Maintaining your productivity is difficult in the best of times, even more so if you happen to be a self-employed blogger. You have to be consistently coming up with fresh ideas for good blog posts, master the art of SEO, manage your social media, and run marketing campaigns. Your to-do list can feel overwhelming.
So, how do you increase your productivity? While each person has their ways, in this article, I’ll share five tried and tested ones that work for me. You can use these to complement your methods. Let’s get started.
1. Set Your Key Performance Indicators
Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are performance metrics for measuring business goals. I use them across all of my businesses. Having goals helps me quantify what success looks like, and how I’m progressing toward my targets.
In this case, your business is a blog, so your KPIs could be the following:
- How much revenue you are making: this seems like an obvious one, but many people focus on website visitors. This is a vanity metric. The number of visitors you get won’t help you buy food at the supermarket or pay for your rent.
- Growth of your email list: you’ve probably heard the phrase the money is in the list. It’s true. An email list is your most valuable marketing asset. Choose a good email provider – I use Sendlane – and start connecting and selling to your list.
- Website traffic growth: while the number of visitors your site gets might be a vanity metric, you generally want to increase your rankings for certain phrases. You can either track these phrases or lump them all together and track overall traffic to your site.
Those are just three examples of the type of metrics you could be tracking. The important thing is that you set KPIs that align with your goals so you can track and evaluate your progress. So, for example, if you see your traffic is up, but revenue is down, you can focus on improving conversions on your site by, say, updating the look of your blog.
2. Define the Value of Your Time
Running a blog can be a full-time job. The problem is, the more traffic you get to your site, the longer your “to-do list” seems to get. Yet, there are only a finite number of hours in the day. You need to optimize your time, so you focus on the tasks that help grow your business.
As a first step to doing this, you need to put a value on your time. This is basically your monthly income divided by the number of hours you work in a week. Once you’ve done that, you should put a monetary value on the tasks you need to complete.
So, for example, a blog post might take you three hours to write. That’s a good chunk of your day. Conversion Rate Optimization, on the other hand, might take you three hours, but result in a 20% increase in your revenue.
Now, with only so many hours in the day, you need to focus on the tasks that help you grow your business. In this case, that could be the CRO project. You can then outsource the task that provides less value to your business to freelancers.
Fundamentally, this is how you scale your business. If you are spending all your time doing tasks that don’t make you much money, your business will never grow.
3. Outsource Key Tasks
Once you’ve put a monetary value on your time, you can start thinking about outsourcing key tasks. This is where other people can help you. Like you, there are people out there who love to sit in front of a laptop and type away. All you need to do is look for them.
They are not difficult to find. Job sites like Indeed are also an obvious channel for finding freelancers. Other channels to find freelancers include LinkedIn, and freelancing websites like Upwork.
Outsourcing does have its risks. I have to admit it’s kind of difficult to know if a person will disappear after some time. However, you can’t grow a company alone. You need and want capable people to support you on your journey.
Outsource the work whenever you have the budget so that you can grow your business. It’s important you set out strong onboarding procedures to optimize this process.
4. Improve Your Time Management
Time management is important, regardless of your job title. If you can’t manage your time, you can end up with unfinished tasks by the end of the week–and a long to-do list. You don’t want this. You need a social life.
Managing your time doesn’t only mean not procrastinating. It also means being organized in the way you work. Don’t just write down the things you have to do on a piece of paper and leave that on a desk. Use a project management solution to keep track of everything and organize your team. I use Trello, but you might prefer to use Monday.
Keeping everything organized and online will help you keep track of your task list. You can then break down your tasks on a daily, weekly, and if you’re super organized, monthly basis.
I recommend you also use an online schedule maker to plan your day. If you plan your work schedule for an entire week or even a month, you can easily optimize your daily work schedule. Then, time how long it takes you to complete tasks.
I’m not naturally an organized person. However, setting up a system for managing everything will make you more efficient; you’ll get more done in less time. That gives you more free time.
Naturally, there is more than one way to earn money through blogging, and at a stage, it becomes like a whole business process. If you are dealing in a huge quantity, you can take help from a CRM that can help you design your custom pipeline. You can create various stages of your content process, and drag it as the content moves ahead. You can assign tasks to freelancers throughout the process.
Managing a process in a spreadsheet can be painful for a lot of business, whether an enterprise or a Solopreneur. An affordable CRM software can definitely help you with that.
5. Automate Key Digital Marketing Tasks
Automating key marketing tasks is a “no brainer.” With automation, you can save time and get more done. Fortunately for you, there are a lot of tasks associated with blogging you can automate.
Got no time for answering FAQ clients’ questions? You can make a chatbot for your website to do it for you. Thinking of building links to drive traffic? There are link building tools available. Want to manage your social media accounts? There is a social media management software you can use for that. Want to improve your conversion rate, there’s landing page software you can choose from.
The bottom line, technology is a friend that you can rely on. Make use of the tools available that help you complete tasks in a short space of time.
Being a fulltime blogger is no walk in the park. Writing takes up a lot of your time. If you add the other jobs that you’re supposed to complete, like implementing an SEO strategy, managing your social media, and more, the job could easily take over your life.
The key to becoming a successful full-time blogger then is to be productive. In this article, I shared with you five ways to increase productivity: set key performance indicators, put a value on your time, improve time management, automate key digital marketing tasks, outsource whenever possible and use project management software.
Now it’s over to you. Complement these tips with those other tricks in the book. If you do this, I can assure you you will get more things done faster.
- 5 Ways to Increase Your Productivity as a Full-time Blogger - April 22, 2020
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