Friday, October 10, 2014

Blogging Tips (How To Get Organized)


Over the past couple years of blogging, I've learned a thing or two about organization. Simply put, being well organized leads to better blogging. When you're organized, you can spend more time creating awesome content rather than scrambling at the last minute to publish a post. Today I'm sharing with you my top 5 tips for staying organized as a blogger… so let's get started! 


TIP #1: KEEP AN EDITORIAL CALENDAR

Blogging is much easier when you have your content planned out. I keep a HUGE monthly calendar (from Target) hanging on my wall near my desk that is solely dedicated to helping me plan out blog posts for the month. At the beginning of every month, I'll mark down the days that I have committed to posts (for example, if I'm partnering with a boutique, I'll write down the specific day that the post will go up). An editorial calendar also helps me plan around holidays. Halloween is coming up at the end of the month, so I've already marked a few days for dedicated "Halloween" or "Fall" posts. These calendars also help you make sure that you don't commit to doing two blog posts on the same day. Another tip: always write in pencil! (Things change often and I like to be able to erase!)


TIP #2: PLAN WEEK BY WEEK & DAY BY DAY

Every Monday morning, I like to sit down and make a plan for the week, which includes writing down what I'm blogging about each day and what needs to be done to accomplish that. I start by looking at my monthly editorial calendar to see if I have any posts that must go up on a certain day. This blog planner notepad has been tremendously helpful in my weekly planning (although a regular sheet of paper will do, too!). This particular notepad has a space for each day of the week, as well as a checklist that includes writing the post, adding images, editing and scheduling the post. It makes it super easy to see the whole week in one glance.

I also like to plan daily as well, so I'll write down a list of "To Do's" that must get done that day. I usually include everything on this list, not just blogging stuff! A typical day of To Do's may include a photo shoot in a new outfit, grocery shopping, paying a bill or responding to a specific email. This notepad is great for daily planning.

If you're looking for a planner in notebook form that you can carry around in your purse, I would recommend the Design Love Planner. Not only is it really cute (and it has fun prints inside!) but it's extremely functional, featuring a weekly checklist, weekly schedule, and a page for budgeting and To-Do's each month. I've owned both the Kate Spade and Lilly Pulitzer planners, and I think this is the best. You can see more features of the Design Love Planner here.


TIP #3: ALWAYS KEEP A NOTEPAD WITH YOU

Blogging inspiration can strike at any time… when you're at work, at the grocery store, shopping at your favorite boutique or just laying in bed at night. I carry around a small notepad with me that I use to jot down blog ideas when they come to me. This is a smart practice because if I don't write down my ideas, I always forget them! Sometimes it's an idea for an out-of-the-box blog post (like a new recipe or a YouTube video on my makeup routine) or sometimes it's an idea for a new way to wear a leather jacket. Whenever inspiration strikes, write it down!

TIP #4: SCHEDULE AHEAD OF TIME

If your blog is run through Blogger or Wordpress, you have the option to schedule your posts. For example, I usually write my posts at night and then schedule them to go live in the morning. This feature makes it really easy to write all of your posts ahead of time… You could write a blog post on a Sunday night and then schedule it to publish the following Wednesday at 10 a.m. (without actually having to be at your computer on Wednesday at 10 a.m. to hit "publish"!)  

Something else you can schedule? Your social media posts! Social media management is a large part of being a blogger, because social media contributes to your branding and helps drive traffic to your blog. However, no one can be online 24/7 (for example, if you have a full time job its hard to tweet all day about your newest blog post!). The good news is that there are several free programs out there that allow you to manage your social media and schedule posts in advance. My favorite free service is Hootsuite, because it allows you to see your Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus (and more) accounts at one time and schedule posts ahead of time. 



TIP #5: SET REALISTIC GOALS & CELEBRATE MILESTONES

This may seem like a boring one, but I think it's essential! To keep your blog growing, you must determine where you want it to go and have a means to analyze your success. For example, when I first started my blog my goal was to reach 100,000 page views per month. When I reached that goal, I celebrated, and then I set another goal. People measure their success in different ways. You could set a goal for the number of Bloglovin followers, social media followers, etc. Just make sure that you are setting realistic goals for yourself and not setting yourself up for failure. Setting goals and striving to achieve them is something that has kept me motivated to blog!

I hope this was helpful, and if you have any other questions about how I stay organized (or blogging tips in general), I'm happy to answer them! Just email me or leave them in the comments below. Happy Friday! 

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75 comments:

  1. Thanks a lot, I'm convinced you are right! Like you I have also a tough blogging schedule and I find it much easier with it :)
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena
    International giveaway: Top form by the reasons of problems
    www.dressedwithsoul.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. So so helpful!! Thanks girly, have a great weekend :)

    Xo,
    Nicole
    Nicolerpuccio.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. I do have a question...as far as photographing your outfits - do you set aside one day to photograph many outfits for different posts? Did you have to hire a photographer? Love your blog, your outfits and you are just too stinkin' adorable...I love posts like this...I'm an OCD sort of gal, so organization is my jam, lol. xo
    -Morgan
    California To Carolina
    The Gym Bunny

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey Morgan! My mom is a photographer, so fortunately I do not have to hire anyone. And yes, we have found that it's a lot easier to knock out a bunch of outfits at once! :)

      Delete
  4. Great article. Your tips are so helpful!
    X
    Miri
    http://currentlywearing.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. These are such great tips! I need that weekly blog planner!

    Hunter
    Prep on a Budget

    ReplyDelete
  6. Love this, great tips! Thanks to much for sharing!

    The Style Storm
    <3, Christina

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  7. These are great tips! I also love your desk set up. Swooning over all your gold desk accessories and fun artwork!

    xoxo,
    Kim
    www.champagneista.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Useful tips! LOVE that Target calendar!

    xoxo

    cvilletodc.blogspot.com

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  9. Great tips! Love all of your accessories too. It's always great feeling organized and ready for the week/month!

    ~Lucy & Jenn
    eastmeetssouthblog.blogspot.com

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  10. hi! where are those cute little heart note cards from?

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  11. your deskspace is gorgeous and I'm so grateful for so many of these tips. thanks for sharing!

    love, arielle
    a simple elegance

    ReplyDelete
  12. Beautiful photos and a great opst! Such a great tips!

    http://lartoffashion.blogspot.com

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  13. Thanks so much for sharing your tips! You always give us bloggers great advice! xo-

    Shauna

    www.lipglossandlace.net

    ReplyDelete
  14. Love these items! Will search for Blog Planner now, such a cool idea!

    www.julialundin.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. Great tips! I will be referring to this post next time I get disorganized!
    xo, Scarlett
    The Trendy Chick

    ReplyDelete
  16. Love that notepad! I may have to look into getting that!!

    www.madeintheshadeblog.com

    ReplyDelete
  17. I need that blog planner! What a great little invention :) These are some fab tips Cait! Thank you :)

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'm really enjoying these posts from you, Caitlin! Great tips and your mom is a fab photographer, you lucky girl:)

    Heidi D.
    www.wishesandreality.com

    ReplyDelete
  19. Love the blogger planner. I need that. It's so cute! <3

    www.shallwesasa.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. These are fantastic tips - I'm off to buy the blog planner notepad - such a great idea!!

    ReplyDelete
  21. This was so helpful for me! I love scheduling my blog posts, but had no idea you could also schedule social media posts! Definitely going to have to look into that! Do you use google analytics? If so, I would love to see a post explaining how to interpret that data. What shows up in my google analytics does not match at all what I see for statistics on my blogger platform and I have no idea which one is actually accurate! For example, my google analytics tells me I have had 30,000 page views from September 10-October 10. Blogger statistics tells me only 13,000. So confusing!
    www.amemoryofus.com

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  22. Great tip. I also use a blog calender.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Awesome tips! Thanks for the helpful advice!

    xx colleen
    www.pleatherandsparkles.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. These are all such great tips! I definitely need to work on scheduling post ahead of time.

    Lauren,
    http://www.atouchofsoutherngrace.com/

    ReplyDelete
  25. Love this set up! The flowers are so pretty :)


    Life As Lissy

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  26. Love these tips!!! Your desk is adorable!!!

    Emily

    Dimples of Dixie

    ReplyDelete
  27. That blog planner is amazing!

    Sophia | sophiebysophia.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  28. Thanks for the tips. I'm definitely thinking of getting myself a planner asap.

    ReplyDelete
  29. So helpful! x

    https://www.marjorievie.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  30. Out of all the blogs I read, yours is my favorite! Thanks for sharing these tips!

    ericakato.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  31. Thanks for the ideas! I especially love the bloggers notebook planner. I've been looking for a weekly calendar specifically for blogging and planning ahead week by week, so that is perfect!

    iamkelskels.blogspot.com

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  32. this tips are very handy, especially when you're starting :)

    xx Cecil // www.wednesday19th.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  33. So helpful. I agree, ever since I started keeping things organized on a calendar, I've been so much more productive!

    Valentina
    Valentina Duracinsky Blog

    ReplyDelete
  34. Thanks so much for sharing! I am new to blogging and these tips are very helpful! It's very overwhelming starting out (especially working full time, like you said), but I like the idea of a blogging notebook. Your blog and Instagram are amazing! :-)

    Brittany
    www.lawyerlookbook.com

    ReplyDelete
  35. Thanks for the tips! They are really helpful for new bloggers like myself

    Puppies and Polka Dots

    ReplyDelete
  36. I like carrying a notepad / planner with me just in case, because I tend to forget everything!

    ReplyDelete
  37. Great post! I never get tired of reading blogging tips from those who have been in the business for awhile. This post is definitely inspiring me to do more with my blog. Thanks for this post!

    petitechicgirl.com

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  38. If you have a self hosted Word Press blog you can use the Editorial Calendar Plugin, which is simply amazing. I use that and it keeps my entire blog organized from one spot :)

    I agree about scheduling posts ahead of time. I actually have posts drafted/scheduled into March of next year on the editorial calendar plugin :)

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  39. Thank you for sharing- this post is really great!

    www.blondeincashmere.com

    ReplyDelete
  40. I find that if I don't organize, I simply won't blog! I love it too much to be careless with it so I organize my self too :)
    Allison from www.mercuteify.com

    ReplyDelete
  41. This post couldn't have come at a more perfect time. I just started a blog last week, and am using WordPress. I too find that writing post ahead of time and scheduling them to publish is best. I'm definitely going to purchase a wall calendar like yours to organize editorials. Love your blog and style! I look forward to more post like this.

    www.laceandpearlsblog.com

    ReplyDelete
  42. Love this post - and all the items you linked to were beautiful.

    Mina | Cream Coloured Ponies

    ReplyDelete
  43. I love this post idea and I follow a lot of the same practices! Big game-changers for me have been scheduling social media posts, and learning to write down any idea that pops in my head. My next goal is to get better at planning posts ahead of time!
    Also, thanks for introducing us to that planner... I'd never heard of it but it looks incredible!

    Jacy
    www.lovelenore.com

    ReplyDelete
  44. Look at those gorgeous planners and notepads!! Must have them all!!

    <3 ae
    www.keeponsing.com

    ReplyDelete
  45. I always love getting an inside into how others keep up with their blog. I love your way of organizing everything. I can so relate to that - I always have to write down everything that I plan out.
    Love,
    Svenja

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  46. I loooove this!! Definitely could have used this from the beginning!

    I would love to know some realistic goals for the beginning of blogging? I'm at about 1,000 views per month, posting 2x weekly (hoping to increase to 3 by Nov!), I'm about to self host and buy my domain, and I've already done lots of reviews/partnerships. I really want to find ways to increase views, which I've started realize requires posting more. What's a realistic next monthly views goal and other goals moving forward?

    Thanks, in advance!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  47. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  48. Great advice! Just ordered my planner!

    ReplyDelete
  49. Love these tips, and I'm definitely ordering the planners and scheduling pads.

    xo Amanda
    http://theluxelion.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  50. Love this post, very informative. Where did you get the painting of the Tory Burch logo; I love it. Also, please follow my blog, thank you and God Bless
    http://love-pink-forever09.blogspot.com/

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  52. Do you still work full time with PR? How do you make time to squeeze in photography and blogging? I find it so difficult with working full time and blogging. Love reading your blog!

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  56. Thanks for your tips. I just started my blog in July so it is only 6 months old. I love doing it and you just

    gave me more inspiration :)
    BloggingRex

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  64. FABULOUS post! So inspiring! Like you, I'm a planner as well! I love the items you linked to!

    Question: How did you reach your goal, of say 100,000 page views a month!?

    Happy Friday!
    Lisa
    www.theeverydayelevated.com

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