If you've followed this blog for a while, you may have noticed that I stick to a consistent posting schedule, publishing new blog posts every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I've read that consistency is an important factor in the success of one's blog, which is why I make sure to always set aside time on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday to write. However, there's a lot more involved with my posting schedule in regards to what I write, how I write and when I publish certain articles. I'd like to share that with you today.
This is, obviously, something that I've come up with for my own blog that may not be suitable for all bloggers. But – as always, I'm happy to share with you the tips, tricks and techniques that I use that have helped me achieve some success. As you read through this, you may want to think about how to adapt a similar approach to what you publish on your blog.
Types of Posts
Before I write a new post, I choose from a variety of post types that all serve a different purpose for this blog. Here's my list, which I'll expand upon later in this post:
- How-To / Instructional
- Reports / Case Studies
- Analytical / Rational
- Psychological / Theoretical
- News / Updates
- Ask the Readers
The purpose of doing this is to keep my posts fresh and new, as well as to cater to most types of people.
For example, many of you are probably “left-brainers”, which means you're more of an analytical, rational and numbers type person. As a left-brainer, you probably enjoy my reports and analytical posts more than anything else. For you “right-brainers”, who are generally more subjective with holistic thoughts and creativity, you probably enjoy my psychological / theoretical type posts more.
I guarantee that if all I did was talk about numbers and statistics all day, that I wouldn't have as many followers and loyal readers as I do. And on the flip side, if all I did was talk about internet marketing theory and creative marketing strategies, I wouldn't have as many followers and loyal readers as I do today as well. The nice thing is that the types of articles that I write for both sides of the brain can compliment each other very well.
So, when I decide what my next blog post will be, this list is what I turn to first. If I've recently written one specific type of post, I normally don't write the same type again until a few posts later.
Lastly, besides my monthly report, which is typically published on the first Monday of each new month (which I'll go into why later), I don't have a hard core calendar that tells me when I'm supposed to write a specific type. I just let it happen naturally, although I do use this list as a guideline.
I do believe in structure, but I also believe in room for flexibility and creativity.
The Post Type Breakdown
As I previously mentioned, each post type serves a different purpose, which goes beyond the whole left-brain / right-brain stuff. Here's what I mean:
Everyone loves how-to stuff. It's a format that's easy to understand, and even easier to write. That's why sites like eHow.com have taken off, although some may say that eHow is in for a rough landing, but that's a whole different story.
So, I always make sure to include some type of how-to or instructional blog post that is useful for people. Here are a few examples:
- How to REALLY Profit From Your Blog
- How to Get 25 Hours in a Day
- How to Test Your Online Product Before it's Even Made
- How to Get the Most Out of Your Custom Website or Blog Designer
- THE Blogger's Guide to Facebook
As they say, you can't “talk the talk”, unless you “walk the walk.” The primary purpose of these types of posts are to show results.
Yes—they are partly used as a means of validation. I'm honest and I'll admit that. But additionally, I think it's important (and useful) to show results with some explanation about how to achieve those results as well, which is what I always include in my reports. If you just show the numbers and don't teach anything, you'll just come across as being cocky.
Here are a number of my case studies and reports:
- My Monthly Income Reports (page)
- An In-Depth Traffic Stats and Analysis Report
- Keyword Search Engine Position Experiment – Week 1
- eHow Income Reports (page)
- BabyMaker iPhone Application – One Week Later
These posts are about the facts, and using those facts and logic to draw some sort of conclusion about something.
The cool thing is that you can't deny facts, so no matter what level you're at (even a beginner with no experience) you can benefit from writing these types of posts because you don't have to be an expert, and they can be extremely persuasive.
Even though these posts consist of things that people may already know about, if you can reformat it in a way that's intriguing and interesting, you'll make a big impact. It's kind of like why some of the funniest comedy bits are from comedians who just cleverly restate what we already know.
Here are some examples of some analytical posts that I have written in the past:
- The Path to an Audi R8 (Or Anything Else You Want)
- 3 Types of Affiliate Marketing and the One I Profit From
- 6,795,850,072 Reasons Why You Can Make a Successful Living Online
- Passive Income Streams 101
- The Triple Threat of Products You Can Easily Create
Psychological / Theoretical
These kinds of posts, the ones that you read where the author begins to speculate about why things are the way they are, or why you should be doing one thing over another, can be very, very powerful. However, if your readers don't see you in the right mind, what you write can just be rubbed off and not taken that seriously.
You have to have some kind of authority or leadership in a niche in order to begin theorizing about it. Until you have that authority, you're not teaching anything. Instead, you're basically just stating your opinion.
Here are a few of my own:
- The Obvious Part of Online Marketing That Most People are Missing
- Pat's Three Laws of Business and Success: Law #1
- The One Thing You Absolutely Need if You Want to Succeed Online
It's nice to step away from all that you've been teaching for a while to keep your audience updated on any plans or special announcements that may effect them. I'd advise to keep these kinds of posts to a minimum because they are not “evergreen”, meaning—after a certain point, they are pretty much useless.
For example, a post about how I plan to redesign my blog becomes useless after the blog has been redesigned. That is, unless I were to somehow incorporate some lesson or some kind of timeless information that could help people as they redesigned their blogs too, which I always try to do.
Ask the Readers
I love these kinds of posts because they get people involved—which is vital for the growth and expansion of a blog.
Also, an “Ask the Readers” type post is great to publish when you don't have enough time to write a killer post, and want to stay on schedule. You can get your readers involved and pretty much create the content on their own through the comments, which is awesome.
Here are some examples of times when I've asked you for your opinion:
- How Will You Know When You've Reached Financial Success?
- Let's Discuss: Which of These Books Do You Think Would Sell Better?
- What Are Your Un-Goals for 2010?
- Help Me Name my Ebook…
- Ask The Readers: How to Motivate the Unmotivated?
Every once and a while, I'll write a post that specifically lists or mentions a number of links that either regurgitate some of my older articles, or highlights some of the better posts around the blogosphere that I've been reading.
No matter the age of your blog is, it's great to resurface some of your older blog posts because you're always going to have new readers who probably have yet to dive into your archives. Also, it can also be a great “filler” post that you can quickly write if you're shot for time or can't think of anything to write about.
One tip is to not just list these posts, but somehow present them in a way that's useful for your readers. This post that you're reading now is an example of that, if you haven't noticed already.
Lastly, but definitely not least, we have personal posts. These are posts that I write that have nothing to do with what my blog is about. It's all about me, my family, and what I've been up to.
You may be thinking, “Pat—why waste precious space on your blog for stuff that doesn't have anything to do with internet marketing, blogging, or making money online?”
I hope you already know what the answer is…
The reason is because in order to really engage your audience, especially nowadays with an internet that is constantly being filled with tons and tons of similar looking websites and blogs all talking about the same exact topic, you're going to have to throw a little bit of your personality into it.
No one in this entire world is like you. Put yourself into your blog, and it truly becomes unique—something that people can easily relate to.
This is why I'm a big advocate for throwing in pictures of yourself and talking about what's happening in your life every once and a while.
As I'm sure many of you know, I have a dog named Gizmo, and I just had a son named Keoni. And I'm sure some of you have also seen the wedding video of my wife and I, busting out a hip hop routine in the middle of our first dance. I wrote specific blog posts about each of those things. Did it hurt my blog?
If anything, they helped me connect with a lot of you in ways that no internet marketing or blogging information could. Learn more about me here.
Of course, some posts that I write can be put into two or more of these categories, but again—I try to mix things up to keep things fresh for everyone.
When I Post
Some of these posts have a bigger impact than others (by impact, I mean a greater response and higher traffic value). Therefore, I try to maximize their use by consciously making an effort to publish on appropriate days.
Mondays, for example, are my most active day. It's the day of the week that I have the most traffic, both from new and old visitors. Because of this, I typically save my “best” articles for Monday. These are usually my How-To and Report type posts.
Friday, the last day of the week that I publish a post, is reserved for more of the “non-impact” type blog posts: news/updates, ask the reader, linkage, and personal. Again, this isn't always the case, because I may find some inspiration during the week to write an article that I want to share with you right away.
So, whatever days you publish, give an extra second to yourself to not only think about the type of article you're writing, but also what day it's being published as well.
So—that's a detailed, insider view of my blogging strategy. It may not be the best, but it's definitely working for me—so feel free to jack any part of it that you wish for your own strategy. If any of you other bloggers out there have anything to add, or would like to share your own strategy, please feel free to leave a comment below!
Have a great week! Cheers!