A lazy soul, I was recently astonished to realize that I’ve been blogging since 2010. Moreover, I’ve been putting out a post every week—with remarkably few exceptions—since then.
This post is not necessarily to pat myself on the back, though I’m sort of doing that, it’s more to point out that blogging is real work. These supposedly casual communications take thought and planning. And, despite their often loose and friendly tone, they’re not just dashed off on the spur of the moment. Or shouldn’t be.
Marcia Yudkin, a truly indefatigable person, writes a lovely little missive called The Marketing Minute to which I’ve been subscribing for years. She always has something interesting to say and, bless her, she does it in very few words.
In early March of this year, Ms. Yudkin described one of her clients, who was “finding writing blog post after blog post a slog.” This client was under the impression that Ms. Yudkin’s pieces, perfect grammar and all, take about 30 minutes to write, no sweat.
Not so, says Ms. Yudkin, describing a process that includes:
- Getting an idea and letting it germinate
- Waiting for insight on how to present it
- Doing any necessary research
- Writing a draft
- Checking word count
- Putting the draft aside “for hours or days”
- Editing, proofreading, fact checking, verifying links, etc.
This process, she says, takes 3 to 4 hours per piece.
This woman is a hero. I can’t claim that my process is quite that rigorous, but it does require creating an editorial calendar for three months of posts so I know what the heck I’m going to write about. Reading source materials, creating a draft—often several at a shot, because there’s nothing worse than writing a post at the last minute. Proofreading, checking links, choosing an appropriate illustration, because accompanying visuals tend to make a post more appealing.
I’m sure you’re getting the idea that blogging is, as stated earlier, “real work.” And yet, I have found some clients are surprised to learn that blog posts cost real money. But wait, they say, this is just a little thing we want to put up on our website every week or so. How can it cost so much?
One solution is to quote a package rate for x number of posts. That can make the medicine go down a bit easier. Still, though, a blog involves coming up with a point of view, writing, researching, and going through the editing process. And it also involves making the commitment to doing it regularly, not just when the mood strikes.
Leszek Glasner — 123rf.com