Have you started or want to start a new blog? Have you been a blogger for a long time? Either way, you have a big job on your hands. Maybe you started blogging because you have a unique hobby or interest that you want to show and teach others.
Whatever the reason, you’ve finally begun your blog. But the process of blogging includes a lot more than just writing your content. Many tasks need to get done to create a successful blog.
Does this sound daunting? Well, it is. That is not something you can avoid. However, you can still maintain and grow your blog successfully, even in the face of difficulty.
Before we begin, let’s take a look at all the heavy-lifting that goes into blogging.
Yes, you have to write content for your blog. That is the number one task. But you also have to market your blog, grow your following, and create an organized system to do everything without stressing out.
Oddly enough, another one of your jobs is scheduling when to do all of this. It’s like you’re a one-person organization unto yourself.
Now, you absolutely can do all of this on your own. But you cannot do everything on the same day. That’s where the hard-core scheduling comes in.
We’ll get into the nitty-gritty details later; all you need to know for now is that you must use your time wisely. Don’t haphazardly go from project to project without any direction. That is the ultimate form of unproductivity and stress.
As a blogger, you are always going to fight disorganization. It’s an occupational hazard. If you give up on this struggle, the hordes of evil stress-mongers will overthrow your intellectual kingdom. To avoid this, continually develop new strategies that make your life easier and simplify the blogging process.
Start this simplification process with blogging SOPs and business systems.
What is a Blogging SOP?
An SOP (standard operating procedure), put simply, is a method you use for a specific set of circumstances. For example, what’s your SOP for emails responding to your blog? Do you have an automated reply set up, or do you take the time to respond individually?
Every part of all businesses contains SOPs. So, if you are unattentive to your SOPs, they probably aren’t doing their jobs very well. Or worse, if you haven’t set up an SOP, your “standard operating procedure” is to chaotically blunder through your day, replying to emails you have time for and forgetting about those you don’t. That’s no way to get a job done.
If you are to have efficient blogging standard operating procedures, keep up with them. Make sure they are up to date and as simple as possible.
What is a Business System?
A business system takes SOPs to another level. It creates SOPs for every aspect of your business and its journey. The key to creating workable business systems for bloggers is to write down your tasks first.
What needs to get done? Here are some basic things on your to-do list as a blogger: writing your blog posts for the month, responding to all your blog-related emails, and marketing your blog.
Now, what should your SOP (remember, that’s standard operating procedure) be for each one of these points? Creating an SOP for each of these jobs are the building blocks of a business system.
So, what should an SOP look like for one of those tasks? An SOP should always make your life easier, not messier.
How to Use a Blogging System
There are plenty of systems for blogging that include stress-relieving SOPs. For instance, instead of jumping from one task to another, set aside certain days for specific tasks. This method is called batching.
As an example, there is a new blogger named Martha. She needs to write one post a week (about four a month), and she’s getting a bunch of emails from her readers. Martha has been fluttering between writing a few words on one blog post then answering a few emails like an uncertain butterfly.
Sorry, Martha, but that is a sad waste of time.
The more you flutter between the jobs you need to get done, the less efficient you become. So, let’s show Martha how to batch her tasks.
On Monday, Martha needs to answer her emails. The next day, she’ll write all her blog posts for the month, and on Wednesday, she’ll focus on marketing. And then she’ll repeat.
As you can see, the basic idea behind batching is to get one specific task done in its entirety all at once. Granted, you do need to take short breaks, but that does not include a “break to go answer your readership emails.” You should be taking a few minutes to walk outside, get a drink, or a snack. Then come back to your computer.
Can Your System Be Simplified?
Here comes the best stress-relief of all. Simplifying your systems is the most time-saving and most effective way to implement SOPs. Let’s say you need to answer emails, but you have hundreds of readership emails you don’t think are worth the time? You can use a platform like Gmail to prioritize your emails and create an auto-response for certain types of emails.
For instance, if you’re getting emails every time someone comments on your blog or purchases some merchandise, craft an auto-response that sincerely communicates what you want your customers to hear, such as a thank you letter. There are other useful platforms too. For instance, using Asana makes organizing and implementing SOPs much easier to keep track of.
The bottom line is to always cut down on unnecessary complications or things that are too difficult and time-consuming. Another way to do this is to outsource. Outsourcing extremely cumbersome or specialized tasks is advisable.
While it would be easier to outsource everything, figure out how you could make this work if it was just you doing it all. Knowing how to organize and optimize tasks informs your decision-making.
When the time comes to outsource and hire someone else to do a job, give them the 5-dollar jobs, so you can focus on the big buck jobs.
If you haven’t worried about your SOPs in a while (or ever), start by setting them up now. There’s no time like the present. So, get rid of all those needless tasks that used to clutter your brain space. Create simple, efficient systems to do those menial jobs for you, and enjoy the ride!