Becoming a blogger is pretty easy. You decide on a topic, choose a blogging platform and before you know it you’re up and running posting content. But that feeling of excitement that comes with starting a shiny new blog can all too quickly fade. And the blog can fade with it. This means it’s crucial to set goals for your blog and find ways to stay motivated to achieve them. Here I’m sharing my top tips for setting and achieving blogging goals – things that have worked well for me over the last 5 years. Whether you’re embarking on, or continuing, a blogging journey these tips may help you!
1. Set purposeful blogging goals
We often hear about how good goals are ‘SMART’ – being specific, measureable, attainable, relevant and time-bound. Take for example ‘I will post a vegan recipe twice a week between June and January.’ A pretty SMART goal – but is is purposeful to you? A SMART goal often isn’t enough – because your blogging goals also need to be purposeful to you. The bottom line is that if you aren’t 100% dedicated to the purpose behind your goal, you’ll lose motivation and find other stuff to do instead!
So, when setting your blogging goals ask yourself:
- Why do I want to share via a blog?
- What are my strongest personal values?
- What does success look like – what outcomes matter most to me?
- Do I really want the end result?
2. Chip away at them
Once you’ve set a goal or goals that are purposeful to you, with an end result you really want, you need to have a strategy to get started and then to keep moving. Because if you just have the very end goal staring at you then procrastination can keep your feet stuck firmly at first base.
Once you’ve written down your main goal then take these steps to help you chip away at it:
- Break the big goal into smaller ones
- Create actionable steps for each smaller goal
- Write them down and tick them off
- Take one step at a time – any progress is good progress
- Celebrate each success milestone
3. Brutally manage your time
Time management is key to maintaining a consistent blogging schedule. We’ve got a limited amount of energy and focus each day so it pays to use it to our advantage. When it comes to blogging this means:
- Blog when productive – concentrate your creative efforts when you are naturally productive – whether that’s morning, afternoon or evening.
- Have set days – decide which day or days you’re going to focus on blogging and stick to them – getting into a regular rhythm means your blog will quickly become a part of your routine.
- Set deadlines – chances are you are not working to an externally imposed deadline so you need to self-impose deadlines to keep you motivated.
- Minimise distractions – this can be as simple as choosing a quiet spot to write in, and keeping your inbox closed and your phone out of arms reach when working on your blog.
4. Practice your self-control
Willpower or self-control is a mental state that weakens if we don’t exercise it – and it’s key to achieving goals. When it comes to blogging it is easy to give up when it gets hard or when another temptation presents itself. The result all too often is a neglected blog. At these times when your willpower needs a boost it’s good to reflect on:
- Your blogging goals and how much progress you have made, and
- The sense of accomplishment you will feel when you stay on track – versus the sense of defeat if you give up.
5. Track, monitor, evaluate performance
Measurement is something that every blog platform gives you – with stats on everything from page views, to which countries your viewers come from, to what posts are most popular. Unless your blog is purely a personal journal exercise, with no goal to attract readers, then it’s important to schedule time to check your progress frequently – seeing real progress in your blog data over time provides a massive sense of motivation to keep on track towards your goals. Also with data you know what’s working and what isn’t – so you can evolve your content or focus over time.
And don’t forget to:
- Celebrate success, however small
- Reward yourself along the journey
- Be kind to yourself – look forwards, not back
- Re-evaluate/re-set if goals are unrealistic or making you miserable!
If you have any good tips for setting and achieving blogging goals please share them here!