How to Start a Blog (and be Successful from the Start!): Part III

how to start a blog Welcome back to my How to Start a Blog and be Successful from the Start series! If you're just now tuning in, check out parts one and two to catch up! Today is all about getting organized, y'all, because I know I'm not the only one who struggles with it!

When I started my blog over a year ago, I was terrible at consistency, and most of that was because I wasn't organized. It's actually only been since my transition to Wordpress that I realized I needed to get organized.

Now, if you're starting a blog to just have a creative outlet i.e., not to monetize, you can tend to post less consistently. But if you're really passionate about writing and helping others (the basic necessities of a monetized blog, for all you people wanting to make money), consistency is key! Your readers want to know when to expect a new post from you! Think about it this way: Say you have a coworker/friend who just didn't answer their phone or show up one day. You'd ask where they were or what was going on! That's how bloggers should want their audience to be.

tools organize blog photo credit*

Many bloggers will tell you that they use a number of different tools to schedule things. I'm going to tell you the same thing, because there really isn't just one way that nails everything. So first things first: CoSchedule.

Since transitioning to a self-hosted Wordpress, the CoSchedule plugin has literally saved my life. Okay, not really, but I can see exactly when I have each post scheduled, and I can schedule social media promotion from Wordpress! Talk about the best plugin ever? If you're on a self-hosted Wordpress, it's definitely worth the subscription. One of the best parts is being able to schedule social posts for older blog posts. Such a great way to drive traffic to old posts.

Buffer is similar to CoSchedule, and they even can be connected. I haven't done that because I just use a free account of Buffer. One of the coolest features of Buffer has been that you can schedule "suggested Tweets" and other things like that (although they're getting rid of that feature soon. Unhappy). Since starting to actively use Buffer in that capacity, I've grown my Twitter traffic exponentially!

My final organization tool can seem silly to others, but since starting it, I feel more organized than ever. My blogging binder has quickly become my best friend! Through my blogging binder, I keep track of not only the creative side of my blog, but also the business side. Many people only see the glamourous side of blogging: the outfits, free gifts and "fame" (I recently had someone tell me they liked my Instagram, and it kind of shocked me. HA) but there is so much work that goes into running a blog. A customizable blog binder is something that will help you keep track of not only your posts, but your financial and business side and most importantly, maintaining the vision and integrity of your blog!

The main thing you need to remember when it comes to organization:

Find what works for you. If you're more of a paper person, a blog binder might be more beneficial for you to use mostly! I know that I don't have time to sit and be on Twitter or Pinterest all day pinning and tweeting all my posts and being engaged with readers. So having both a paper and digital way of keeping track of all of it helps! Don't let the business and organization side of blogging scare you away from it! Blogs are a lot of hard work, but with the right tools to keep you organized, you can definitely succeed!