Juggling blogging with other commitments is more challenging than it sounds (as I discovered soon after starting!) Although blogging involves plenty of writing, there is a lot more to it besides that. In fact I’d go as far as to say that blogging is mostly about successful promotion although of course this depends on what exactly you want to achieve with your blog. If you are keen for your posts to reach, influence or help people, then being active across social media and engaging with the blogging community is key. This is because there is (sadly) little to no chance of anyone stumbling across your blog using search engines when you’re only just starting out. This will naturally become easier a over time, as your blog gains more authority.
At the heart of it though, blogging is about producing quality content. Alongside which you must manage your social media, build and engage with your audience and promote your blog! I admit that keeping on top of all of these things can get tiresome sometimes. There are, however, some apps out there that will make blogging feel like less of a chore.
Here are my top five…
Out of the few scheduling apps I have tried, this one is my favourite. It allows you to write social media posts in advance and set them to be posted at a specific date and time. This means that you don’t need to worry about putting together a post when you’re having one of those busy, chaotic days. On the flipside, I have days where I have little to do and it helps to be able to put together posts which can then be posted at a later day.
What I like about this particular app is that it has all the features you need in one place. This includes analytics so you can analyse engagement and following across your social media. What really sets Hootsuite from the others though is the customisability of it. You can track specific hashtags and engage with content easier.
If you live under a rock and don’t know what VSCO is… what are you doing?! In all seriousness though, VSCO is a brilliant app I would recommend to absolutely everybody. It allows you to edit your photos to a high quality. I use this to edit both my blog photos and my Instagram photos (which you can see here). Instagram in particular is a completely visual platform and I’ve noticed that it has actually been driving more traffic to my blog since I started putting more effort into it! Can’t say the same about Pinterest though… I’ll get to grips with Pinterest someday. Maybe.
As well as the usual exposure, contrast and saturation settings, VSCO has a wide range of great filters to make your Instagram feed look fabulous. There are plenty of free ones available but I do recommend looking at the ones you have to purchase too. They cost very little but I personally think they’re worth it if your blog/ brand aesthetic is important to you.
While I use VSCO for photo-editing, I use Canva to produce graphics and promotional posts for social media. There are templates available for pretty much everything, from YouTube banners to Tumblr graphics. I used Canva to make my Facebook header and I regularly use it to make Pinterest graphics for my blog posts. In fact, the pinnable photo at the top of this page was made using Canva! It makes promoting your posts across different platforms so much easier (and bearable). It’s also a lot less time-consuming than using multiple apps to produce one image, trust me… In the past I used different apps for the filters, collage and font. And then spent an hour editing it to be the right resolution and aspect ratio. Canva gives you everything you need in one place!
I don’t always write blog posts on my laptop. Because I try to write whenever I have any spare time and/or feel inspired, the WordPress app is so convenient for me. It means I can work on a post wherever I am, whenever I want to – even offline! The posts you write offline are updated and synced across your devices when you connect to the Internet which I find super handy. This is a lot easier than drafting your posts elsewhere and having to copy it across later – which is even more painful when you’re switching between devices.
My productivity has shot up since I started using this app because you can write and edit on the go! The app notifies you on new comments, likes and follows which means I can read them immediately. Just like the desktop version, it shows you stats and insights which is useful for quickly checking up on how you’re doing.
I confessed earlier that my Pinterest game in terms of generating traffic to my blog is not fantastic. However, it is my topmost source of inspiration! I pretty much use Pinterest as a search engine, for everything from blog-related advice and bullet journal ideas to programming projects and outfit ideas. I love how it is both visual and informative – it’s sort of like Instagram but without all of the ads. Touch wood. You can also use it to drive traffic to your blog but for me, it’s mostly an inspiration tool.
These apps have helped me considerably with creating content and promoting it effectively without having to devote masses of time to blogging. Managing a blog seems like a huge amount of work when you think of all that comes with it – but if I can do it, I promise you that you can too!
Let me know which apps you use to help you manage your blog. Do you use any of the ones I mentioned?