Thursday, 24 January 2013

Making time to experiment for Your Blog

Making time to experiment:

Many bloggers have at least two major tasks: writing or blogging, and running their businesses (which may be on- or off-blog). experimentation and practical research adds another challenge to the mix, but Amy makes this work with a combination of planning, discipline, and regimentation. When we interviewed her, she’d just been planning her work for the year ahead so she could “hit the ground running” on January 3. “What I’ve been doing is making sure that I have everything in place so that I know what I’m selling, and what I’m promoting, and what I’m creating every single month of 2012,” Amy explains. “Now I won’t stick to it perfectly, but at least I’ll have a good idea as to how I’ll be spending my time.” she uses a physical calendar as well as google Calendars, and employs a detailed system of color-coding. “I actually have to have something visual to look at deadlines on a calendar,” Amy explains. “I’m a visual person.” While she describes this approach as “old-school” she feels that, “Part of being successful, productive and efficient is knowing your own style and then trying not to fight it, but just getting really good at streamlining it. That works for me.”

If I create a team, how can I lead it productively?

“Because … I was able to put this team together from all of these parts, and … they are able to communicate with each other directly, a lot of initiatives drive forward without me being the hub in the middle—I’m more of ‘here’s what I see and here’s my advice, and you guys make it happen. And let me know if you need to come back to something.’ ”

“I tend to listen to my own internal reactions to things to work out whether they’re working or not …if something is giving me energy, I’ll do it more. If something’s taking energy I question,‘Is this worthwhile?’ “The other thing is I tend to watch what’s giving other people energy. If I’m doing certain things and people are responding well to them, then that’s a signal that I need to do that more. And conversely if I’m doing something and there’s no reaction or a negative reaction then I’m questioning, ‘Is this something that I want to put time and energy into?’ ”

How to boost the quality of my posts?

I really need to boost the quality of my posts. How can I do that?

“I need to step away from my work for a little while just so maybe I can get some ideas outside of my niche in order to be more interesting, quite honestly, in the blogs I write.” Amy Porterfield “I decided that when this was going to be my job, I was going to take it very, very seriously, meaning, like I was going to work hard at it, and I was going to work hard to get better at it. “And so I read lot, and I write a lot. I’ve practiced this craft for the lastten years; I haven’t practiced anything else more. And it’s about just sitting down and working.”

“My creative process really is first finding out what people want to learn about… by checking out other people’s blogs. “So I usually find out the topics that are getting the most shares on social media sites, the most comments, and then I expand on it. I find the topics, but then I put my own spin on it, or put my own opinions in it, show some of the results that I’ve gotten related to that topic.“Another thing I do is I experiment a lot… I take what I’ve learned from my own experiences and make myself my own case study inside my program. So that usually helps a lot, because people then can see that this really and truly has worked, and this is how it’s worked.”

“I go back to the last place that I think I had a good [idea], and then I’ll mindmap from there. So I try and go back to a place where sparks were flying, and recapture some of the sparks that I didn’t follow up on and build from there… mindmapping’s probably one of the main tools I use.“I’ll try and set time aside every now and again, too, to just do something that’s fun and creative … go for a walk or go for a kick of the football with my kids—just completely break it. When I’m struggling I’ll try and break it and do something that’s completely different and come back to it. I find that’s often when the ideas come—it’s usually when I’mout on a walk that I get ideas.”

“Just get started. That really, for me, is the hardest part, it’s just creating momentum. So if you can do anything to begin and just scribble something down, start writing one word a day, whatever it is to just begin, I think it’s like a bicycle: each pedal gets a little bit easier. And then you start to build up speed and momentum, and the same energy that you would exer t to get going is now sending you down the road at 20 or 30 miles an hour.”