Let’s go behind the scenes here at Oui In France and look at what goes into publishing a blog post. Believe it or not, it doesn’t go like this: Come up with an idea, write about it. Hit publish. Repeat.
Sometimes the words just flow. But other times, it’s way more involved than that — both before and after publishing the post!
The reality is that a blog post can take hours upon hours of work. If you’re interested in my blogging process, here it is.
*Before publishing the post*
Brainstorming. I don’t brainstorm regularly, but when ideas start flowing (usually when I’m out walking Dagny), I take a few minutes to write them down (or dictate them). I don’t usually brainstorm for more than 5 or 10 minutes at a time. My ideas come in bursts and I record them all on a spreadsheet and then move them over to my editorial calendar once they’re solidified.
Dictation. Many of my ideas come to me when I’m outside, so to not forget them in the moment, I record voice memos on my phone or dictate into notepad.
Web research on topic. If I have an idea, I’ll often Google it to see how it’s been covered by other bloggers. If it’s a factual piece, I’ll spend anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour or more researching.
Make an outline from the dictation. This is when my babbling takes shape and I start writing my main points in my WordPress draft folder. Sometimes I’ll skip this step and go right to the rough draft.
Write a rough draft. From the outline, I’ll then write a draft of the post that usually happens pretty quickly. I love short paragraphs and lots of easy-on-the-eyes white space. I spend no more than 30 minutes here in one sitting.
***Comes back to draft maybe a few hours or even a few weeks/months later. As I write this, I have 143 posts in my drafts folder!***
Revise draft. This is when I finalize my copy and make sure I’ve said everything I want to say. Sometimes I do a few revisions.
Add relevant links to my own content or others’ content. Links are important for SEO (among other things) and I try to link back to any relevant content I’ve written or content from blogger friends or other sources.
Find or take images for the post (then edit images). I try to have 2-3 images per post (more if it’s a product or travel post). Sometimes editing takes longer than actually shooting the photos.
Create graphics for the post in Canva (for Pinterest, feature image, etc.). Canva is absolutely wonderful and I use it almost daily. Even if you’re not a skilled graphic designer, it’s super easy to use with tons of templates to make your work look pro. It’s free but their paid business plan lets you easily resize images for sharing on various social networks and just for that it is worth the fee.
Embed graphics in post and finalize formatting. Once the images are in the right spot, I make sure my posts are easy to read. I like white space and short paragraphs. Huge blocks of text make my eyes glaze over, so it’s this stage where I make sure my posts are formatted in a way that makes them easy to scan and digest.
Optimize post for search engines (SEO) including title and relevant keywords. I use the Yoast SEO plugin for this which streamlines the process.
Proofread post. I move more quickly than I should at this stage and I’m sure typos slip through because it’s hard to spot errors in your own work! That said, I do my best to make sure there aren’t glaring errors before setting a post live.
Check links to make sure none are broken. Broken links aren’t cool.
Hit publish! Voilà! The post is live.
*After post is published on Oui In France*
Read post immediately after it’s set live to make sure there are no errors and formatting looks OK.
Add the new post’s link to relevant old posts on my own blog.
Schedule social media promotion in the coming days (including thanking people who share my post!)
Email or tweet any other bloggers/brands mentioned in the post.
Reply to reader comments on post and social media accounts.
- Read other bloggers’ posts and engage in comments/social media. It’s all about community!
- Maintain my own social media accounts with my Facebook page taking up the most time… and it’s a lot. Facebook only is about an hour/day!
And there you have it… my blogging process! What does yours look like?
P.S. If you’re looking to start a blog, read this post for my tips!
P.P.S. Read about when my site was hacked here.
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