It's my anniversary! Not my wedding anniversary -- that was back in April. My daily blogging anniversary. I used to be a pretty lame blogger, averaging less than three posts per month. So if you've tried to blog regularly before and failed, I've been in your shoes. And I can tell you from experience that you don't have to be a natural-born-daily-blogger to become a daily blogger.
Let me give you an idea of the kind of transition that you can make too:
- A year ago today, I went from blogging an average of 2.6 times a month to blogging nearly every weekday (with just one or two days missed other than holidays).
- The month before I made the switch, I'd written nothing -- zero posts (and I'd had five other dry months before that).
- I'd only topped five posts in a month five times before, and had never managed to post 10 times in a month.
- Since last year, I've never posted less than 18 days a month. (That was in February -- the short month. Since February, I haven't dropped under 20 posts in a month.)
- In the 3.5 years before making the switch, I'd published 109 posts on this blog. In the past year, I've publish 247.
And it hasn't really been that difficult. Yes, it still takes time and effort, because I'm writing original content. But coming up with ideas to write about (which used to be my biggest challenge) is no longer difficult. And I've got an easier way to publish too.
How do I come up with things to write about every day?
The #1 key is Blog Riffing. I didn't invent Blog Riffing, but once I'd discovered how powerful a tool it is, I gave it a name to help people solidify the idea in their minds.
Blog Riffing in a nutshell is grabbing a quote from someone else's blog and "riffing" on it -- using it as a seed from which related ideas grow, and writing about those ideas.
It's simple. It's not revolutionary. But don't pass over it too lightly -- it really is my #1 secret for blogging daily.
If you browse through my posts from the past year, you'll see that over half of them are Blog Riffs (you'll see the quote that inspired the post and a link back to the blog I borrowed it from).
The #2 key is rhythm and momentum. Before I started Blog Riffing, I didn't write often enough to establish a daily rhythm. I had no momentum to carry my forward. Blog Riffing was the first key, because without it, I wouldn't have been able to build any momentum.
But once Blog Riffing got me going, it wasn't difficult to keep going. There were days when it was harder than others. But it was no longer difficult enough to overwhelm my commitment.
The #3 key is experience. Once you've established the habit of blogging daily, your mind develops the ability to see blog post ideas in places where you wouldn't have recognized them before. It becomes easier to relate everyday experiences to the topic of your blog.
Even things that are completely unrelated to your blog will offer analogies that you can use to illustrate the points you're trying to make more concretely. With experience, you'll learn to look for ideas everywhere, and it won't be hard to find them.
The #4 key is tools. Actually, I'd say the blogging tool I've used has been the second most important factor in making the jump, because it's made the Blog Riffing process so much less cumbersome. Instead of having to stop in the middle of my reading, copy and paste the quotes that I Riff on from a blog or feed reader into my blog editor, publish, and then find my place again to keep reading, I read, write and publish all in the same program.
I don't even have to copy and paste the quote or the link to the original article, because I can just highlight it and click a button, and the quote and link are already copied and formatted for me in the editor.
The blogging tool I use is SEO Content Factory. It's my own product, which I really for myself to solve my own blogging challenges. As you can see from this graphic I whipped up this morning, it's done the trick.
If you're interested in blogging more often, without feeling like you're pulling teeth every morning trying to come up with something to write about, I highly recommend Blog Riffing. Subscribe to a bunch of blogs in your niche, and use them as inspiration.
(If you're in marketing, I highly recommend subscribing to Seth Godin's blog, because it's a perfect source for Blog Riffing ideas. The posts are usually about an interesting idea. And they're almost always short, which means they leave plenty unsaid -- plenty for you to talk about without being redundant.)
If you want to make Blog Riffing a comfortable part of your daily routine, take a look at SEO Content Factory. It takes the "grunt work" out of daily blogging so that you can focus on the ideas.
By this time next year, will you be looking back on a year of daily blogging?