How to write a blog series (Part 1)

Last year, I wrote my very first blog series. I was looking to stretch myself and grow a little bit in what I’d been doing, and I thought a series would help me out in that. Not only did I have a solid run during the series, but I picked up a few tips along the way that might help you out as well. There’s a lot to it, but I’m going to break it up into small chunks by running – you guessed it – another blog series! Totally going meta, here.

Why write a blog series?

If you’re happy cranking out your blog posts on a regular or semi-regular basis, why would you want to consider running a series? There’s a few reasons:

A series will help you stay consistent in regularly updating your blog. If you plan it well, you can write several posts in a day and set them to publish later, or you can take it a day (or week at a time), but one thing a good series will do is keep you accountable.

It can help you get out of the rut of just posting whatever, whenever. When you allow yourself to zone in and focus on one subject for awhile, it can have a great effect on your writing. You’ll find yourself learning more about the subject and a lot of times, the ideas will start to really roll out of you because you’re getting those creative juices going.

It can give your readers something to look forward to. One of the things I can almost never do is stop watching a movie in the middle. I simply must put everything else on hold and finish this show, unless it’s an emergency. If I stop and try to come back to it, the chances I actually will are not that great. In the same way, giving your readers a reason to come back will keep them from “stopping in the middle” of your blog and leaving, immediately forgetting all about you. Giving them a reason to subscribe or return or sign up for that email newsletter is a great way to ensure reader retention.

It can open the doors to other conversations, and revenue. When I ran my blog series last year on Upstarts, it was great to see some of the folks that I know on Facebook and Twitter start interacting with me on it. Even though I didn’t see a lot of traffic or a lot of comments, I knew it was a start, and when you’ve started, you’re instantly further than you were only moments ago.

The other side of that coin is a blog series can lead the way to additional revenue, such as an advertiser to sponsor the series for you, or you could format the whole thing into an ebook when you’ve completed it. You can even enhance this package a little by integrating feedback you received from the commenters or maybe special sections or information that’s only available when you purchase the ebook form. Additionally, it can act as an incentive to subscribe to your email newsletter. It’s popular for a lot of blogs to offer a free downloadable ebook or report as a small “thanks” for subscribing. Maybe your ebook could be what increases your subscriber rate!

It’s a great way to increase awareness of a particular subject or cause. Thanks to the awesome power of compounded sharing through the internet and social networks, running a blog series on a particular subject will ensure that what you’re writing about gets seen and paid attention to, as long as you’re diligent and courteous with it.

Experiment with your “tribe vibe”. If your tribe is the group of readers you hope to make raving fans of your writing, then your “tribe vibe” is the topic or series of topics they respond to the most. What things do you write about that get shared or commented on more than anything else? Writing a series is a great way to gauge that. Often, you’ll find that you’ll get more attention on one particular part of your series because people identify with it. That can tell you that you’re either on the right track, or that you may need to pivot after your series is over and loop back to discuss something in greater detail.

Throughout the rest of this course, we’re going to cover the other basics of writing a blog series:

  • What to write about?
  • How to get started?
  • How long should it be?
  • How to get the word out?
  • Launching successfully
  • Tracking progress

Thanks for checking this out, we’ll see you in a few days! If you’d like to make sure you don’t miss a post, go ahead and subscribe to the email newsletter!