Monday, February 14, 2011

Having Problems With An Inconsistent Blog Schedule? Try Post Dating It!

Photo by scribbletaylor
Since the beginning of January, I haven't written much. I'm sure I could come up with some excuse to explain why I failed to write, but what good would that do? Instead, I'd like to focus on how to correct an inconsistent publishing schedule through post dating. How does that sound?

The Problem
Knowing myself the way I do, I know that I tend to work in short sprints. This means that I attack a project with fierce intensity and passion. Unfortunately, that rush of energy and activity is short lived and quickly dies of exhaustion or boredom.

Sprinting produces a lot of work in a short period of time. In the blogging world, this means the quick accumulation of multiple blog posts within a few days or weeks. If published, readers would get an overwhelming number of articles at one time followed by a period of extreme drought.

Aware of my natural ebb and flow, what can be done to produce a more consistent stream of work?

The Solution
Just because some bloggers function as sprinters, it doesn't mean that readers appreciate the sporadic flow of information.

To correct this inconsistency, simply take the pile of completed articles and hold on to them. Instead of publishing your posts immediately, consider publishing them over a period of days, weeks, or months.

On New Year's Day, for example, I wrote 25 articles as a part of a blogging challenge. Instead of posting all 25 posts on the same day, I could have published one article per day for 25 days.

The advantage of delayed publishing means that sprinting bloggers can rest, compose themselves, and begin another sprint when ready. All the while, the world is receiving a daily blog post.

Another advantage is that every sprint is essentially an investment in the future. With 25 articles in the can, bloggers can either coast for 25 days or continue to invest in the blog with new articles.

This 25 day buffer allows for protection against the unplanned event, which will happen. It also provides time to explore more meaningful posts through reflection and research.

The Nuts & Bolts Of Automation
Now that you can appreciate the value of delayed gratification, let's talk about how to automate the process. For this demonstration, I will use Google's Blogger but this can easily work for WordPress or many other publishing systems.

At the bottom of each post is a Post Options button. When clicked, it displays the following window.


To post date an article, simply select the Scheduled at option and choose the date and time this post should publish. Until then, this article will stay hidden from the world. Neat, huh?

Closing Thought
Knowing thyself can be one of the most powerful weapons against issues with motivation and inconsistency. Taking that knowledge and applying real solutions can be the difference between a thriving and decaying blog. I hope you found this quick tip helpful. Good luck!

P.S., this article was written on Saturday, February 12, 2011.

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Damond L. Nollan, M.B.A.

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