Planning your year - For bloggers
I just finished making a bullet journal spread for what the blog is going to be like in 2020 and I just wanted to share what I think you should include in your's or what you should be planning for the future of your blog.
This isn't all about "planning", it's also about getting inspired and excited to do new things and reach milestones with your blog. I really like doing this and I think it's really fun but I don't always feel like writing and stuff and so I the spread in my bullet journal is really going to keep me motivated and organized during the year.
We are really excited about 2020 for our blog and we have a lot of amazing posts coming soon, so be ready.
BY THE WAY: You'll notice that my bullet journal is part French and part English and that's because I speak French but I write my blog in English. I sometimes get confused between the two and things like this happen. Sorry about that.
What I did
The first thing I added was a tracker and a legend to go with it. The tracker is to track what we do and when we do it and I wanted a legend so I could track 2 different things and not get mixed up. I don't have that much trouble post blog posts, but Instagram posts are somehow a lot harder. I don't know why taking pictures is so hard for us, but it is. We have to plan a photoshoot, have good outfits and good lighting and that doesn't always happen. Even when it does, the picture still has a lot of chances of not getting a lot of likes and comments and it's very discouraging.
Then, I wrote a list of goals I had for the blog. There are only two:
Posting one blog post per two weeks (minimum, because I actually want to post one per week);
Posting on Instagram once or twice per week.
I really want to succeed at those goals, but posting on Instagram takes a lot of work and I don't know how much school work I'm going to have to do on top of blog posts. Actually, writing for the blog might not be too bad, because I told myself I could write at least 1 per two weeks, so that's a lot of time... We'll see how this goes!
To keep me inspired, I wrote a list of blog posts that I can always refer to when I don't have ideas and a list of themes for each month. I didn't have a lot of ideas for the month specific ones, so if you have some please tell me in the comment section.
I took a whole page to write down the traffic we got for each month of 2019 and the traffic of 2020 (I'll fill it out at the end of each month). I want to be able to see the growth from one year to another.
On the final page, I wrote a to-do list of all the things I usually do after posting something, because I tend to forget one step or another and then I'm all confused, Instagram posts ideas and ideas of places to go take pictures.
I added some doodles and some color to make the whole thing seem prettier and it really didn't take me too long to make. It's really simple and I think it's going to work out well for me. Right now, I don't think I'm missing anything, but if you can think of something make sure to tell me in the comments or to dm us.
A tracker+A legend;
A list of goals;
Lists of blog posts ideas (one for any time and another for specific months);
Charts of my blog's traffic (one for the past year and another for this one);
A to-do list of the things I need to do after posting a post;
A list of Instagram posts ideas;
A list of places to go take Instagram photos.
When you make a tracker, keep it simple. You don't have to add the times you posted something and you don't have to track everything you do for your blog. At one point, I was really into Twitter and I'm glad I wasn't tracking every tweet I posted because it would've made me so obsessive.
Lists of goals or resolutions that are more focussed are really great because they're more focused on this specific project of your's and you might have a lot. Don't have too many, because you won't be able to keep up and you'll just get discouraged. You can say you want to reach a certain number of visits, a certain profit, a number of followers and it's all up to you. Make sure that your goals are things YOU want to achieve.
I sometimes don't have any idea of what I should write about and it really sucks. That's why I wrote down ideas of blog posts I can write at any point in time and ideas of posts I can write during certain months because that's what's going to be trendy. If you want to do this, it's really inspiring, but you need to write down things you actually want to write about. If you hate fitness but you know that fitness is going to be a really trendy topic when summer starts coming, don't add it to your list, because you probably won't write about it and you'll think you're stupid.
There are a lot of ways you could track the traffic of your blog and you are free to choose whichever one you like, but I personally chose one that includes the stats of 2019 because I wanted to see if I was improving. I want to know that I can do better than the previous year and how much it's going to take me to do so. You could also track the traffic of your social media, but that's not what I wanted to focus on so I didn't.
Listing what you need to do after you're done writing something can help if you are a very forgetful person like me. Everybody has a different routine and you should have one that works for you and your blog. I think mine is pretty long, but if the only step you have to do is to click "publish", then you're good.
If you use Instagram to promote your blog, you might know the stress of not having anything to post and so maybe writing ideas for the future could be a good thing. It's basically the same as writing blog post ideas, but for social media.
As if taking pictures isn't hard enough, finding the right spot is also kind of tricky. I didn't write down specific locations on my list, but I do think it's a good idea if you know your city and your area very well. If you live in the hottest place on Earth and you never travel, don't add "a snowy place" to your list because that's not realistic. Write locations you can access by taking the bus or your car easily.
The most important thing is just to write things that are specific to you and your blog. No one can tell you what you should plan and wish for your blog in 2020 or whichever year you're reading this on.
Where to plan your year:
As you know, I used my bullet journal for this, but you can also very easily use an agenda, a planner, a notebook or anything you normally use to plan. If you don't usually use one of these, maybe you should because having a blog takes a lot of organization. I prefer to be able to write what I want where I want and to do it by hand. If you want, you can always have a tiny book or planner that you only use for things about your blog. Having two agendas can be tricky, but if you think that it's what's going to help you the most, go for it.
I really like writing by hand and I'm not the biggest fan of online calendars, but you can always try it out. If you have some kind of tablet with a pen, I think you could write your plans or there and it's going to be safer for the environment.
Follow your gut. If you really like drawing, add a lot of doodles. If you are more minimalistic, be really simple. You really need to make sure that, even though the look isn't the most important part, you don't have something that you think is so ugly that you don't even want to use it. Here are some ideas you can use:
Black & White
With lots of doodles
Focused on the business side of things
With a theme
Don't try to follow an order, but try to keep similar things on the same page(s) or close to each other. For example, I kept my Instagram posts ideas and my picture location ideas on the same page so I could easily look at both of them and get inspired.
You can use as much space as you have I don't think you should hold back unless you're at your sixth page of lists and all because that could get very overwhelming. Do what you think is going to help you in the future and don't have too many unecesseray details.
I suggest you look ideas up on Pinterest, especially if you're a beginner at this. Sometimes, you kind of know a little what you want to do but you need a little more clarity and a clear image that someone made in the past and decided to post on Pinterest. If you don't like Pinterest, you can go to YouTube, because there are a lot of YouTubers who do planning and organizations videos and they're usually very great.
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