What is UP you guys! Welcome back to K Is For Karly! Next month we’re coming up on one year of self hosted blogging and I am so excited. I’ve learned so much from this adventure in blogging and I can’t wait to complete another year. As most of you know blogging is actually way more work than it seems to be. From photographing, to writing, to social media. It’s a lot to do – especially if you already have a full time job or you’re a student! Lately I’ve been writing my posts in whole new ways and learning how to plan blog content is different ways too! It’s helping me be effective and fast in my content planning for the month. Today I’m going to show you how to do it too!
How I Plan And Organize My Blog Content
1. Choose Your Colours
Okay, so this step is a bit extra but for those of you that don’t know I also bullet journal! Bullet journalling has helped me get so organized and excited for planning my life. I always used to struggle with store bought planners because they often lacked something I really needed and added something I didn’t. The bullet journal creates freedom for me to do whatever the heck I want, and I love it!
I choose the colours for the month and get to planning! For July I chose to do pink and green and do a watermelon theme!
2. Mark Down Important Dates
I’m not talking birthdays and anniversaries. I’m talking about things like Canada Day or International Day Of Friendship. These dates are perfect content fillers on Instagram! Throw up a picture of your best friend for international day of friendship, add a kissing boomerang on international kissing day. Celebrate whichever you want! I always make sure to write the ones I’d like to celebrate down so I can incorporate them and plan blog content later.
3. Plan Those Blog Posts
When I plan blog content I always do two stages of blog post planning. One is just getting ideas down on a page according to my blog schedule and the other is a bit more in-depth. For the first one I gather all of the dates I post my blogs on and write them down along the left hand side. I also placed a little key at the top for me to remember which day has which kind of content. M = Fashion/Lifestyle W = College F = Fitness. From there I get to work!
I always do a monthly blog report and a bullet journal set up on my blog so I pop those right at the end of the dates on their appropriate days. It’s also my 21st birthday this month so of course I’ll be blogging about that too! This process probably takes the longest because you have to come up with and plan blog content that you love but that you also can realistically write. But don’t worry! It’ll come to you!
4. Get In Depth
After you’ve got all your posts down it’s time to really plan it out! I post three times a week on K Is For Karly so I use two pages in my notebook to plan out my blog content. Even if you have to skip a page I would definitely recommend you do this on two pages that face each other so you can see your plan all laid out.
I start with the very first blog post of the month. I pop the date on the left and the title right after. If the blog is a bit complex I’ll jot down little notes underneath the title so I know exactly what I need to get done for that post.
4a. Photo Planning
While I’m in the same box for post planning I also write down what photos I need. This really helps out my photographers because we normally have limited time to shoot. (This is actually because my photographers are my boyfriend and best friend and we always end up doing things right after taking photos!) I visualize what I want the post to look like and which photos I think would fit best. After that I write it down. I like to write the number of photos I need as well – it just makes it easier for everyone.
After that I write down “Shoot Date” on the next line. This really helps when I’m trying to get a lot done in a minimal amount of time. If there’s a post from the end of the month that doesn’t require a lot of pictures I’ll try to shoot it with something that also doesn’t have tons of pictures. That way we kill two blogs with one camera. Having a shoot date also keeps everyone involved accountable so that no one is ever rushed for photos. Getting photos is one of the hardest things for me when gathering blog content but having a plan makes it way easier!
5. Instagram Content Plan
This is literally the hardest part for me. Keeping up with Instagram is literally one of the toughest things I’ve done. I can’t pull tons of images from other people and repost them nor can I just casually throw up photos once and a while. Throw in that fact that the Instagram algorithm is always ruining lives and you’ve got a recipe for disaster. And that is I why I Instagram content plan.
Getting an idea of my feed down on the page makes me hyperaware of situations I’m in. Did I plan to have a photo of the downtown skyline? Am I downtown right now? Snap a photo! I then have that content to put up later. Planning has caused a little less stress when it comes to the gram but honestly it’s still hard. What really helps is sticking to shoot dates for blog posts and having strict turn around times. This means I’ll get the photos for blogs and I’ll be able to also use them on Instagram. It takes some practice but eventually it’s totally worth it!
6. Brainstorm The Collaboration Post
This is something new I’ve recently started and you probably saw it with this David’s Tea post! I’ve begun to reach out to brands to do collaboration posts once a month. This means working with companies I absolutely love to bring you content that’s actually helpful. For example my David’s Tea post is all for my people in the low carb low calorie game. You still get to enjoy delicious alcoholic drinks with way less guilt! (PS – The contest ends TODAY July 7, 2017 at midnight MST. Head over to this link to enter – good luck!)
I plan this post to be the last week of every month so I have time to talk with the company, come up with great blog content, have products sent, and do the photos. This is just an extra step I do on my blog in order to work towards working with brands in the future.
7. Get To Writing
I’ll admit it writing blog posts in probably the second hardest thing I do next to Instagram. Having to write out long, SEO optimized, engaging but educational blogs isn’t that easy. And it honestly used to take me FOREVER to write posts. I’m talking like a week. Until I found something that absolutely worked for me. That something is called Pomodoro’s.
I actually came across this idea when looking for study tips on Pinterest! You set a timer for 25 minutes and do as much work as you can in 25 minutes. Then you rest for 15. I’ve adapted my Pomodoro to 25 minutes of working on blog content and 5 minutes of break because I usually write blog posts right before I have to leave to somewhere else. The 5 minutes gives me enough time to check my phone or grab a snack without me losing focus on the task at hand. If I have tons of time that day I’ll do 4 rounds and take a 30 minute break. But I usually end up doing two rounds and have to be gone.
In that hour I can now write a full blog post and have it completely optimized and organized. This is SUCH a help when I’m planning photos as well. I can pick pieces out of the blog that I think would translate great to a photo and come up with a plan to shoot it! (PS – I speed wrote this blog in an hour too! Yay to Pomodoro’s!)
8. Schedule All Of It
I literally mean all of it. I use a few different automation tools when it comes to social media. This not only takes a lot of stress off of me it also ensure everything runs smoothly together. I start with the easiest things to schedule and that’s blog posts. I just head to the blog, choose the date and time, and hit schedule. BAM! It’s done and ready to send on it’s appropriate date. Next – this is where things get a little hectic at the beginning of the month. Here are the tools I use!
Planoly is an Instagram scheduler that allows you to schedule your Instagram posts and stories. It also let’s you see them laid out like you would see them on Instagram. That helps SO MUCH when you’re trying to plan your week out. Every Sunday I upload all of the photos I need for the week (according to my Instagram content plan) and get to work.
As a free account you can upload 30 photos per month onto Planoly. This is great for people that post once a day! But for the bloggers out there that know posting twice a day is where it’s at I’d suggest going to paid route. It’s only $9 a month if you choose to go month to month or $7 if you bill annually. If you’re serious about growing your Instagram having Planoly is a great tool!
This thing has helped me in ways I didn’t even realize. Boardbooster does SO MANY great things for your Pinterest! There’s campaign management, a scheduler, and a looping tool. All of these things are so helpful for Pinterest automation. It ensure your account is always growing and active even when you’re not actually on Pinterest.
I exclusively use the looping tool on board booster. It pulls pins from other sources and pins them on specific boards. This is absolutely amazing for growing your niche on Pinterest. I use it for my College Tips, Closet Goals, and Blog Tips board because those are niches I want to be in! Boardbooster pins wonderful relatable content so people see it, re pin, and follow me! Boardbooster pins 100 free pins for you before you have to switch over to the paid version. And much like Planoly it’s so cheap. I currently run the $5 a month version for 500 pins a month. That’s dirt cheap considering my Pinterest reach is now at 58.4K!
I recently discovered tailwind and it’s been a hit for me! Tailwind is very similar to boardbooster but a bit easier to use when it comes to scheduling off your own website. Every time I post a blog I’ll go in and use Tailwind after. It collects all of the images on the website and allows you to choose which ones you’d like to have pinned. From there you choose which boards they should be pinned on and you schedule them!
Tailwind also figure out what the best times to pin for you are in fills in those slots automatically! This is AMAZING because I don’t know much about prime times to pin on Pinterest. Not having to worry about knowing them is one of my favourite things about Tailwind.
I’m currently running the free trial of Tailwind where they will pin 100 pins for you. I’ve used up almost all of my pins so I’ll soon be switching to the paid version! tailwind is $15 a month if you bill month to month or $9.99 a month if you bill annually. If you’d like to try it out I’ve got you guys your first month free! Click here to sign up for Tailwind and get a $15 credit!
There is so much work that goes into running a blog and planning out blog content that it sometimes can get overwhelming. But just take a moment and breathe! If you have to adjust your posting schedule to twice a week, do that! If you can only manage to post on Instagram every second day, do that! Don’t sweat social media too much, but make sure you’re always working to improve.
You don’t want to be complacent in a routine, you’ll have no growth! Take the month to become comfortable in a plan and then change it the next month! Greatness happens right outside your comfort zone. So if you’re a bit stressed about all of this – know that it’s going to be okay.
Thanks So Much!
We have officially made it to the end of the blog. Thank you so much for sticking around and reading this all about how I organize and plan my blog content. I really wanted to make this an informative one so you could get a clear idea of how I plan my blog content for the month! What are your best blog content tips? Let me know in the comments below! As always!