I discovered Elle & Co recently and have been poring over archives and archives of her blog posts each night before bed (#nerd). Her posts are so inspiring and motivating — and all so beautifully designed. Elle's business model and personal vision has changed the way I think about blogging, and I want to start taking her nuggets of wisdom into action! Hence the re-brand. My goal is to slowly move Coffee & Honeycomb from a hub of scattered personal posts to one that is more purposeful, resourceful, and inspiring! Here are some practical and simple tips I'm going to start implementing around here and ones you can leverage today, too.
DEFINE YOUR READER
When you write to a large, faceless crowd, it's easy for the quality of your content to become dull, scattered, and pointless. It's important to define exactly who your reader is — or who you want your reader to be. How old is he/she? What are his/her dreams? Why is he/she coming to your blog? Taking the time to wrestle through these questions will give you more clarity as you write each post moving forward and may even give you more ideas of what to blog about.
ASK THE RIGHT QUESTIONS
One of my favorite pieces of advice I learned in college was that when you are trying to communicate a message, whatever the medium may be, is to ask yourself three critical questions. What does my audience currently know? What does my audience need to know? How can I bridge that gap? Asking myself those three questions has always helped when writing papers, delivering presentations, and I'm realizing now it's just as important when writing a blog post. Make sure that every piece of your post answers and addresses these questions. It will take more thought and time at first, but it will make the message effective, engaging, and relatable.
SELECT YOUR CATEGORIES
What are the main topics you talk about? How would you group or categorize your blog posts? Is there any sort of similarity or consistency among them? Ask yourself these questions and start just listing out everything that comes to mind. Now look for any pattern or consistency within your list and use that as a starting point for your categories. To take it one step further, identify categories that you are most passionate about, most knowledgable on, and most importantly, add some sort of value to your reader.
DISSECT YOUR CATEGORIES
FREQUENCY: Once you have your categories identified, consider the hierarchy of importance. How frequently do you write about each category per week/month? Does that reflect how important they are? The two should correlate.
TIMING: Make yourself an editorial calendar and select the exact days you will write about each category.
POSTS: Brainstorm up to 10 possible blog posts for each category so you have a pool of posts to choose from.
You've read my tips and are now hopefully itching to start brainstorming and re-branding your own blog. I created a free printable that you can use to help as you begin that process. There is space for defining your mission, reader, and categories just like we discussed! Click the button below to download the free printable and use it as a guide. Scribble all over it and may it get your creative juices flowing. Feel free to pin, share, and print as many times as you want!