Blog Experiment Gone Awry: Restrictive Scheduling Takes Its Toll

Tara takes the photo for the banner image.

The Making of South Mountain Media: Tara takes the photo for the banner image.

As my first blog enters its third month, I’m going to spend a few lines on an assessment of goals and realities. First I would like to say thank you for all of the compliments and feedback you’ve given me – it means a lot to know that this message in a bottle is really connecting with you. My goal is provide you with useful information and new connections for online community building, small business marketing, local living, music and non-profit promotion and digital communication. I’ll explore these subjects by using research and experience to connect them to related aspects of modern life, but always with a focus on making or improving real human connections.

Scheduling Without Limits

Professional blogging wisdom, such here from Darren Rowse, Stanford Smith and Chris Brogan, says that to stay relevant and readable, you need a minimum of one post per week, better yet two to three, and at best once or more every day.  Aiming for growth but wanting to deliver quality content I chose a three day per week posting frequency, but I’ve now realized that the self-imposed Mon-Wed-Fri schedule was an unnecessary constraint. You will still see the Spotlight series every Friday, but despite the dangers of passion blogging that Stanford notes, other posts will appear when they are truly ripe and not rushed to an artificial deadline.

Managing the Content Supply

Me at Watermelon Park Festival

A Festivarian in His Natural Surroundings, photo by Rhya LaFleur

Also on good advice from the pros above, I built up a small reservoir of posts at the beginning, and up to now I have been able to draw from this store of drafts to keep ahead of the schedule. But when life intervenes on the quality writing time, as it has now at the end of festival season, my supply of drafts dried up.  Now I’m refilling the well the same way that I started, with a combination of idea dumps on paper and saving several draft headlines online. I’m going “back to the future” by taking stock of what I’ve done so far (so that I don’t repeat myself), organizing resources for future posts and asking my readers for feedback.

What would you like to read more of ? Or less of? Am I too sometimes too broad or too narrow? Do you want more links? More in-depth Spotlights? No Spotlights at all? Are there related subjects I am missing out on? More tips?  Interviews? Video? The WordPress stats only tell me about links and page views, so in this time of reflection and replenishing I’d love to hear back from you.

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About Mike Ward

Connecting the digital to the local - website management, social media and event promotion.
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2 Responses to Blog Experiment Gone Awry: Restrictive Scheduling Takes Its Toll

  1. I don’t like setting up strict deadlines either. Try to build up a more organic writing schedule. Find ways to provoke your creativity, and then when a good idea comes up catch it and write about it. I have a bookmark folder called “Ideas,” I also try to read a lot of other people’s blogs. When I read something that sparks an idea, I make a mental note, and then bookmark the page to later go back to.

    3 months is still a baby site. I’m only a year and 6 months and I still feel like a baby. At the very least, your writing is very clear and personable – that is a lot more than I can say for most blogs. Just keep up the good work and things will eventually come together.

  2. Mike Ward says:

    Thank you for the encouragement Steven! Yes, that schedule was an odd constraint and I need to be free to write and research when I have the time. For a while it worked out that I did have the time for this schedule, but not for the long haul. More tortoise and less hare.

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