You may have noticed that I am attempting to establish a sort of regularity to my blog postings – let’s call it a “Blogging Rhythm”. A quick Google search for “blogging rhythm” will reveal that my mind may be incapable of originality at this point, but I assure you I invented that phrase on my own, just now. Great minds, it seems, really do think alike.
The concept of blogging rhythm is a key idea to keep in mind as one progresses through their own blogging experience. Keeping a decent, or even halfway decent, sense of regularity to a blog naturally lends a certain reliability to the content creator. If visitors can come to expect new content consistently, more trust is created between the content creator and the visitor. Obviously, if the visitor can expect new content at a reasonably regular interval, they will be more likely to bookmark the site and return again and again – as long as fresh content continues to be regularly added, of course. This is why RSS is so important. In an even better scenario, the visitor would subscribe to the site’s RSS feed so they would be automatically notified when new content is added. Once a visitor does this, the blogger has nearly guaranteed a repeat visitor.
In fact, the idea of a rhythm isn’t unique unique to blogs. Any site will benefit from fresher content, but blogs themselves are optimized for their ease of use, especially when adding new content.
Another perhaps overlooked side-effect to having a regular, consistent blogging rhythm is word of mouth. Once visitors have begun to expect fresh content at a regular interval, the more likely they will recommend such a fresh website to their friends and colleagues. Of course, the rate of this word of mouth spread will be related to the type of content the creator is providing, but this basic rule follows for all types of content.
One of the questions that I’ve asked myself as a beginning blogger is:
Is it better to be sporadic but spontaneous with new content?
Or is it better to be structured but reliable with new content?
There is of course a range of styles between these two approaches, but most content creators will lean one way or the other. And as much as I love spontaneity, I’ve chosen to side with the latter. At this stage, it’s more important for me to pattern a regular blogging habit into myself.
Yet there is a happy medium between these two extremes which I intend to implement once this first habit becomes ingrained into my neurons. After implementing a regular blogging rhythm, a content creator’s blogging habit will basically be on autopilot, like brushing their teeth every night. From this point, the creator would be able to supplement a spontaneous element to their blogging habits. Whenever the mood strikes, they’d allow themselves to add new content on the spot, but they wouldn’t rely entirely on their own spontaneity for content. They’d have that regularity already built up as a habit, so they wouldn’t have to even consider the possibility of their site even getting stale. The habitual part of themselves would already be handling that in case the spontaneous part decided to delve into refining site code or reading a book instead of creating.
Creating habits isn’t always easy though, so I suggest starting small and always remembering the reason you are doing what you’re doing. Make it as easy as possible to keep your word to yourself, because that’s what you’ve really done. You’ve made an agreement with yourself, and writing it down makes all the difference.