As of February 2022, I’ve been blogging consistently on Authoring Arrowheads for five years. In the early months of building this blog, I really struggled to come up with post ideas that were both valuable for my target audience and fun for me to write. Then, one day, I finally sat down and came up with a content strategy that has allowed me to continue writing a post a week and never run dry of post ideas, even when my creative well is dry.
Want to learn the secrets behind my foolproof strategy? Keep reading to discover this simple trick that has revolutionized the way I approach blogging.
Supplies You’ll Need
The best part about this simple content strategy is that it is super low-budget! The only things you’ll need are:
- A notebook
- A weekly/monthly planner
- A pencil
- A set of multi-colored highlighters
- About an hour of time
That’s it! As y’all know, you can spend any amount you would desire, but, if you’re a bit of a cheapskate like me, you can easily round up these materials for under $25.
Now, for the fun part: using these supplies to plan blog content!
Step 1) Make a List of Potential Blog Posts
The first thing I do when planning blog content for the year is to allot myself a good chunk of time toward the end of the year, most likely when I’m on my yearly Christmastime blog hiatus, and sit down and write a huge list of potential blog posts I would like to write for the upcoming year. During these brainstorming sessions, I often think of blog posts that worked really well for me in the past, and figure out how I can expand on those and provide new value for my readership through those topics. Once I’ve exhausted these shiny new “blog post bunnies” ideas, I dive a little deeper and break out a color-coordinated system.
Step 2) Create a List of a few Existing Topic Categories and Brainstorm Specifically with Those in Mind
Next, I realize the need to cater specifically to my blog’s top niche subjects, so I split my posts up into five different categories and start color-coordinating my existing list of post ideas to see what I have to work with so far.
For example, my five different niche subjects for Authoring Arrowheads are currently:
1) Writing/Publishing/Book Marketing
3) My Books/Writing Updates/Editing Diaries
4) Motivation/Christian Living/Life posts
5) Planner/Bullet Journaling/Writing Accessories
Breaking down my existing posts into these categories gives me a clear vision of how many of each topic I will need for the year. Since I mainly post every Wednesday, with special posts sprinkled throughout the year if I have a book release or a sale going on, I try to write one post for each of those categories per month to adhere to those established niches.
In order to figure out if I have enough ideas to stick to this guideline, I go back to my free-for-all list of ideas I jotted down earlier, and break out my highlighters. Using the color-coordinated system below, I go down the list and put a dot with the corresponding color beside the post idea:
1) Writing/Publishing/Book Marketing – BLUE
2) Books/Reading – GREEN
3) My Books/Writing Updates/Editing Diaries – PINK
4) Motivation/Christian Living/Life posts – YELLOW
5) Planner/Bullet Journaling/Writing Accessories – ORANGE
Once all the post ideas have dots beside them, I count them to see which niches need more ideas. I then brainstorm specifically with those niches in mind until I have enough to satisfy me for the first few months of the upcoming year. If I need more later on in the year, I come back to this same list and brainstorm more posts.
Step 3) Plan Ahead
The final step I take in my content planning for the year is to map out important posts ahead of time. For example, if I know I’m going to publish a book in October, I will write down ideas that center around that book for those weeks.
However, I don’t plan ahead specific niche content months in advance otherwise. I try to pre-plan niche posts for the upcoming month a couple weeks ahead of time, going off the color-coordinated list at random. As long as I have one of each color (or one of four colors during months with four Wednesdays), I’m not too picky.
And, that’s it! Blog content planning doesn’t have to be difficult or require fancy software. As long as you have some niche subjects to build on and some basic supplies, you’ve got this! 🙂
Talk to Me, Arrowheads!
If you’re a fellow blogger, what methods do you use to plan your blog content?
Aim high, stay strong, and always hit your mark.