Sure, it's been spring for several weeks now but I'm willing to bet to most of you have yet to spruce up that blog of yours. Luckily, it's never too late for you to make a change. Follow these suggestions to make sure your blog is in tip-top shape and satisfying for mother nature.
1. Edit and re-read posts.
I'm sure you made sure you crossed all your T's and dotted the I's but that doesn't mean you didn't still miss one. Go through your posts and double check that all your facts are correct, there are no grammatical errors and everything is spelled right. It's also a good opportunity to update what's become outdated information with "breaking news" or "developments" to make them timely again.
2. Re-evaluate your sidebars.
When you first start a blog, you often get excited by all the widgets and plug-ins you can add to your site to make it pop. But after time, you might realize that you may not like them as much or just never had a need to use them. Go through them to see which are worth deleting. Not only can it help the speed of your blog, it will be a lot less cluttered and easier to navigate.
3. Test links.
It's always been beneficial to add links to blog posts for various reasons. Unfortunately, after some time, links can change or be deleted. That means your visitors may end up seeing error messages instead of, "How Beyonce snapped her body back after baby". Save your professional image and reliability of your blog by testing old links and replacing the ones that don't work.
4. Cross-link posts.
After blogging for a while, you're bound to touch on similar topics more than once in your posts. Boost SEO, garner more comments, and help resurrect some old blog posts by cross linking them with newer posts on your site. Just make sure you don't go overboard. A link-heavy post can be even worse than a blog with none.
5. Get rid of unused categories.
Having a bunch of unused categories and tags can bog down your database and lead to error message. Not too mention, it ends up looking cluttered and lack direction. Delete tags and categories with less than three posts assigned to them to make navigation easier for your visitors.
If you are in to publicity and media, you've probably heard the term "editorial calendar" most likely in reference to magazine publishing when they are looking for advertisers. But it's about time you knew the term isn't exclusive to the magazine industry. Small and mid-sized businesses use it to keep publishing material organized within the company.
Now you may be thinking that you would have no use for an editorial calendar. But if you have a blog, newsletter, white papers, direct mail campaign, or an ad circulation, it may be in your best interest to develop one. Editorial Calendars are a great way for you to stay organized and think ahead in terms of content. Typically, editorial calendars are broken down by weeks for each medium and list the publication date, tentative title, distribution, keywords, tags, author, theme, or focus for that period. Most people like to create one in Google Spreadsheets or Excel. My preference just happens to be Excel.
Of course, your editorial calendar doesn't need to be as complex or include so much information. It could simply be a spreadsheet detailing a focus topic for each month; especially since it will most likely only be viewed internally. Regardless of how you choose to organize it, the editorial calendar will certainly be an asset for content creation. For example, if you have a newsletter and white papers, using the editorial calendar can assist with repurposing and recycling information to help save time. Furthermore, once it's time to brainstorm a blog topic or newsletter column, the editorial calendar can help keep your thinking in the right direction - another timesaver. Lastly, it can be used to help manage social media initiatives, contests, and promotions.