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Life and Blog Balance

For 5B, I proposed a session on Life and Blog Balance, not because I have it together but because as a writer of two blogs this is the one conversation I want to participate in at conferences.

Content, beautiful photographs, SEO, social media, site maintenance, monetization, how do other bloggers do it ALL?

Like so many situations in life, what works for another blogger may not work for me. If I write one or two new posts on each blog weekly, I’ve hit my personal goal. A blogger who looks to earn income via her blog might be hustling to produce posts daily.

I work, like to workout, have family and friends I adore spending time with, am the single, head of household responsible for grocery shopping, food prep, cleaning, yard work, repairs, paying bills, etc. Then, I blog.

Here’s a rundown of how I operate:

For udandi, I ditched the niche and gave myself permission to indulge posting on anything except lunch packing, which goes on Lunch It Punch It. The payoff has been relating more to those people in my every day. When I see them, they refer to my blog posts. As someone who likes people, it’s nice to be able to continue a blog post conversation in person.

Sundays are my blogging day and what I write is typically scheduled to appear at a later date. I have a designated blogging station aka a desk. I prepare my photos, upload to WordPress, then write and edit the posts. I do not use this time to reply to email, pay bills, download new music or make a move in Words with Friends. I stay on task by using 30-30 app which is a timer app.

Blog posts are automatically shared to Twitter and Facebook from WordPress. I use the WordPress app to reply to comments in a timely fashion. Rarely, I use it to write a blog post.

Privately, I keep a mission statement for each blog. I jot down ideas all the time. I prefer a paper calendar, but many those who work further in advance praise the editorial calendar plugin for WordPress.

If I miss writing a post that might have a tie-in to a holiday or annual event, I still write it and schedule it for next year. Bloggers who participate in weekly memes might find a post template helpful.

I use permalinks without the date and write evergreen posts so I can repost previously published content. For example, I’ve shared this Valentine’s Wreath post twice. I have readers who follow my blog via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram so I take advantage of referring them to posts that they might have missed in the last seven years.

I use WordPress but keep the plugins to a minimum – fewer plugins, fewer updates. I schedule blog maintenance time, because I know the pain of wiping out my site, having corrupted back up files so I couldn’t restore my site and spending a $150 to recover my site. It was an expensive lesson in frustration.

I know the value of SEO, but I don’t stress over it. I’m not blogging for dollars or acclaim, but work through fields in this SEO plugin and use Google Keyword tool.

I participate in social media before and after work and sometimes on my lunch break. I use Tweetbot because it allows me to manage multiple Twitter accounts, keep saved searches, view lists, mute hashtags, keywords, applications and people and more. On Lunch It Punch It’s Twitter account, I look for packed lunch photos to share.

I use the Facebook page manager app to write updates on the fly just to say hello to those audiences when I don’t have a post. If a photo is relevant, I’ll share from Instagram to Twitter or Facebook. I’ve just started using Google+ and manually share posts to my profile via the app.

I don’t accept every opportunity. I’m flattered to be contacted, but attending an event often means following up with a blog post. I know that giveaways and product reviews require a lot of promotion on my part in order to get a response. In each of these situations, I have to factor all time spent.

I have a folder of Lunch It Punch It photos and post shells that I use to rework and share when asked to provide a guest post. This works mostly because people are asking me to give a summary of the blog, how it started and a photo. By not reposting the same info on multiple sites, I’m not dinged by Google.

By the way, I accept guest posts on Lunch It Punch It so if you make a better packed lunch than me or have a recipe you’d like to share but it doesn’t fit the content of your blog, please email me at LunchItPunchIt@gmail.com

If I get bogged down, I think of products, books and music I like. I wonder if I could blog in a theme. I look at book title and wonder if they could be the subject of a post. Sometimes I write posts that never get published.

I’m a librarian so I use labels and filters in Gmail to my advantage.

krogerFB

In Facebook, when I like a brand or blogger page, I take a moment to “Add to Interest list” and decide if I want the updates appearing in my news feed. This way when pinched for time, but eager to catch up on fan pages, I can visit each list accordingly. It’s kind of like only viewing certain circles in Google+

If I need to take a break because life happens, I do without guilt. Period.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Katie S. February 24, 2013, 9:10 am

    I thought that you did a fabulous job presenting, I learned a lot from what you shared with us, and even though I took many notes, I’m so glad you published this post that I can use as a reference! Hoping to run into you again in the future!

  • Organize 365 July 17, 2013, 8:14 pm

    Awesome! I love how organized you are! AI learned a lot!

    🙂
    Lisa

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