For April, I attempted to complete a challenge of 30 days of blogging. All I needed to do was blog every single day of the month. Easy, right?! Ha! As any blogger out there knows, that is quite an undertaking and not.easy.at.all! So, let me tell you all about it and share what 30 days of blogging taught me...
Before I dive in, let me tell you how I did. To be frank...I didn’t quite succeed. I missed 4 days, BUT, I’m still happy with what I did accomplish and consider it a success and not a failure!
I definitely blogged more and I learned a few things from the process that will help me going forward.
The Good Part of 30 Days of Blogging
Consistent Writing Habit
I was writing all the time!! Granted I was barely staying above water, but it got me into good habit.
You know how it goes, you sit down to write your blog post(s) and then you check your email, then Facebook, and finally you start to settle back in. Then your phone buzzes and a friend has texted you, or a tweet has come in, or whatever…some rabbit hole opens up and two hours later you realize you haven't finished a single thing!
Sound familiar? Well…when attempting to publish a good quality post every single day, you have to learn to get focused. This month taught me to turn all of that off, set a timer, and GO! This will be a skill that I will definitely carry forward (not that I won’t still get distracted by other things…it happens!).
Developed a New Series
Since I was going to be writing 7 days a week, I needed something to fill in those weekend days. I’ve always loved reading weekly inspirational posts sharing other bloggers’ content and links. I am always finding good stuff when reading blogs throughout the week, so while it’s not a new concept, I jumped on the bandwagon with my ‘Weekend Reads’ series (note…I don’t love the name of that and I’m trying to come up with something better!).
Gained More Readers
If you write it they will come. Well, it’s not quite that simple, but there is truth in the more you write and publish (provided it’s still good content), the more people will read your blog.
Let’s talk Numbers
I finished March with ~8,500 page views for the month (which was up from February). I always apply a 25% growth rate to my stats at the month end to get my goals for the month ahead. That meant my goal for page views for April was ~10,700.
I finished April with ~15,300 page views.
Yep…I increased my page views by 80%!
Now…I don’t think just writing every day was the secret sauce. My daily numbers started ticking up in mid-March as I was wrapping up the Badass Babes e-course and I think THAT had a lot to do with it because I was now writing posts for topics I had brainstormed on during the course (i.e. better topics…stronger content). But, I do think blogging more played a part in the jump in my numbers!
The Bad Things of 30 Days of Blogging
There was really only 1 ‘bad’ thing and it was that writing blog posts was pretty much ALL I was doing. My time for all of my other blogging tasks was severely restricted.
I love to read other’s blogs, but I just couldn’t stay on top of that as much as I wanted to this month.
I also couldn’t dedicate time to making other changes and improvements to my blog. I have a long list of other things I want to do to improve my website and add more value for you guys, but I could only scratch the surface. This is the main reason I’m looking forward to scaling back a bit in May.
What Got Reinforced from 30 Days of Blogging
An Editorial Calendar is Key
Having a well planned and thought-out editorial calendar is the only way to post consistently and to have good content. Blogging on a whim and coming up with topics the night before you post may work for the rare few, but the vast majority of successful bloggers that have the readership we all covet….plan ahead and think ahead.
I’ve been making an editorial calendar for months, so I think that’s what made this somewhat of a success for me. When I had time to write, if I wasn’t working on a post to be released that week, I was writing ahead for upcoming posts that I knew were coming.
Daily Posting is HARD!
Posting 7 days a week is not for me. Ideally, I’d love to post 5 days a week, but I’m not even sure if that’s really realistic. But, I’m still aiming for that and at a minimum, I’ll post 4 days a week. This was my schedule prior to the challenge, so I’m not changing anything up there…just returning to what works for me.
Make time to Check out Other Blogs
Reading and commenting on other people’s blogs is still a great way to connect with others and drive traffic to your site.
There was one week that I did have a bit more time that the other weeks and I was visiting and commenting on a lot of blogs. That week, not coincidentally, had my highest page views and visits of the month.
Would I do it again?
With all of this said, I do think it was a good exercise and I’m going to try to plan to do this once a quarter just to shake things up! I think it’ll also be good to continue reinforcing the good practices I established during this past month.
Next time, though, I’ll likely start planning well in advance so I already have some drafts in place (if not completed posts) by the time the month begins.
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What about you? Have you ever attempted to blog daily? How did it go? Would you do it again? Leave me a comment and let me know! I’d love to hear your thoughts!