I have a bit of a problem. It's called "Do as I say, not as I do." For content marketing efforts to be effective, I know you need a robust blog. I know you need to be sharing useful articles. I know you have to market yourself to get sales. And I haven't been doing that.
So let's fix that, shall we?
Today, we're going to focus on planning blog posts. Why? Because Post It products legally own my soul. I mean, because planning sets the groundwork for a successful marketing strategy. This is going to be short and sweet. There are two steps. That's it. You ready for your mind to be blown?
Step 1: Color Code
I'm a fanatic for a bouquet of colored pens, a rainbow of sticky notes, a unicorn's wet dream of colors. Give me all the hues.
Not only does color coding help because you can easily see what's planned, it allows you to batch tasks easily (more on that later) since like is grouped with like.
It's totally up to you how you want to break up your color coding. You can do it by category. That's particularly effective so you can see if you're dominating your blog with one type of post. You can do it by type of post (personal writing, DIY, event round-up, etc). Again, that's effective so you can make sure you have a good mix of content. You can do it by length of post.
Basically it all ensures that you have a healthy content mix and one topic, style, what-have-you isn't being domineering.
Being dominant can be fun. But having one type of post take over is boring for your readers.
Now that you've figured out how to break down your content by type and color, it's time to plan some of the content.
Step 2: Outline Your Posts
I know, I know. "So original, Angelica. I didn't see that coming."
Listen, it has to happen. Get yourself over to CoSchedule and print out some of their content marketing editorial calendars. You'll get a year overview so you can see a big-picture road map, an ideas worksheet where you can brainstorm content ideas, and a monthly calendar for you to plan out your specific posts (that's where the pretty, pretty colors come in).
As CoSchedule says, you'll save about an hour per blog post in planning, you'll see an increase in traffic, and you'll be able to publish almost 50% more content. Why? Because when you sit down to write, everything is mapped out, you'll have an outline, and you can easily create content that works together and effectively promotes yourself instead of being all over.
You don't want to be that person who isn't prepared for a big launch and then scrambles to get content out to support why someone needs to your Facebook Ad Email Course, do you? Nope.
And that's it. Two steps to planning blog content. Once you figure out what types of posts you want to write and have a general outline, half the work is already done. Then you just have to write, publish, and promote. And if you need a little more guidance, MeedEdgar has a fantastic list of resources to help you get more out of your blog posts from the planning to writing to publishing stage.
How do you plan your blog content?
PS: I am not affiliated with CoSchedule nor do I earn a commission for mentioning them. I just love their planning tools. Plus, they have a great blog with awesome content marketing...content!