Stop wasting time on content creation when you could be growing your blog and business.
Creating fresh content for your blog should be high on your priorty list. But if that is what’s eating up the majority of your time, your doing it all wrong.
Each blog post that you publish should work for you. It should be a part of the overall content strategy.
Sure, writing and creating amazing blog posts is important. It is a huge part of what we do as bloggers, but in order to run a successful blog, earn an income and have an actual life, you need to be able to create systems that will allow these things to happen simultaneously.
I am going to let you in on the not-so-secret trick that all the experienced bloggers and content creators use. You can implement these tips to make sure that you are creating content consistently without compromising on the rest of your business.
The secret to consistent content is batching blog posts!
If you are stuck on the hamster wheel of content creation, take out your pen and paper because I will be walking you through my content creation process and how I batch create content for my blog so that I can remain consistent.
What Is Content Batching?
Batching is the act of grouping tasks together. This allows you to perform similar tasks all at once instead of constantly switching between tasks.
Batching is a well-known form of time management because it allows a person to streamline processes, minimize distractions and focus on one type of activity for a period of time.
Simply said, batching helps you to save time and get more done.
An example of batching in practice would be checking all your emails once or twice a day (at the start of your workday and at the end). For most people, this is sufficient. Checking your email at various times throughout the day is distracting. You may feel tempted to respond to emails here and there when in reality, most things can wait. Your productivity will be much improved if you are able to respond to all your emails at set times and avoid the distraction in between.
Reasons To Batch Your Blog Posts
Batching your blog content will not only help you to save time but also ensures that you have more time to work on other parts of your business.
Instead of writing a new blog post every day or every week, you are better off batching the process. Create blog posts on specified days so that you can work on other revenue-generating activities on other days.
If you have a goal of creating 4 blog posts a month (one a week), you can create all of this content in 2 days. Choose a day that works best for you and crank out as much as you can on those days. When you do this, you can spend the rest of the time, promoting your content (which is arguably more important if you want people to actually see your content).
You may also spend time, creating products or finding clients to work with. This also crucial if you want to monetize your content. There are so many reasons to batch your content.
How To Batch Create Content
The method that I use for batch creation is something that I have worked on and refined over the years.
Generally speaking, my process for content creation falls into 4 distinct phases. It is important to me that I separate each of these phases and work on them on separate days. I dedicate a set amount of time at the start of each month to each of these phases.
Phase 1: Brainstorm + Planning
Phase 2: Content Creation
Phase 3: Fine Tuning
Phase 4: Promotion + Content Marketing
Breaking the process down this way made the process much smoother.
Note: The timelines below are suggestions based on my schedule. In addition to running a blog and business, I have a full-time job. I have listed what I can handle with everything that I have on my plate. If you have more time to spend on content creation, you may find that you can complete each of these steps in less time. If you need more time to complete, that is ok too. I would recommend splitting each of the phases up to and doing them on a separate day. At the very least, your content batching process should take 3- 4 days.
Phase 1: Brainstorm + Planning
This phase is a little bit less structured than the rest. This is because I am constantly brainstorming and looking for ideas for my blog. If I read an interesting article that I think my readers will find interesting, I make a note of it. I find inspiration everywhere. It may be from other creators or there are times that I am just going about my day and I see or hear something that I think could link to my content.
I have a section in my content calendar where I collect a brain dump of all the ideas that I have over time.
Once a month, I sit down with that list and start to plan exactly what piece of content should be released and when it will be released.
It is good practice to do this ahead of time- but not too far in advance. I am writing this post in 2020. These days, things seem to be changing so fast that it is difficult to keep track.
If you plan too far in advance, you may have all this great content planned that might be irrelevant by the time that you intend to release it.
Also plan with your goals in mind.
If you are releasing or promoting something for your business, it would make sense that the content you release in the weeks leading up to the event would complement it in some way.
My editorial calendar has a section where you can write down your goals for the month. Having your goals top of mind is always a good idea as it allows you to plan ahead towards it.
I plan using my content calendar and then move everything over to ASANA.
ASANA is my project management tool of choice. On ASANA I am able to set reminders and generate a to-do list. This is the list that I look at on a daily basis.
Day 1: Planning (1 hour)
Phase 2: Content Creation
This is the phase that takes up the bulk of my time. This phase involves both researching and writing about my topic.
My current content framework looks like this:
Every month, I release 4 blog posts, 2 email newsletters, 4 youtube videos (my youtube workflow falls outside of this process) and 10-12 Instagram posts.
When I write, I type my thoughts. I do not try to check spelling or grammar as I know that this will hold me back in terms of productivity. Editing uses a different part of the brain so my focus in this phase is simply to get my thoughts out and on paper.
Day 2: Research and draft 2-3 blog posts ( 4 hours)
Day 3: Research and draft remaining blog posts (2 hours)
Re-purpose YouTube videos from previous months into blog posts (2 hours)
Day 4: Draft Newsletters (2 hours)
Create Canva Graphics (2 hours)
Phase 3: Fine Tuning
Editing and fine tuning can take a whole day so I usually schedule this to be done on a weekend when I can set aside a considerable amount of time for uninterrupted editing.
This phase consists of checking grammar using my favourite grammar tool- grammarly.
Grammarly is a tool that you can add to your chrome as an extension. It checks your spelling and grammar and gives you tips on how you can improve your writing.
I also spend time formatting and making sure that I am using the right keywords for SEO purposes. This process is honestly even more time consuming than the actual writing. Doing the editing on a separate day means that I can edit a bit more objectively.
As part of this process, I also add all the necessary hyperlinks and images.
This phase also involves scheduling each blog post and newsletter for the appropriate day so that I do not have to worry about falling behind on my schedule.
There are a lot of steps in this phase so I make sure that I use a checklist every single time.
My checklist is included in my FREE resource library!
Day 5: Edit blog posts + Newsletters (6 hours)
Phase 4: Content Marketing
You may think that once you have written and scheduled your blog post that you are good to go.
But if you want people to ACTUALLY read your blog posts, you need to spend some time marketing it.
For me, this means spending time thinking about how I am going to drive traffic to my content.
Pinterest is my main source of traffic, so I spend considerable amount of time developing my Pinterest strategy.
I developed my strategy based on what I learned from The Pinterest with Ell course.
I spend about 30 minutes every week scheduling my pins using Tailwind. This is something that I would highly recommend if you would like to increase the traffic to your site. It doesn’t take long but ensures that you are consistent in promoting your content on Pinterest.
I also market my blog using Instagram. Every time I release a blog post, I share it on my Instagram page so that my followers can visit and engage with my content.
The third way that I market my blog is using Facebook Groups. I dedicate time once a week to interact with other bloggers in a similar niche and share my content with them.
This phase is an ongoing phase. I schedule about 3-4 hours every week to focus on content marketing.
Content creation does not have to be difficult in order to be effective. By following this simple formula, I am able to stay consistent and meet the goals that I have set for myself.
Batching my blog posts also allows me to spend the remaining 3 weeks of the month focused on client work and building my brand,
Do you currently batch your blog posts?
Leave a comment and let me know!