write 1 post on XXX topic, another on YYY topic and another on ZZZ topic).
- Post Style Goals – set yourself a type of post to write each day. Some bloggers have a weekly rhythm that they stick to (ie on Monday I’ll post an interview with someone, on Tuesday I’ll write a rant, on Wednesday I’ll do a review post, on Thursday I’ll do a link post style wrap up on the news for the week and on Friday I’ll write a tip post) For ideas on different types of blog posts – here’s 20.
Make your goals reasonable enough to be achievable as well as big enough to stretch you a little.
Using posting schedules works brilliantly for some people and gives them a wonderful framework for their blogging, but for others it can squash their passion for blogging. It’s worth experimenting with though and seeing if it fits with your personality.
I tend not to use posting schedules in day to day blogging but do find them very useful in those times when life threatens to get on top of me and I find maintaining momentum most difficult. In these times I attempt to set a goal for each and then on a piece of paper in front of me tick off each post as I write them.
Public Posting Schedules – some bloggers not only have personal or private posting schedules but have public ones and tell their readers what to expect on their blog. This makes the blogger accountable to their goals and can create a sense of anticipation among your readers but is also risky if you don’t meet the expectations that you create in your regular readers minds. I do this if I’m writing a series of posts and I know I’m going to follow through on my goals – but don’t like to set many more expectations that that as my own style of blogging is reasonably spontaneous.