It's a question that most bloggers grapple with at some point: how frequently should I blog?
If you don't post often enough, you risk losing your audience. If you post too much, you risk posting for posting's sake.
This dilemma is especially challenging for professional bloggers who are blogging as a business or blogging on behalf of a company. How frequently one posts can, for obvious reasons, dramatically affect key metrics that most online publishers track, such as visitors, pageviews and ranking; make one mistake and it can have a real financial impact.
Marketing guru Seth Godin, who has been interviewed by Econsultancy editor Chris Lake and who recently started posting on a daily basis on his blog, took the time to explain his blogging philosophy to AdAge's B.L. Ochman.
- Godin's blogging objectives are to a) spread his ideas, b) make room for new ideas and c) "encourage people to add alacrity to their diet."
- He doesn't measure his readership or blogosphere rankings; he measures the number of inbound emails and the quality of inbound emails.
- Godin writes posts as ideas come to him and queues them up for future posting. He doesn't like building too long of a queue, however.
- He's made the observation that "Monday seems to be a good day to post a really viral idea."
- Godin tries to stay away from the ''echo chamber'. Posting about other posts is something he tries to avoid.
- He uses Twitter, Google Reader and FriendFeed to share links and offer short comments.
- His most important belief: only post when you have something to say.
While Godin's advice isn't going to be appropriate for all bloggers (if you're blogging for a company convincing higher-ups to ignore readership and rankings might be difficult), there is a lot that should be considered.
A few suggestions of my own, based on Godin's:
It's good to create objectives. If you don't know why you're blogging, don't start.
- Go beyond the basic metrics. Readership, rankings, pageviews, etc. are all important but consider other metrics that may be more revealing (and important) to you, such as inbound emails.
Pick a schedule that's comfortable. Whether you're posting daily or weekly, building up a queue of posts or publishing in real-time, it's important to pick a schedule that you're comfortable with. This will help ensure that blogging doesn't become a chore.
Monitor when your posts have the most impact. Are Mondays a good day to spread ideas? They are for Godin, apparently. But until you monitor and track when your posts are best-received by your readers and the blogosphere at large, you can't make similar observations.