How to be more productive as a blogger? – I get asked this question a lot!
Productivity tips are always sought after by bloggers. Thanks to the overwhelming information on the internet, the massive number of places to get distracted online and the nature of work involved for a blogger, blogging productivity is always in danger!
In order to get blog content ideas, in order to expand those ideas, in order to do keyword research, market research and content research and in order to create the content, a blogger has to use the enormous number of online tools that are easily available.
Now this comes with a price. The “enormously” useful online tools that help bloggers to do what they gotta do also keep them from doing what they got to do.
Productivity rests in peace in the life of most bloggers.
Let me give you a scene so that you can picture it yourself.
You wake up in the morning and open your computer with a nice cuppa coffee. You start checking emails. And then, oh there’s Facebook. No, you’re not wasting your time – but you’re engaging with your audience on Facebook! That’s what YOU think.
Bam! Lunch time!
After lunch, let’s say you take a nap. You come back to your working (?!) table with yet another cuppa coffee. Now you’re determined to do the work.
You need to write that blog post. You need to do the background research. You go to Google. You end up reading 55 blog posts, share them, pin them on Pinterest, get lost on all the shiny objects out there until your eyes go blurry, and red.
Now you take a serious pledge that you WILL work seriously without wasting time from tomorrow morning.
And, you know, the story continues…
In this post I am going to tell you what exactly you need as a blogger to boost your productivity. The productivity tips I’m going to share here are no theory; but they’ve been tested (on me) and are found to work perfectly.
Let’s get to productivity tips for bloggers 101.
Have clear goals in order to boost your productivity
It all starts with clarity. Without this it will not be hard for you to get lost in the sea of information that’s presented before you on that computer screen.
Get over with the foggy clouds and multiple voices that are over your head 24/7. Eliminate all the unclear thoughts and goals. Find out exactly what you want with your business and your blog.
In fact, as a blogger, you should get clarity from day -1 – I mean, even before you start your journey as a blogger. If you do not have clarity then don’t start a blog or an online business unless you know what you want to achieve.
This not only applies to bloggers but to all businesses and even starting something new with your personal life. But in the case of blogging, having clarity is very crucial since this is a crowded business.
We see blogs being started every minute and they also die faster that way. Without clarity, you won’t be able to succeed as a blogger.
OK that’s the big picture. When we see at the detailed level, without clarity you cannot accomplish anything in one single day. I mean, you cannot even think about being productive.
Every night before you go to bed, write down a list of things that you want to accomplish the next day so when you get to your working table in the morning, you don’t have to figure out what to do.
Facing a day without knowing what to do is like getting on a plane without knowing where you want to go or the destination of the plane itself.
You should have short term and long terms goals (see below). You have to clearly know what you want to achieve in a day, week, month and in the coming year.
Plan for the long term to become more productive
Once you get clarity about your business, you look at the bigger picture and make long term plans. This is the first step to increase your productivity as a blogger.
Why? Because having a long term plan will put a target in front of you and motivate you to work towards it.
Without a long term plan and a goal you will simple be checking emails, hanging out on social media and occasionally work on your blog. This is not the best working model for a blogger.
As a blogger, if you want to be productive every day, you should have long term goals, that are split up into short term goals, which again are split into manageable chunks (tasks) that you handle on a daily basis.
Now let me ask you: What will you work on everyday, as a blogger, when you don’t have a long term plan?
Let’s answer this question first and talk about productivity later!
How to be more productive as a blogger? Have focus
See I’ve emphasized “blogger” in the heading above?
Remember I talked about distractions in the beginning? Well you cannot eliminate them as a blogger, coz you need to do a lot of research, be on social media and put your face all over the internet. And this can lead to a lot of distraction.
But that doesn’t mean you’ve to get lost in the sea of things to do. Often times, you get lost when you don’t have clarity, which we talked about earlier.
But having focus is another part of the story.
Now, assuming that you have your long term plan > short term action plans > daily tasks and strategies, you have something to work on everyday, right? You have a precise list of stuff that you need to take care on a daily basis.
When you have that stuff in front of you, work on that and that alone.
If you find yourself getting distracted quite often, use the appropriate productivity tools for bloggers (more on that below).
These are the bits you need to stay focused:
- Have a clear long term goal
- Create an action plan to achieve that goal
- Organize the baby steps
- Split big goals into chunks to easily get them done
- Take action and approach tasks one by one
- Stop regularly and analyze the results (more on this below)
Work in blocks to become a productive blogger
The working hours of a blogger can get boring by the day since all we do is sit in front of the computer. This can be really tiring. And when you get tired, that will seriously hit your productivity.
To avoid this boredom and kinda sick feeling from emerging inside you, try to work in short blocks of time. The Promodoro technique is the best bet in this case.
Choose to work say 25 minutes and compulsorily take a 5 minute break. Or you can also choose to work an hour straight and take a 10 minute break.
It is very important that you take your eyes and focus off your blogging activity at regular intervals to make yourself more productive.
And one important advice here > Have everything ready when you start working in a block of time.
Do not set aside time for writing a particular blog post until you have all the material ready and have done the research.
Tip > Set aside a separate block for doing research to start writing that blog post and really limit yourself to work on that task only for that amount of time!
With this tip (working in small blocks of time), you can also avoid multi-tasking!
Analyze your plan regularly
Do not keep working hard monotonously on a strategy. It is very crucial in any business to pause and analyze.
Whenever you are implementing something new, or whenever you are working on a strategy, you need to pause often and look back. And, analyze the results.
If you keep on working on a thing without looking back, you are not being productive. You could be wasting your energy on strategies that don’t work and you could be missing out on strategies that work.
Stopping by and looking back helps you to find out what worked and what didn’t work.
This information is crucial for any business (not just for blogging).
In short > Find out what works and do more of it. Find out what doesn’t work and eliminate it or tweak it.
Have the RIGHT productivity tools
As a blogger we use so many tools every day for blogging, social networking, promotion etc. It is also important that we use the right tools in order to keep ourselves productive and to keep us on track.
I use Evernote to keep myself alive in this chaos It not just helps me plan things, but also to stay focused and keep an account of my productivity. I keep track of projects and keep a collection of all the relevant documents/details in Evernote. Almost no chaos.
I use Wunderlist a task management tool.
I used to use a variety of different tools for keyword research, tracking my search engine traffic and keyword positions, etc. Now I only use one tool – Semrush.
Using the right productivity tools also mean using less number of tools. Less is more. When you use various/numerous tools, while in fact you can use one or two, you are naturally wasting time and energy.
How productive are YOU as a blogger?
What productivity tools do you use? What do you do to keep yourselves accountable?
Or are you the blogger who doesn’t worry about being productive and just performs tasks everyday when and as they come in (I won’t be surprised)?
Let me (and everyone else) know in the comments!
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