In my post about why I run multiple blogs, I promised I would talk about how I actually do it. This is that post! Despite how it might sound, running multiple blogs isn’t actually much more complicated than running a single blog.
However, you do need a good strategy in place for producing content and marketing that content. This post assumes you’ve already done branding and the launch for your blog. That requires a different strategy and process. This is how I keep things running smoothly once the blog is actually running.
Batch your content
This is one of my favorite tips for new bloggers. Rather than painstakingly take each single blog post from draft to polished artifact one at a time, I work in batches. Blog posts get drafted and worked up to final copy in groups of three. My process is:
- Draft three blog posts and set aside.
- Draft three more blog posts.
- Return to edit the original three and plan photo shoots.
- Spend a day working on photo shoots
- Handle photo processing and graphics
- Add photos and graphics to posts and do one last edit before scheduling
- Schedule posts and start drafting three more posts
Then, rinse and repeat. Three happens to be my magic number. Yours might be five or six. Experiment and develop a workflow that works for you! That brings me to my other favorite tip about writing blog posts: stay focused.
Takeaway: remember that streamlining your process and creating work flows helps you stay focused and create higher-quality content.
Write focused content
I’m really, really sorry to say that I don’t remember where I learned this trick. I’ve been blogging since 2011, so I’ve read a LOT of blogs about blogging. If you think this may have been your idea (from around 2014, maybe?) let me know!
Anyway, the originator of the idea commented that she only spent 30 minutes writing any given blog post. If it took longer than 30 minutes to draft, she knew the topic was too broad and she needed to split it up into more focused posts.
This was a brilliant insight, and one that I stick to pretty religiously. My one exception is Indie Herbalist, where the blog posts often require more research or references.
Most online content is quick content. Readers are more likely to skim your blog posts. Make your blog posts concise, easy to read and navigate, and with a clear takeaway for the reader.
Takeaway: You are not writing War and Peace. You are writing a blog post. Having some posts in the 1,000-3,000 word range makes search engines happy, but having lots of focused posts in the 300-700 word range will make you and your readers happy.
Don’t over-schedule content
Many blog owners post multiple times a week. I find that once or twice a week, tops, is my sweet spot. When you bust out a quality, focused first draft in 30 minutes, it’s super easy to keep your content topped up. Pushing yourself to churn out posts day after day is a good recipe for burnout – don’t do it!
If you find that you are writing a ton of posts and not making money with your blog, take time to determine why your posts aren’t converting. Are readers confronted by a wall of text that overwhelms them? Do your posts have a clear call to action? Have you made a good case for your affiliate products? Do you have great posts, but they’re not getting traction on social media?
Your job as a blogger is to entertain, but it’s also your mission to make your readers’ lives easier or better in some way. And hey, you’re here to make a living, and there’s nothing shameful about that.
So, the answer if your content isn’t converting is generally not more content. It’s better, more strategic content. Know your audience. Know your marketing.
Takeaway: Don’t let yourself fall into the trap of thinking that more content is the answer. The answer is high quality content + marketing.
Marketing savvy for running multiple blogs
Here’s where most people trip up when it comes to blogging. They spend lots of time creating brilliant content and put almost zero effort into marketing!
Important aspects of marketing include search engine optimization (which helps people find your blog in search engine results) social media, and paid advertising.
The best return on investment for marketing is usually social media. This includes organic reach and paid post promotion.
You can also experiment with Google Ads ( although I have not).
But what about SEO? Sounds terrifying and technical but it’s not. I use the free Yoast plugin on all my blogs and it keeps me in track, no problems. The concept for SEO is that when you write a blog post, you learn how to include phrases that people are searching for related to your topic.
Preferably, you also master making it sound natural so that you don’t annoy the heck out of your reader.
Knowing search engine optimization is essential now, but you can squeak by for awhile with just Pinterest when you are learning the ropes. I’ve done it but don’t recommend it – SEO isn’t actually as hard as I thought it was!
Takeaway: Add “Learn SEO Basics” to your to do list if you haven’t already.
Optimize for link sharing
Think of each social media platform as a potential channel for you to reach your audience. Personally, I think that EVERY blogger should be on Facebook and Pinterest. These two platforms are the most friendly for sharing links that will put your reader directly to your page with the least effort on your part.
When you’re running multiple blogs, it becomes essential that your blogs are optimized for link sharing. Every post needs to have beautiful images or on-brand graphics that show up when your readers share your link on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Left to their own devices, the internal gremlins at Facebook and Pinterest pride themselves on finding the ugliest, least relevant images from your website to pair with your articles. Things like random social share buttons, affiliate graphics, or your blog header.
So you need to be very specific and tell them exactly what you want them to share. Most blog themes will have a way to set a featured image. This featured image will pull to Twitter and Facebook.
Pinterest is a little more difficult, but infinitely doable. Use a graphic design tool like Canva or Pic Monkey to design branded graphics with a template. Insert the graphic into your post, and you’re good to go! I prefer hiding my Pinterest graphics with an HTML tag to make my articles easy to read.
In fact, I prefer two or three optimized Pins for each post. Plus, you can go back and refresh these anytime you want as an easy way to update your content.
Takeaway: Choose ONE social media platform and learn how to OWN it. I recommend Pinterest or Facebook. Learn how to optimize your posts to make them gorgeous when they are shared.
Running multiple blogs with automated social sharing
Once you have lovely optimized graphics for your posts, you can use social schedulers to drip them out gradually instead of blitzing one and done. This is especially great because most social platforms prefer regular users over someone who just pops in once a week.
The trick with social media is that managing multiple channels is a full time job in itself. (I’m working on a full post about how I do it using batching and automated posting so that I don’t constantly need to babysit my social channels. I’ll add the link here when it’s ready).
The basics, though are this: I use Tailwind for Pinterest and Instagram but use Facebook’s internal scheduling capability. Twitter has a free internal scheduler, and sometimes I use the free version of Hootsuite (I don’t do a lot on Twitter).
Takeaway: Investigate different social automation options for Pinterest. Choose one and master using it.
Stay organized to manage multiple blogs
The main thing to remember if you are considering multiple blog mastery is that it’s all about staying organized. To stay organized, you need a strategy and a system to keep that strategy afloat. Although the ideas I’ve provided work well for me, they evolve slowly over time as social media and my personal needs change.
If you’re curious about how I keep my blogging projects and personal life organized for maximum productivity (and therefore maximum fun – that’s the important bit), you might enjoy these other articles:
Anyway, use my tips as a starting point- your own systems will evolve as you go along, and that’s great!