This is my 5th post in the Summer 100 Challenge. We are still in the first round and I am on track! I continue to learn about my fellow participants and continue to work on some organizational aspects of my blog. This isn’t typical sex blog content but writing this post has also assisted in tweaking these tools to the right fit for me.
Want to learn more about the Summer 100 Challenge? Check out the guestbook over on Pretty Pink Lotus Bud or read Isabelle’s round 1 round up to check out some of the other awesome bloggers participating. Go read their posts, follow them on twitter, and enjoy!
Part of running a solid blog is creating content on a regular basis and determining what a “regular basis” is up to you. Regularly posting comes easy to some bloggers and others have to work a bit harder at it. I am part of the latter. I have great ideas and want to post often but find life gets in the way. For me staying organized and planning ahead are key to getting content out regularly. It involves writing some posts in advanced for when life gets in the way. As part of the challenge I am trying out some new organizational methods to help myself produce content more regularly than the 1 post per week that otherwise is my goal. It is going to be a challenge and if sharing these tools helps another participant out I am happy to share! How-to content is not my niche but I have found so many great ideas from other people’s posts that have helped me out that I just wanted to share!
Set Goals – The largest part of the #summer100 challenge is to increase traffic to my blog. The second largest is to build the community with other participants and help lift their content to others. In order to know if I am successful I need to determine what successful means in a measurable way! Although I will not be sharing my goals to the last detail I will be discussing my progress and milestones along the way. Recording my goals is my first organizational tip! Do what works for you! A simple list or a detailed chart are both “right” – it really has to be what works for you but write them down!
Track Progress – Tracking my progress is being detailed in a very simple spreadsheet. I recorded my views, number of viewers, and number of Twitter followers. My tracking sheet has another spot for me to record these same numbers again at the end of June, July, and August. I included a column to indicate the change and left some extra room to make notes. Although the numbers are important to me I cannot let them be my only measure of success. I do keep this as the last tab so it isn’t always the first thing I see when opening.
The first tab of my tracking sheet is the list of posts. I have divided this into rounds for this challenge and plugged in the title, date of post, if it’s drafted, and if it is scheduled. This sheet gives me a quick visual of what I need to focus on to post in the upcoming weeks as well as other items to work on for the longer term. It allows me to prioritize my time when things are hectic. One post at a time is much easier when you know what the next few posts will be!
The second tab of my spreadsheet tracks the links to other participants that I have shared in my posts to date. I think this is important to ensure that I am highlighting different folks but also makes it easy for me to grab a link while posting.
I also have a calendar that I have entered the rounds start and end dates in. I have used this calendar to layout my posts ahead of time. Laying them out allows me to look at what pieces I need to focus on to stay on track. This calendar isn’t something I normally use but I needed a visual tool. I needed to be able to move stuff around and not panic about neatness like I would in my bullet journal. Everyday blog posts are entered in my monthly bullet journal spread but for the challenge I am trying something different.
Mind Dump – Keep a list of post ideas as they come to you. I have a page in my bullet journal that I keep all these ideas. I also have a note on my phone where I jot them down until I have more time to focus on them.
Supplies – Part of setting up the goals and tracking above is finding the right format for you. Different formats will require different tools. Some may like to keep everything in electronic form but others will want to have a physical copy. I have a bullet journal so selected some post it notes and coloured pens to use for my Summer 100 pages. Post it notes are great for taking notes, collecting ideas, and many other things.
Flexibility and trial and error are key. Sometimes my schedule will be changed up based on another piece being ready or maybe I am not 100% comfortable with what I have scheduled. Sometimes you are behind on content, other times you are ahead.
For me posting content 3 times a week is overwhelming. It is not a routine that I will maintain after the Summer 100 wraps up but it is always nice to have something to focus on for the summer. I am learning how to be more patient with myself and have published content with only a few hours of editing. I don’t have to be perfect.
This challenge is also about engaging with other bloggers. If you are interested in using these tools go for it! Make them your own! If these tools don’t work for you that cool too! Either way I would love to hear what helps keep you organized – lists? Charts? Spreadsheets?