Blog post scheduling is one of the hardest tasks to do. It requests good planning, a great vision for the future and after all – time. This is my guide to blog post scheduling for busy bloggers.
One of the things I never really learned in my first 3 years of blogging is exactly this – how to write and schedule posts in advance. And only recently, when upcoming months seemed really hectic, I get myself together and made a PLAN.
I can’t guarantee this specific plan would work for you but I’m sure it can give you an insight into new ideas on how to schedule your own posts and get better at long-term planning.
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What are the benefits of blog post scheduling?
Whether you’re a full-time blogger and your blog is what brings your monthly salary or you’re a hobby blogger, maybe just getting into blog monetization or really just doing it for fun, we all want our blogs to be successful.
And the very first step to having a successful blog is consistency in writing.
But the reality of our daily lives is as it is. Some days we have more inspiration and more free time to write posts, other times we can experience weeks full of struggle and to-do lists.
That’s where blog post scheduling comes in and gives your blog a chance to have consistent content.
Blog scheduling will:
- Make it easier for your readers to know when they’ll find new content on your blog;
- Take worries about blog post writing out of your daily life, especially, when you have no inspiration;
- Make more free time on a daily basis for older post promotions and other blogging related tasks
Before getting to blog post scheduling, you can read more on how many blog posts per week to schedule and other similar questions.
Guide to blog post scheduling for busy bloggers
My blog post scheduling system is based on weekly blog posts, with at least 1000+ words. But this idea can be adjusted to any content plan.
STEP #1 Come up with topic ideas
Coming up with new content ideas can happen on a daily basis. At this step, all you need is a topic of your blog post.
I usually write down some ideas daily or weekly, whenever they come into my mind. It’s definitely harder to just sit and think about things you could write if the inspiration is not hitting you hard.
But there are various ways how you can improve your brainstorming:
- scroll through Pinterest;
- read other blogger posts;
- check what your readers are asking for in emails;
- look at what topics are discussed on related Facebook groups
- take your old blog posts and review which of the topics could be rewritten in a more in-depth post or separated in several blog posts instead
There is no magic number of how many blog post ideas you need to have. I usually have around 20+ standby ideas.
STEP #2 Outline some of the upcoming posts
When the inspiration hits you (once again), start outlining some of your gathered topics.
This means that you won’t have to spend hours on each post right away. All you need to do is to write bullet points for each topic, maybe add some links or images you already have in mind.
For me, this outlining process is happening on a daily basis – whenever I have a bit of time or a big willingness to work on my blog.
It can also happen as soon as you come up with the topic. That’s when you might have the most ideas on what exactly to write.
STEP #3 Dedicate a day or a specific time to blog post preparation
Since you have outlined these blog posts already, there is no need to be as inspired to actually write and finish the post.
If you have the bullet points, it’s a lot easier to actually get into the flow and write even if it’s not really your day.
Therefore, give it a try and just schedule a day when you can spend several hours finalizing these posts, creating graphics, scheduling.
In the best case scenario, you’d be able to schedule this time weekly. But in case you’re on a tight schedule, just do your best and make it bi-weekly or even monthly.
I started doing this before going on a month-long trip and moving to a different country afterward. I was pretty sure that all the time I’ll have will be spent for my freelance clients, not blog post writing. So a month before getting on the road, I scheduled 3 months worth of content by sitting down once per week and writing around 6 hours in a row.
When you do it in one sitting, it takes a lot less time than going back and forth, therefore, you save at least several hours!
It felt a bit like a content factory but usually – when I start writing, it’s really hard to stop.
A few tips on how to make this happen:
- For me, the best days to do this were on the weekends or when I’ve just finalized some client projects and I have a bit more time on my hands. Sometimes those were mornings – just before the day starts, other times – evenings when other things are already done.
- What’s important – in this time, FOCUS ON WRITING. Don’t check emails, answer phone calls, check Facebook. Just write. The rest can wait until you’re finished.
- Give yourself some free time between posts so you head stays fresh. Make some coffee, stretch, walk around (but don’t get distracted for long!)
STEP #4 Create a schedule
Now you have a dose of ready blog posts so it’s time to actually create a schedule.
Here’s how I prefer doing it:
- First, I schedule posts bi-weekly for the next two or three months
- Then, when more blog posts are written, I put them in the empty spots so I have a weekly post to publish
This gives me a chance to skip a week in case I haven’t had enough time to write all the necessary content (no one is saying you’re obligated to create weekly posts if you don’t feel like it).
Depending on how informative and in-depth are your posts and what’s the purpose of your blog, you could just as well create monthly posts and get the schedule for one year ready within a week or two.
It can also be useful to leave some spots open so you can add in new posts. For example, unexpected brand collabs or season/holiday related posts.
Before you go…
Keep in mind that getting started is always the hardest part! When you’ll start your blog post scheduling and see how this plan is stacking up, you’ll have more motivation to keep it going and prepare posts for an even longer time ahead.
First, come up with blog post ideas. Then, write the outline. And afterward – make sure to dedicate some good dose of time for the actual process.
It will feel very rewarding and very beneficial!