Blogging Challenge Week 1: Plan Your Year

In this episode, Angie and April kick off week one of the blogging challenge.

blog planning

Grow with Angie and April: A Podcast for Teacherpreneurs
Grow with Angie and April: A Podcast for Teacherpreneurs
Blogging Challenge Week 1: Plan Your Year

We are super excited to be continuing our TpT Conference workshop on “intentional blogging” in this new blogging challenge. Over the next four weeks, we will focus on helping you with blog planning to be more intentional with your posts. It doesn’t matter if you attended the conference or not, we want you to participate! Make sure you head over to our mastermind group for accountability as we work through the challenge together:

Are you feeling motivated and inspired after attending the TpT conference? We hope so! We were honored to present a workshop this year on intentional blogging. The conference is always a great time for gaining new insight and focus to grow your TpT store.

But, if you didn’t attend the conference, don’t worry—we’ve got you covered!

Over the next four weeks, we are embarking on a blogging challenge. If you attended the workshop, you know all about it. If not, that’s OK. We are going to provide short podcasts once a week over the next month to walk you through the process of learning to blog intentionally for your TpT business.

What this challenge is and what it’s not

This challenge is not blogging every day for 30 days. We’d never ask you to commit to that. We wouldn’t do it ourselves! It’s not even about blogging once a week.

Last summer we ran a blogging challenge to blog once a week for six weeks. It was rough! So, this year, we are going to focus more on prepping your blog for the entire year.

Yes, it’s an entire year of blog planning, but it’s going to be simplified and goal oriented. We want to help you succeed!

This challenge is all about quality over quantity. It’s better for you to blog less and create content that you’re proud of then to pump out new content that’s subpar each week. We don’t want you to feel stressed about blogging.

Week 1 focus: plan your year

Let’s be real, half the hassle of blogging is sitting down and trying to figure out what to post about. That’s why intentional blogging is so helpful. We talked about it a lot in our conference workshop, but you can also learn more about it in our podcast episode 33.

You need to know why you’re blogging. What are your goals?

Of course, you want to sell everything in your store. But, it’s hard to blog about all the resources you have. So, it helps to look at the following things when choosing your focus and finding your sweet spot.

  • Which products in your store are selling really well
  • Areas where a lot of others aren’t already selling resources and you are
  • What other teachers consider you an expert on

Here’s what this looks like on my blog. I have decided to focus on two areas. My first focus is creating blog posts on the products that are selling well that I don’t have a lot of blog posts for just yet. I’m going to focus on explaining why teachers should be trying the activities in their classrooms and how to succeed with them.

My second area of focus is on creating blog posts around the questions that I’m hearing teachers ask a lot in Facebook groups.

Creating an intentional blogging plan

Most successful blogs have one particular theme for their blog. It could be a grade level or a certain type of learning style. Something along those lines.

Before you start mapping out a year of random blog posts, it’s important to choose what you’re going to focus on. Decide what area you want people to see you as an expert on.

Do not move on from week one until you know what those topics are for you.

And, when it comes to planning a schedule, do what works for you. April and I recommend that you shoot for at least one blog post a month, or two if you can do it. Choose what will work the best for your schedule while allowing you to create quality blog posts.

Blog planning resources

To start your blog planning, you need some type of content calendar to use so you can stay organized. You could write it on a paper calendar, Google spreadsheet, or whatever works the best for you. If you follow this link, you can check out the resources that April and I have put together to this blogging challenge.

It can be really helpful to use one calendar for your blog post topics, email newsletter content, and social media. That way, when you know what you’re going to blog about, you can easily create additional content to go with it.

Word of warning: It might sound overwhelming to write out an entire year’s worth of blog topics, but it’s not as bad as it sounds. If you only plan on writing one post a month, that’s just 12 blog topics. Or, if you plan on blogging twice a month, that’s just 24 topics. 

blog planning challengeLet’s get started

So, your assignment for week one is to plan your topics from August to July of next year.

You can plan it all out in the workbook. It’s a big first step but will make the rest of your challenge go much smoother for you.

If you don’t know what topics to choose for a blog post, then find a group online and look at what questions teachers are asking about. Find out what keywords they are searching for. We’ll dive further into SEO keywords later on in the challenge, but a great resource to use is Uber Suggest.

As you work on your blog planning, make sure to pay attention to seasonal resources. I’ve had a lot of success with seasonal blog posts. But, the trick is you need to schedule your posts a few months in advance of the popular time. Then, when it’s starting to approach and teachers are starting to look for resources, your blog posts and pins are already out there waiting to be found.

Blogging challenge accountability

Remember to head over to the mastermind group to share when you have completed your content calendar for the year. And, don’t forget to check out all the free resources we have for you to use during the blogging challenge.

Next up in the blogging challenge for week two is prepping and optimizing your blog. But remember, you need to have a plan and your goals in place before you start on week 2.

You got this!