When someone tells me that he’s planning to start a blog, I get really excited about it. I’ve been blogging in some form for over 11 years now, so it’s safe to assume that it’s something about which I am very passionate.
“That’s fantastic!” I say. “Tell me a little bit more about it. What’s your theme? What are your topics? How often are you going to post?”
When a new blogger tells me that the plan is to be a daily blogger, a shrill alarm sounds off in my head.
Whoa, whoa, whoa. Hold on a second, there, partner.
Daily blogging is great. It does wonders for your SEO; it helps to increase traffic to your site; it builds a community.
But it’s not an immediate destination. Not for one person, anyway.
What do you think would happen if you, having never set any kind of exercise regimen other than walking from the couch to the bathroom, decided to one day get up and run a marathon?
You might make it a mile or two, but you’d burn out pretty quickly.
If you trained, though, and ran some 5ks, 10ks, and half-marathons first, your goal of one day running that marathon would be a little more realistic.
Likewise, if you’ve never blogged before, or if you’ve never blogged regularly, it’s not necessarily practical to just throw yourself into it at a full sprint.
You might make it a month or two, but your odds of burning out and giving up are pretty high.
Does that mean no one can do it? No. People have done it. But the ratio of successes to failures is alarmingly imbalanced.
Now, I know what you’re thinking:
So you’re telling us how great daily blogging is, and then you’re telling us not to do it.
Well, yes and no.
Daily blogging is great. And I’m absolutely in favor of it.
But if you’re the only blogger you’ve got, I’m never going to suggest that you jump right into a daily blogging schedule.
Instead, put yourself through a training period. Establish regularity first. Aim to post once a week on Tuesdays, or every Tuesday and Thursday. Set a schedule that works for you and stick with it for a few weeks until you’re really well-adjusted to it.
Then build your way up, adding a day and giving yourself an adjustment period.
Rome, as they say, wasn’t built in a day. Neither is your content strategy.
Enjoy the journey. Try different topic ideas and methods of writing. Research the best kinds of blog promotion tactics for you. Interact with your social community. There are any number of other blogging aspects that don’t involve the actual writing part. Don’t forget about those, because without them, your blog is just a bunch of words hoping to maybe someday be found.
Worried that you’ve got all of these ideas and if you don’t publish them now, you’ll forget them?
You’d be surprised how many bloggers are driven by similar concerns. There are a few ways you can avoid losing your ideas.
The best way is to just go ahead and write the post. You don’t have to publish it right away. Scheduling posts is really simple with a CMS like WordPress, so you can write your ideas as you have them and post them according to whatever stage of the “increasing schedule” you’re at.
You can also use note-taking tools (my personal favorite is Evernote) that will help you organize your thoughts, clip web content, keep links, and generally prepare for writing the actual post when it comes time.
Daily blogging is great, and I definitely encourage you to use it as part of your content strategy if that’s your goal – but only after you’ve worked yourself up to that point. In the meantime, don’t forget to learn from your surroundings and enjoy the journey.
photo credit: blog for profit