For a blog to be successful, you need to provide a steady stream of thoughtful original content that people will come to appreciate so much they begin to look forward to your next post. You also need to have a mechanism in place to announce every new post so you can attract new readers and entice your previous readers to come back for more. Building a community of people who actively engage in conversion on your blog with each new post you publish is also key to building a highly successful blog.
To help you manage all of the above, we are providing you with several tips and tricks you can use to automate your key blogging tasks:
1. Scheduling Posts Ahead of Time
If you are like most bloggers, you probably have days and weeks when you are so busy, you hardly have time to breath! During these busy periods, you may find it difficult to near impossible to publish a post.
Unfortunately, having periods of inactivity on your blog can significantly impact your followers’ enthusiasm for your blog. They may stop checking to see what you’ve posted. They may also become less likely to recommend your blog to their friends if you have significant lag time between posts. This can affect not only the number of readers you have but also the level of conversation happening when you do finally publish another post. This affects your search engine rankings and increases the likelihood that even your most dedicated followers may lose interest.
Almost all blogger platforms offer a way for you to “schedule” posts to be released at any point in the future. In WordPress, you simple click on the edit button near the publish button to reveal this feature. From here, you can use the calendars provided to pick any day in the future for which to publish your blog post. You can also choose any time. The time feature allows you to publish your posts when your readers are most likely to want to read them and when you’ll generate the most active discussion.
Using schedule feature to automatically publish posts will go a long way toward making sure you generate a nice steady flow of posts to keep your readers interested and happy. You can generate multiple posts during days and weeks when you have more time and then schedule these to be posted on days and weeks when you’d be so busy you would not have time to create a post. This also works great if you plan to go on vacation or attend a conference.
2. Automating Tweets
A smart tactic that many bloggers use to draw people to their new posts is to send out a tweet about each new post. In fact, it is even smarter to send out more than one tweet to announce each new post at different times of day to ensure more people actually see the tweet. People check their twitter feeds at different times of day.
At the same time you schedule future posts, you can also schedule tweets ahead of time to announce your new posts as they are posted in the future. There are several popular Twitter apps specifically designed to make scheduling your tweets much easier. These include HootSuite, Buffer, and SocialOomph.
There are also Twitter apps that will help you identify the peak times, i.e. the most effective times, for you to schedule your tweets. One popular Twitter app that does this is Tweriod. This app will analyze your audience to determine when they are the most active and more likely to click on the links to your new blog posts. In fact, this app will even break this down for you by day as the peak times will certainly change by the day, especially on weekend days.
3. Automating Facebook Posts
You’ll reach a much wider audience for your blog if you announce your posts on both Twitter and Facebook. If you are scheduling blog posts ahead of time, you will want to also schedule Facebook posts ahead of time that will announce your new posts as they come out. Luckily, several of the popular apps designed to automate Twitter posts will also make it easy for you to schedule automatic Facebook posts that will announce your posts as they are published on your blog. These include Buffer and HootSuite.
We asked a cross-section of bloggers the below question.
Do you use any automation techniques when blogging, and if so what are they?
Do you automate post scheduling, tweeting or other? We’d like to know what automation steps you use to help streamline your blogging process.
There are several more methods of automating your blog that we will discuss in future posts but these should get you started on the right track. Good blogging!
About the author
This post is written by Andy Merchant, Co-founder of Bloggers Required. When Andy is not working, he can found him with a camera in hand, pretending to be an amateur photographer. Find him on Google+ and Twitter.
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