For the first time in eight years, I’m not blogging every day for a month as part of the FreelanceSuccess/WordCount blogathon challenge. I’m cheering from the sidelines and you can too, by folllowing the blogathon Facebook page. Throughout the next 30 days, I’ll be running favorite posts from previous blogathons to inspire everyone who’s participating and anyone else who wants to blog or write more often. — Michelle
Think you can blog every day? It’s not as tough as it sounds – if you have a plan.
If you’re doing a blogging challenge, a plan could be the difference between having a great time and feeling like you’ve got an albatross around your neck, like that poor guy in the picture.
Even if you aren’t part of a challenge to post every day, having a plan can bring more discipline to your blogging endeavors.
Here are 25 ideas for daily blog posts:
Stick to a Schedule
1. Set up an editorial calendar. StressLimit makes a plug in called the WordPress Editorial Calendar you can use to schedule posts months in advance.
2. Pick a theme. I know bloggers who’ve devoted an entire month to writing about inspiration, investments, adventure, even chocolate.
3. Pick a theme day of the week. If you don’t want to devote a month to a theme, pick one day a week. On Fridays, share a list of things you saw, read or heard during the week. On Sunday, run a photo that you took around town or on a vacation. Make it simple, short and snappy.
4. Start a series. Write about a topic on a regular basis. The silver lining: do it long enough and you’ll collect enough posts to write an e-book.
5. Be spontaneous. Next time you see something on Facebook or Twitter, instead of commenting there, blog about it.
Think Like a Reporter
6. Write about news of the day that’s related to your blog topic.
7. Curate. Pick an event or topic that’s been in the news. Find the best stories or blog posts about it and compile them, adding an intro with your own spin on the subject.
8. Go to a conference. If you can’t go in person, watch a webinar or listen in on a teleconference, then share what you learned.
9. Do a Q & A. Find a leader in the field you cover and ask them for an interview. If you’re pressed for time, conduct an email interview.
10. Run guest posts. Trade with someone who blogs about the same thing. Or find someone who writes about something completely different but whose writing or perspective you admire.
11. Re-run popular posts. If readers loved something the first time, they’ll probably love it a second time too. Update as needed. This post is a good example of a re-run. I originally ran it in 2011, updated it in 2012, and updated it again for the 2014 Blogathon by removing older dates and outdated material.
12. Bundle related posts. Create a list of posts you and other bloggers have done on the same topic.
13. Run “Best of…” posts. Create a list of the best posts you’ve ever done on a specific topic.
Interact with Readers
14. Write posts that answer readers’ questions. I started getting so many questions from writers about the freelance business I turned my responses into a series called Dear WordCount.
15. Post a podcast interview. Next time you do an interview, record it.
16. Post a video. Set up your own YouTube channel, and point from it to your blog and vice versa.
17. Post a slideshow or photo gallery. If a picture is worth a thousand words, let your photos do the talking.
18. Run a poll. Readers love polls and you can use the results to get ideas for future posts.
19. Run a contest. Readers love giveaways even more than polls. Ask readers for comments or some other form of content so you can…
20. Post contest results. Contests are two-fers – announce it in one post and results or comments in a second.
21. Run a list (like this one). Another crowd favorite.
22. Break up one long post into a series. Instead of writing a 1,000 word treatise on a subject, divide it into Parts 1, 2 and 3 – just as much information, three times as many posts.
23. Start a Twitter chat. The hour-long virtual meetup I hosted to wrap up the 2010 blogathon went so well and I created the WordCount Last Wednesday monthly Twitter chat. Chats are good for two posts each: one to announce it and another to recap the highlights.
24. Participate in an online event. If I didn’t host the blogathon, I’d consider joining a blog tour or NaNoWriMo.
25. Run a graphic. In journalism circles, infographics are hot. Infographics use visuals to depict some kind of statistics. Here’s a sample from HubSpot, on the secrets to writing an attention-grabbing blog post.
[Illustration from William Strang, in “The Ancient Mariner,” Samuel Taylor Coleridge]