5 Tips to Help Schedule Posts
All of us that have been blogging long enough have encountered it: the dreaded blogging slump. It sneaks up on you and pounces on you the moment you aren’t paying attention. And once it hits you, you don’t feel like blogging anything, at all.
Most of the time blogging slumps are caused when real life is busy and taking care of your blog is just too stressful. You don’t want to keep your followers hanging, but you also don’t have time to really pay attention to your blog, so you get into this vicious circle of guilt and stress.
One of the (many) ways to help keeping blogging slumps at bay is to schedule posts. If real life gets stressful, you can forget about the blog and let it run its course. I know bloggers that have scheduled posts for up to two months in advance. Two months! If you get sick for a week, none of your followers will ever notice.
There are many ways to handle scheduling posts. Some people only schedule reviews – others schedule everything up and including to memes, guest posts, interviews, events and discussion posts. It’s one of those things where you have to find what works for you. Below I’ll give some tips to start scheduling some posts, as beginning it is quite hard. I know it took me a year to figure the perfect system out!
1. Dedicate a certain time or day to blogging
Do you always have Sundays off? Try to blog a few hours every Sunday. Or maybe you usually just hang around and watch TV on week evenings. That would be a perfect time to schedule some posts for next week!
If you set a certain time for blogging, you can make sure you won’t get interrupted. Tell your spouse or family that you’re going to blog for a few hours, and that you’ll do something fun afterwards. Being able to give a time frame reduces chances of them complaining of you not spending time with them.
2. When you’re being more productive than usual, schedule them instead
of posting them right away
Most successful blogs have a fairly regular blogging schedule, in the sense of that they post roughly the same amount of posts every week (unless they’re hosting a big event). That amount of posts can be as high and as low as you’d like it to be – some blogs post once or twice a week, some post multiple posts every day. If you have a regular schedule, your followers will know when to come back and check for new posts.
If you find yourself in an awesome creative urge (great!), make sure you don’t get crazy and all of a sudden post three reviews on one day when you normally have one every week. I’ve tried this, and usually they barely get read. Just keep two of them behind and save them for a later date when you’re feeling less creative.
3. Become organised
I’m awful at this one myself. I consequently forgot I had scheduled blog tours or interviews or review deadlines. On one hand it was nice (no stress if you don’t remember the deadlines!) but on the other hand, maybe not so good. One of the many solutions is using a blogging agenda. I bought a seperate calendar for blogging events so they wouldn’t get drowned out by personal stuff. You can pencil in every release date of your review books, you can check whether or not you’ve already committed to a guest posts that day… It’s a great tool to keep track of stuff, especially once you get more ARCs. If you’re very computer-savvy you can also use a digital calendar, or Excel, or maybe an App on your phone. I personally prefer the real thing.
4. Schedule drafts that you write out later
This is my absolute favourite. If you look at my WordPress posts dashboard, it looks like the picture on the left (click it to make it bigger). As you can see, I’ve already scheduled three posts; one review of Belle Epoque and two Release Day posts. In between I have posts that I haven’t written yet – including this post, an interview, a feature I’m doing in a few weeks, and a review of Thin Ice. When I open my WordPress, I am now reminded every time that I still have to write these posts. (And in the case of Thin Ice, still have to read the book).
The best thing about this is that you can make notes when you don’t have enough time to write the whole post. For example, inside my interview draft I’ve already pasted the answers Robyn sent me. It still need a lot of work including formatting and adding a bio and pictures, but when I do decide to work on the post I don’t have to go looking for the questions.
5. Take a break
If blogging is really stressing you out, the best thing to do is to take a break. If during your break you feel like writing a review or a post, do so! But make it a goal for yourself not to post anything during your break. Instead, schedule them for when you get back. This way you don’t feel obligated to blog when you don’t feel like it and you’re creating leeway for yourself later on. Win-win situation!
Do you schedule posts? If so, how? Let us know! (: