As a writer, you may worry that if you begin blogging you will run out of material. Even if you blog about your book, you may think you have little to say to help promote your work. If you blog your book, of course, the manuscript provides the content for your blog posts—at least until you finish the book. Once you finish blogging your book, though, you might find yourself staring at a blank computer screen wondering what to write. In all these cases, creating a blog content plan helps you save time, consistently have topics to blog about, and blog effectively in a focused manner.
The basic principle behind creating a blog content plan revolves around planning blog posts on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis. If you plan on blogging a book, initially you can use your blogged book as the central subject of your blog and your manuscript as the content you plan to blog. Thus, your content plan, in fact, is based upon your table of contents and the content in each chapter, which you break down into posts sized bits. (Click on this link to learn how to create a blog content plan based on your blogged book.)
If you don’t plan on blogging a book, create a content plan based on the topic of your book or on a general topic that helps you brand yourself. This methodology also works after you have finished blogging your book. You will need to continue blogging about your book long after your manuscript has been completed; this help you continue to gain readers to your blog, and these readers represent potential buyers of your book. In other words, you continue to promote your blogged book with your blog after it becomes a printed book or ebook.
How to Create a Blog Content Plan
It’s not difficult to create a blog content plan. Pick a topic to explore each month, quarter, or year that relates in some way to your book. Then brainstorm related topics. Schedule these topics based upon how often you write and publish posts. Then write about the topics you’ve selected each week in your posts (1-7 per week).
If you take the time to consider each post you write, you can expand it into another post fairly easily. Try doing a mind map, or just brainstorming, about ideas related to the themes, topics and issues in your book. The ideas you come up with can become blog posts. Now schedule them in your content plan. You can use a simple calendar for this. (The picture at the beginning of this blog post shows you how you can start with an idea and branch out to many different posts or ideas. Click on it to enlarge it.)
You can even come up with a series of posts on one topic—maybe a whole month on one particular subject. If you do so, you will blog a short book! You could sell this or give it away as an enticement for people to sign up for your mailing list.
Why a Content Plan Makes You a Better Blogger and Your Blog a Better Blog
Plan on a regular basis—once a year, quarterly or monthly—and you’ll find yourself with a continuous flow of blog post ideas. You’ll also find your blogging improves and you attract more readers. Here’s why:
- It is easier and faster to write your posts. You’ll always know exactly what you are going to write on a specific day. No more staring at a blank screen. You look at the schedule and write the scheduled post.
- You stay focused on your topic. No meandering around from topic to topic. You either remain on a direct path from start to finish of your manuscript or you write about subjects that are relevant to your brand, your book or your readers because you thought out your topics beforehand.
- You produce lots of keywords that make you and your blog more discoverable. Because you’ve planned out your content, your blog and your writing are always “on purpose.” This improves your SEO and makes your writing more relevant to those who do find your blog or your links.
- You produce better content. By simply planning ahead you produce better content. You don’t write on the fly, scramble to find something to say, or write a “bad post” because you don’t have something to say one day. Your plan keeps you on topic with great content day in and day out. This attracts more readers to your blog and your bogged book over time and, again, makes it easier for you to produce quality content and a quality blog or blogged book.