Welcome to day 29 of #BookBlogWriMo! We’re going back to the future now.
At the beginning of this challenge, we talked about the history of our blogs. Since the challenge is now ending and today is the last real prompt (tomorrow is a wrap-up), it seems appropriate to look to the future.
I have a lot I want to do with this blog. Too many ideas to actually implement them all soon, which sucks. But here’s a few items on my “To-Do…Someday” list:
Be a Better Blogger Challenge
I’m hoping to be able to kick this off with the new year. Basically, the idea for this that most of the blogging challenges I know of (including this one) are based in writing. For example, the Write-On Review-a-Thon. These are all great, and help us get caught up or change up what we’ve been blogging about.
But there’s more to managing a blog than writing posts. I wanted a challenge that recognizes that. I couldn’t find one, so I decided to create it myself. Each month, the Be a Better Blogger challenge will have one assignment to improve your blog.
Sometimes, it may include writing posts. But it will focus on things like making your blog easier to browse, updating pages that need updating, cleaning up tags and categories…all the stuff that we say we need to do, but never get around to.
Showcasing Bookish Playlists
Music is a huge part of me. Having been a dancer my whole life, I’m not even capable of listening to good music without somehow moving to it. I sit in traffic and choreograph dances in my head. Music speaks to me.
So I’d like to incorporate music into the blog while still keeping it focused on books and blogging. A lot of books have a soundtrack with a list of songs at the beginning or end, but I, for one, usually forget about actually creating a Spotify playlist of the songs.
I’d like to make around half of the music posts (probably posted on Mondays, because alliteration rocks) actual playlists from books that you can listen to and save in one click. I also have a few playlists that I like to listen to when I’m writing, so the other half of the column would be a mixture of those and “just for fun” playlists.
Writing and Accepting Guest Posts
Next week will be the first time I publish a guest post as part of a blog tour. Later that month, my first guest post on a bigger blog will go live. But I want more.
As a blogger, guest posting has been one of the best things I’ve ever done for building my professional brand. And as a blog manager, building a contributor program has been a great way to attract new audiences, get new perspectives, and free up time spent writing posts.
I would love to start regularly publishing Bumblings Blog Tips written by guest bloggers. My initial goal is once per month. In the time saved by writing one less tip per month, I can focus on pitching and writing guest posts.
I like getting personal and I have a tendency for TMI. I want to turn Book Bumblings into a community, but why would you want to join if you don’t know anything about the girl behind the blog?
I started doing this on my professional blog and have gotten great feedback. I link to some of my favorite posts written, favorite posts read, and just talk about what’s going on in my life. Since those are focused on my job and professional brand, there’s nowhere for me to just talk about my world.
More Reviews, Less Canned Content
I’m already making strides on this…kind of. I’ve scaled back on things like cover reveals, release day blitzes, and blog tours that don’t include any real writing from me. If the post can also be found on 20 other blogs, why should anyone read my post?
It also gives you much less flexibility in your editorial calendar. I’ve had too many days where I had to wake up at 5 a.m. to finish formatting a release day blitz before work because I was too busy the night before.
I’ve made progress in making less commitments, but after #BookBlogWriMo is over, I don’t have much planned in terms of original content. I really want to up my review game, especially since there are probably a hundred books I’ve read recently enough to write a review for. I wish I could just spend a solid 8 hours writing reviews. I could get enough done to just schedule them out for months. That would be awesome.
One of the best ways to grow an email list (which I’ve mentioned is one of the best things you can do for your blog) is to offer subscribers something special.
From day one, I have wanted to offer subscriber-only content. Perhaps it’s freebies like post templates for book bloggers, or bring back my weekly sale alerts, but only in email newsletter format. I also started outlining an ebook on different ways to save money on your book addiction.
The only thing holding me back right now is subscriber count. If I’m going to put an extra few hours of my free time into writing something, I want it to make sure it can be read. Right now, I love each and every person who lets me into their inbox, but it just doesn’t justify spending a separate chunk of time on them when I have other projects that need attending to.
Become a Resource
One of my favorite things about blogging (book or otherwise) is being able to help people through my writing. I would love to be seen as a resource in the book blogging community.