Content Planning 101
How do you decide what to write about? I've covered this topic very briefly on the blog but wanted to dive in a little deeper for my readers that are fellow content creators or just starting out. Planning out what to write for the month, the year or even next week, can be a daunting task. After all, you want it to be relevant to what is happening in the world today and to what your readers are interested in learning about. I have found that many of you love my fashion looks, but there are also several of you who want tips and tricks about creating content for your own blogs as well.
If you've created your own space on the internet, then you've probably (hopefully) already identified who you are writing to and what your niche is.
I try to have posts planned up to a month in advance, with some projects being planned a little further out based on contracts I've signed and requirements for posting. I am not always this organized, and there are some nights when I'm cranking out a post that's due within the hour, but life runs much smoother when things are planned in advance.
A few tips on how to plan your content:
1. Determine your posting frequency.
My schedule is Monday, Wednesday and Friday. There are times when I miss a day, but I try to pick back up on the next posting day. I work full-time, I have two children - things happen, so if I miss a day, I try to communicate it and then come back strong the next day it's time to post.
2. Once you know when you're going to post, start planning out your post content.
My routine is writing out blog post titles, but I would say having a good idea of what you want to say and what the focus of the post will be is a great place to start. Sometimes I write out blog post titles as a part of the planning process, but after I've written the post, the title changes! And that's totally okay. This is my rough draft, planning phase. If you are posting 3 times a week, you should know what you are going to post before each week arrives.
3. Listen to your audience!
I have a search option on my site and one of the favorite analytics to view is the site search query. This tells me what readers are searching for on my page and if they found what they are looking for. Many of the posts I have created were based on something that one of YOU searched for on my site. I want to make sure that I am providing what you are looking for so this helps me out a ton! If you don't have this feature, create a call to action on your social media pages or blog posts and ask for feedback!
4. Balance your sponsored content.
If you're just starting out, do NOT stress about not having paying gigs to post about on your blog. But I do want to say for those that do create sponsored posts: balance your content. You want your page to be genuine, and authentic, not a constant commercial trying to sell your readers flat tummy tea or the latest vitamin. Another note I can add about this is stay true to your content. I don't post every deal that is proposed to me because I need my page to be a place that you can trust what I'm saying. I'm not here to be a walking advertisement for any and every brand out there. Stay on brand. Stay true. Your audience will appreciate that.
5. Establish a series.
These are a great way to create consistent content that covers a topic that your readers might be interested in reading weekly or monthly. I had an Ask Steph series last year that I enjoyed writing for a little while. I may start another one soon.
6. Think through your seasonal content strategy.
My blog is a fashion and lifestyle blog, so my content will stay within this realm. Holidays are great content boosters because a large portion of your audience will likely be able to relate to what you are writing about. Whether it's Holiday Outfits or Best Recipes for Hosting Christmas, use seasonal times to their full potential. The key here though is to plan ahead and already have the content ready to go by the time the season rolls around.
7. Do your homework.
As a fashion blogger, my homework includes reading fashion magazines and staying ahead of trends, but whatever your niche is, read up on it, never stop learning and use what you learn as inspiration for your upcoming posts.
8. Speak from the heart.
Sometimes the most read posts for me are the ones that I just wrote from the heart. They weren't planned or a part of any strategy, but simply me sharing my heart with the people who make this all possible ... my readers.
I hope this helps, as always, email me if you have questions or want to see a topic on the blog! I'm always open to suggestions!
Have an amazing day!
XO - Steph