Close
Close

Discover the Secrets of Productive Bloggers with 50% Off Our Blog Wise eBook

Blog Wise blog header
Greetings from ProBlogger HQ where I’m currently recovering from a fun Christmas with my family. I hope those of you who were celebrating this week had a happy time too and that your preparations for the end of year celebrations are going well too.

Here in Australia many of us take time off for this summer period between Christmas and New Year so things will be a little quiet here on ProBlogger until the new year but I know many ProBlogger readers use this time to get productive with their blogging.

So for those of you getting things rolling for 2016 I thought I’d drop by the blog one last time for the year with a little end of year gift for those who find it useful.

For the next week you can get 50% off my eBook Blog Wise when you use the coupon code GOODBYE2015.

Blog Wise is an eBook that is all about helping you to be more productive as a blogger and is something that I’m sure many of you will find useful as you end 2015 and get into 2016.

In this eBook my team interviewed 9 full time bloggers about their blogging habits and how they built their blog without needing extra hours in their day.

Bloggers interviewed were:

  1. Amy Porterfield: author, prolific on Social media, contributor to numerous blogs, speaker, Mom and much more.
  2. Brian Clark: Founder of CopyBlogger Media which includes CopyBlogger the blog, StudioPress Themes, Premise, Scribe and more.
  3. Abby Larson: Founder of Style Me Pretty – a network of 12 sites which she manages with her husband Tait.
  4. Matt Kepnes: Founder of Nomadic Matt’s Travel Site – constantly on the road travelling
  5. Heather Armstrong: Founder of Dooce, author of numerous books, mother of 2 kids (and 2 dogs)
  6. Jeff Goins: blogging at Goins Writer, writing a book, husband and…. he works a full time job
  7. Gretchen Rubin: Founder of the Happiness Project blog, author of 4 books, wife and mother of 2 daughters.
  8. Leo Babauta: Founder of Zen Habits and numerous other projects, author, minimalist and father of 6 kids.
  9. Darren Rowse: owner of Digital Photography School and ProBlogger, author, social media addict and husband and dad to 3 boys (that’s me!).

As a special bonus when you order Blog Wise, you’ll also score a bonus PDF Problem Solver guide.

It covers 21 common productivity problems bloggers face with some quick answers from the interviewed bloggers to get you on the right track.

I hope you find this eBook useful – it’s just $9.99 USD this week only which is 50% off when you use the coupon code GOODBYE2015. Grab your copy here.

How to Create a Successful Editorial Calendar

How to Create a Successful Editorial Calendar

Well here we are – the final episode in the ProBlogger podcast #TodayNotSomeday series! Where we’ve taken a look at the things on our to-do lists that always get pushed back to “someday” and challenged ourselves to do them now instead. We’ve covered:

and now we’re thinking about creating content for your blog in the new year – one of the best things you can do in advance to save time and work productively. Creating an editorial schedule also helps you create thoughtful content with a narrative arc, it’s easier to fit in with your monetization strategy, and helps with your consistency and discipline over time.

In this episode I give a list of points to consider about the content that was published on your blog this year – take some time to go over each issue and note down the answers, as this will help shape your content direction for 2016. There’s also the opportunity for you to complete a Google Analytics exercise that I do at the end of every year to get my head around what kind of content I should be spending my time on in the future.

I also give tips on what to focus on when creating your new editorial schedule, and how we create the calendar for Digital Photography School. I want you to think about things like themes, series, features, categories, post frequency, different mediums, visual content etc, which will help you narrow your focus and plan out a fantastic year of content that your readers will love (and importantly, that you will be excited about and enjoy creating!)

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments, on the show notes, or on social media with the hashtag #TodayNotSomeday – and thank you for joining me in these few weeks of challenges.

Further Reading:

Starting a Blog? Here’s Our Guide to Your First Week (Currently 50% Off)

First Week of Blogging eBook

The end of the year is fast approaching and I know this next few weeks is a time that many bloggers start blogging.

If you’re among them this week I’ve got a little offer that might just help with that task.

It’s 50% off my eBook – ProBlogger’s Guide to Your First Week of Blogging (when you use the coupon code GOODBYE2015 during the checkout process).

7 Days of Teaching to Build Solid Foundations for Your Blog

Making great early choices is vital to the long-term success of your blog. This eBook guides you, day by day, through your first week of blogging so you can make the most of those critical first few days.

Over 7 days you’ll:

  • Learn foundational brainstorming techniques.
  • Create a content plan—and content, of course!
  • Build a social media presence.
  • Create practical quality assurance tools.
  • Set up a publishing process.
  • Master the components of a blog post.
  • Develop your blog’s ongoing strategy.

Who is This Guide For?

ProBlogger’s Guide to your First Week of Blogging is for anyone at the beginning of their blogging journey who wants to start with solid foundations including:

  • Those thinking about starting a new blog
  • Those in their very first week of blogging
  • Those looking to start a 2nd or 3rd blog who want to do it better

Grab your copy today for $9.99 USD (just be sure to use the coupon code GOODBYE2015 during the checkout process to get the discount).

Note: this eBook doesn’t take you through the technicalities of setting up a new blog but is rather designed for those who want to know what to do once they’ve set up.

I hope you find this week long deal useful if you’re thinking of kicking off a new blog!

Get a Head Start on 2016 by Mapping Out your Promotional Calendar

Get a Head Start on 2016 by Mapping Out your Promotional Calendar

Today’s challenge for the #TodayNotSomeday series is something I do regularly at the end of every year, and that’s to map out my promotional marketing calendar for the following year. It’s one of those things that can easily get lost in the crush of the busy end-of-year time (and also gets put on the backburner in favour of general day-to-day blog tasks), which is why I’ve included it in the challenges for this series.

When I first began creating these calendars I would do it on my own, but nowadays the team and I spend a few hours on our team retreat creating a map of our marketing efforts in the coming year. It’s seen real results for me (rather than doing it throughout the year as we go), and I believe if you want to build a profitable and sustainable blog, you need to put effort into thinking about how to make your blog do just that. Put aside some time today to think about how you’re going to monetize your blog in 2016.

In this episode I invite you to look back on how your blog has performed this year  in terms of income streams, launches, products, and affiliate promotions, and also what times of year saw the most results. It’s also a good time to think about what products you could update, extend or retire.

So grab a calendar of choice (paper or online), a spreadsheet, or a whiteboard and get to work visualising how you want your income to look in 2016. 12 months is a long time, so have a good think about how the year might flow. In the podcast I talk about what you should give priority status, how you should consider your launch strategies across the weeks and months, other advice about how to create a realistic and successful calendar, and a description of how we create ours for Digital Photography School, which you can see a version of here:

Get a Head Start on 2016 by Mapping Out your Promotional Calendar
Feel free to share whatever you’ve learned with the hashtag #TodayNotSomeday, and you can find the show notes for today’s episode here.

Further Reading:

Reading Roundup: What’s New in Blogging Lately?

Reading Roundup: What's new in blogging this week / ProBlogger.net

This is it! Our last roundup before 2015 implodes in a concoction of fireworks and warm champagne. I hope you’ve enjoyed them (the roundups, not the warm champagne but hey, to each his own), and I’m looking forward to sharing the best of the bits and pieces I find on my safari through the internet in the new year.

Now, without delay – your news!

100 Pinterest Trends of 2016 // Mashable

I cannot get on board the “coffin nail” trend, but I am all about teaching kids to code. If you blog on any of these topics, start optimising your current posts for Pinterest now!

6 Tools for Selling Products on Instagram // Social Media Examiner

I’ve bought quite a few things I’ve seen on my Instagram feed, and it can be a great way of selling if you have something visual to show. If that’s you – then click on over.

108 Experts Give Advice to New Bloggers // Blogging Thing

You are going to need to save this one and refer to it later… a lot. It’s huge! so much to take in. Pin it maybe? Either way, gird your loins and dive in.

Idea Sex: How New Yorker Cartoonists Generate 500 Ideas a Week // 99u

I’m always fascinated at the creative process, and how artsy people come up with so many ideas – this insight into cartoonists and their work was fantastic. It was a great reminder that you have to have lots of ideas (and put aside time to have them!) for you to mine out the workable ones. You have to have the shite ideas to get to the good ones.

Speaking of which…

Viewpoint: How Creativity is Helped by Failure // BBC Magazine

Everybody loves a peek into the real lives behind the curated ones of others, and I like that spin on this idea of an exhibition showing the stuff-ups before the final good copies of designs and illustrations. Life isn’t always the end product, and end products didn’t just fly out of the heads and hands of creatives, fully formed. Sometimes it’s a long road of wrong to get to the right destination. That’s normal. You’re normal!

Hat tip and glass clink to Ash Ambirge from The Middle Finger Project for those last two. Good stuff!

blog_images

image credit

A Really Big Guide to Finding Images For Your Blog (And How to Use Them Like a Pro) // The Blog Tyrant

Not only does Ramsay give you plenty of places to find great pictures for your blog and social media, but he goes one step further and shares a bunch of tools and resources to help you use them right. Bonus legal info too! On point.

9 Tips for Launching Your Business on Instagram // Ivanka Trump

Or upgrading and updating it if you’re already established. The lasses from HeyMama take you through the non-negotiable basics if you want to get traction on everyone’s favourite visual platform. Will probably also make you want to rip your jeans.

3 Podcast Episodes to Help You Grow Your Email List // Aweber

And who doesn’t want to do that?! You might even spot a familiar face in this list, chatting to the tune of $1.3m a year blogging.

Why We Unsubscribed 250K People From HubSpot’s Marketing Blog and Started Sending Less Email // HubSpot

The dreaded graymail. We all have it, and want to know how to manage it – now HubSpot is doing something about it. Could you do it?

7 Lessons I Learned from Blogging My Book // Huffington Post

I remember when The Pioneer Woman did something similar… so for those of you thinking there’s a book in there waiting to be serialised, check out this post first. Blogging and book writing are very different beasts, best not to confuse the two.

So are you going to blog a book? Delete 45% of your email list? Come up with 500 ideas a week? Or say “screw it, it’s Christmas” and eat a bowl of truffles?

Stacey Roberts is the Managing Editor of ProBlogger.net: a writer, blogger, and full-time word nerd balancing it all with being a stay-at-home mum. She writes about all this and more at Veggie Mama. Chat with her on Twitter @veggie_mama or be entertained on Facebook. She’s probably eating truffles right now.

Finding Readers, Finding Ideas, Finding time to Blog: The Top ProBlogger Podcast Episodes of 2015

The top ProBlogger Podcast Episodes of 2015

We’re closing out this week looking back on the year that was with a bang today – the most popular ProBlogger Podcast episodes of 2015! So far this year there have been over 620,000 downloads and we’ve published 76 episodes.

As you will remember, Darren kicked off his new venture in July with a podcast a day for 31 days, helping you grow a better blog in the meantime. Each episode had a new challenge for you to go away and implement on your own sites, which was the motivation many of you needed to take your blog to the next level.

Your favourite episodes of the ProBlogger Podcast were:

Episode 29: How to Develop a Plan to Grow Your Readership

Top ProBlogger Podcasts 2015

You may write great content, but readers generally don’t just show up to read it. So what do you do? Darren takes us through a step-by-step plan to help you get your content out in front of a wider potential audience.

Episode 11: How to Come Up with Hundreds of Blog Post Ideas for Your Blog

Top ProBlogger Podcasts 2015

One of Darren’s favourite days in the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog series, and one that will ensure you’ll never sit down again and go “soooooo what am I actually going to write?” and then give up and scroll Facebook. You will be or.ga.nised.

Episode 12: How to Create an Editorial Calendar for your Blog

Top ProBlogger Podcasts 2015

With all those ideas you’d have come up with after listening to the previous podcast, you’ll then be guided into putting them into a calendar that will cover your content for a full year. With tips from Darren and a description of his own successful calendar, you’ll be armed with plenty of knowledge to help you create a workable editorial schedule.

Episode 18: How to Create a Page That Propels People Deep Within Your Blog

Top ProBlogger Podcasts 2015

credit.

You know the one – where a reader stumbles onto your site and finds, one one page, tons of links to other important and useful information they’re dying to read. Before they know it the’ve fallen down a click rabbit hole on your site and have been reading your archive for half an hour. Darren explains the best way to create such a page on your own site to help keep readers on your blog for longer.

Special Mentions:

Did you have a favourite? Which one was the episode that led to a breakthrough in your blogging?

You can also catch the rest of the series here:

Stacey Roberts is the Managing Editor of ProBlogger.net: a writer, blogger, and full-time word nerd balancing it all with being a stay-at-home mum. She writes about all this and more at Veggie Mama. Chat with her on Twitter @veggie_mama or be entertained on Facebook.

Grow Your Blog’s Traffic and Income by Creating a Resources Page for Your Blog

recommended blogging resources

Today’s ProBlogger Podcast challenge is one of those I’ve had on my “someday” list for too long now: create a “resources” page for your blog. It’s an excellent way of grouping all your affiliate programs together, and also heading off some of the frequently asked questions about what you use and recommend.

You can see our (recently updated) Resources page here on ProBlogger, where I list useful tools, services, and training for bloggers, and in the show notes of today’s episode I also list a few more examples of how other bloggers in other niches have set theirs up.

Not only are pages on your blog dedicated to blogging resources good for affiliate income and to answer questions, but you’ll find they can also rank highly in search engines and has the capacity to do well on social if comprehensive enough and designed well.

This #TodayNotSomeday task is one that was sorely needed here on ProBlogger – the last time I had updated that page was six years ago! It was in a terrible state, with broken links, nonexistent offers, and out-of-date information. I still am so embarrassed by that, and I almost didn’t want to even mention it here or on the podcast.

But there’s always time to turn it around, and so I urge you to update your resources page, or create one, for today’s challenge. I’ve got some tips in the podcast to help you create a page that really works for you and I’d love to see a link to the finished product – make sure you use the #TodayNotSomeday hashtag so I can keep track!

Further Reading:

Our Top General Blogging Tips: The Most Popular ProBlogger Posts of 2015

Our Top General Blogging Tips: the Most Popular ProBlogger Posts of 2015

So far we’ve spilled the beans on everything concerning creating content, earning an income on your blog, and tips for a smashing social media strategy, and now it’s time to turn our attention to those random-but-general things that have helped thousands of you push your blogs forward this year.

Be sure to return tomorrow for a secret bonus round we’ll be sharing!

Our Top General Blogging Tips: The Most Popular ProBlogger Posts of 2015

Where to Find Free Images Online

 

Where to find free images online // Problogger.net

It seems my bugbear was yours too, this year! There have been quite a few places to get quality, modern, free and no-attribution images online springing up since I wrote this post, but these are still my go-to sites. They never let me down.

A Powerful Exercise Inside Google Analytics to Set You Up for a Successful Year of Blogging

google-analytics-logo

The one where Darren takes us on a tutorial trip through Google Analytics to drill down into your audience, how they arrive at your blog, and what they do when they are there. He uses the data gleaned from this exercise at the end of every year to figure out what to re-share on social, what gets shared most, what headlines worked, what content fell flat, and what posts could be optimised or upgraded in the new year. It’s a long one – take a drink!

 

10 Simple Hacks that Will Increase Your Blog Traffic

10 Simple Hacks that will Increase Your Blog Traffic all the secrets revealed on ProBlogger.net

We love simple, we love hacks, and we love traffic. No wonder this post resonated with many of you in 2015!

How to Write Brilliant Blog Posts: 5 Tips from Psychology

How to Write Brilliant Blog Posts 5 Tips from Psychology - on ProBlogger.net

It seemed you all were “ready to rock a brilliant blog post? Do you want to write faster, think more creatively, just do it all better?”, as this post really hit it out of the park with readers. Five really simple but effective tips to create an environment where success is inevitable.

Top 15 Free Internet Marketing Tools to Boost Your Online Business

Top 15 FREE Internet Marketing Tools To Boost Your Online Business

Free! Tools! 15 of them! From content generation to social scheduling tools to testing the speed your site loads, there’ll be something here that will help you find a shortcut in blogging. Which brings me to my next point:

5 Ways to Make Your Blogging Life Easier

5 Ways to Make Your Blogging Life Easier

When you feel a little bit overwhelmed, and like the to-do list of your blog is longer than the years you’ll ever be alive, here are five ways to slash the stress and breathe a bit more. Put some of them into place before the end of the year and start 2016 off on the right path.

Special Mentions:

What was your favourite?

Stacey Roberts is the Managing Editor of ProBlogger.net: a writer, blogger, and full-time word nerd balancing it all with being a stay-at-home mum. She writes about all this and more at Veggie Mama. Chat with her on Twitter @veggie_mama or be entertained on Facebook.

Our Top Tips on Social Media: The Most Popular ProBlogger Posts of 2015

Our Top Tips on Social Media the Most Popular ProBlogger Posts of 2015

With the ever-changing Facebook algorithm, nothing but crickets on Twitter, and Instagram being a slow-moving feast, we’ve seen a huge response to our posts on the topic of social media this year. It’s like a beast we’re all desperate to tame. In this roundup there are a couple of videos and a few step-by-step tutorials showing how the experts do it – I hope you find them useful.

Check back tomorrow for the most popular general blogging tips we’ve published (think productivity, traffic, engagement), and catch up on our most popular posts on creating content and monetization.

Our Top Tips on Social Media 2015

7 Effective tips to Grow Your Social Media the Right Way

7 Tips to Grow Your Social Media Presence The Right Way / problogger.net

This thorough post covers everything from measuring audience demographics to tools to help you get an advantage. Bring a pen and notepad and take notes!

How to Build an Effective Social Media Workflow to Increase Your Traffic

http://www.problogger.net/archives/2015/02/11/how-to-build-an-efficient-social-media-workflow-to-increase-your-traffic/

In this video, Darren shared his own personal social media strategy for Digital Photography School, and in only 20 minutes a day! No wonder it was popular.

3 Steps to Saving Time by Writing Social Media Updates in Batches

3 ways to increase your effectiveness on social media by creating your updates in batches.

I love this: “Scheduling updates in advance solves a number of social media’s most frustrating problems. It gives your routine newfound flexibility, and it can even make you a better blogger. But there’s one hurdle that scheduling alone doesn’t take care of for you: those updates still have to come from somewhere, and that means you have to write them.” – it’s so true! So Tom takes us through a bunch of ways we can cut down on the work for maximum social media results.

How I Use Edgar to Increase the Effectiveness of my Social Media Strategy

How I use Edgar to Increase the Effectiveness of My Social Media Strategy - ProBlogger

An update of sorts to the above article on Darren’s social media schedule – including ProBlogger’s social media (mostly Twitter) and a video tutorial to help you through creating a similar winning strategy.

The Step-by-Step Method of Making Your Content Shareable on Social Media

The Step-by-Step Method of Making Your Content Shareable on Social Media

Another fantastic tutorial on helping you get your content social-share ready. Includes ways to get around common mistakes bloggers make – don’t miss it.

Special Mentions:

What did you find most useful? Do you have a solid social media schedule? What are your favourite tips?

Stacey Roberts is the Managing Editor of ProBlogger.net: a writer, blogger, and full-time word nerd balancing it all with being a stay-at-home mum. She writes about all this and more at Veggie Mama. Chat with her on Twitter @veggie_mama or be entertained on Facebook.