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I’ve been thinking a lot about how to grow my blog without sinking too much time into it.
Clear goals and time limits help but I wondered if I was really focused whether I could cut out all those late night oh-my- goodness I will be whacked in the morning blogging sessions!
And inspired by a good friend who wants to grow her blog … to help her get published … but who has no time, I wondered what you could achieve by blogging for 20 minutes a day … and not a sneaky second more …
I had a look at my stats and guess what? Well on a good month we get 200,000+ pageviews and 80% of our visits come from 3 sources:
- Pinterest – 40%
- Search – 20%
- Top 10 Link Parties – 17%
So my three critical activities are:
- Writing posts that get pinned
- Writing posts that perform well in search results
- Sharing at my best performing link parties as soon as they start
It took me a while to get Pinterest but the secret is you must have a great image on your post with a stand out title and you need to pin 2 or 3 posts, with great images, as often as you can.
Even if you are a rubbish photographer … I am!! … you can make your images stand out using PicMonkey which I use all the time and is brilliant! If you are not using, you absolutely must!
I stumbled upon the power of search by accident and have lots to learn but my big tips are:
- Write on specific topics & stay focused
- Identify the key words others use to search for these topics
- Put key words in your blog post title & URL – but keep them short
- Put key words in opening paragraph and headers & use throughout post
I love link parties and I visit loads.
They are a wonderful way to meet bloggers but my top 10 deliver 80% of my readers so if you need to be ruthless with time you can focus on your biggies and not lose many readers.
The best parties obviously vary by niche and different parties work for different people so go through your stats and see where your links are coming from. For a full list of link parties with the time they start and links to all the hosts do check out my Link Party Calendar … even if I say so myself, it’s amazing!!!
A 20 Minute a Day Blog Schedule
OK so how does this translate into a 20 minute a day blogging schedule my friend can use to get 100,000 page views in her first year, (she currently gets a few hundred a month)?
Well based on the readers I know that you can get for just one pinnable post that appears in search results, this is how I would spend my time …
- Quick SEO research – 5 minutes
- One post a week – 45 minutes
- Great pinnable image – 20 minutes
- 10 link parties … share post & pin 2 others – 40 minutes
- Pinterest … re-pin 3 posts in 1 minute, 3 times a day – 30 minutes
- Back-up … after every post – 5 mins
- Mail & comments – 5 mins
Can One Post a Week Deliver 100,000 Page Views a Year?
A well pinned post … even if you have very few Pinterest followers … shared early at big link parties should be able to get 250 page views in its first week, 900 odd in the first month and about 2,500 in the first year.
One post a week performing like this would deliver the target of 100,000 page views.
And if you only write one post a week, regular as clock work, it gives you the whole week to mull it over in your brain, refine your thoughts and chuck it out if it’s a bad idea.
20 minutes on an image might seem a lot but I promise you if you the picture is good and you share it right at the beginning of a big link party, your page views will fly.
When I try to hurry my image my posts bomb! And you really can work wonders with image editors like PicMonkey in just 20 minutes.
But What About Twitter?
My friend’s first reaction was what about Twitter and Facebook and Google+?
I know, I know, I love them! I would find it so hard to give them up. It would take a lot of the fun out of blogging which is as much about the conversations as hitting targets.
But all the big bloggers will tell you Pinterest delivers much, much more traffic, so if you need to cut down your blogging time without losing readers you need to focus your effort on pinning and being pinned.
I would love to hear your thoughts. How much time do you spend blogging? Are there things that you could cut out?
And if you’re looking for more blogging tips do follow my blogging board on Pinterest it is chock full of them.
This post has been shared at Mama and More.