10 tips for managing multiple blogs
10 tips for managing multiple blogs
Once you’ve mastered the art of blogging, setting up additional blogs is something you should consider doing. Here are 10 tips for managing multiple blogs.
1. Get one blog right before starting any more.
The key here is to figure out what works and what doesn’t before you make the same mistakes on all of your blogs, and you only realise this when you’ve potentially wasted a lot of time doing things the wrong way.
In other words – get it wrong on one blog, then fix it before you launch any other blogs.
2. Don’t start too many at once.
It’s a lot harder to make an impact if you launch loads of blogs in one go, than if you gradually release them one at a time. Give people a chance to check out one blog before you start another.
3. Use WordPress Multisite to reduce your workload.
I used to install each blog individually, which becomes a huge hassle once you get to your third or fourth blog. The multi-site options in WordPress 3.0 will make your life much, much easier in this respect.
If you’ve already set up some blogs separately, the following migration guide will be of interest.
4. Have a “master blog” and link to all your blogs from there.
This is required for WordPress Multisite – at least the “master blog” is – you don’t have to display cross-site links if you don’t want to. But it’s a great way to get people checking out your other blogs. My portfolio is how I do this at the moment.
5. Mix up your posting schedule.
When you only have one blog, choosing a posting schedule is relatively simple. Figure out how much content you can write in a week, think about the days when you’ll be able to commit to writing posts, and set a goal that’s both ambitious and realistic. If it doesn’t work, change it. Job done.
With multiple jobs, finding a posting schedule is a much more complex matter. For instance, if you run five blogs and you like to write on a Saturday, you’ll need to write five posts just to get one new post onto each of your blogs. It’s a lot more work – but you can work it into a sensible schedule.
I try not to have too many posts going up on the same day, even if the blogs are on different topics. So if I know I’ll be publishing a post on a Wednesday, I might choose Thursday for one of my other blogs, and Tuesday for yet another blog.
This might not work if your readers like to see new content on a Monday across all of your blogs… so let’s look at a way to deal with that.
6. Write posts in advance.
If you want to publish one post a day on a single blog, it’s a good idea to try and write some posts in advance and schedule them to go live at the time of your choosing. Especially if you’re going away, or if you are better at writing lots of posts in one sitting.
With multiple blogs, the stack of posts you want/need to write is going to increase. However, the same rule applies: it’s good to get ahead. On some of my blogs, I write when I think of a post and publish it immediately. On others, I write in advance. It all depends on the type of content I’m writing, how many posts I publish in an average week, and how organised I am with my schedule.
Here are three examples:
- Weekly Blogging: for the upcoming week, I wrote 5 posts on a Sunday afternoon and scheduled them to go out on Monday to Friday.
- Spam Comment: at the moment, there are 45 scheduled posts. This blog has one new post every weekday, so the current schedule will be good for 9 weeks. Currently, the last scheduled post is dated March 4th.
- Ben Barden: no scheduled posts, I write on this blog when I have something to say.
None of my other blogs (including Top Ten Blog Tips) have any posts scheduled at the moment. How you organise your schedule is up to you, but queuing up posts in advance is a very good idea if you have multiple blogs.
7. Have a clear separation from one blog to the next.
Each blog should have a clear focus – otherwise, how will you know which blog should contain a certain type of post?
If you have several multi-topic blogs, you may find that some of them get neglected, or they suffer from poor quality content as you post on them just to keep them somewhat up to date.
There’s very little reason to set up multiple blogs if you don’t have different things to say on each one. Finding a new social networking site that happens to have a blog widget is not a good enough reason to have a blog on every site you use.
8. Have some overlap.
Contrary to the above, allowing your blogs to overlap will allow you to link them together. There should still be a clear separation so you can tell where one blog ends and the next begins, but isolating each blog will create work for you as you’ll need to promote each blog one by one.
You’ll probably need to promote each blog individually anyway. But in much the same way you should link to previous blog posts to get people clicking around a bit, being able to cross-promote your blogs is a very powerful way to make your content much richer and keep readers on your blogs for longer.
How many times have you been on Wikipedia, clicked a link, and ended up on a totally random article an hour later? Maybe it’s just me…
9. Accept guest posts.
Don’t depend on them as your only source of content – but do invite readers to become writers, by accepting guest posts on your blogs. This can help you to schedule many more posts in advance, and allow the blog to run itself for a period of time.
10. Comment with different links.
Another cross-promotion technique is to alter the link you use when commenting on other people’s blogs. This can be tricky to manage, as you’ll somehow need to keep track of which links you’ve used and how often each one has been used.
One method is to comment on blogs in your niche using the most relevant link, and simply broaden your commenting community to include blogs from every niche you’re currently writing in.
Alternatively, you could comment with a link to your “master blog”, or your portfolio page, if you have one.