The number one reason that blogs fail is lack of organization. I’ve talked before on organizational blogging tools that you can purchase, but many of them cost money. If you don’t have any extra money to spend on blog organization, don’t worry. There are plenty of free tools that can be more than adequate for blogging, if you’re smart about how you use them.
Here are five ways to organize your blog without spending any additional money:
1. Collect Ideas in a Google Spreadsheet
One of the biggest problems bloggers face is running out of ideas. When you run out of ideas, you don’t post content regularly, and when you don’t post content regularly, your blog can’t get off the ground.
To avoid this problem, you should keep a stockpile of ideas, which can be kept in a simple Google spreadsheet. You should also use notes or voice memos on your smartphone to write down ideas when you aren’t near your computer, and transfer them to the Google sheet later.
If you have multiple writers working on your blog, you can use the Google topic sheet as a place to pitch topics, claim topics, and ensure no topics are repeated. The chat function of Google sheets allows writers and editors to talk to each other to discuss ideas in the same window where they can view all the proposed topics.
2. Use Google Reader to Follow your Favorite Blogs
Pablo Picasso is quoted as saying, “Good artists borrow, great artists steal.” If your Google sheet is running low on ideas, you should look at other blogs to get inspiration.
Google Reader is a tool that’s free for anyone with a Gmail account and allows you to follow all your favorite blogs from one place. You’ll know when there’s a new post without having to visit each website. This method saves time and ensures you’ll never miss a blog post that could be relevant to you.
3. Use Google Calendar to Plan your Content Schedule
A good blogger plans out content weeks or even months in advance. Advanced planning ensures that you will produce content consistently and that you will never feel rushed trying to meet a deadline. I’ve already discussed CoSchedule as a great editorial calendar, but if you don’t have any extra money to spend, you can just use Google Calendar.
Simply write the title of a blog post on the day you want to publish it. To be thorough, you can also mark the dates by which the article has to be written, fact-checked, and given images. You can share an assignment and a deadline with a writer, editor or photographer by “inviting” them to the event when the copy or the photos are due.
4. Use Trello to Streamline the Content Creation Process
Trello is an excellent free tool for moving content through an editorial process, especially if you have different people in charge of writing, fact-checking, photography, and editing. All members of your blog team can move assignments, or “cards,” into different Trello columns to signal that their work is done, and it’s time for the next person to take over. Trello allows you to attach documents or links to cards, so you can access a draft directly from a Trello board.
You can customize your Trello boards to suit the needs of your blog. You could, potentially, also use Trello to organize your ideas, rather than using a Google sheet. Writers could create cards with their pitches, and you could move the pitches into an “approved” or “denied” column. Trello has many potential uses when it comes to organization, so play around with it and see what system works best for you.
5. Use Hootsuite for Social Media Posts
Trying to manage your social media accounts without some sort of consolidation tool will inevitably result in you forgetting to schedule social media content. Hootsuite is probably the most popular social media management tool, and they offer a free plan which allows you to schedule posts for up to three social media accounts. This means that you can write posts for Facebook, Twitter, and a third site, such as LinkedIn, all in the same browser window, making social media marketing a breeze.
Ideally, you should have more than three social media accounts, but if you really don’t have any extra money to spend, a free plan from Hootsuite is better than nothing. Hootsuite also offers a subscription which costs only $10 a month and allows you to integrate up to 10 social media accounts. That’s a very good deal for the ability to promote yourself in an organized manner.
Starting a blog does not have to be an expensive endeavor in order to successful. It is relatively easy to find good organizational tools that don’t cost extra money. Find a system that works for you, and you’ll be on your way to success.
Eric Brantner has been writing on the web for the last decade. He now owns a number of high- traffic blogs, reaching millions of visitors around the world. His latest projects include Scribblrs.com and SleepZoo.com.
I hope you enjoyed this article on frugal methods you can utilize to organize your blog for success.
Interested in more articles about content management?
Read My Posts:
- Frugal Content Creation with Infographics
- Content Creation Overload & Writer Solutions
Best Of Luck In Business To You All!
Michael J. Schiemer of Schiemer Consulting
Bold Bootstrapping Businessman & Enthusiastic Entrepreneur
Digital Marketing Manager & Social Media Professional
HootSuite, HubSpot, & Google Analytics Certified
Bootstrap Business: Money - Marketing - Motivation
Mike Schiemer Builds Better Business
Share This Blog Post On Social Media: