Despite their best time management efforts, freelancers frequently experience the continual strain of having too many things to do, and not enough time. That all-too-common scenario is one you may be battling right now, and the situation probably feels more severe if you simply don’t have enough time to maintain your freelance blog.
Perhaps you started it with a hopeful attitude, assuming it could be a worthwhile moneymaking venture — and way to establish authority on a subject in your industry. Now, it’s making you feel more swamped than ever, because you haven’t updated it in so long, and know that’s not in line with best blogging practices. Fortunately, there’s hope.
Here are a few practical strategies for keeping your blog content current, even when you’re short on time.
1) Set Expectations for Readers
Begin by assuring readers you intend to keep the blog running, and give them a general idea of when to expect fresh content. If people visit your freelance blog and see you haven’t posted anything new for five months with no explanation, they’ll likely click over to another blog and never revisit yours again.
Offer as much explanation as you think is necessary about why you haven’t posted in so long. Communicate honestly, and let readers know you appreciate how they’ve continued to visit despite the lack of updates.
When you do post, try to make it on a consistent schedule. I publish every Tuesday and Thursday, but you could make yours every other Wednesday or even on the 15th of every month. Whatever works for you, just be sure to keep it consistent.
2) Compose Guest Blogging Guidelines
If you need new content, announce you’re accepting contributions from guest bloggers. At first, you may break into a cold sweat worrying that allowing other people to share their voices via your blog could compromise the overall quality. Although that’s a possibility, you can minimize it by publishing extremely clear guidelines about the posts you need.
Take a look at a snippet from HubSpot’s marketing blog guidelines below, which include links to the type of content preferred. The blog receives over two million visitors monthly and has over 300,000 subscribers, and it requires high standards. The more precisely you detail your expectations, the less likely it is you’ll waste time sorting through submissions that are far below your minimum quality level, or submissions that aren’t written in a style that matches the blog.
3) Consider Hiring an Editor
If you’re like many freelancers, you’ve become a competent self-editor by default, even if writing is your specialty. Many freelancing gigs necessitate sending assignments directly to clients, without the luxury of editors reviewing it beforehand.
In the case of your freelancing blog, it may be the perfect time to hire a professional editor. Think about the amount of time you likely spend scrutinizing the content for spelling errors, grammar mistakes and complicated sentences. The hours you save by letting someone else handle the editing could become money well spent, especially if you ask the right questions during the hiring process.
4) Update Old, Popular Content
Depending on when you started writing it, your blog may feature hundreds of pages of archived material. Rather than creating entirely new blog posts, sift through old content and find posts that were popular. You’ll likely find evergreen material, or topics you could easily revitalize and turn into updated content.
5) Explore Automated Blog Software
Today’s top automated marketing tools fall short of penning blog posts for you, but they can tackle numerous other must-do tasks currently cutting into your free time. Many provide real-time statistics about trending topics, so you can discover which blog posts are most relevant to your visitors, or set up the software to market your content through social media channels for maximum impact.
Take a realistic viewpoint and realize everyone has the same number of hours to use each day — the difference is how they spend that time. If you genuinely don’t have any time to maintain your blog and aren’t willing to open slots in your schedule by sacrificing other activities, evaluate the possibility of turning the responsibility over to a committed and interested person or team. Otherwise, the suggestions above should help you get your blog in better shape without wasting time, so it can once again be an enjoyable, profitable aspect of your freelancing career.
Would you like to be a guest blogger at freelancermap.com? Check out our guidelines for guest posts at freelancermap.com