Alright, so we’ve talked about why you need a blog, we’ve established how you get one started, and now? Now I’m going to tell you how you can create a blog schedule so you can build your readership and successfully blog and provide you with the tools to get it done!

Blog Schedule

Over the years, I’ve learned that one of the biggest challenges about having a blog isn’t necessarily knowing what to blog about (stay tuned for that post!) but rather about how to do it in a consistent and strategic manner.  Your readers want to develop a relationship with you, not a relationshit. This means generating a certain level of trust and expectations and in order to do this, you must make time for them in ways that will inspire that trust, loyalty and above all, sales.

Creating a blog schedule isn’t difficult and when you have one, neither is blogging. Here are 5 vital steps that you can employ in your blogging strategy to help create the consistency and expectations your readers deserve.

1. Be realistic.

This is probably the longest and most difficult of all the steps. If you’re going to write a blog that is successful, you need to be realistic about what kind of time you can commit to a blog. After writing literally hundreds (if not thousands) of blog posts, I can say with some certainty that the average 400 – 500 word post is going to take you anywhere from 2 – 3 hours to complete from inception, to keyword searching, writing, editing, image sourcing and promoting. Depending on your niche, attending events, cooking, conducting interviews, etc… can add hours onto each post. How much time do you really have?

Sit down, make a list of your blogging goals and in very realistic terms, evaluate how much time you can create to write quality blog posts. Can you really handle 3? Maybe just 1? There’s no shame in writing one post per week. It’s usually a good idea to aim for 2 to 3 so your content stays fresh and you develop a good reservoir of posts quickly. Bloggers that can come up with 7 (one for each day of the week) are a phenomena I have yet to understand or conquer myself. Start small; when you have that down pat, add some more.

One last thing before I move on to point 2… I’ve noticed a lot of new bloggers on the LinkedIn forums lately who are posting multiple times per day. That’s a terrible idea and let me tell you why: You’ll overwhelm your audience. No reader can keep up with that many updates and if you inundate them with posts, they’ll stop coming to your site. Moreover, no one can write that may posts and have them be of high quality content. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Google indexes sites based on quality content. If you’re spamming your blog at every whim, Google (and your potential reader base) is going to call bullshit.

Blog Schedule Themes 2. Select “themed” posting days.

Some call these categories, others topics. The point is, choosing a specific focus for the same day each week makes it easy peasy to come up with content for that day.  For example, Tuesdays right now are Blogging Tuesdays on the ohksocial blog… So what do I write about? Blogging. Or on Gastronomical Sovereignty, Wednesdays are a fun real-food link up called Fresh Foods Wednesday. What do I share on that day? Fresh food and the link up. See what I mean? To determine the best themed content for you, look at what’s important to your customers or most interesting to you. Make a list. Write it down. See what comes out. If you can only commit 2 posts per week but you have 4 themes you want to discuss, schedule each theme every other week so you can cover everything you want to.

3. Schedule your posts.

This may take a bit of trial and error and a whole lot of monitoring via Google Analytics, but in time you will see what the best days and times are for your posts. I typically schedule posts 2 months in advance. That way, when the first month runs out, it’s in my iCal to schedule the 3rd month’s posts so I’m never left scrambling for content. Essentially, you want to write down, on specific days a working-title for each and every post so you have a map of where your blog is going. You can do this through virtual programs such as WordPress Editorial Calendar, Evernote, or the old fashioned way (and my preference), in a binder with a few printed calendars and some loose leaf paper. Speaking of which, continue reading for your FREE blogging schedule printables!

4. Execute.

Set aside one day a week to write your posts. For me, this is Sunday. I get up, make myself a giant pot of baileys and coffee (err, green tea) and sit out on my front stoop and look at my schedule for the next week. Then I write, write, write. Every blog platform allows you to schedule your actual posts to go live when you want them to – this way you don’t have to worry about publishing them at the right time. It’s already done. To ensure I actually write the posts on Sunday, I set my iCal (with alarm) to go off on first thing Sunday morning so I can’t avoid it. I also have a recurring alarm that goes off through out the week so I remember to check comments, post updates  to specific social media sites and promote my brand by commenting on other people’s blogs. But more on that later.

Blog-Schedule-Printable5. Re-Evaluate.

As time goes on, what worked for the goose, may not work so well for the gander. Essentially, you’ll have to monitor which posts get the most reaction, which days see more voter turn out than others, and of course, which posts you enjoy writing the most. If something isn’t working or blogging feels too much like work, change something. Make it work for you. If you’re excited to write and you give your readership valuable content, blogging will be a much better experience for everyone involved. And who doesn’t want that?

For your FREE blog planning printables, just right click the images above, select “Save As…” and then print baby print!

Do you have a blog schedule? How often do you post? Any lessons you’d like to share with us? Leave a comment below and tell us how you manage your blog posts! Or better yet, leave me a question on blogging and I’ll do my best to answer it for you!

In the meantime, read:

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44 Comments on Be A Blogger Series (3 of 10): Creating a Blog Schedule (Free Printables!)

  1. liz
    August 27, 2013 at 10:05 am (4 years ago)

    Thanks so much for the link love, Kristy!

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:18 pm (4 years ago)

      Anytime Liz!

  2. lindsey @ NW Backyard Veggies
    August 27, 2013 at 7:14 pm (4 years ago)

    You just blew my mind.

    Exactly what I needed to read, right now. I cannot thank you enough, my friend.

    You is the shit. And by the by – that term “relationshit” is going to enter into my therapeutic lexicon and be a w inner for years to come. I can feel it.

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:18 pm (4 years ago)

      Dane Cook is a silly bitch. Love that guy!

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:18 pm (4 years ago)

      Anytime my friend!!

  3. anja
    August 28, 2013 at 11:55 pm (4 years ago)

    I’ll stop being a shit. Thanks for the pretty schedule templates!

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:19 pm (4 years ago)

      haha – are you being a shit anja???

  4. Krystal
    August 29, 2013 at 9:32 am (4 years ago)

    Thanks so much for sharing in the Blog Zone. I love these printables and will add them to my blog binder. =] I was doing so well for so long at blogging regularly, but have since fallen off. I need to get back on track and having a schedule really DOES help.

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:19 pm (4 years ago)

      Hi Krystal! Thanks for stopping by! I’d love to see what you do with the printables! Share a link if you ever include them in a post 🙂

  5. Elizabeth Scott
    August 29, 2013 at 12:31 pm (4 years ago)

    These are great tips. As a relatively new blogger it is hard to find my rhythm.

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:20 pm (4 years ago)

      It can definitely be difficult Elizabeth. Even us “seasoned” bloggers lose the rhythm sometimes. It’s always an evolving process. Glad I could help! Let me know if you have any questions – would be happy to provide any insights 🙂

  6. Suzanne Fluhr (Boomeresque)
    August 29, 2013 at 10:42 pm (4 years ago)

    I think it’s definitely time for me to try to stick to blog post schedule dictated by a calendar, n0t by my sometimes unreliable, occasionally lazy muse who sometimes likes to do her own thing instead of what she “should” be doing.

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:22 pm (4 years ago)

      HAHA – that’s the trouble with muses isn’t it??

      It’s true we want to write things when we’re inspired and we should 🙂 Following a schedule just helps to shape those inspirations into strategic and coherent posts.

  7. Debra Yearwood
    August 30, 2013 at 7:51 am (4 years ago)

    I laughed out loud at the idea of posting more than once a day. I get a little sick feeling at the idea of posting once a day . I’m not sure how you would be living your life to do more frequent posts. 🙂 Thanks for sharing some these smart tips on keeping sane while blogging.

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:24 pm (4 years ago)

      True that, Debra. I’ve been keeping up (barely) with 4-5 posts per week between this blog and my food blog – I don’t know HOW people do more! But I guess that’s the thing – if you’re just whipping out terrible content, it doesn’t matter. One post could be a picture of a puppy, the next a quote on dark matter and black holes and the third an instructional video on tight rope walking. Point being: no one is going to be interested in that. Write better posts, less often 🙂

  8. Jeri
    August 30, 2013 at 1:50 pm (4 years ago)

    All practical and great tips. More and more, I’m starting to come to the conclusion that less is more with blogging… it could also be because I am not the fastest writer in the world either 😉

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:25 pm (4 years ago)

      Absolutely Jeri! More quality, less quantity for sure. As long as you’re consistent with respect to when you update (ie same day(s) each week), you’re solid.

  9. Leora
    September 1, 2013 at 10:23 am (4 years ago)

    On blogging a lot: “You’ll overwhelm your audience.” – how true! I’ve learned to post quality over quantity. If I get one great post, that’s better than a few quickies. I have a schedule in my head, but I work at forgiving myself if I don’t get it all done in time.

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:27 pm (4 years ago)

      Totally Leora! And that’s an excellent point: there will be times when our posts don’t get finished and published. And you know what? That’s okay. Too often we get wrapped up in the mechanics of it that if we don’t feel particularly inspired or are just too busy to post, we freak out. Our audiences want consistency, but more than that, they want quality and really, the very best for us (most of the time). It’s okay to take a day off here and there for sure.

  10. El Michelle
    September 5, 2013 at 5:52 pm (4 years ago)

    Ok, so TALK about SPAM!! I just sent this to all my social networking sites AND followed you on Twitter (LinkedIn after I finish this lol)! I think I have found a new favorite website! For me, the best thing about what you do and what has got me so excited, is the straight forward approach (who doesn’t love reading something that makes them feel like they are TALKING to the person writing?!), & REAL words (I am a semi-newbie so the SEO n all that crap jargon FRIES my brain lol although I’ve forced myself to learn it to keep up!)! I am so glad LinkedIn brought me to you! lol Happy blogging, doll and please keep this up! 🙂 I have a feeling you have a lot to teach! Not to mention, I am a self admitted foodie lol so i love the integration of THAT!

    Thanks again!

    p.s. Whiskey’s got my heart too! 🙂

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 16, 2013 at 1:29 pm (4 years ago)

      hahahahahaha!! I love it! Spam away, my dear!! So glad to meet you too! Your blog is hilarious and I can totally relate to so many of the posts 🙂 Adding you to bloglovin!

      P.s. because you’re a foodie too, hope to see you at my food blog 🙂

  11. Kate
    September 12, 2013 at 1:52 am (4 years ago)

    This is awesome. Pinning to keep for reference! Thanks!

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      September 12, 2013 at 8:22 am (4 years ago)

      Thank YOU!

    • kristygardner@gmail.com
      October 8, 2013 at 3:16 pm (4 years ago)

      is it weird if I say I love YOU?! …adorable!! I’ve shared on all my social channels Krystal – it’s surreal to see it being used! YAY!

  12. Shan the caliph
    October 15, 2013 at 5:31 am (4 years ago)

    Really an informative blog post. Some great suggestions for both new and old bloggers.

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 1, 2014 at 12:32 pm (3 years ago)

      Glad you found it useful Shan!!

  13. KT
    November 25, 2013 at 7:42 pm (4 years ago)

    Thank you for sharing! Detailed is what I was looking for and you helped me see exactly what I want to do!

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 1, 2014 at 12:34 pm (3 years ago)

      Good luck KT!! Let me know how it’s going for you!

  14. Naa
    January 3, 2014 at 12:19 pm (3 years ago)

    very simple and straight to the point. thanks a lot!

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 1, 2014 at 12:34 pm (3 years ago)

      Happy to help NAA! 🙂

  15. Rohit Singh
    May 16, 2014 at 6:07 pm (3 years ago)

    Very nice tips and after creating blog you must generate great quality content regularly and keep on learning new things which are happening in your niche.One should always blog about useful content which might be useful for your readers and this will gradually increase your authority in the niche or topic and increase traffic to your blog

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 1, 2014 at 12:36 pm (3 years ago)

      I totally agree Rohit!

  16. Style Bits & Bobs of M.E.
    July 1, 2014 at 8:16 pm (3 years ago)

    Great tips. I am happy I came across this while I am writing out some of my blog posts ideas!

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 1, 2014 at 12:38 pm (3 years ago)

      I hope your blogging is going well and that the printables have been useful for you my friend!

  17. Resham Panth
    August 1, 2014 at 10:45 am (3 years ago)

    I must thank google for sending me to this site! I was pretty much confused by tons of ummm boring articles on the web that say Blog Every DAY! Your point makes absolute sense. Thank you for the printables too! Good Luck 😉
    Resham Panth recently posted…Improve Your Computer’s Performance with DefragmentationMy Profile

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 1, 2014 at 12:40 pm (3 years ago)

      Oh I’m so glad Resham!! I don’t think you need to blog every day – that’s so much content and no one can keep up with it all. Focus more on quality content, rather than quantity and you, your audience and potential clients or sponsors will thank you. Glad to have helped – good luck with the printables!

  18. Zycco
    April 30, 2015 at 12:13 am (2 years ago)

    Great post very informative I really needed some advice on a blogging schedule and got allot more thank you I will try my best to implement what was said here as i would like to be a successful blogger and interact with people and make friends.

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