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Aug 3, 2015

Organize Your Blog

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and DaySpring, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #DayspringSadieRob http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV


As my blog has grown over the past few years, one of the hardest, but most important lessons, has been realizing just how important it is to keep all things blog-related organized.  When blogging was just a sporadic hobby, there wasn't much to organize.  I'd write when I felt like it and post when I wanted to and I hadn't really fully invested time into harnessing social media to help give my posts as big a reach as possible.  

But as this space has grown and blogging has become both business and hobby, having a good organizational system has proven to be a necessity.  There's so much to keep track of when you're blogging a few days a week!  From your blogging calendar to your budget to your sponsors, keeping tabs on every little detail can be a daunting task and feel overwhelming, but really, it doesn't have to be.  While there are great planners out there designed specifically for blogging, I like the idea of having a blogging binder that I created myself so that I can customize it as my needs change.  Plus, a binder allows you the flexibility of adding in pages, like that email that you decided to print out or that receipt from some photo props.  

Personally, I like having my binder at my fingertips on my desk, where I do most of my blogging, and then also carrying around a smaller notebook for when inspiration or an idea strikes.  For my blog binder & notebook, I adore the new Live Original line from Sadie Robertson and Dayspring!  I picked up a 3-ring bider, divider tabs, and a notebook at Hobby Lobby and I love that they provide a positive, inspiring, and faith-based message, and they are a great encouragement and reminder of what I want my blog to be...a place for people to be inspired and encouraged, and for me to be able to share my faith with my readers. 

Here are a few tips for creating your own DIY blogging binder:

PRIORITIZE YOUR NEEDS //
What are the specific things that you need to keep organized?  Do you offer sponsorships and need to keep track of who is on your sidebar and when?  Do you do sponsored posts regularly and need a place to keep track of income and receipts?  Decide on the big categories that deserve their own section in your binder and break these up with a few divider tabs.  My top five that I needed in my binder were:  Calendar, Sponsors, Budget, Receipts, and Inspiration.  Once you have your categories decided upon, fill each tab with the appropriate paper.  I threw some plain computer paper in my receipts section for taping in receipts and making some notes, but I found some great monthly calendar pages for my calendar section.

COME UP WITH A SYSTEM // 
I love the look of a color-coding system, so I grabbed some colored felt-tipped pens and assigned different color checkmarks for different tasks on my calendar (i.e. blue = scheduled, purple = Twitter, pink = Facebook, orange = Pinterest, green = Instagram).  This simple, yet efficient, system allows me a quick snapshot of the work I've done on a post, and I can see that all one month at a time.  

MAKE YOUR OWN WORKSHEETS //
It took me all of three minutes, a marker, and a ruler to create a worksheet to keep track of my sponsors.  By simply creating eight rectangles on a sheet of paper, and then writing in titles for pertinent information (Name, Blog Name, URL, Email, Ad Size, etc.), I was able to quickly create a template that I can simply copy and add a header to for each month!  It would also be super simple to create something similar on your computer and then print that, obviously, and then because you own/created the file, you're able to change and reproduce it as often as you need!

STAY ORGANIZED ON THE GO // 
Like I mentioned earlier, I often come up with ideas when I'm on the go.  Carrying around a bulky binder isn't really realistic, so I like to keep a small composition notebook with me in my bag.  That way, when I have an idea for a post, think about a blogging goal, or come up with a collaboration idea, I have something to write it all in and keep that organized too!  I grabbed a cute and cheery notebook and sectioned that off using washi tape as tabs so that all of my notes can go into their appropriate sections instead of being all jumbled together.  

BE TRUE TO YOU // 
Most importantly when you're working on your binder, remember that there are no rules!  Make your binder work for you and don't be afraid to change things up if you find that your needs change or if something just isn't working.  That's the beauty of the binder, after all!  You can totally customize it to your needs! 











I hope these tips on keeping all things blog organized!  It's been a learning process for me, but I can tell you with confidence that as you start creating a system that works for you, your blogging workflow will become more efficient, more strategic, and more intentional!  

HOW DO YOU KEEP YOUR BLOG ORGANIZED?


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