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9-Day Science Blog Challenge, Day 3

Content Strategy, Part 1 of 4

Today let’s begin creating a formal content strategy for your blog. This challenge could really be broken out into a dozen or more individual challenges! I will give you an overview of some of the many things that can inform your content strategy. Then I’ll suggest one exercise for today. Eventually, you may want to consider working on all of it.

What is content strategy? It is the planning, development, and management of your content. Content is the text, photos, videos, graphics, etc. that you create or share on your blog. The way you select, create, and present this content can be seat-of-your-pants, carefully-planned, or somewhere in between.

Here are some considerations and activities that you can tackle as the first steps:

  • Do you love the name of your blog? Does it capture the essence of your elevator pitch from Day 1? If not, is it time to rename it? Renaming and rebranding your blog can be very time-consuming for you, and confusing for your readers, so you’ll want to be certain you are adding significant value to your brand.
  • Set measurable goals. Create some goals for your blog, social media profiles, email list, etc. Make sure they are goals that have an end-point date and are measurable. Some ideas can be found at https://pushingsocial.com/3-goals-that-every-a-list-blogge…/
  • Analyze the top blogs in your niche. These might be blogs you consider as competitors, mentors, and/or colleagues. make note of their blog name, the editorial tone-of-voice in the writing, their selection of images and videos, and the structure of the website. Borrow ideas from what is working elsewhere, and resolve to avoid the boo-boos.
  • Make a style guide. This is today’s exercise.

Exercise 3: “Make a Style Guide”

A style guide is a formal written document that defines the style and direction for a brand. In this case, you’re going to set some guidelines for the content on your blog. Your style guide might include these categories and more:

  • elevator pitch (Day 1)
  • audience (Day 2)
  • grammar and spelling notes
  • tone of voice (what kind of personality shines through?)
  • citation formatting
  • color palette
  • fonts and text formatting
  • image guidelines

This should be a living document that grows and adapts as your blog grows. And you might decide to revisit it repeatedly as you work through this blog challenge day-by-day.

You may the only one using this guide for your blog! that’s okay, because it really helps you maintain consistent, quality content.

A great guide can be found at: https://blog.bufferapp.com/how-to-create-a-content-style-gu…

By Dawn Pedersen

Science advocate, web designer, educator, artist, and mommy.

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