Blog channeling chart for busy bloggers
The downside to the many easy, instant and cool blogging platforms on the Internet is that it is really easy for Internet-active folks to suddenly discover they have started a few too many blogs, joined a few too many social networks, and have created too many points of presence to keep up well.
I have a one-page chart that anyone can make that has helped me manage two things: keeping focus and awareness on my important blogs, and easily channeling blog post ideas to the right blog.
One blog isn't enough for me. My professional readers don't really care about my personal life, and my Second Life friends don't want to read about my linguistics hobby, for example. Readers spend time on blogs they trust to be about the topics that interest them. No one likes a blog that wonders everywhere.
And yet, twelve or twenty blogs is too many, if I were to set up one blog for each favorite topic of mine. Something between these two extremes is the right balance.
So I made a chart for my wall; I pinned it up right next to my computer screen (same visual field). The instant visual awareness does four things for me:
- It makes the decision easier of where any blog post I write should go.
Saves brain juice, speeds up the posting process and removes one more factor that can kill a post. I think once you hit around five choices of places to blog something, the brain really has to start working hard to choose. That can be enough to kill some posts, you know?
- It keeps my post fine-tuned for the audience.
Seeing all those keywords and audience-defining terms makes it easy to tune-to-relevance and leave out the chaff. It also opens up clear possibilities for any cross-posting uses, perhaps tweaking different versions for different sites.
- It keeps me from starting more new blogs.
When you have around seven or more blogging outlets - social nets, group blogs, personal blogs, hobby blogs, tumblr blogs, etc. - it is easy to forget that (a) you are already full on the blog commitment side and (b) you already have a blog that your new post idea would match. This chart fixes that.
- It inspires new connections and more complete posts.
When I can see all the words, topics and audience-interests for one blog in one box, it gives me new ideas for posts. Combining those terms, and applying those key ideas to the post I just wrote inspires me with a mixing of ideas that is truly unique to me and my history, interests and moments.
So this chart keeps my focus while inspiring more ideas - ideas that fit the focus. Nice.
Here is an example of my simple chart idea. You'll have to make your own and fill in your own keywords and blog names. There's even a spot for your Twitter, Flickr and other blip-style channels at the bottom.
And may your day rock the house!