Someone, somewhere, told bloggers to post every day.
So you do. And you give it your best shot.
But posting daily just doesn’t work for you. You don’t meet your traffic and income goals, you don’t get a flood of visitors, and your subscriber numbers stagnate.
Now you’re doubting your ability to be a successful blogger, and you feel like a sweatshop worker, working super-hard with no real reward.
The post-every-day strategy takes all the fun out of blogging.
Deep down, you suspect this strategy is downright dangerous. And you’d be right for the following reasons:
Daily Posts Destroy Social Proof
Social proof is evidence, left by your readers, that your blog is interesting, popular and worth reading.
Your subscriber count, number of comments, number of retweets, and likes show new visitors that other people like and endorse you.
Without social proof, getting people to subscribe to your blog is much harder.
By posting too often, and thus continually replacing the latest post, you reduce the amount of social proof that each post will get. Few people will expend their present effort on yesterday’s conversations.
If you publish a post every day it’s only up at the top of your blog for that day. If you publish a post only once a week, it would be at the top of your blog for a whole week.
And a post will get more exposure if it is up at the top for longer… People will interact with it more since it’s the latest, most relevant content for a longer period of time.
Daily Posts Destroy Reader Bonding
Do you read all your emails as soon as they arrive? Neither do I.
In fact, some of my subscription emails can remain unopened in my inbox for days.
When I see I have, say, four unread broadcast emails from a blog I like, I will often only read the latest one. I miss all those that I couldn’t get to during the couple of days after they arrived.
I’m pressed for time. And so are my readers. And yours.
If you post too regularly, your subscribers won’t get around to reading every post you write.
As a result, you miss an opportunity to bond with them with each post they skip. And you miss an opportunity for them to spread the word about your work too.
Daily Posts Destroy Subscriber Counts
By sending out posts via email too often, you’ll force some of your subscribers to unsubscribe. This is particularly true for less-popular bloggers.
Most people have too much to read and will thank you for posting less often — especially if the quality of your blog posts improves as a result.
Some of my favorite bloggers post as infrequently as once every month to six weeks.
Every post they write is excellent, packed with powerful words and helpful writing advice that I can apply right away. I devour every article.
But I only read about one in ten of the posts from people who publish daily.
Scarcity breeds value. Abundance doesn’t.
Don’t Ask, “How Often Should I Blog?” Instead, Do This:
- Plan Your Posts… Wisely
- Life is short — Make It Count
- Hit Publish, then Promote, Promote, Promote
- Grow Your Online Business by Creating Valuable Assets
- Stroke Egos to Your Advantage
By now, you should agree that posting on your blog daily is neither wise nor productive. Yet when you start seeing the benefits of not posting every day, you need something new and constructive to fill the void.
Sure, you can still think about and work on posts every day. You’ll just be publishing less often and spending your remaining time with the following:
1. Plan Your Posts… Wisely
A remarkable post is almost always a well-planned post. Crafting excellent content starts before you sit down to write.
You have to come up with blog post ideas people will like, so do your homework.
Look at popular blogs in your niche. Which posts do well?
Look for similarities between successful posts.
Once you have an idea, craft an excellent headline — one that will get the click. No use spending days writing a post if readers will just glance at it, or ignore it and carry on with their busy lives.
You have to give them incentive to click through. Tell them why they need to read your post. Give them a compelling reason in the headline.
What problem do they have? What useful solution does your post offer them?
It’s wise to test your headline with a mentor. A wise guest blogging mentor —someone you might know very well 🙂 — refined and improved many of my headlines (including this one).
You only start writing after all this.
2. Life is short — Make It Count
Remember that scene in Walk the Line where Sam Phillips, the owner of a small recording studio and record label, gave a speech to Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two about the tired gospel-type song they were performing?
Sam stopped them from playing and asked if they had anything else, stating a song like that wouldn’t sell. Johnny didn’t like this, but Sam sketched the following scenario:
“You were hit by a truck and you were lying there in that gutter — dying — and you had time to sing one song. One song people would remember before you’re dirt. One song that would sum you up. You’re telling me that’s the song you’d sing? That same Jimmy Davis tune we hear on the radio all day… about your peace within, and how it’s real and how you’re gonna shout it? Or, would you sing something different? Something real. Something you felt. ‘Cause I’m telling you right now, that’s the kind of song people want to hear. That’s the kind of song that truly saves people. It ain’t got nothing to do with believing in God, mister Cash. It’s got to do with believing in yourself.”
Whenever you’re writing a blog post, ask yourself these same questions. If you had time for only one post, would your current idea be the kind people want to read, the kind that saves people?
If you post only once every two months, but the content is truly awesome, you will be much more successful than someone publishing crappy posts every day.
Make it excellent, interesting and worthwhile. Over deliver! Blow your readers away. That’s the only way to turn readers into raving fans.
3. Hit Publish, then Promote, Promote, Promote
Okay. So you wrote your article, and if it were the last one you ever wrote, you’d have no regrets.
You had it checked and edited, and it’s live.
Do you just move on and start a new post?
Now you have to promote the you-know-what out of it. And that could take as long as two weeks to do thoroughly.
Don’t know whom to tell?
Start networking with the five biggest bloggers in your niche or a related niche. Comment on their posts. Retweet their tweets. Purchase their products. Offer them your assistance.
Soon, some of them will notice you. They might even have a conversation with you on Twitter.
And then, when you tell them about a product of theirs that you reviewed, or a post that you’ve linked to, who knows? They might just promote your post for you.
They might even agree to do an interview with you.
I know this seems like hard work. I know it might take time. I know that it’s not a guaranteed payday.
But earning a solid income online is no get rich quick scheme. It’s called online business. It takes time and effort, but when it pays off, the rewards are awesome.
Nothing worth having comes easy, right?
4. Grow Your Online Business by Creating Valuable Assets
You shouldn’t post on your blog every day because you need to spend time creating assets to grow your business.
You should spend time conducting interviews with niche authorities. You should host webinars. You should create ebooks, all of which you can either sell or offer as free subscription incentives.
Your marketing efforts will pay off if you do. And a product that offers a clear solution to one of the pressing problems of your target market can make you good money for years to come.
Case Study: A Successful Post
Despite having built some successful blogs, a few years ago I found myself in the same boat as many beginners.
I had a brand-new blog, with less than ten posts up. It was in dire need of some attention, traffic, and subscribers.
So, I wrote a massive resource and had it published as a guest post on a popular website.
It took me three weeks to nail the title of the post. And about two weeks to write the post.
On the day I posted it, it didn’t get that many visitors. But the day after that… wow! The traffic soared.
According to Google Analytics, that single post brought me about 2,000 unique visitors over the ten days after I published it. It almost doubled my subscriber numbers too.
The overall traffic to my blog also leveled off at a significantly higher level than before this post.
People retweeted it 1,075 times and liked it 122 times. It received close to 100 comments.
Yes, I know. That’s not so great in comparison to an A-list blog, but for a new one? One with only 3 posts at that stage? And for a relatively unknown author?
I was blown away.
If I had forgotten about that post right after hitting publish, and posted a new article the next day, I wouldn’t have gotten as much traffic or social sharing.
Brian Clark, Darren Rowse, and Chris Garrett probably wouldn’t have retweeted it. Johnny B. Truant probably wouldn’t have linked to it from his Copyblogger Weekly Wrap.
I promoted it. I told people about it — people I know online and who I have earned the right to speak to. I didn’t spam anyone with it. I didn’t ask for retweets or links from anyone I didn’t know.
But I knew it was good and helpful and the result of years of consuming online resources. And therefore I didn’t hesitate to ask others to share it.
5. Stroke Egos to Your Advantage
I admit. The post I highlighted in the case study used a crafty tactic. It employed the ‘ego bait’ factor — one that has viral written all over it.
Many people who saw their products listed in my post wanted to show other people that their products made it onto the list. So they shared it on the social networks and linked to it from newsletters and blog posts.
Does that make the case study less applicable?
I don’t think so. In fact, a clever blogger thinks about these things.
He realizes that certain factors make a post more attractive to other people and increase the likelihood that people will share it. And then he goes and writes a post specifically with that in mind.
It’s just another part of the strategic promotion game.
And using ‘ego bait’ is just one such strategy.
Derek Halpern tells how he regularly emails other bloggers to inform them about his Social Triggers articles.
He would point them to an article on a topic their readers might find interesting. More often than not, these people link to it. He has grown his subscriber list to tens of thousands of fans using this strategy.
Jon Morrow used guest posting to get 1,200 subscribers in one day! And who knows how many more subscribed over the course of the following two weeks.
These things don’t happen because these guys are in the right place at the right time.
They study content marketing. They study copywriting. They spend many days thinking about their post ideas and coming up with good headlines. They spend weeks working on their posts, improving them with each iteration.
And then they spend countless hours promoting their posts after hitting publish.
Go Pro, Baby!
Do you want to start a blog and become a professional blogger?
Steven Pressfield says going pro is essential if we want to overcome self-sabotage. You need to let the world and yourself know that you’re serious, that you’re not in this merely for a couple of laughs.
You mean business. This is your life. And you have something meaningful to say.
A professional blogger doesn’t just write one boring post after another.
The pro has a vision. And he has a strategy to achieve his vision. He realizes that marketing is part of the game. He knows that a business needs promotional material, products, and sales letters.
He understands the problems of his target market. He knows how to communicate the benefits of the solution he offers.
He knows the difference between boring content, and the stuff that really matters.
A pro doesn’t just fall into a rut of daily posts hoping that someday soon his luck will change. A pro grabs his opportunity with both hands and does something amazing. Something worth talking about.
So, who do you want to be? For a smart blogger like you, the choice is obvious.
It’s time to start taking online business seriously.
It’s time to start writing posts that matter — posts that save people.
It’s time to start promoting your blog posts like your future depended on it.
Because it does.
234 thoughts on “Why Posting Every Day is a Silly Strategy (And What to Do Instead)”
Painfully true advice Dries.
Although I thoroughly enjoyed writing and posting to my blog everyday for 6 months, it would have been far more enjoyable had I not expected it to boost traffic to my blog.
Now I post once or twice a week and traffic is starting to pick up nicely and as you mentioned the quality of my writing is improving.
P.S. Love the JC analogy
Only the Best,
Ego Baiting… brilliant! One of those things that makes you say to yourself, “Why have I never thought of this before?!”
Shew this is such an interesting read… I love living and learning about blogging!!! After posting almost daily for years and always thinking my readers would fall away if I stopped!!! Well this year I have cut my “postage” back somewhat… A couple of times a week I leave a post up and my stats have literally flown on the non-posting days… and they go deeper looking for past posts to read… turns out to be a winning strategy!!!
Hm. I post everyday during the week. The topic of my blog is women’s empowerment so there is so many areas to cover. When I get a good idea (or a pitch) for a post, I have to let it out to make room for the next 20 that will come my way. I receive my traffic from searches, women who need help with the life transitions and relationship questions I explore. I haven’t broken into the social sharing circle yet. Nary a retweet for me. =)
In a way, I still blog because I love sharing wisdom with women. The more I explore different topics and women’s lifestyles, the more women find me through search and subscribe. If I posted once a week, it would take ages to attract visitors. Or maybe I’m just doing it all wrong.
I think everyone should post accordingly to their preferences and abilities. If writing and posting every day is something that comes naturally to you and it feels like you have enough worthwhile content to put out at that rate, I say do it. I also am in the relationship/self-help niche geared towards woman but I was thinking there’s no way I have enough juice in me to post on that frequently of a level. I wanted to post weekly. So I really think it’s up to you, especially since there’s so much contrasting opinions on the subject.
The timing of this post was perfect for me. I’m in the process of launching my new blog and was about to follow, “the post everyday” advice I got from a trainer. As a marketer, this makes a heck of a lot more sense. Gotta go. I need to market that post I just published. Thanks for the insight.
Three words said in the style of the comic shop guy from the Simpsons: best……post…..ever!
I’m not sure it’s because it gives me an excuse not to post but I agree with everything said here. When you think about it it is obvious, I don’t think I will bother publishing my freshly written post tonight after all.
great idea.. .i totally agree with posting weekly,
I’m glad you like it, Soubhik.
THANK you. I often wonder about bloggers who keep to a daily schedule who seem to have nothing to say that often. But I need to step it up to find something to share at least weekly. Time for more guest posters!
I thought you had to post everyday to attract traffic. Thank you for this post. Luv the post from this Blog. Keep up the good work.
Interesting article. I’ve been analyzing our traffic (days, hours, topics) to see what drives the most. That will give us an idea of how often to blog and when.
Glad you’re seeing some increase in traffic with your new strategy Les. And don’t we all love JC?
Great advice and very sensible. I, too, have stacked e-mails and delete the oldest or file them away.
2 times/month works for us pretty well. More often that that, and we’re not doing our jobs, not creating what our clients need and want.
Thanks for the post.
Nice article – thank you. I think my new posting strategy will focus around great movie scenes I can tie in to my niche!
Also related here, I think, is the length of blog posts … this post here must be 2,000 words long (I haven’t checked, but it feels weighty) and there’s a correlation between post length and the amount of times it gets read. You simply cannot post meaningful amounts of content on a daily basis, and your content has to be meaningful.
I agree. I’ve been doing some research reading articles like this, that promote publishing fewer times a week.
There’s just something I ask myself: could this be topic related?
Hopefully this advice will take some of the obligation out of blogging and bring back a little more creativity, freedom and enjoyment.
RG — If the pressure to write daily is less, you will most probably wirte more.
Jackie — As Les remarks, posting less often will often bring more trafiic. But don’t forget post promotion…
I started with a daily schedule really just to get some posts out there, but after a couple of months cut back to 3 times per week. This seems to work. The only problem is I can’t stop writing. With the current schedule I needn’t write another post for 14 months, but every day I get more ideas and just have to write them down.
Now I need to overcome my avoidance of the promoting bit of blogging!
I think that’s amazing. My problem is that I get into these hyperfocused zones of writing for hours but then it leaves my system. I want to get into the habit of writing every day even if I don’t post everyday. It takes me hours to edit my posts as it is. Good for you that you have an archive of content you can pull from!
The Johnny Cash quote made me think of another in the same vein. It’s from The Anatomy of Story by John Truby. His book is intended for fiction writers, not for copywriters and content producers, but I think his advice applies.
His simple advice (paraphrasing here) is to write a story that will change your life. What a tough standard!
But why bother to write anything less?
Thanks for your thoughtful post.
I was one of those bloggers who was told to post every day or at least three times per week. Ironically, I started a new blog a few months ago ‘thinking’ I could post every day. I have no idea what I was thinking. I’ve lost interest in the blog and may let it go. I have too many as it is! Live and learn.
BTW: I think the lesson for me is if I have an idea for a blog, I could find one I like and send the owner an email to see if they’d welcome a guest post.
Joseph — If you’re clever, you can use ego bait to gain serious amounts of traffic, new subscribers and sales.
I’ve done the whole “posting daily” routine. And I can tell you that I prefer longer, high quality posts than short posts delivered daily.
Longer, higher quality posts get shared more often, and people generally engage with them more. Period.
Anyway, great post and tips!
I’ll be sure to check out that other quote, thanks Jack.
I see the creative marketing juices is already starting to flow, Amandah. Good stuff!
Thanks David. And it’s a researched and proven marketing fact that longer posts are appreciated and shared more.
I learned that from the very wise Jon Morrow 🙂
Glad to ‘hear’ some proof that this strategy is working, Se7en. Thanks for taking the time to leave your thoughts…
You know, my goal a while back was to post everyday at my household budgeting site (http://www.household-budget-made-easy.com/). Boy did I become frazzled.
I have now moved to twice per week and making my posts better and using guest posts. Am also rejecting more of those because of the lack in quality.
So, this article is timely for me, reinforcing what VERY few are saying.
I have a lot of work to do to go back and make my posts worthy of being my last one. But you know? That is the quality I want to have that will set me apart.
I always struggled with the idea of posting every day. Trying to rack my brains for great content seemed too much like work and not enough like service.
On the other hand, I’m not entirely sure that Scott Stratten’s approach of blogging only when something is death-defyingly awesome will work either (unless you’re Scott and have a book deal, which I don’t).
I started my online marketing life by writing articles expressly for sites like ezinearticles, so I always wanted to write the good stuff, which for me takes time.
So for me, weekly seems about right in most instances. There are times when I’ll pack ’em in closer together – like when I’m doing a blog series – but on the whole, I’m a weekly gal, myself.
Which brings up the question: what’s your take on blog series and daily posts that are concentrated around a theme for a specific period of time? The do seem to boost traffic and comment counts. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts.
We advise clients to post weekly. We do it for their company blogs and for our own blog. Small businesses typically don’t have the resources for a dedicated social media staffer, so they rely on outside resources. When they try to save money and do it themselves, they often let blogs and social media feeds languish. It’s discouraging to set up a blog for a company, provide a couple of posts to get them started and then have them drop the ball when they realize how much work goes into it.
2 times per month is a good strategy. Someone very new to blogging (or taking the approach of really digging in — researching and investigating their topics, and positing the findings) might even post less frequently… And be very successful.
Great article Dries!
I have a brand new blog also with only a handful of posts and I find it impossible to post everyday. In fact, I find it hard to post even weekly.
Some other contributors to this frequent posting ideology comes from SEOs who say that google likes you to post at least every 5 days so they know it’s fresh (or maybe I’m behind the 8 ball on this?).
Now that I’m gearing up to send out my first email to my brand new listies (yep I call my list people ‘listies’) I’m feeling a tonne of pressure to email every week with a new post and to add to that I’m also struggling to decide whether I should go with the “newsletter” type email (my autopilot decision) or the single post and (very exciting!) .
In my 9-5’s I’ve always done the monthly e-newsletter which is a wrap-up of articles from the previous month or a bunch of new ones. However, after reading your post I’m thinking that’s probably not the best approach.
The original thinking was that you didn’t want to email too often and when you do it gives the reader some back up articles to read in case they don’t like one. Kinda backfires if they like a few of the articles as I doubt they would read all right?
Is that an old school tactic that should be turfed?
Te-erika — This post is not saying that daily posts are wrong… In fact, many very successful blogs post content daily.
But for someone starting out to post every single day, and get no results… That’s not clever. Their time will be spent much wiser on marketing and promotion in between posts.
Thanks Ricardo! And I whole-heartedly agree…
Great news Donna. Follow the marketing-focus route, and I’m sure you’ll see some serious results soon.
Good luck with that David. I’m sure if you follow some contrarian advice you’ll get the results you need.
This post is just what I’ve needed to hear right now! I’ve been struggling with the balance between creating new products and keeping up with fresh content. After reading this I feel like I can take some of the pressure off myself and focus more on other project & promotion.
“Which brings up the question: what’s your take on blog series and daily posts that are concentrated around a theme for a specific period of time? The do seem to boost traffic and comment counts. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts.”
If you use certain types of posts often, you will get a nice boost in traffic. I’m not a big fan of series of posts myself, but list posts are super-popular. Just ask any of the Copyblogger editors… 🙂
I think you could have some success with a series, even if it goes out daily, but the focus should always be on super-useful, the-opposite-of-boring, entertaining, and helpful information.
That makes a lot of sense Dawn. I’m hearing that most of you like weekly posts…
Seems to be working for Jon too 🙂
This is such great advice Dries! You are right on the money man and this advice is so incredibly timely for me!
I’m just about to release my blog next week and I’ve been sweating when am I going to find the time to write. I was contemplating blogging 2 or 3 times a week but now I’m going to bring it down to just 1 time a week and spend the rest of the time promoting my post.
Wow Tim… Those are three big words in a row.
And my philosophy is always to leave a post overnight once it is written and polished and final. The reason? I never post it the next day without changing something… And sometimes I’ll make a big change.
What a great article! Super informative!
I like listies! I’ll be using that in future if you don’t mind…
And that is also what should be your focus. Getting more listies! I’ve built sites in the past that attracts 30,000 search engine visitors from Google, every month, but convert very few of those into listies. So “SEO, take a back seat!”
It’s all about building up a list of people who love you, will read every word you write, and eventually buy every product you release.
Consider building an email autoresponder series that goes out to all new subscribers. This releases the pressure to email your listies every week. And by the way, you can email them once a month and they won’t love you less.
Glad to hear that Jillian. Go market and promote!
Here’s what I suggest: Only post something to your blog that is really helpful, truly worth telling other people about, and something that you’re VERY proud to add your name to.
Even if the posts only come once every six weeks… if they’re remarkable your blog will fly.
I have an 18-months old blog. Started posting 2 times a week, the past six months posting 3 times a week but less time promoting.
Traffic is slightly down compared to last year,but only slightly – and that’s with no promotion, almost none.
There was a time when I was considering posting daily, but before I even tried, I reached the same conclusions as you. I’ve been thinking of going back to 2 times a week,that would make sense.
And besides – when visitors come, they browse random posts. They come upon the not-so-great ones that I posted just to make my numbers. They decide the blog has some good stuff, but too “watered down” by not so good stuff. So they leave.
Every page is a landing page. Every post is a business card.
Hi Raya. What is your email list looking like? Is that growing despite traffic taking a bit of a dive?
Dries! Fancy meeting you here! 🙂 (I’ve never forgotten our skype chat ’round christmas time)
I absolutely love this post, much like Jon and everyone else. Way to practice what you preach 😀
I’ve always loved my ability to turn out gold quality materials at a rapid rate, and I don’t intend on changing that.
At the same time, your post makes a massively strong case for scarcity, and I agree.
What I’m taking from this, is that for hyper-producers like myself, don’t overwhelm my own blog + readers with the mass quality/volume, but instead post once a week (or whatever suits), and aim the rest of the content towards other people’s audiences.
I’m open to any other ideas 🙂
Jon, you know how to pick ’em, this really is an awesome guest post.
Boost Blog Traffic and ryze up!
Good to meet, Dries.
So blogging success when you’re a pro isn’t really about the writing. But of course it’s that too, when we ‘write posts that save people’. I think that’s a great thought for beyond today. Well put.
More than happy for you to use “listies”. It makes them feel more like my mates than numbers when I call them listies 🙂
Thanks for the tip!
I’ve been wanting to create an auto responder series but I’m just not sure yet what angle to take … I’ll have to hurry up and work it out.
wedding blogs get hundreds of thousands of readers a day and they post 1-15 times a day ie. Style me Pretty. If you are running your blog editorially like a magazine like we do, I think you do need to post every day.
I’ve had the same experience — sharing other’s stuff in a list gets the most traffic. Usually because each of those people also share the post.
Good luck with your new blog, Dries.
Dries and Jon this presents a different point of view with merit. The guest blogging part is still one I need to find a way to really do and my only solution seems to be to find the money to do Jon’s course. Now do I give up food or paying the mortgage? I have cut down the daily blogging and blog one or two times a week on different blogs – different topics but since I stopped blogging regularly my ranking has fallen on Alexa hugely – like over 1m. Maybe that really does not mean anything but….blogging every day is a challenge. May just recycle but then there might be a Panda problem. So much to think about
It’s all I can do to get one decent blog a week out the door. Even that’s not always achievable. Thank God for some sensible blogging advice–and, oh, thank you, too, Dries.
Fantastic post. Daily posting is only useful for content aggregators and news oriented sites.
In the category of Planning Your Posts, we’ve created an outline generation tool that helps you spill out your best ideas without your judgmental “left” brain getting in the way. If you know what you’re going to write…and you know it well in advance…it makes a difference. This same outline tool has been used to write best-selling books, plan new businesses and chart career moves. Just substitute anything you want in place of “blog outline” and go for it.
BTW…did I mention that the tool is free. Well, you have to opt-in to our list, but we are just as lazy about emailing as we are about blogging. 😉
Fantastic. Now I need to go see those 45 resources. I never really saw the wisdom of posting daily. When I first started, I was following one guy who posted daily and I read or watched a post that was about your desk space. It was so “unhelpful” that I stopped following him. I wonder if that was because he was trying to post daily. Good work.
Until now, I’d been kicking myself for only posting a new article every week or two. After reading your article, i’ve decided I can let go of the guilt and focus more on promotion. Thanks for the good advice.
Yes, we had a good chat 🙂
And don’t let my advice here deter you if you are getting good results using your own strategy.
You’re a big thinker! I can’t say that about too many people…
Writing well is at the very core of being successful online, Anthony. Good observation.
Elise — ask yourself what most of your ideal audience struggles with that you have found a solution to. I know that’s hard, but keep at it (and start searching for solutions if necessary).
Build an autoresponder around that topic, splitting your advice into about seven parts. Give your subscribers an awesome email, worth reading, about every third day.
That way you’re also training them to open email you send 🙂
I totally agree with you and my stats would agree with you aswell. Daily posting dilutes your message and I much prefer to post approx once a week, give my readers quality content and promote my latest post for the rest of the week.
You can still engage with your subscribers through tweeting and on your facebook fan page the rest of the week by asking them questions etc and retweeting their posts.
It also gives you time to read others blogs in your niche and get ideas for future posts of your own.
Great post Dries!
You make a good point!
Certain niches just need posts daily (or even multiple times a day). One friend wrote about iPhone and iPad apps — and he had to post about ten posts daily to compete…
So, if that’s the case for your niche, and you have a large enough audience, post away!
Thanks Tea! I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts.
Roberta — Are you focussing on building up a list of email subscribers? It is much more important to look at the growth of that list than to fret about some metric — like an Alexa ranking. But that’s just my oipinion 🙂
Produce great content and the rest will take care of itself.
You’re welcome Jim! And don’t be too hard on yourself if you skip a week 🙂
Thanks for sharing that Dave. I agree… A well-planned piece of content (in whatever form) has a much better chance at being a well-written and well-received piece of content.
Hehe! Amy… I hope that none of my posts is ever “unhelpful” enough to cause someone like you to unsubscribe!
Good luck working through those 45 kick-ass resources 🙂
Kerrin — PLEASE let go of that guilt.
I bet it’ll free you up to produce content three times better than when you are feeling guilty for not posting often enough.
Write with your reader in mind. Solve their problems for them. Bring them innovative solutions and ideas. Slow down and be really creative…
I wish I could say that I posted once a week 🙂 Ha!
You’re right — taking time to build relations on social media is very wise.
Great post! Two things that resonated with me the most are the need to promote, promote, promote – for a good 2 weeks.
All your strategies make perfect sense.
And second, the fantastic songwriting quote! I’m a songwriter, teacher, and beginning blogger and that is SO true! Whatever media we choose – the goal is the same. Change peoples’ lives. Blow them away. Be proud if that was the last thing you ever wrote.
Thanks for this.
“The only problem is I can’t stop writing.”
Wow. It’s not often that a writer has that particular problem 🙂
Maybe you should write an ebook (or build a course) about overcoming writer’s block?
Good luck with the promotion bit!
Hi Leanne. I’m glad I could encourage you to promote.
And I’m very glad that you liked the songwriting quote. It’s very dear to me…
I agree that if you start over-blogging you are going to burn yourself out and your going to overstimulate your readers. Plus how can you be passionate about every post every day?
I don’t know I’ve been just like Linda though. How do you stop when you start getting into a cycle of great ideas?
This definitely makes sense to me. I’ve started posting daily, and I have seen comments and page views fall!
Another question, though – lately, when I have a “big idea” I’ve been splitting it up into a “series” hoping that readers would read the first one and keep coming back. I’m guessing that this is also a bad idea? Or maybe an okay idea, as long as I continue to space out the posts in the series?
If you’re in a cycle of great ideas and it’s reaping great rewards, there’s no reason to stop. Just look at Chris Brogan go!
But if you’re starting out, struggling for traffic and new subscribers, maybe stop, reassess your strategy and realize that just writing, writing, and more writing might not be your solution.
I’m glad to hear that you’re also a member of “What exactly is procrastination?” club.
“Another question, though – lately, when I have a “big idea” I’ve been splitting it up into a “series” hoping that readers would read the first one and keep coming back. I’m guessing that this is also a bad idea? Or maybe an okay idea, as long as I continue to space out the posts in the series?”
This is not bad… Just remember that variety is the spice of life!
Mix it up. Do a list post, then a story, then say something completely unexpected. After that entertain and make people laugh. Than maybe do a series where you post daily for a couple of days, and then do a list post again. Add some anchor content in between. Spend time promoting… And start all over again.
Simple right? 🙂
Thanks Danasha! Glad you liked it…
My blog is young but growing. I find my posts improve with a once a week posting, which I am doing on Tuesday or Wednesday.
I notice that the viewership almost flatlines on the weekend so it is good to have that time to work on another idea. My posts are simple and direct. They tell a story. They are difficult to write but look like anyone could write them.
I think you have a pretty decent strategy there Jo Ann. And if your blog is growing, keep it up!
Posting everyday was a terrible strategy that I put on myself when I first started. And, as most say, you’ll run out of things to say — and that happened to me.
Also, it’s illogical to think that you can write an excellent, compelling, informative post in just one sitting and the expect to create another the next day. Not. Happening.
Meticulously writing and editing a post and only posting 2-3 times a week, if that, has drastically improved readership, engagement, and content value.
This is awesome!
You know, I just wrote a guest post on this same topic for another big blog, but it is not yet published there.
The basis for that post were my feelings after slowing down my publishing schedule to two post per every other week.
This gives me so many new options:
– I have more time to engage with my list
– I can do more research
– I can experiment more
– I can create case studies and interviews
– More time for create products
– More time for being creative – instead of just publishing a post after post
There are so many great reasons to slow down and thanks for pointing that out to us 🙂
Paul — You’re onto a good point.
Sometimes being prolifically creative is not a matter of writing a great post every day.
You need time for ideas to form. You need time to be inspired before doing inspirational work.
Since I’m a big Steven Pressfield fan, I believe you should do your Work every day. But that doesn’t mean you need to post something to your blog every day…
Great seeing you here…
If what I wrote here makes sense even to someone who produces as much quality and regular content as you… I’m relieved.
Sometimes slowing down gives you a huge boost in the type of productivity that really matters 🙂
Hopefully this post will create an “Ah-ha!” moment for some bloggers that feel the need to post daily about not really much at all. Daily posts really do water down your content. And how in the world do they find time for that if they are spending even half as much time on a post as I do? Thanks for all the insight!
now that you’ve let everyone off the hook… lol
This post was a nice read, many good points to reflect upon (like a touchstone)and to consider during the content creation process.
Here’s to bringing creativity back to blogging..
Great post. It should be notice that posting everyday will eventually end up killing you.
It is just hard thinking to deliver a valuable post everyday, through weeks, months and years. Eventually your quality will go down.
Here I was already practicing numbers 2 and 3, but thinking I was just a desperate perfectionist and pressuring myself for not pumping out this rapid-fire, gold-plated content to 5,000 daily readers, but shoot, now I know I’m right on track.
So a huge Thank You to you for the vote of support- and you don’t even know me!
My blog is funny, edgy, insightful, eccentric and not at all instructional (except for when I stumble on great truths because I am so, well, insightful), but this is universal advice, and I am all over your list. I am going to just eat up numbers 1, 3, and 5 that I didn’t know to do till today.
Especially number 5- that one is the cherry on top of numbers 1 through 4. Perfection.
Hey, Dries, you have just changed my life, man. Keep an eye out for The Shiny Butter Blog- she’s bustin’ out.
Here’s to fewer watered-down posts, Jenifer. Good to hear that you’re taking your time with yours.
Agreed Nando. I guess it is possible to deliver quality if you spend all day every day writing… But NKOTB bloggers need to think marketing and promotion as well. That list needs to grow…
Good to hear that my advice helped you Suz! And I’ll definitely be checking out The Shine Butter Blog… Looking for more funny in my life every day 🙂
Great blogpost. On my new blog started in December 2011 I use a frequency of once per fortnight.
More often I could not handle (there is more work to do then writing a blog)and I had the feeling that I would pester readers if I publish to often.
But the most important thing is: You should give people space to implement what you learn them. Otherwise the whole operation is futile.
But with some successfully blogging colleagues I did doubt my reasoning sometimes.
Thank you for the extra rational on this issue 🙂
Wow, you nailed this, Dries, and I plan to re-read, digest, and implement. I hope all the daily bloggers will get this message — it could change their life!
For the past few years I’ve been posting every day. My traffic has increased greatly. I’m curious what will happen if I spread my posts out by a couple days. I’m going to give it a shot and see if the engagement and traffic increases or decreases. Great article.
Glad you agree Koos. I think fortnightly is a good rhythm.
And don’t bother too much with the opinion of your peers… Just be you. And have fun along the way.
Thanks Elizabeth. I would feel honored of it helped some bloggers.
Let me know what the result of your experiment is, please Scott. I would love to know…
Just make contact through the form on my site.
“People retweeted it 1,075 times, liked it 122 times, and +1’ed it 38 times. And it got 56 comments.
Yes, I know. That’s not so great in comparison to an A-list blog, but for a new one? One with only 3 posts at that stage? And for a relatively unknown author?”
Man, seriously, don’t tell me this is your very first blog, because those numbers are insane for a complete newbie blog launch for someone with no network, no matter how great the headline sounds.
And what, it’s not great compared to an A-List blog??? Are you kidding??? That statement is even more insane. As if all A-List bloggers got those social share numbers. Those are dream numbers even for some of the biggest ones out there. Don’t discourage people…
Hehe! Did I let you off the hook there a bit Sean? Glad to hear it!
And yes… Won’t it be wonderful to see more creativity and thought going into blog posts.
Hi Connie. Thanks. I do really like those numbers no doubt…
But I’ve seen much bigger responses to blog posts. Most notably to those written on Copyblogger.com by the founder of this blog — Jon Morrow.
So, I guess I just wanted to put my numbers into perspective 🙂
Apologies if I discouraged you or anyone else.
I agree. Make a single post is not easy as it says. Thus make an update once a week is a smart move to give some refreshment to your mind and evade yourself from blank blog post syndrome.
Thanks for taking the heat off producing content off the assembly line. It is a do unto others as you would have done unto you and is totally logical. I would not want to read someone everyday, and the people I read usually only post every other week. Somehow you have to have time to live life before you write about it. I am going to work harder at the followup. It sounds solid to me.
Phew, now I don’t feel bad about posting several times a month. Or about some of my posts taking a few days to finish off. 🙂
Thanks for this, Dries!
I was one of those who fell for the ‘you must post every day’ gumpf when I started out and I quickly realised that I’d never be able to keep it up.
So I dropped it to 3 times a week, then two and now I post just once a week, sometimes less.
Because everyone was still telling Bloggers to post every day, I felt uneasy – that I was shooting myself in the foot by not posting every day.
Then, a couple of years ago, James Chartrand wrote a post on Men With Pens that had the same message but focused on the loss of quality if you tried to post too often. That rang a bell with me and finally put my mind at rest.
But I’d not thought about the bonding or social media aspects that you talked about here, so many thanks for opening my eyes still further 🙂
One of the purposes of my site is to wade through the overwhelming amount of information and share the best of the best. In order to do that I break down sub-topics and post a curated list of articles, etc. If I did that once a week it would be overwhelming. My email list only gets one email a week, though that pulls the RSS feed.
I’m not sure how else to do it but would greatly appreciate any suggestions – because I’m getting decent traffic and stats but not engagement.
I feel like the weight of the world has been lifted! I know now that I should blog smarter and not necessarily more often. Thanks for the freeing advice.
Great thought provoking article. I’ve always had 2 minds on blog posting 1.post often ie 3x/week or 2. Post less often ie 1x/week. Even though I’ve subscribed to the first for several years this article has got me thinking about reducing it to 1x/week but writing a longer article or perhaps combining 3 articles into 1.
Hmmm. My blogging niche is anime/manga reviews, with forays into commentaries on things going on in the industry (such as Japan considering changing their copyright laws in a way that would negatively impact manga writers). So, when I started, I did look at the most successful blogs in my niche. These guys get heavy traffic, lots of comments, and sometimes have multiple posts in a day, especially if it is a team blog. That is still true today.
I made it a goal to post every day and for a while, even staggered two posts a day until that became a bit much. That did improve my traffic somewhat, but it was the “niche within a niche” element that I could occasionally tap into that caused my traffic to spike. On those instances, I recognized that such posts should stay out longer than a single day, simply because they are going to generate a stir within the fandom. Since some folks don’t put direct links to a post, but to the general blog address, keeping said hot post “above the fold” made more sense.
I guess one of the other reasons I wanted to post daily was to clear out backlog of stuff I wanted to say something about. If I tried combining multiple anime or manga reviews in a single post, I figure there’d be folks going, “well, I don’t care about ‘X’ or ‘Y’ title in his post, but since he’s combining them in a single post, he can’t be saying much about any of them.”
I do think that if my blog were solely about me commenting on things, then yeah, once or twice a week would be all I posted. However, with reviews, I’m not sure how I could make that work so well.
This blog and post is awesome! Much appreciated. Thanks.
I’m a total blogging Newbie – with a mind for moulding – and an interest in the long haul.
Recently have been posting twice a week due to having lots of ideas and things to say/share, as well as experimenting with posting. I haven’t got started with self promotion just yet. But have recently found my blogging groove and have shook the newcomer’s nerves.
Despite a backlog of ideas and post drafts that could last months, I will now relax and work on posting one killer post every 1-2 weeks.
This is one blog subscription I will read!
PS: when I edit a published blog post & re-publish it – does it trigger a new post email to subscribers? I do this a bit and worry whether I’m annoying readers, if any, and potentially losing them. Thanks if you have time to reply.
There was mention of having your blog post “checked and edited.” This helps a lot. Many of my customers bring me blog posts, and they’re always so happy to see how much better than can be. Readers are glad too–they just don’t know it.
This was a seriously kickass post. I got so sick of hearing “post every day” because every time I tried to, it burnt me out. I wasn’t blogging because I wanted to, I was blogging to fulfill a quota that I thought was important. I had a hard time sticking to any kind of schedule because as soon as I couldn’t come up with anything to meet my next deadline, I felt like the digital walls were closing in.
Great post. I totally agree with this Dries. Liked everyone here, I used to post every single day on my blog. Hell, I even join 30 day blogging challenge just to get myself pump!
But just like what you and Jon said.. no one reads it when you’re just starting up. It’s so true that its hard for beginner bloggers admit it.
I clear up my calendar, deleted all my blog post schedule for the whole month. Changed my tactics to just posting twice a month and focus on connecting with other blogs first.
I’m with you Dries, time to go PRO… time to PLAN AHEAD and think long term and start writing kick ass post. 🙂
PS. Your “Morrow intro” rocks! I’m still practicing it.. 🙂
Thanks for lowering my guilt level now. I heard the “every day” rule and was attempting at least 3 times each week. However, I was so busy trying to produce blog content that I was running out of time to do what it took to up my own writing skills and to connect with readers and others online. After reading this I know that cutting back to twice each week will help me improve in so many areas. I will use the extra time to check out the websites of those who comment and create better relationships, I will finally have time to solicit guest posters on a regular basis, and I will have more time to work on my non-blog writing. It’s win-win all around.
Finally, a blogger who gets it!
I’m not a blogger but I am a subscriber whose time is valuable. I used to subscribe to about 30 blogs. Now I only subscribe to 5.
I was overwhelmed with daily blog posts. It got to a point where I was saying, “Oh please, not you again, just let me miss you already!” So I unsubscribed from all the others.
I hope that more bloggers will take your advice. Thanks!
Dries, thank the gods I don’t have to post everyday. Oh, I have to promote. It’s always something. Hey, great numbers on your “ego bait” post. Yes, same idea behind getting movie stars to attend the Academy Awards. They aren’t there for the dance numbers. 🙂
Fewer blog posts can definitely help you maintain a higher standard of overall quality. I would add that however frequently or infrequently you post, it’s important to make that routine as stable and predictable as possible so your readers will know when to anticipate the next tidbit of wisdom or fun or whatever.
Loved the post Dries!
You are absolutely right about not posting daily, and that is exactly what I do- and in-fact post just once a week!
It does make a lot of sense to share your content and spread the word about it, so that you get people coming to your blog, with more comments and lots of interaction.
However, i really do wonder why and how people put up posts every single day? Is it for getting more traffic (which I am sure couldn’t be the case), and even if they do, they hardly have any comments. And they don’t even get the time to spread around their content through the social media- so how do things work for them?
Yes, I feel their reasons for posting daily is related to ranking higher in the search engines, or because someone told them this was a way, or perhaps their friends are also doing the same things.
However, I am rather content and happy with the comments, interactions, discussions and shares I get at my weekly posts. Yes, if need be I may make it to twice a week, though the second post would be a lighter version – perhaps like a poll, or some videos etc.
Thanks for sharing 🙂
Geluk Dries-soos Casper sou gese het Ouma verstaan niks maar dis vir Ouma pragtig.
This is an amazing post. I have just recently started a new blog website, and I wonder if you are dealing with constantly changing news cycles if this formula would be a bit different or if one should just focus on one big major news story of the week and write about that.
Very insightful. Before i always thought as a blogger you need to post daily. After a while I notice its not possible to write good quality articles everyday. It takes time for research and setting it up.
I didn`t know you need to promote every article you put on your blog. I thought using onpage SEO the traffic would come automatically. I guess this is what i did wrong all the time. Thanks for sharing this Dries!
Thanks Dennis. Seems like this post took the heat off for a number of people…
Julia — Some wise mentors will tell you that if your post doesn’t take a couple of days, then you might be better off not posting it…
Pleasure Martin! By the way, James Chartrand is an excellent writing coach… Ask me, I’d know 🙂
Sandra — it sounds like you have a strategy that works…
Jon has a video in his course about how to make a blog post remarkable. That’ll help you get more engagement. Maybe he’ll also do a post about all that here soon?
I like the term “blank blog post syndrome” Okto.
Thanks for stopping by.
I’m glad you’re seeing the light.
For 2 bloggers who deliver excellent quality, but don’t post nearly every day, check out Derek Halpern and Glen Alsopp. And be inspired to produce higher quality posts… 🙂
Good luck with your new strategy Herman. I hope it pays off smartly for you!
Astronerdboy — Some niches (including the tech world) do expect to see frequent posts. And if you are in one of those niches you might want to post daily.
That does not mean that you shouldn’t spend quality time marketing and promoting your work…
“PS: when I edit a published blog post & re-publish it – does it trigger a new post email to subscribers? I do this a bit and worry whether I’m annoying readers, if any, and potentially losing them. Thanks if you have time to reply.”
Any quality blogging CMS should not send a new email to subscribers if you go back and edit your old posts. Are you using a self-hosted Wordpress install, with Feedburner as the feed and email subscription service provider?
If you ever need someone to check and edit your work, I suggest Shane Arthur: https://twitter.com/#!/shanearthur
He works closely with Jon these days, and he’s also the guy who edited this post for me after I wrote it. And he’s very good…
Glad you enjoyed the post, Elizabeth.
Take a couple of days to think about your next post. Really ask yourself what will be an awesome post for your ideal readers to read. And then start researching and writing it. You’ll be surprised at the difference that makes in the long haul.
Haha Valerie! So you saw the use of the Morrow opening there? Clever 🙂
And I like the way you are thinking about your strategy.
Pro’s don’t care whether other people say they should blog daily or not. But pro’s do write awesome articles and land guest posts on big blogs (even if they wait three or four months for their post to go live…) Maybe make that your strategy 🙂
Well done Dries. Your post is more than conversational. It’s superbly convincing. I simply couldn’t stop reading. Your arguments are spot-on and valid.
Tough question Adrian.
If I were you, I’d look at what the sites I compete with are doing.
Nicky — An article that gets my attention on the Google search results doesn’t nearly make as big an impact on me as one retweeted by one of my favorite bloggers with 100,000 Twitter followers.
See how post promotion can be very powerful?
Agreed, I posted daily in a blog challenge but now I only post once or twice a week, traffic has levelled out and my subscriber numbers are gradually growing. Thanks for the great post, I can stop feeling guilty now for not posting each day… 🙂
Thanks for the tip Dries.. I actually have few target blogs for my guest posts. (including this one)
Hmm.. I wonder why Jon didn’t use a nested comment section..
Got me fired up with this post.
I think it’s so important to be dynamic, consistent and produce content on a regular basis. We are naturally drawn to a ‘more is better’ way of thinking.
But I agree that you’re better off making fewer, higher quality posts and dedicating time to promotion.
Thanks for the compliments, Pieter! I guess you’re a fellow South African?
Yes I am South African. In fact, geographically quite close to you, or so I guess. I’m glad I discovered your link.
Jon’s right. Not only was this a well written post, but it was chockful of excellent, well-supported advice. Seriously great value, well done! Off to share…
On my personal blog, I try to keep the posts to about once a week. I do, however, warn readers on the “About Us” page that we post more frequently when there’s a lot of events going on.
It may have to do with the *types* of posts as well as the timing, but my event-related posts do net me more new subscribes. Even when done more than once a week.
My once-a-week, navel-gazing posts where I whine about stuff or post reader questions, get the most comments. (I actually have a “navel gazing” tag.)
A year ago I would have agreed with you, but I don’t think it’s accurate to say that daily posts are hurting a blog. I SWITCHED to daily posts, and my income has increased dramatically.
I don’t care that much about social proof. If I had to choose between social proof, traffic, and income. I’ll take income.
Everyone should test their market. For me, sending shorter, daily emails and then posting those as blog posts (the way Ben Settle teaches it at http://www.bensettle.com) has boosted my sales dramatically.
Of course, if you’re not selling anything and you really just want traffic and “social proof,” then go for it.
Also, you mentioned that people don’t want daily information. I disagree. A lot of markets are rabid for information. Talk radio shows air for 3 hours a day, 5 days a week, and people listen every day. If they only had a show for 30 minutes once a week, they wouldn’t have near the size of audience or income as doing it daily for several hours.
Just a few thoughts.
I have a mummy blog, which, lets face it, are usually much of a muchness. My favourite blogs in the same genre are written by people who clearly have fantastic writing ability, and are prepared to reveal enough about themselves and their activities to create a vivid mental picture. Then, as long as their posts make me chuckle, I will continue reading and enjoying them…but will unsubscribe the moment I realise they post daily!
I go against all blogging advice: I don’t have a carefully defined target audience; nor do I have a clear reason for writing (other than the fun of it and the satisfaction of having exercised my brain). But then I discovered the confidence boost you can get from high viewing figures…and I did briefly consider going down the big promotion route. However, unfortunately I don’t set enough time for my blog to even enter into conversations with other bloggers, and so my success early on has reached a plateau.
I was recently asked to write my first ever sponsored post; and that has really brought back the urge to boost my popularity. Previously I was unaware that a silly diary-type blog such as mine could earn money.
Thank you for this advice; I don’t think I have adequate subject matter to make my blog go viral, but it has helped me to see I can interest a few more people in my writing without having to change what it is I love writing about.
I really like this list.
My only bone of contention would be this. It’s one thing to create a blog or website where you’re helping people help themselves. Content about marketing yourself, building websites, and creating an income never get old, unless maybe Google changes their algorithm or Facebook changes its interface.
But what if you’re creating content based on news? What if you want to be the guy or girl who creates a blog based around celebrities or celebrity culture? Or music? Or television? Or books or the weather?
And let’s go deeper–what if you don’t even have your own site–you write for a site that pays you a certain amount of money per page view on your article.
In these kind of situations, I would think it would seriously be in someone’s best interest to write everyday. Certainly, you want to write GOOD CONTENT, but if you’re not keeping up on the latest TV episode, celebrity mishap, or weather pattern change–or more simply, aren’t publishing daily or every other day when you’re essentially paid a percentage per page view–then I don’t see how you’ll be successful and grow your brand.
Also, a lot of people come to a person’s page via an article that they find on Google or a specific link to an article on a social networking site. Not necessarily the home page. So I would think that the idea that if you wrote, say, 3 or 4 articles in one day, that it would then push your other great content into obscurity, isn’t completely true.
In fact, I would tend to think the opposite–the more content you create, the better chance you have to be found. Subscribed to? Well, I suppose that’s different and depends on the service you’re providing.
I am a new blogger. I agree with your post and enjoyed the discussions and comments that followed. I’ll be returning to this site more frequently.
Great post. I was severely struggling trying to post everyday because another writer said to do so. I had nothing to write about and just started posting pics and a sentence or two. Thanks for the advice!
Dries, thank you! When I started my blog, I kept a 3x/week schedule. After a few months I felt that was too much and cut back to twice a week. That’s about right for me.
Occasionally, though, I look at people like Darren Rowse and think I should post more often. Thanks for explaining so well why I shouldn’t!
I started off posting twice a week, and have gradually grown to 3 times a week. I was proud of myself for keeping a consistent schedule.
This post reminded me of an experience I had just this week. I decided to start a series and I was pleased with my topic. But the headline wasn’t coming together and something about the first post seemed very pedestrian. My advice seemed sensible, but lacked something.
The good news is another well-known blog had linked to me. I wasn’t expecting the link and was thrilled. The bad news is my mediocre series post went live the same day. I wish the traffic boost I got from that would have seen more exciting content. And had I published nothing that Monday, the visitors would have seen one of my pride-and-joys from Friday.
I explained to my husband that I wasn’t excited or proud of that particular post. I did chop off the headline about 2-3 days after it went live, but the result was only a marginal improvement.
My husband said, “Well when you’re posting 3 times a week, you will get into ruts.”
My reaction to my husband’s statement was justification. Of course some posts will be mediocre if I’m posting often, but posting often must count for something. I almost felt some satisfying sense of martyrdom. But justification and martyrdom never increased anyone’s bottom line.
I want to do at least one ebook and submit some guest posts too. But have been struggling to find the time. Maybe cutting back on my posting will help.
“A professional blogger doesn’t just write one boring post after another.” You should have posters made with this line on it. Unfortunately it is all too common an occurrence. Even when bloggers don’t post daily or too frequently, they still tend to post boring posts. One of the important things I learned was that a blog to simply educate readers is not that interesting. And yet, many many blogs are boring educational sites.
Thank you for this post Dries. Well said!
Writing every day? Hell yes, that’s discipline. Publishing every day? Not necessary.
Although there comes a point where a site can grow exponentially by not only publishing every day, but publishing many times in a single day. These sites have multiple authors and never lack for comments or social proof. These are the “big blogs” like Techcrunch, HuffPo and Boing Boing.
But… they didn’t start out that way. 🙂
Hello; I never heard that you should post every day. I read a lot of posts about writing good content, and I could never reconcile the idea of producing quality posts on a daily basis. But, your other advice about promotion was very helpful. I need to do more work in that area. thanks for a great post, Max
Thanks Suzanne. I like the poster idea… 🙂
Maybe I’ll put one up in my writing corner…
Hi Michael. Good point… Writing every day is a very clever strategy.
And I guess it keeps the Resistance at bay.
Joe — I like Ben Settle’s emails. I’m an Email Players subscriber…
But I think his very successful email marketing strategy and the blogging mainly for list and brand building strategy I discuss above are two different things. But I guess that’s also just an opinion 🙂
really sound advice, and something I need to do… Thanks for sharing!
Very happy I came across your article. I have been trying get this blogging right. I was under the impression that I have to blog everyday and so hardly blogged at all because I could not get a worthwhile post written in a day. My site has been somewhat dormant with some poor attempts. (not all of them). Will set a goal of once a week and make it good. Quality not quantity!
I too do not like getting too many emails/posts per day and do look forward to the ones that are less frequent.
Thanks so much, Sheryl
I had the temerity to suggest on a forum for women bloggers that posting daily (or even weekly) isn’t necessarily the best operating procedure. I knew it wouldn’t be a popular view, but many of the women on that forum are “mommy bloggers” whose main audience is their family and friends! They post cute pictures with captions, and I can’t quite figure out why they are trying to “get more traffic” when obviously most of their (daily) posts are only going to appeal to those close to them.
My homeschooling blog is just the opposite. I’ve gotten to where I don’t post more than twice a month because all the posts I write are meticulously researched, with links to appropriate resources. My blog is about informing people who are homeschooling, or who are thinking about homeschooling. So I am putting out detailed information about curriculum, or ideas about implementing resources, or important issues of the day affecting homeschoolers. Even when I publish a more personal post, like my most recent post, I spend hours not only writing it, but editing and refining it as well. The idea that you can put quality content on a blog every day, unless you have a team of bloggers writing, is ludicrous to me. And as you say, I’m not going to read every post from someone that posts that often.
Thanks for taking the time to get back to me. It’s appreciated.
I am with a free service: blogger.
I’ve enjoyed reading your comments and advice to others – very interesting and helpful.
Just realised I have been linking the wrong URL for my blog up until now. They’re very similar.
Not a good sign 🙂
If you have a second, I would love to hear your thoughts on any major wrong doings on my blog at first glance.
MOST HELPFUL POST I HAVE EVER EVER READ.
Thank you. Sorry for shouting but I am CRAZY ENTHUSIASTIC about this!
Thanks again and again and again.
Firstly I would like to take a fat chance and say you are a born South African? (that would be just plain freaking exciting! 🙂 )
Then I have to agree on posting less is more. I am a firm believer in quality over quantity and posting less often not only ups the quality but keeps you from posting everything that comes to mind as that could be dangerous without being fine-tuned first.
Great post Dries and I can see you learnt from the best! Thanks Jon; I’ll get into your class myself; sooner than you think 😉
I appreciate the points raised, and while I admit I don’t personally subscribe to the practice of posting daily, I disagree with the ‘one size fits all’ approach to blogging, or anything else in life for that matter.
You are right on point. I have always felt that receiving e-posts everyday is so overwhelming. I only post once or twice a week because I don’t want to bombard my readers.
I’ve also been following the post-every-day strategy, until I’ve recently accepted that it is overwhelming (for me, as well as for my readers) and eventually hard to keep up with.
I’ve also noticed that spending more time promoting my posts through social media, commenting on other sites etc instead of posting something new every day is much more efficient. Now that I read your article I have even more reasons to believe that this is THE way to go.
Thanks for this one, Dries 🙂
I’m relatively new to blogging and online business, so posting daily has never really been a possibility. There’s just too much stuff to learn, and like many others, still find myself challenged more by information overload, than by idea overload.
What I’ve gathered so far is that the “someone, somewhere” who told bloggers to post everyday was probably from an era when SEO alone had a good chance to get you on top of a Google keyword search. It hasn’t been that long historically speaking, but in terms of internet marketing, that was eons ago. Today content marketers are garnering their resources and honing their skills to challenge the status-quo in just about every field.
It’s exciting! I want to be a part of it… maybe a big part of it in my corner of the world. So my “get-feet-wet” blog features bi-monthly posts. It’s great to know I’m on the right track with quite a few of these tips. I’m jumping on the others yesterday. Thanks Dries. You’re already a superstar in my book. And thanks to you also Jon, for your commitment to excellence and substance. We’ve got some really savvy mentors.
of course you’re proud of those crazy numbers. But they are not realistic for the average new blog or representative of what most newbie bloggers see in the beginning.
It makes me wonder what your strategy was to get to those number. Guestposting? Networking? Maybe you should share that instead of just the numbers..
Hi, I am a very new newbie to the blogging world. Great advice and I truly want to take it on board, however, I feel torn between writing for a couple of link ups I link to and writing less frequently. I do link ups as a way of bringing viewers to my blog. I know you’ve stopped answering the comments, but I’d love to get a reply on this one. How do you manage writing less frequently and linking up?
I think in the case above it was simply the ego bait factor as explained in the post. I literally just made a few of the big online business bloggers aware that their products featured in the list, they tweeted and blogged about it, and the visitors came streaming in…
I also think that a post like 45 Kick-Ass Resources for Online Entrepreneurs is useful enough to the average readers for them to spread the word about it and make it go viral. That is why it was retweeted and shared to that extreme extent.
I hope all that makes sense… 🙂
Wow what an informative article… very much effort you have putted in it… thank you for Posting this article. 🙂
I personally agree that posting every day is too frequent. Posting daily does a few things that can hurt your blog. It creates a precedent for you and your readers (some will expect daily content and will stop checking if they don’t see it – not everyone uses feed readers or subscribes via email) and secondly it usually means that your content quality isn’t as good.
One caveat I think should be mentioned here though is that when a site is “younger” the frequency of posting is reflected in it’s Google results. Google wants content to index and they re-index you based on the frequency they find new content. I personally try to post something every 3-5 days and find that this allows me to write decent posts (although some are rushed just to get it done) and allows time for others to read/comment to my content.
Thank you for breaking down a lot of the stereotypical rules of blogging. I’ve always had a problem with the whole “Post Daily” rule but I have to admit that I never really knew why. You gave some solid reasons why it isn’t a good idea and they really made sense.
Hi, I am so glad to read this because I was told that more is more. What resulted was a lack of enthusiasm from me in writing. I don’t want that so I scaled back. These are all great tips. One question, if I have 2 blogs for 2 very different subjects, how do I avoid that over satiated feeling I may get from readers who I connect with on Facebook? It’s where I get most readership. But, I feel people get tired of seeing my updates with yet ANOTHER post. Should I just post once weekly for each blog? Thanks for your guidance.
i totally disagree with this!!
this strategy is more suited for a an established blogger like you. for a newbie like me http://www.tradingwala.com/, to get established i need to post at least 2 posts a day, do on page and off page SEO and get attention from the readers.
for a newbie, even if your content is best in the business, people will forget you if you don’t update daily. ask your self, will you visit a new blog which is updated once in a while. the answer is NO.
till you get established, you need to perform consistently hard to get noticed. moreover, it is going to help you in one way or other. more posts will be indexed quickly and will help readers to find you in seacrh engines.
I think it depends on your niche or target audience. I operate a hip hop website and I was taught that I need to post content on a daily basis to compete.
Recently I have shifted away from the promotion of music and embraced the extension of knowledge. I learned that the hip hop artists that I promoted did not promote themselves. A lot of wasted time.
Now I am motivated by bloggers outside my niche and the result is better posts.
Well I’m going to respectfully state that if an established blogger with a stellar reputation gives me advice, and it debunks older advice, the least I can do is read him properly to get his reasoning. I put it to the test on my own self, and it stands up to scrutiny. Post every single day and I tend to click you off mentally most days. I just simply cannot keep up.. unless your name is Seth Godin and your posts are so short that most of them take less than 30 seconds to read. People like Leo and Jon and Brian Clark… I pick apart everything they write with a fine-tooth comb. And a big part of the reason for that is that I don’t have to do it on a DAILY basis. Come on folks. This is only common sense.
footnote to my previous comment: If your reasoning is SEO and Google, Jon also addressed that in this post, and I alluded to it earlier in my first comment as well. Google keeps changing their algorithms, and frequent content doesn’t necessarily boost your ranking, particularly if your bounce rates and other things show that no one is really engaging with your million and one posts. Methinks I’ll follow what the most highly engaged bloggers advocate… exceptional quality that is well promoted gets you a thousand times better SEO than sucky stuff you put out there so often no one bothers with it.
did u post sparingly when you started your blog!!
or should i put it this way – did all the highly engaged bloggers started this way!!
the answer is NO!!
This makes absolutely PERFECT sense to me my man!
I remember self imposing a challenge that consisted on doing a video each day for seven straight days (I was terrified of being in front of the camera so it was valuable to me) and people were eager to see what was going on in the first days.
The last days I could tell the few ones still commenting were doing it more because they were my close friends.
But people were kind of ‘too busy’ to digest every single post and every single video and decided to start leaving really short comments or comments that I could tell they weren’t watching the videos at all.
So I can tell that daily posting is a big no-no from experience or maybe I am not likeable LOL
Awesome guest post my man, really liked it!
But Jon… How about us beginners?
Hmm… I’ll do this only when I become a bigshot like you… LOL…
Thanks for a all the cool stuff in your blog!
You make some great points! I recently wrote a post where I brought up the question of the ideal posting schedule. I’ve always believed that there is no one answer that fits every blog or every blogger.
There will be variance depending on the niche, on the blogger’s goals (ie: getting more comments, more page views, etc.) and so on. My niche is personal development and marketing so 3-5 posts per week is acceptable and works depending on my goals. But if I was running a blog about coupons and deals I would be expected to have at least 3-5 posts per day and probably more.
I’m looking forward to reading your post with the 45 resources!
Interesting post but it is WAY too long!
Even the page scroll gadget is like only 5mm.
To paraphrase yourself, if you were laying dying, hit by a truck, what would you have TIME to say.
So you’ve missed the biggest blogger trick ever here. Leaving me hungry and wanting t come back!
Concentrating on saying your best stuff, is certainly an idea. But sometimes people want/need the basics too.
If everyone only posted life saving tips, there’d be nobody left just talking about living inbetween emergencies.
Also maybe your blog doesn’t have a featured posts plug-in, or a top rated posts plug-in, but they exist and you can sculpt your content as the content warrants.
I’m all for people not posting drivel for the sake of frequency, but the pressure of “your best stuff only” may freeze many bloggers stone dead in to obscurity.
For instance, people who tweet seem to get away with inane banter 🙂
Wow! Thank you so much! I’m a newbie myself and struggling to get readers.. I’ always thought that you had to post daily to get good traffic. Now I know what to do.. Thanks.
Thanks for taking the time to get back to me. It’s appreciated.
Love this post. My only gripe about it is that it wasn’t around a couple of years ago when I was burning the midnight oil routinely trying to frantically scrap together a blog post every day!
Great blog post, very insightful – I’m going to put these ideas into practice, look forward to reading Headline-Hacks!
Great post. I just completed a blogging course and the advise was to blog 5-7 times a week.
Mmmm… I take a whole day to do a blog post & don’t have time to do anything else at that rate. I believe its worth trying your ideas.
This is counter productive in my niche. I am in the technology niche. News, reviews and more news happen on an hourly biases.My readers will come to my site in order see the latest in tech.
Will they want to stick around if all I do is post just a few times a week?
I strongly agree with this post. A lot of people assume that by posting everyday, you are getting productive. Yes you might think that you are productive but this is not going to do any good. Instead, it will affect the quality of your content since you are trying to quickly create post and move to another creation of a post.
Once again,thanks for sharing this article which most of the bloggers don’t believe this.
This is clearly one of the biggest misinformation making the rounds in the blogosphere.
You do not need to post daily to have a successful blog.
In my experience as I made clear in my post here: http://www.probloggertips.com/blog-post-daily , your time is better spent on marketing related activities.
Instead of publishing daily on your blog, write guest posts that are part of a strategic plan of attracting visitors for your blog. I have found a ratio 3 guest posts for every own blog post balanced.
If you can do more guest posts than that, that’s even better.
Writing posts daily in a blog as empty as a ghost town is not just pathetic, it is also thoughtless.
Oh very nice, I came here with the reference of monetize blogging… Its veryhelpful article for me….Because Everyone said that daily updation is very necesaary for the blog… But many times I realised that I am getting same traffic (when I post daily and when I post weekly). Today with your articles reading I am happy and feels realaxed. Now, I will not take stress of daily posting…
Exactly what I needed to hear, thank you so much for keeping it real.
I agree with you but in my case i like to post one time per month but in last months i was so busy with my holiday 🙂
So again i agree, do a quality post instead posting every day like an ezine article.
Keep it up
Weekly posting is really a good idea. Yes, everyday posting strategy takes all the fun out of blogging and wonderfully said, “Scarcity breeds value. Abundance doesn’t”. This is really wonderful and informative post, with a lot of good things to know. I really appreciate it, thanks a lot Dries 🙂
Hey there, I’ve just taken my posts from 3 x a week to 4, and found this piece by researching whether I should be upping that to 5 – 7 x a week.
You have just saved me from myself, and my idea of how I should be working!
This is the best article I have read on blogging in a LONG time, so much so that I’m printing it out to read again and again!
I post my best piece a week every Sunday, then bang out my second best piece 24 hours later. Crazy! I’m going to shake my editorial calender up now and spend a few days promoting the best one before posting my number 2.
Janie (your newest fan, follower and probable life-time stalker 🙂
Millionaire author John Locke famously publishes about once a month and still manages to drive massive traffic to his Kindle titles (Donovan Creed)
True, “quality always wins over quantity”.. thanks for useful tips.
Gret stuff! It makes sense to me, both as a new blogger, and a reader. I don’t have time to read all the blogs I am interested in as it is, much less if they published daily. Thanks!
An excellent post.. It takes time, planning and effort to create a great post like this and even the fact that you pondered over the title instead of just publishing the article shows you got mad skills!
I do not think this is taboo or sneaky how you got the list out there. The only way I think new blogs can get known in the world is to post and share and contact other bloggers.
Unless you have lots of money. You could probably pay traffic.
Well done on another thoughtful and information packed post,
All the best,
thanks for this good idea…i like it…. Hit Publish, then Promote, Promote, Promote… thanks again…
Hi there. Nice post but I totally disagree!!! I LOVE posting daily – it’s my favourite part of the day doing my blog post so that will never change as long as I have the time to do it.
Incidentally I have the longest running one man travel guide to all 7 continents on the internet that is updated daily…
Thanks for the tips, but I love my daily posts 😉
I read this article a few months back, and so glad I re-read it today. This has really helped me get re-focused as I’ve recently become so overwhelmed with a new blog and everything that comes with it.
I am going to shoot for 3-4 high quality posts per month and use my “free” time to promote and work on products and services to sell.
Thank you for this great article.
More work on the front end to make the posts great + more work on the back end to promote them = more results with less overall effort. This is very helpful info for a newbie. Thanks!
I am sorry, that’s your opinion, if it works for you stick with it.. I love posting everyday, if my subscribers don’t like it, they are free to hit the “unubscribe” button. Its a free world and I really don’t live by the rules of anybody. I do what works not following one ridiculous rant from anyone.
I’ve just started beauty blogging and thought it would be necessary for me to post everyday. But I’ve quickly learned that there is already an awful lot of noise in the beauty blog-o-sphere and posting daily is probably not going to increase readers. It’s more about topical, relevant, well presented content and then promote, promote, promote! Otherwise your changing posts just get lost in the daily very busy buzz.
Thanks not only for the permission to do this, but the instruction to do so!
Thank you for this very helpful and thought-provoking post 🙂 As a total newbie blogger, I found it very informative. Thanks again!
The first blog that comes to my mind which best debunks this article is the Huffington Post. HuffPo is first and foremost a blog. It’s a blog about “news” where news covers many different topics. It posts new articles everyday, it’s so popular that it has no shortage of guest bloggers and was purchased by AOL for 315 million dollars.
What we have to keep in mind is that blogs fill different niches; some specialize in travel, others is sports, while others specialize in providing tips to increase blog traffic.
Depending on your audience and niche, it may not be wise to post more than a few days per week (or even once or twice a month) but when you’re posting about news – which is what the Huffington Post does – it would be a mistake to not post daily.
For every new blogger who is going from one blog post to another trying to figure out the best strategy for posting, I think what you said is really very helpful.
I somewhat disagree. I do post daily since my site is somewhat a personal journal for my travels and business activities. It’s true that there are days where the content is less interesting, but I also feels it adds a bit of reality.
Reality doesn’t always translate into authority, but coming from a broadcasting business background, I feel that authenticity – even if it is hum drum at times – can be great. Different people connect with you, including on little things.
Some readers have said my site has a “James Bond vibe” as it discusses perpetual travel, second passports, etc., and you could argue James Bond wouldn’t write a daily blog post. He’d make anyone who cared wait around until he was done throwing some guy in a lake and making love to a Bosnian woman. But if I can make a list of four or five great ideas over a week, write about them on Sunday when they’re still fresh and topical, and deliver them one at a time, what’s wrong with that? If readers have a problem, that’s their problem… no? I didn’t necessarily have to peck away at a keyboard every day at lunch… I could have, but not necessarily.
Besides, if you’re selling people something, you’re their representative, and they want field reports. It’s not about you, it’s about them. I get the “leave them wanting more” concept, but THEY are the ones who want to feel like Jason Bourne in this case. Give them what they want.
Ding, Ding! Wake-up call for me!
Being the newbie, inexperienced, not-very-knowledgeable blogger that I am, I always thought that posting as many times per day as possible was best. Wow, that was dumb.
I realize that none of my posts on my blog, so far, are even close to the quality that should be maintained on my blog. Thank you, Dries! You’ve just got yourself a brand-new subscriber over at Productive Entrepreneurs. I’m gonna be devouring your content pretty soon, and implementing the practices you mentioned.
I absolutely agree, that posting every single day will only do harm to your blog. It’s not like you must post every day to appear more popular, intelligent or something. Even one post every week can make you look like a God of Blogging. Quantity doesn’t always win the battle, but quality is something very different. It is a great article for those who wish to improve their blog, to reach heights of blogging that will make one a real blogger, not just some amateur=)
Thank you for these insights, I am only new to blogging and they make a great deal of sense.
Great points and suggestions!
Wow, what an eye opener. I recently launched my newest blog and was very happy with myself when I was able to post daily. Your take makes total sense. I’m changing my strategy. Thank you so much for the wake up call!
Don’t blog every day – check.
Write as if I’m saving lives – check.
Promote the daylights out of it – check.
Ask the heavy hitters to share it – scary, but check.
Dries – this was jam packed with everything I needed to hear today. I recently sucked up my fear and announced I quit my online coaching business (wrong business for me, thank God I figured it out) so I can write books and take pictures of flowers and butterflies. My post, which I stuck up on my wordpress.com site, has had more views, shares, retweets, google+ comments than any post I’ve had. I’ve decided to post twice a month. Maybe, after reading this only once a month.
Great post, but, a very big but ..this appleis to blogs with an established reader base already, take tthis post out of that context the post is detrimental advice to new bloggers who are starting from scratch and still have to come out of the so called Google sandbox. – Content Marketer and Professor Bill Belew shares good points and case studies on how new bloggers acheive success by posting multiple times every day for 4 – 6 months – please google bill Belew search engine journal or you can google his website.. context context context, and content content content
I’m just starting out on the blogging scene, but I have an equally valid view. Short, snappy and timely microblogging can also work too. In a world that is moving increasingly quickly, why not post 5 micro articles a day?
You have written a great Post for Newbie And Old bloggers. It’s another motivational post , because this post is motivating me to write daily on my blog.
Your Blog is really awesome mostly all articles are unique and helpful, Now i’m going to write one by one just like a Book.
I know this is an old post already, but look at how much traffic you still get in here, Dries. Even after two years of writing this, comments still keep pouring in. Thanks so much for writing this article and for enlightening me about this topic. I don’t post every day, but I’ve been meaning to do it in the future. Now I know it isn’t a good idea.
And that part on Walk the Line? You totally got me there. From now on, I’ll totally write as if it’s my last. 🙂
Sometimes I have to post a blog at least once a day because of the press releases that I have to make for brands. If only I can post once or twice a week instead that would make my life easier!
Excellent post, Dries. I followed the link to your blog and tried to subscribe, but I received a message saying your list is not active. May want to check it out, cause I for one would like to read more posts like this in the future.
Hello Dries, Congratulations on a great post. Your post is music to my ears, especially because I have thought of writing every day and never done it on an ongoing basis. There have been times when I planned sprints, 10 day sprints or 30 day sprints, where the goal was to publish one post a day. But it is exhausting, to say the least!
I agree that your posts don’t get as much traction if you have something different at the top everyday, but there is definitely a surge in traffic. And once you have people through the door, they Will look at older posts. No?
There are some success stories, such as Jeff Bullas (if I am not wrong), where bloggers started posting everyday and gained a lot of attention and became pros.
Personally, I think it really depends on the topic. Someone writing about current affairs or fashion or gossip cannot afford to let some titbit go. Another example is of course blogs where there are more than one contributor.
There will always be differing opinions, but I learned a lot from your post, and your points are well made. Thanks!
I am a blogger but i really learn a lot from this post. Before I thought of posting as many as I could but because of your post it change my point of view in blogging.
I trully glad that I found your post and it amazed me.
Thanks a lot for this great information! I´m a beginner in all this blogging thing. I started my blog 3 weeks ago and I was already feeling that One Post per day was being WAY too much spam for followers, a lot of pressure for me to have everyday something to say and something ready to share, less networking time, less quality in the content of the posts and above all it was truly affecting my personal life. This morning before reading you, I was ready to write my last post and quit…..
This experience made me learn and truly believe that the quality of your post content will eventually bring better results than a huge amount of spam messages everyday in your follower´s newsletter. I ´m considering to reduce my posts to just a few consistent writings per week, and to use the rest of the time for planning, connecting and having a life beside the blog.
Thank you very much!
I thank you for this post. Just cleared my doubts. I’ve got friends who post everyday and I thought probably I was working hard enough. But reading you post made me realize I am on the right track. I make it a must to sit for hours putting my thoughts on paper. I love giving my readers quality not quantity. Thanks again for a great post.
I totally agree with your point…Daily post can’t increase serp, the quality post increase the SERP…I think bloggers have to create quality content with proper keyword density and also try to focus on quality link building. You might get the engage readers from daily posting but wouldn’t get the good ranking in search engine…many blogger nowadays creates lengthy post rather than posting small post daily…The author of this post is absolutely right.
i really confused about “post a new article daily”, but after read your article i understand if we required good comment and Valuable subscribe, we must w
I agree with you that we should not write post everyday. However, we should blog regularly!
Thank you! I’ve just started my blog a week ago, and have been somehow convinced that I need to post everyday (in the beginning), and I’m exhausted!!!! Great post!
I’m not sure if this question was covered in the vast array of comments above, but what if you have a WordPress site, for instance, and your layout is rather good and many posts are shown on the home page, as well as in the counter that flows from right to left across the site? Every time you post on this site, nothing is replaced, it’s just thrown in. The site is fairly organized and easy to navigate?
I guess my main question is this. If you don’t run the risk of knocking another post out of view, is it really that bad to post one per day or even more?
Great post by the way, I’m just wondering if it would be best aimed at those with traditionally laid out blogs (one blog on top of another)
Technically our site is a blog site, but it’s laid out much differently.
Thanks in advance,
Wow, this was helpful! I was stressing out over doing daily posts for my blog. I lost sleep over the blog. I should just step back and relax a little and go to weekly or monthly blogs instead. Focusing more on quality than quantity!
This has been a great read. I’ve been wrestling with daily posts. Weekly posts make more sense and your reminder of the leg work involved to market and promote the snot out of your blog allows for energy to invested wisely. Look forward to more optimistic and informative topics from you.
I am glad you enjoyed the post, Robert! And yes, it’s essential to promote your work. Jon advocates a two-posts-per-month approach now, especially for a fairly new blog.