I’ve been blogging since Jesus was a boy, and it’s taken me this long to build good blogging habits. (Jesus was a boy back when we were posting to Xanga, right?)

Good Blogging Habits

Original photo byJess Watters

It can be really easy to be lax with your blog. There’s always a million things to be done for the day job, and most of the work of a blog is unpaid. (Don’t let anyone shame you for not making thousands per post. Pinterest is full of links that will do that, but seriously, it’s a waste of energy and most of it’s a lie.) At the end of the day, even if you use your blog as a portfolio or writing samples for potential clients, it can be hard to get new content posted.

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This year, I’ve taken a new approach to blogging. (And life, really. But that’s not what this post is about.) It’s been tough to publish twice weekly all year, but not as tough as you may think. And if you’d like to start posting regularly to your blog too, I thought some of these good blogging habits would make it easier for you to follow through on that.

Good Blogging Habits

001: Make an Editorial Calendar.

So, I could go in depth on this one, and may or may not have pitched an entire session on this one alone for this year’s Megaphone Summit, but I’ll keep it brief here. Your blog should cover a specific number of categories. For a personal/lifestyle blog, I’d recommend three to five categories. And to be honest, I’d recommend that for almost all blogs.

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Then, thinking about those categories, you can brainstorm blog post topics that would fit under those categories. My categories are work, life, balance, and book reviews. Work posts are generally all about writing and blogging. Life posts are about products I use or my workspace or something tha happened. Balance posts tend to be the woo-woo sort of things I like to write or anything to do with my planner. And book reviews are where I talk about different books — whether that’s the reading lately posts, or posts where I pick a topic and share books that fit that.

002: Publish Posts Consistently.

This is where you have to get real with yourself. Do you only have time to blog once a week? Then only blog once a week. Do you only have time to blog once a month? Then only blog once a month. Whatever you pick, stick to it.

(Pssst! Have you read How to Write a Blog Post yet? What about Writing for an Audience?)

There is something to be said for writing when you feel inspired, but ask any writer who makes a living with their words, and they’ll tell you that they write when they’re inspired. And when they’re not inspired. And when they’re tired. And when they don’t want to. So while it’s nicer (and easier) to write when you’re feeling it, you need to publish posts consistently so your audience knows your content and when they can expect to find new stuff.

003: Schedule Posts in Advance.

I’m not the type of blogger to hit “publish” just as I finish a post. I know many who are, but I don’t. This partially goes back to consistency. I publish a post every Monday and Thursday at 5:30 AM. So if a post is finished at 2:15 PM on a Wednesday, it wouldn’t be consistent to hit “publish” then.

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Another reason I do this is so I can have a stockpile of blog posts ready to go. I like to batch tasks, so I find it’s way more productive if I write a ton of posts all at once. I may take a Friday afternoon or a Saturday morning for this, and I’ll bash out 3-6 posts at once. Then, I’ll find another block of time to format the photos for the blog post and social media. But I find by doing a lot of that work in advance, it makes it a lot easier to ensure that I’m publishing consistently.

004: Read Other Blogs.

As much as I’d like to live in a vacuum with no other human contact, it’s just not an option. And since it’s not, I know that my audience is reading other blogs in addition to mine. So it would behoove me to know what others in my niche are doing. I use Bloglovin’ as my feed reader, and I subscribe to bookish and writerly blogs.

Another reason I do this is because I don’t want to come off as irrelevant. And while I’m rarely on the cutting edge of anything, I do take time to know what’s going around me. If you skip this, know that it will come through in your writing. Just as you can’t write a novel without reading other novels, you can’t blog without reading other blogs.

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005: Share Your Content and Others’ Content.

I know a ton of bloggers that get super salty that no one is reading their stuff. Then, they only share it on Twitter once, at that random and obscure time when they hit publish at an inconsistent time. (UGH DON’T DO THAT.) The thing with Twitter is that no one there is hanging on your every word. Assume they are following hundreds, if not thousands, of people, so you have to do a little more to stand out. Share you post multiple times. (I share mine 8 times the day it’s published.)

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But it’s not enough to share your own stuff. You need to share the words of others, and you need to do that so your followers on social know they can come back to your account to get relevant information or entertainment at any time. And by sharing those blogs in your niche, you provide your followers with more value than you would be just by posting your own stuff.

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What Are Your Good Blogging Habits?

So, what have you done to be more consistent with your blog? What has made the biggest difference in how you approach blogging? What habits would you recommend to others? Let me know in the comments!

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