The Secret to a Better Blog

The New Year is just around the corner. As we reflect on this passing year, it’s time to take stock in what went right and what might have gone better. My guess is, for many of you, your blogging habits might be due for some improvements. And I have a sure-fire way to make sure your blog has the best year yet. Keep reading to learn how…

What Is the Secret to a Better Blog?

So what’s this big blogging secret? It’s a simple little thing called an Editorial Calendar. You might’ve heard about them. Maybe you even considered creating one at some point. Well, there’s never a better time than now to organize your blog’s upcoming content.

How to Create an Editorial Calendar

  • Start by brainstorming. You can do this alone or with a mastermind group if you have one. Write down as many ideas for blog posts as you can. No need to organize at this point, just let your brain do its dumping thing.
  • Keep a notepad handy at all times! The best ideas tend to come to us when there’s nowhere to write them down. We tell ourselves we’ll remember later. We tell ourselves this, but it’s a lie. So write everything down as soon as it comes to you.
  • Go back and review your blog’s traffic statistics and comments. Which posts brought in the most traffic? Which posts had the most engagement? These are priceless clues as to what your readers are looking for. Write them down!
  • Decide how far out you’re going to plan. Some people only like to plan quarterly; others have great success in planning for the whole year. Do what feels most comfortable to you. If the thought of planning out the entire year feels overwhelming, then start with the first quarter.
  • Use a calendar, whiteboard, spreadsheet, or whatever feels right. Determine your publishing schedule (once a week, daily, twice a month, etc.) and start filling in those dates with blog post ideas.
The mother of all editorial calendars.

Why This Works

  1. Creating an editorial calendar allows you to relax around your content. Once you know what you’ll be writing about, much of the stress of blogging is automatically removed.
  2. Your brain works overtime. Whether you know it or not, your brain is constantly percolating and processing. If you have your editorial calendar in place, you will unconsciously be preparing to write the content, making it much easier to produce when the time comes.
  3. You’ll know what to look for. When you know what you’ll be writing about in the future, you’ll be able to spot great resources for those topics well ahead of time. Keep a swipe file for each topic so that you can easily find the references you’ll need when the time comes.
  4. Organization becomes a breeze. After you’re done brainstorming, you can categorize your blog posts into specific areas, allowing you to create a theme each week or month. For example, if I come up with five posts for writing a sales page, I’ll plan to write about them during a specific month and, if I’m really smart, I’ll end the series with an offer of some type (30% off all sales pages or a free lead-generating webinar on sales copy).
  5. Repeating the past successes. Don’t ever shy away from re-purposing your blog’s content. When you hit on a hot topic, go ahead and rework those posts for future use. Better yet, create an entire month’s theme around that topic and break it down into step-by-step instructional posts.

Have you used an editorial calendar in the past? How’d it go? Let us know in the comments below!