Are You Using a Blog Post Checklist?

blog post checklist.jpg

Last week I wrote a post called "Why You Need A Blog Post Planner". Today I'm going to tell you about the second tool you need for publishing a blog post, it's the 'blog post checklist'.  As I mentioned in the other post, a planner is your tool for planning your post, but the checklist is used to make sure you included everything in your post prior to publishing. It also helps to ensure you complete all the tasks you need to complete as you publish your post. The checklist helps you to remember all the things like, adding meta tags or descriptions to photos, publishing to social media, resizing photos for quicker load times, etc.

Both the planner and the checklist are tools you can use in your blog planning. Watch for our planning tool called 'Write a Yearly Plan' to be released soon which can help you in planning all areas of your life including your blogging ministry or business. 

Watch the video for more information on blog post checklists. Fill out the form below to join the list and download the checklist.

If you missed the post on the blog post planner go here: 'Why You Need a Blog Post Planner'


When you submit the form below, you will receive a password to access our member area where you will find the blog post checklist and other helpful resources. 

Why You Need a Blog Post Planner

Why You Need a Blog Post Planner

If you have not been using a blog post planner, boy are you missing out.

But a blog post planner is only a part of a larger system. With just the planner the same thing happens. You sit at your desk, you take out your blog post planner, you begin to plan a blog post aaannd…nothing. You are blank. So, I want to show you how I use a blog post planner.

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Why We Moved from Wordpress to Squarespace

NOTE:  I am not being paid by Squarespace or Wordpress for this post. 

Moving to Squarespace

(UPDATE March 2018: As I expected when I wrote this post, I received some nasty emails from Wordpress diehards. Seriously people? I clearly state in this blog post that Wordpress is a good platform, I clearly state that it is the RIGHT choice for some people, just not for me and maybe not for others. Why people have a need to verbally thrash someone who has a difference of opinion I will never understand. What works for one person does not necessarily work for another...and that's ok folks! Hey, if you love Wordpress, you can still come over for tea.)

There have been lots of exciting things going on behind the scenes here at Faithful Bloggers. We've been planning and prepping but in addition to all that, we've been super busy with moving. By moving, I don't mean an actual physical move, I'm talking about a move from one web platform to another. We moved from Wordpress to Squarespace. I have moved (physically) a great big number of times and although a physical move has it's challenges, a web platform move has it's own unique set of challenges, none of which are any fun at all.  As you all have read, Faithful Bloggers changed ownership. At the time of purchase, Faithful Bloggers, Faithful Devotions, and The Faithful Bloggers Directory were all on Wordpress. I wanted to make that work, really I did. But I just couldn't. I know I'm probably about to get a bunch of you upset with me, but before all you Wordpress diehards get all hot under the collar, hear me out and read this entire post, because I really do believe Wordpress has a place, just not for me. And I think it may possibly not be the best choice for many other people, depending upon what they are looking for. You also should know, this was not my first experience with Wordpress, I've been there before. 

I know there are about a bazillion websites on Wordpress, I know it's a great platform, but it is not the only platform, and it's not the platform for me. I believe it really depends on what you are looking for whether Wordpress is the place for you to call home. Below is a run down of the pros and cons of the two platforms, so if you are just starting out, you'll be able to make an informed decision. And if you are dealing with any frustrations with either platform, you'll have an idea of what the other offers. Please note: Any time I mention Wordpress, I'm talking about a self hosted wordpress site. 

So why did I move?

Basically it boils down to the fact that I want to write, blog, and create great products, not work on a website. Squarespace allows me the luxury of doing just that. Let me explain further. Here's a few of the reasons I moved:

  • Squarespace has an incredibly clean, clutter free interface. It's also easy to use. Like any sort of software it does have a learning curve, but it's click and drag format is generally user friendly. Also, if you are just starting out, you should know that there will be a learning curve on either platform, but I feel it's fair say, you will have a longer learning curve on Wordpress. 

  • Live Chat!  I love this about Squarespace. When I have questions, I can just hop on live chat and get assistance immediately. Granted, their live chat is only available during daytime hours (eastern time zone), so you 3:00a.m. bloggers may not find this a benefit (unless of course you're a 3:00 a.m. blogger around the world from the eastern time zone). 
  • Domain, Design, and Hosting all in one location. I cannot say the transfer of the domains to Squarespace or the transfer of the entire site to Squarespace was the easiest thing I have ever undertaken (it isn't even in the top 10 easiest things). In all honesty, I didn't have to move the domains to Squarespace, that was a choice I made to have everything in one place, taken care of by one group of people. I know, Wordpress is free, but hosting is not and I'm paying similiar for Squarespace as I was for self hosting with Wordpress. The other thing that is not free (if you are considering Wordpress) is if you need someone to fix code or anything else for you. With Squarespace you are a paying customer, so unless you've monkeyed with the code on your site, they are there for you. If your Wordpress experience has been to email on a regular basis with your hosting company to get things fixed, you'll probably love Squarespace. I tried to recall if there had ever been a time when I had to email Squarespace, and although I can't say for sure, I don't remember any. I have used their live chat a few times. 
  • I HATE CODE.  I mean, I REALLY hate it!  Some people love it, some people tolerate it, some people hate it, I'm definitely in the third group. I have no business playing around with the inner workings of my website, nor do I want to. With Squarespace I don't have to deal with code. There are times I may have to copy and paste a portion of generated code into a code block but other than that, no code. This does not mean that those people who love code, can't access coding on Squarespace. If you are of the "I Love Code" camp, you can code to your hearts content on Squarespace. Here however is where I think Wordpress has a place. If you are the type of person who absolutely has to have the ability to manage every detail of your website, and you love that stuff, Wordpress will probably feel like home. But if what you are looking to do is write and blog and not have to deal with code hardly at all, you might want to consider Squarespace. 
  •  No 3rd Party Plug-Ins. There are about 5 million plug-ins (I might be exaggerating just a little) available on Wordpress. They are used to get your site to do just about anything you can imagine, there are probably plug-ins to get your site to do your laundry for you. Having so many options has it's positives and negatives. On the one hand, you have options. Options are good. Except at times, I found the options overwhelming. On the other hand, Wordpress is an open platform and anyone can author a plugin and make it available on Wordpress, this too is good and bad. Once your Wordpress site is up, you are going to load lots of plugins on your website, because you need them to do things like add forms to your site and numerous other tasks. These plugins are all authored by different people and they all need to be updated. If you overlook updating them, this is where issues occur. This is the open door hackers use to hack Wordpress sites. When I purchased Faithful Bloggers, it had been hacked and neither myself nor the prior owner, Tishia, were even aware of the hack till I started poking around in it. 
  • To some people, these next two things might seem nitpicky, but I'm creative and very visual so these were big for me. There were a few things design-wise in Wordpress that drove me batty. The first is the themes. Even though there are thousands of them, you read the description and it says "custom color", but then you load the theme and begin the preview and by "custom", they meant you can choose from, blue, red, pink or green (or some other limited selection depending upon the theme), that's not "custom". Granted, there are some which offer true "custom color" but why on earth do I have to go through the process of loading them and begin the preview process in order to know that for sure. The other design thing that drove me nuts is when I was choosing a font in the theme, which you can't do in all themes, the drop down menu just had the names of the fonts, all written in the same font, not in their own font. So I had to actually try the font in order to see what it looked like. I know there are premium themes which you can buy on Wordpress and they probably offer more flexibility, but it seems to me that out of thousands of choices, there should be a couple that don't drive me nuts. Wordpress does offer tremendous flexibility, if you know code or are willing to pay someone to make the changes you are wanting. Squarespace uses templates as well, and there are many less templates to choose from, however, I have found they are much more customizable for someone who doesn't want to deal with code. The font on any part of my website can be any font I want it to be and the color is truly customizable. I need to have the capabilities to do these things myself, to do them quickly and efficiently, and without having to play with code, Squarespace offers me that.
  • It's Just Easier. Less monkeying around with back end stuff frees up more time for writing and blogging.  As I said before, I'm looking to write and blog, not play with my website. When you write a post on Squarespace and you need to insert anything, a form, code, a calendar, a map or a whole slew of other options, all you do is click to add it right there in the text. You don't have to go to a plugin to get your form. See this videofor more details.
  • I have another site on Squarespace which I have had with them for 7 Years. In that time, I have never had my site go down, and I've never had an issue with messed up code. It's also never been hacked. I know there are first times for everything and I may just have been fortunate but it's a pretty good track record.

A couple other things you might want to know about Squarespace.

  • Your website doesn't have to be a blog. This wasn't important for me for the Faithful Bloggers website but it is for the other business my family owns, and it might be for one of my readers so I'm including it. On Squarespace your website can just be a website. Our family business website does include a blog but it has a non blog front page as well as many other pages. If you'd like to check it out visit  You may notice it has a similar layout to the new Faithful Bloggers site, you should know this was intentional, not required, there are plenty of other templates. I used the same template for simplicity for myself. I felt that because the sites were so unrelated industry-wise, no one was going to say "boy your site has a similar layout to the Faithful Bloggers site", (except, all of you now). I also could have made that same template look very different. One other thing you may find useful to know is that on Squarespace you can have more than one blog on your website. If you want to see why anyone would want or need that, take a look at this very website. The main Faithful Bloggers website is set up as a blog, but if you click on the "Directory", that is also set up as a blog. Then you can click on "devotions" and that is set up as a blog as well. 3 blogs, all on one website.  
  • Just because I discuss the ease and simplicity of Squarespace, does not mean that a Squarespace website can't have all the bells and whistles. You can build a very dynamic and professional site on Squarespace (again, see the website I mentioned in the prior point, it has pretty scrolling images on the front page).  

A few things about actually making the move.

  1. I mentioned earlier that the move was not easy,  but don't let that scare you. If you have a straight forward blog with minimal things which would make a move challenging such as signup forms, etc., then if you decide to move to Squarespace it will be relatively easy and straight forward. The things on the Faithful Bloggers site which made it difficult were things like the forms, and the directory and a few other challenges like that.  

  2. If you decide to transfer your domain to Squarespace (which is not required), you should know the  transfer can take from 1-15 days, my tranfer took 6 days (I'm not very good at waiting).
  3. If you have a mailing list, Mailchimp integrates better with Squarespace than Aweber or other email services. You can use the other services with Squarespace but Squarespace is set up so you can automatically connect to Mailchimp when you load a form. I moved  the entire mailing list from AWeber to Mailchimp which made the move more challenging. UPDATE March 2018:  I moved my email platform to Convertkit.

In summary:

If you are the code loving, website fidgeting type I would recommend Worpress for your platform. To go along with Worpress I would recommend for hosting (their tech support is very quick to respond). I also recommend AWeber  or Convertkit for your mailing list. 

However, if you are the, "I just want to write and blog and not monkey with the backend" type, I recommend Squarespace, and for your mailing list, I recommend Mailchimp or Convertkit.

Blogging for Ministry or Business - Be Yourself!

Blogging Ministry

Our recent survey showed that the largest percentage of our subscribers are blogging for ministry purposes or to share testimony. This, among other things, stood out to me and I want to thank those who took the time to participate. The survey results have been immensely helpful to us in getting to know you all. Because we have to contact and confirm the winner, the winner will be announced sometime next week. I'm sure you can agree, it's incredibly exciting to think about all that work being done for the Kingdom.

In the survey, many of you expressed feelings of "overwhelm" from trying to maintain balance in your life or from trying to keep a consistent blogging schedule "like the experts say you should".  

I get it, I really do. I've been there. Why do we pressure ourselves like that? Why do we compare what the Lord wants to do through us with what He is doing in the lives of other people? We think "I should be doing this or that because they are", when, in reality, what we should be doing is what the Lord leads us to do. God has a plan for your life which is completely different than the plan He has for the life of the "experts". I know and understand that there are guidelines for best blogging practice to increase traffic whether blogging for ministry or business. However, if you are experiencing feelings of "overwhelm", it might be time to get back on your knees and give the whole thing back to God till you have clarity.

Let me tell you a little story. A number of years ago the Lord laid a ministry on my heart. He told me to do some prep work, writing and such. When I completed that portion, I felt it was time to move forward with it. So I attempted to. I experienced one road block after another, along with all those feelings of "overwhelm", just like some of you expressed. I eventually gave it back to the Lord and He told me to wait. It hasn't been easy, the waiting. At times my flesh has wanted to move it forward. But I waited. Recently a number of things changed in my life and I found my schedule opening up some. I asked the Lord for guidance in moving forward and He said "now".

Around this same time, I saw that Faithful Bloggers was up for sale. My husband and I felt it fit well within the plans the Lord was showing me, so I contacted Tishia (the prior owner). I have to tell you God is not only an amazing connector of people, but when you wait for His "now", those feelings of overwhelm are greatly reduced. There have definitely been frustrations (glitches with the transfer of ownership, etc.), but I can beyond a shadow of a doubt see the Lord at work.

I'm telling you this to encourage you in your blogging ministry or business, but that's the point, it's YOUR blogging journey, no one else's.  Maybe the expert you're reading says you should be posting daily, or 3 times a week but after prayer God tells you 1 time, then 1 time it should be. Don't try to be someone else, be who God created you to be. You are incredible, unique and have your own story to tell the world. It's your story, tell it in your own way. Be yourself. If God can part water, heal the lame, and drive out the powers of darkness, then He can certainly use your once a week posting schedule to do mighty things.

When the timing is right to move your project forward, you can find many resources here at Faithful Bloggers to help guide you and teach techniques for driving traffic, or increasing followers, etc. These materials are meant to assist you in your Kingdom work. We hope you find them useful on your journey.

Where are you on your blogging journey, clarity or overwhelm? How is the Lord directing you today?

Happy blogging.


63 Emails Later...


Wow, it's been a whirlwind of a week. As most of you have heard The Faithful Bloggers Family of Websites is under new ownership. It has taken a tremendous amount of work to get the ownership transferred. Over 63 emails have gone back and forth between Tishia, myself and the hosting company in one week. And that number doesn't even include the emails to other places such as Aweber, and other places that had to be involved. There have been many details to work through and we are not quite done yet. We're excited about moving forward. Here's a peak at some of the things you will see in the near future:

  • We've been busy putting a plan in place for Faithful Bloggers and have been charting a course. Over the next couple weeks we'll be sharing with you the planning process we have used for that.
  • We'll be sharing some resources to help you with your own planning.
  • I will be writing a review of some resources to help you in blogging journey.
  • I will writing an honest list of thoughts and suggestions on purchasing an existing website and all that is involved.

Stay tuned for all that and more as we move forward. Don't miss out on the updates, sign up (over on the right) to receive our emails.

I can't thank you all enough for your prayers, support and patience during this transition. We have received numerous warm welcomes in our email and we thank you for each and every one. If you sent Tishia an email wishing her well as she heads in new direction, please know she did receive it. Let's all cover her in prayer for her new adventures.

What have you been up to this week on your blogging journey?

Do You Have A Misery Attitude or a Mastery Attitude?


This is a guest post from Kelly McCausey of Solo Smarts.

"I wrote this article years ago and stumbled on it while cleaning out some folders on my computer.  I couldn't help but think about how my own issues with Misery/Mastery Attitudes have impacted my growth as a Blogger & Podcaster.  I hope it blesses you :)"  - Kelly

Someone with a Misery Attitude has a poisoned perspective on life.  They find the negative in everything.  They live under a cloud and even when the sun shines they are looking for the next sign of rain.  Misery loves company but company rarely wants anything to do with Misery.

Someone with a Mastery Attitude has a heavenly perspective on life. They have mastered their emotions and choose daily to live life with a positive outlook.  The mature Christian sees the hand of God in all events and he knows that God will work all things out for good in their lives.

So do you have a Misery Attitude or a Mastery Attitude? [tweetthis]Do you have a Misery Attitude or a Mastery Attitude? Guest post from @kellymccausey via @FaithfulBloggrs[/tweetthis]

Misery claims: ‘I can’t help it, everything is going wrong in my life.  How can I pretend to be happy when I’m so miserable?’  ‘I just don’t have what it takes to be fake – when I’m down, everyone knows it.’  ‘I’m not negative – it’s just that nothing ever goes right in my life.  If I had Perfect Patty’s life, then I’d be happy.’

Misery, has it ever occurred to you that everyone has troubles?  Would it amaze you to know that the Perfect Patty has problems that she is facing too?  She doesn’t wear it on her sleeve for the whole world to see – but if you took a moment to ask her, she might tell you and even thank you for your concern.

But Misery doesn’t ask.  Misery is too busy worrying about herself.

We all know someone with a Misery Attitude – maybe we’re even realizing right this minute that we do.  That’s ok,  tonight, we’re going to find out that we don’t have to keep holding on to that Misery Attitude any longer.

Misery blames everyone and everything for their problems.

As a Christian, you can't blame anyone or anything for your attitude.

Things can contribute to your attitude – but what you allow to come across in your language, your facial expressions and your physical stance is entirely within your control.  To claim anything to the contrary is to say that you cannot control yourself.

As normal functioning adults, we can control our ‘state’.

[tweetthis]As a Christian, you can't blame anyone or anything for your attitude.[/tweetthis]

Small children can’t control themselves.  They feel something and it shows up on their faces and usually blurts out of their mouth.  As children grow up and are taught, they gain control of their state.  They learn that they can feel something and not saying anything about it if it is not appropriate or useful to do so.

Of course, not everyone gets the parenting and teaching that they need about this and they make it all the way to adulthood without ever having really developed impulse control.  If you’ve ever had to spend any amount of time with one of these ‘spoiled’ adults, you know it’s not very pleasant.  Watching a two year old throwing a temper tantrum can be amusing.  Watching a twenty year old in the midst of a temper fit is just ridiculous.

Good impulse control means that you can feel angry and not yell at someone.  It means that you can feel hurt and not have to hurt someone else.  It means that you can feel worry and not fret verbally.  It means that you can feel jealous and not try to sabotage someone’s success.

Someone with low or no impulse control is like a red bulb thermometer.  The red goes up and the red goes down – and their attitude goes with it.

So the first key to a better attitude is to accept responsibility for YOUR attitude.  If you can accept that YOU and you alone are in control of your attitude, you can then begin to change it.

Good things and bad things happen to everyone.  No one lives a charmed life, so why would anyone think that they can blame their bad attitude on circumstances?  Attitude isn’t a matter of circumstance.  It’s a matter of how you’re thinking about those circumstances.

[tweetthis]As a Christian are you taking responsibility for your own thought life? If you're doing this, you're NOT! [/tweetthis]

In 2 Corinthians 10:3-6 Paul wrote, "For although we are walking in the flesh, we do not wage war in a fleshly way, since the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but are powerful through God for the demolition of strongholds. We demolish arguments and every high-minded thing that is raised up against the knowledge of God, taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”

It’s time for a reality check.  No one is in perfect control of their attitude every minute of every day.  Life can toss you some curve balls and it’s normal to feel like you’ve been knocked off center for a season when you’re in a crisis.  When tragedy strikes, your maturity in Christ will determine how quickly you regain control of your state.

A Story That Illustrates The Misery Attitude

Years ago when I became a home owner for the first time, finances were always tight.  It seemed to me that I was always taking one step forward and two steps back.  I rarely had any money in the bank but I had a good couple of months and it looked like I would be able to buy a few things that we needed.

Then a bazaar wind storm blew through my neighborhood and pushed two large trees over towards my house – close enough to be scary – but not close enough to do any damage.  I felt relieved and called my insurance company to see how I could get the trees removed.

The insurance man came over and took photographs.  He gave me some unexpected bad news.  Because the trees were not touching the house – they weren’t a covered expense.

I said ‘Are you crazy? The roots are all torn up – they could fall at any time!’

He said yes, they could and because of that I had to do something about them right away.  If they fall within 48 hours of the storm, the insurance will pay – but after the 49th hour – if they fall, the insurance would not only not pay for the trees – but they would not pay for the damage to the house because at that point, it would be negligence on my part.

I was stunned but there was no point arguing with them.  I called for bids to have the trees removed.  The lowest bid?  $1000.00.  I just about fainted.

There went all my money.  It was just awful.  And let me tell you – I had a bad attitude about it.  I was angry with the tree company, angry with the insurance company, angry with the wind and even angry with God.  He let it happen after all.

I said ‘That’s it! That’s just the way things are.  You never get ahead in life.  You work hard, you make money and something happens to take it away from you.’  This was my attitude for quite a long time.  I spouted negativity just about every chance I got.

I not only resented the $1000.00, I resented the loss of shade and the big ugly stump they left behind.

It’s too bad that I didn’t choose to look at it differently.  I should have been praising God that the trees didn’t fall on my house and ruin my bedroom.  I should have been grateful that there were only two trees – instead of five or six of them that could have fallen.

It would have all been a matter of perspective.

Rough Things Happen in Life And In Business

I could tell you a dozen stories about difficult situations I've faced in growing my blog and building my business. Failed projects, disappointing promotions, lack luster reactions to something I was so proud of!

Fortunately, I've had more successful projects, profitable promotions and great reactions to my content.

Truth is, if I didn't foster a Mastery Attitude, I wouldn't have survived the failures to enjoy the successes.

Attitude is Everything.

A Misery Attitude can be silent but deadly.  Do you know this woman?  She walks into a room with the weight of the world on her shoulders, face downcast, looking like she’s about to cry.  Everyone in the room sees and responds to her sadness.

You might think, but she’s obviously in need of some comfort.  Yes – she is.  But what if this is how she walks into every room?  Every time you see her?  It’s one thing if someone is clinically depressed – they need to seek medical attention.  It’s another thing if they’re chronically needy.

Some have become addicted to the sympathy of others.  They like having someone pat them on the back and tell them that they’re strong and brave to bear up under the trials of life.  They enjoy the attention.  And maybe there is a lot going on in their life – but they’re not helping themselves to wallow in it all the time.

Here’s is a powerful quote I found: “Praise is more spontaneous when things go right, but it is more precious when things go wrong.”

[tweetthis]“Praise is more spontaneous when things go right, but it is more precious when things go wrong.”[/tweetthis]

We all admire a special someone in our life who has been through heartache and tragedy yet never broke under the weight of it.  I have a good friend who all the while that her husband was seriously ill – would always ask about me and my life before she would spend a minute talking about her concerns.

Philippians 2:4 says “Don't think only about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and what they are doing.”

I believe she discovered the truth of those words and made it a daily practice to always care about others.  It helped her to maintain perspective and not fall into pit of depression.  It helped her to choose a Mastery Attitude.

How do you move from a Misery Attitude to a Mastery Attitude?

A better attitude starts with choosing to be more optimistic about life.

Optimism has to be practiced to be done well and feel genuine.  If you’ve been a lifelong pessimist, when you first try to practice optimism, you may feel ridiculous saying things like ‘I know God will work this too out for good in my life.’

It does feel awkward at first when we begin to confess the promises of God over our life instead of whining and complaining all the time.

[tweetthis]I’d rather feel silly standing on the Word of God than feel comfortable on the sinking sand of circumstance.[/tweetthis]

But you know what – I’d rather feel silly standing on the Word of God than feel comfortable on the sinking sand of circumstance.

Psalm 56:3 says: “When I am afraid, I will trust in You.”  You could change that up just a little bit and say ‘When I feel SILLY as all get out, I will trust in You Lord!”

Changing your attitude and choosing to adopt a more positive outlook on life will have a strong impact in many areas of your life – some that you might not even expect right now.

First of all, if you’re used to complaining all the time – like I used to be.  You might find it’s hard to make conversation.  Think about it!  I used to burn up five or six hours a week on the telephone with my best friend.  I was complaining about my husband, my son, my mother, my other friends, the telephone company, the lady at the bank… you name it!  I could rant for a half hour about the smallest inconvenience.

When God started dealing with me about my negative attitude – I had to give up all the ranting and raving.  And you know what?  I found I didn’t have much to talk about without it.

Good grief! My poor friend!  I went from five hours on the phone to maybe a half hour total.  I just didn’t have anything to say!  The good news is that she was going through the same transformation so she understood what was happening.

I had to relearn how to have a conversation without having to fuss and bother about something.

I wouldn’t want you to think that I’m saying I’m totally cured – because I can relapse if I am not careful.  A good complaining session feels real good to the flesh, but we are supposed to exercise control over our flesh!

Changing your attitude will take more than just changing what you talk about and trying to control your emotional state.  You are going to have to start consuming more positive input on a daily basis.

This starts with the time you spend with God in prayer and in reading His Word.  If you’ve been living life in a bad attitude for 30 or 50 years – you’re not going to be able to make a change on your own.  You need God!  You need to saturate yourself in Him.

Start your day with Praise & Worship music.  Fill your heart with the Word and make it a goal to memorize some key scriptures.

Practice Mastery.

When you face personal failures, it is easy to fall back into Misery. But even in failure you can choose to have a Mastery Attitude.

When you fail, put it into perspective.  You couldn’t have failed if you didn’t at least try and it is always better to try than to do nothing!

Kelly McCausey is a Blogger, Podcaster & Solopreneur Business Coach.

NOTE FROM TISHIA: I wanted to mention, from a personal experience, how awesome Kelly is as a coach. I've coached with her over the years and without her help, ideas, support and the ability to tell me when an idea stinks I wouldn't be where I am today as both a blogger and business owner. If you're stuck and need help with taking the next step in blogging or building your online business, I highly recommend you connect with Kelly.

Why You Need A Mailing List


How many times have you found some great blogs, bookmarked them and had every intention of going back to the site 'one of these days'...only to never end up getting back to it? It happens to me all the time. I've said it over and over (and I'll keep saying it!) - man I wish they had an email list (mailing list) I could sign up for. Had those sites had a mailing list, I could have opted-in and be reminded of them when they sent an email - and go back to their site to consume the great content I tried to remember to go back to. Keep this in mind  - for me and the vast majority of people that stumble across your blog and think we want to re-visit the site some day, will never make it back. And that's not very promising if you want to grow a loyal following/readership.

This is why it's so important to have an email list and get them on it! There are many different email marketing software options to choose from (Mad Mimi, MailChimp, Get Response, just to name a few) but I have used (since 2007) and always recommend Aweber.

Once you have people on your email list you can stay in front of them (in other words they won't forget long as you email on a regular basis but that's a different post in itself) and get them back to your site.  When you write a blog post, share a bit of it in an email and invite them to click through to go read the entire post on your site.

But it doesn’t stop there.

Share some of your social media posts and profiles with your list and invite them to connect with you there. This is another way to help you grow your reach, build your relationship with your community and interact with them personally.

As you begin to build relationship with your community and mail regularly, they'll get to know you better. This leads to them knowing, liking and trusting you. Once you've built that know, like and trust factor you can make offers to them (either your own products/services or affiliate offers) and they'll be more likely to take you up on those recommendations.

I've had several people ask me about how they can monetize a blog post. While it can be done (product/service recommendations, product reviews, affiliate offers, etc.) While I'm not against that and do encourage it sometimes, I always tell people the best way to do this (earn money blogging) is by building that list and making offers to them. You can do it ethically and without spamming people or sounding like a used car salesman. Share relevant, helpful information and then invite them to learn more or implement (something you shared - a tip or strategy) it with a product you're recommending.

Let’s recap why it’s so important to your blogging success that you focus on building an email list first.

  • It allows you to bring readers back to your blog whenever you’re publishing a new post.
  • It allows you to grow your social media reach by inviting readers to connect with you on social media.
  • It allows you (by staying in touch regularly) to build a relationship with your audience.
  • It allows you to make offers for products and services and make some money from your blog posts and emails.

If you would like to learn more about list building, check out Skill Building Intensive: Starting Your Own Mailing List where you'll get step-by-step video walkthroughs of setting up a list using Aweber & Mad Mimi. 

This is part 10 of a 10 part series on blogging.  

How to Monetize Your Blog

In writing this post I'm making a major assumption - you're blogging and want to make money with it. If you’re putting in the work, doing the research, and growing the audience, chances are you’d like to get paid for your hard work. It can be done by monetizing your blog. Here are three ways you can start earning:


Product Recommendations

This is probably one of the quickest and easiest ways to start making money with your blog. There's a couple different options when it comes to making product recommendations:

  • use your own products
  • an affiliate product

Depending on where you're located, Amazon's affiliate program is one you should check out. Unfortunately their program isn't available to residents in some states. It's an easy way to promote things as an affiliate. We're all consumers using some sort of electronic gadget, household gadget, reading books, etc. Those things can be found on Amazon, your affiliate link grabbed and added to a blog post - easy peasy.

For example let's say you're a health blogger and are following a new exercise regimen. You could find products on Amazon you're using (the exercise DVD, weights, etc.) and include your affiliate link to them in the post. A Christian blogger could link to a devotional book, Bible, etc. - things people would need to study the Bible or do a Bible Study. The possibilities are limitless - write book reviews and link to the books on Amazon, if you're using a new tech gadget write a review about it, you get the point.


I don't generally work with brands but from time to time I have. For example, many years ago on a weight loss blog I owned I was being contacted regularly by brands wanting to give me free things in exchange for an honest review. One time I got a fancy, expensive bathing suit from a company that specialized in plus size women's bathing suits. I decided to take them up on their offer and enjoyed the bathing suit and writing my review about it. Here at Faithful Bloggers I was recently contacted by a pretty large brand about partnering with them in promoting their stuff but for the most part, it's authors wanting me to review their books.

In my opinion, the best place to start if you're interested in working with a brand(s) is social media. Find them, connect with them, and start interacting. There are also sites out there that will connect bloggers and brands. They will often pay you to write a blog post that mentions one of their products. Don’t be surprised to work for free products or low pay in the beginning though.

It takes time to build a relationship and show the marketing person that you have the reach to influence a group of people. And of course as your audience grows, you can expect to get paid better to be a brand ambassador.

List Building & Email Marketing

I've been blogging and running my Virtual Assistant business since 2006 and the most important asset (and continues to be!) has been my lists. I'll never stop talking about the importance of having a mailing list. It's been a way to build my relationship with my readers, share my expertise, get them back to my blogs, and of course make offers to them.

Keep your emails helpful with some recommendations thrown in and you'll do well. I always like to include a little personal blurb at the start of messages that gives my readers a chance to connect with me on a more personal level. For example, here at Faithful Bloggers one of the most important events that has been going on in my life since April 2015 is my now five year old nephew Braylan fighting leukemia. I've rallied prayer warriors from all over the world by taking the time to be open and share personally from the heart what's going on in some of my mailings.

An important note to keep in mind - you can't just set up a list and be done. It's important to continue taking action to build that list on a regular basis and then even more important than that - stay in touch with them on a regular basis! 

These are just three of the many different ways you can monetize your blog. I chose them because they're pretty simple, quick and fairly easy to get started with.

I'd love to know - what are you currently doing to monetize your blog? Leave a comment below. 

This is part 9 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

How to Create a Good Blog Post Call to Action


How many times have you come across a really great blog post and then get to the end and feel frustrated there wasn't more? Not even necessarily more of the content of that post, but just more in general - like you were left wondering "now what, what next?" It happens all the time - bloggers leave their readers hanging, wanting more but not giving them a call to action inviting them to do more! Heck, I'm guilty of this...way more than I should be considering I've been blogging and running an online business for 10 years (at the time of writing this) ;-)

Put yourself in the shoes of your readers. Why not give them something more. What if they wouldn’t mind learning more from you or connecting with you via email or social media or even take you up on a product recommendation?That’s what a call to action at the end of your blog posts is all about.

Encourage Them To Comment 

One of the easiest, and oldest, call to actions is simply asking your readers to leave a comment. Ask them to share their opinions about the content of the post.

Example: What are your favorite ways to end your blog posts? Do you use a particular call to action? Leave me a comment below and let’s talk.

Invite Them To Connect Via Social Media

Do you want to grow your social media reach? Then add some calls to action where you ask your readers to like the post on Facebook, share on Twitter, etc. Or share one of your social media profiles in the call to action and invite them to join you there.

Example: Got questions about creating a call to action? Let’s talk about it on our Facebook page. (Link to your Facebook page). (This would also work for a Facebook Group.)

Make A Recommendation

Sometimes it makes sense to make a sale and monetize your blog post in your call to action. This is also called pre-selling. You talk about a topic and then at the end make a recommendation for a product that helps your readers learn more or take the next step.

Example: There’s a lot more to be said about crafting a strong call to action. Take a look at this guide to learn more.

Invite Them To Join Your List

One of the most important calls to action you can use is the invitation inviting readers to join your list.Once you have them on your email list, you can invite them to come back and read other posts, comment on them, join you on your favorite social media platforms and of course make offers to your readers.

Example: I have a lot more to share on the topic of blogging and would love to email you with more tips and strategies on a regular basis. Just enter your name and email below and we’ll get started right away. As a thank you, I’ll even send you my guide to writing strong blog post titles that will grab your readers’ attention.

This is part 8 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

What's the Goal of Your Blog Post?

I have a request. One that needs to be completed before you write your next blog post. So, what is my request, what is it that I want you to do? STOP!


I want you to stop and think before you write your next blog post. I want you to think aboutwhat your goal isfor that blog post. How will that post help you move forward/accomplish something in your biz/blogging journey?

Here are a handful of questions to think about/ask yourself:

  • Am I writing this post to have people share across social media sites to increase my reach?
  • Am I writing this post with a clear call to action inviting them to sign up for my mailing list so I can build relationship with them and stay in touch?
  • Am I writing this post to get the attention of a brand I'd like to work with?
  • Am I writing this post to engage my readers and get them interacting with me/each other?
  • Am I writing this post to sell a product or service?
  • Am I writing this post to share content (curated content) of a fellow blogger I would like to build a relationship with?

Each one of these questions pertain to some very valid goals for writing a blog post and I'm sure you can think of even more. The point I'm trying to make is that your next post (and every single post) should be written with a goal in mind. Know beforehand exactly what you want that post to accomplish.

After you've taken the time to stop and think about this, it's time to move forward. And now I'm going to go against the 'norm' and ask you to start with the end in mind. For example, let's say your goal for the post is to get the attention of a brand you're interested in working with. Think about how you can share your experience with a product (product review posts are great) of theirs.

Let's look at another example. Now, let's say you've decided that your goal for the post is to build your list and get readers to opt-in to it. Think about what your opt-in offer is and write about a topic complimentary to it. After you've written the content, be sure to invite them to sign up to get immediate access to the free report (or whatever it may be).

When you know beforehand what you want a post to accomplish, it's easier to craft goal driven text. This is pretty powerful, especially if you use blogging as a way to earn money. Knowing the post's goal ahead of time helps you create a strategic blogging plan. Write a post that helps you grow your reach. Then work on one that starts the conversation with new readers. Next work on getting them on your list and finally make them an offer. Intersperse this with posts that help you get the attention of potential JV partners and Brands and you’re all set to not only grow your blog and your audience, but make money blogging as well.

This is part 7 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

Engage Your Readers And Encourage Interaction


When you started blogging did you have a vision of all these people flocking to your site that would leave comment after comment after comment? If I'm completely honest - I did! But that's not exactly what happened ;-) Sometimes I feel like I'm having a one-sided conversation. I pour my heart into a post, publish it and wait for the comments. And wait. And wait. And....yep, you guessed it, I keep on waiting. That's pretty normal in the blogosphere. Now a days it seems even harder to get people engaged and interacting on a post which sort of defeats the purpose of what a blog was designed for - to facilitate engagement (communication/comments).

Don't lose hope. Getting your people engaged on your posts can still happen - with a little encouragement ;-)  Combine that with a little social media interaction and there’s no reason you can’t turn this into a fully engaged conversation that will help you grow a loyal base of fans.

How do we encourage our audience to interact with us?

People want to be heard, to voice their opinions, so ask them to give it. Ask them some questions, ask them to leave feedback and encourage them to share their opinions! This can be done right within the comments section of your blog posts. At the end of the post, give them a call to action - ask them to answer a question, share their experience with whatever topic the post is about, let them know you want to hear their experiences/opinions and to leave a comment below.

Keep in mind that it's important to respond to those comments anyone leaves! Keep your readers engaged and interacting with not just you but each other too. This can help you not only have a great conversation with a reader(s) and build a relationship(s), it will show your readers that you value their input, them and really do care and want to hear from them.

This can also be applied to any social media interaction you're getting too. Now-a-days a lot of bloggers are finding that they actually get higher engagement on Facebook (for instance) than they do on the actual blog post. You still need to do the same as you would in the post and give people a call to action. What do you want them to do? Ask them to do it - share it, comment, like, etc.

This is part 6 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

How To Get Your Blog Posts Shared Socially


We live in a social world where much of our news comes from sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. This isn't a bad thing. In fact, it can be a great thing when it comes to expanding our reach and getting our message in front of other people (that we may normally not be able to reach). It's just a matter of getting your current readers to start sharing your content on their favorite social sites.

Here are 4 tips to help you get your blog posts shared socially. 

Quality Content

Of course it all starts with quality content that your readers want to read and share. No one is going to spread a crummy post on social media. Start by writing the best blog posts you can and do some research into what your audience wants and needs.

In other words, serve your market well and they will in turn share what you’re writing with their friends and acquaintances.

Make It Visually Appealing

Make your post easy on the eyes! Remember - people tend to skim content so you want things that will grab their attention. Break up your content into small bite-sized chunks so it’s easy to read. Add some subheadings and formatting to make it easy to scan through. And don’t forget to add an image that captures the essence of your post.

Step away from your desk and then come back and look at it with fresh eyes. Is the blog post visually appealing? Does it grab your attention? If not, go back to the drawing board and see what you can do to improve it.

Make It Easy To Share

When your goal is to get people to share your blog post on social media, you want to make it as easy as possible to share. I have a social share plug-in that I use - if you look at the bottom of this post (and any other posts on the site), you will see that there are options for you to share a post on Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Tell Them What To Do

While making it easy for someone to share by having something like a WordPress plugin that gives people the otpion to click a button to share a post on their favorite social media site, that isn't always going to be as easy as it sounds. People need to be told what to do. In other words, if you want the social share - tell your people that. End the post with a call to action telling them that if they liked the post to please share on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Don’t forget to let them know how much you appreciate it when they share the love.

This is part 5 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

Why you should include Images in Blog Posts

People are visual by nature. An image draws an eye in and captures someone's attention quicker than text. Capturing your readers attention quickly is essential to keeping them on the page and having them want to read your content.  Good pictures are an easy way to accomplish this.

A Picture Can Draw Readers In


Think about Facebook for a second. I don't know about you, but the first thing I'm always drawn to when I log into Facebook are the images that show up in my news feed, not the text. Images catch my eye and capture my attention - drawing me in, wanting to know more/read the text that goes with the images.

So, again, it's important to make sure you're using images in your blog posts. Try to find an image that tells the story of your post. The image should tell at a glance (with the help of the post title) what the blog post is all about. Of course you’re not limited to just one image. If it fits the topic, grab a few to illustrate what you’re talking about or show step-by-step progress.

You Need Pictures For Social Media Shares

We talked about Facebook already and how important images are there to grab your reader’s attention. But it doesn’t stop there. Think about other social sites your audience participates in. It doesn't matter if it’s Pinterest, Instagram or even Twitter. A good image will stand out and draw people in. Without it, your chances to get the click and more importantly the read and interaction on your blog are slim.

But it doesn't stop there. As you get traffic to your post, those readers will be more likely to share your post on social media if it has a good image or two. Of course making it easy to share with social media buttons doesn’t hurt either.

But Where Do You Get Images?

I'm hoping that by now I have convinced you of the importance of using images in your posts. So now you're probably wondering, where do I find images?

Image Monthly- I shared a sneak peek into what this is all about in this post. This is one of the first places I look for a stock image to use or a quote bubble I can use to make a graphic or a background texture to make an image/quote graphic from.

Yourself - I'm a wanna be photographer ;-) but very rarely do I take my own use in a blog post, at least. This is also mainly because the things I write about don't include sunsets, flowers, the beach, my nephews, son or other family ;-) So, in other words - pics I take don't really fit into writing about blogging. But if I was a food blogger I would certainly take pictures myself to use for blog posts. If you're a crafty person and blog about that, you could most certainly take your own pictures to use.

This is obviously the cheapest option. But if you're going to be 'really serious' about taking photos, you could find it a little time consuming to set up equipment, pose the subject for the pic, take equipment down, download images to your computer, and then edit the image to use in your blog post.

Stock Photos - I've found many stock photo sites but I haven't used any of them because they all seemed a little on the pricey side for the few images I had the need for. But there are sites like and These sites give you the rights to use an image once you pay for them (be sure to read their rules for how you can/can't use the image though). These are pretty big sites that connect you to thousands of photographers so you can find images on just about any subject.

There is also a free site called that offers stock images. I've used this site in the past. Because it's free I've noticed that there are some things I can't find an image for. But there are still a lot of options to choose from. Again, remember to read their terms of use and how you can/can't use one of their images.

This is part 4 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

Why Breaking Up Your Content Into Skimmable Sections Is Important

A new study by a researcher at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at the University of California, San Diego, says that by 2015, the sum of media asked for and delivered to consumers on mobile devices and to their homes would take more than 15 hours a day to see or hear. That volume is equal to 6.9 million-million gigabytes of information, or a daily consumption of nine DVDs worth of data per person per day. (Source: UC San Diego News Center) man-791049_640

That study is an old one - posted back in 2013 - so I'm betting that the amount of media consumed daily, now, is more than mentioned here. And while this is referring to media (what I'm assuming they mean as video, audio), I'm wondering how much textual information we consume on a daily basis.

I don't know about you, but between mailing lists I'm signed up for, local retail stores that I've signed up for their mailing list sending me coupons & other things, the content on social media, blog posts, etc. I'm bombarded with a whole lot of information. Every day!

There is no possible way I have the time to consume, word for word, all that information thrown my way. I've become very good at skimming content. Skimming content ensures that I don't miss something that is good information and gives me the opportunity to then choose what I want to read and what I want to skip past.

What does this have to do with blogging? A lot. I promise ;-)

Because so many people are like me and skim content it's essential that you break up your content and make it easy for your readers to scan through it. But, how do you this?

Headlines and Sub-Headings 

Take a look at this post. Do you see how I’m breaking the different elements of making a post easy to scan down into subheadings? You can do the same with your blog post. Think of the outline of your post. Each point in your outline could be a subheading. Start with those and then fill in the content.

Or if you prefer, start with the content and then go back and add the sub headings. Create the content and work in the subheadings in whichever way works best for you. The only important thing is that they are in there before you hit publish.

Short Paragraphs

If you pay attention to the next book you're reading (or magainze, newspaper, etc.) you may notice that they have pretty long paragraphs. That's okay, they can get away with it. But reading online is a lot different than the offline publications on paper. Online reading can be difficult if there are long paragraphs - especially on mobile devices! The most effective thing to do is keep your paragraphs short - try to keep them around three or four lines.

Lists And Bold Important Key Terms

Next you want to go through your content and see if there’s anything you can present in the form of a list.

  • Use a list instead of several related sentences.
  • Use a list to share examples.
  • A list is a great way to break things up and grab your reader's attention.
  • Lists can be as long or short as you need them to be.

And let’s not forget about other formatting options. Bold important key terms, italicize them, or underline them for emphasis. All of these formatting options make it much quicker and easier to scan a piece of text and figure out what it’s about without having to read every single word.


And of course, we can't forget graphics! A picture is one of the best ways to convey within seconds what your blog post is about and generate interest. Just scroll through your Facebook feed - what grabs your attention? It's probably images that catch your eye quicker than anything else. Or, think about Pinterest and Instagram - those are two sites millions of people use and they're all about images. Images hook you and grab you in. They are also a great way to break up longer sections of text. Make sure you use them to their fullest advantage.

This is part 3 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.


How Long Should Your Blog Posts Be?

When I first started blogging, I was so focused on the word count and making sure my posts were long enough that it caused more of a headache than anything. In fact, it almost always "paralyzed" me which ended up causing me to not post as frequently as I wanted. Back when I started - I don't see too much of this anymore - there were gurus saying posts should be this length, or another one saying no it should be shorter and broken up into even more bite size chunks. It made me nuts! I never knew who to listen to. long should your blog posts really be?

It would be great if there was a magic number that guaranteed best results, wouldn’t it? But that’s like asking someone to tell you how long your conversations with other people should be. Sometimes it’s nothing more than a few words or sentences; sometimes you have a nice long talk. It all depends on how much you have to say to each other, doesn’t it?

This exact same approach should be followed when it comes to writing blog posts. If you're a food blogger sharing recipes all you really need is a short post (probably about 200 to 300 words) and an image and bam, you're good to go.  Same with writing devotions - you want, short, bite-sized easy to digest posts.

Of course, there are times that warrant longer posts. Sometimes going into more depth is needed. In those cases make it as long as you need to make it. Long posts aren't bad. In fact, they can help you build your expertise by showing your authority on a topic.

In my opinion, a combination of short and longer posts is a good mix. If you're going to write longer posts, keep in mind that people often scan content so be sure to use headers, bold, and italics to make important points stick out (but don't over do these either). If you find that a longer post is extremely long (let's say for example a thousand or more words), think about whether it would be best broken up into a couple different posts and do a series on your blog making sure to link to all the parts so people don't miss them.

My biggest piece of advice - don't force yourself to follow some guru who says you have to make a blog post so many words. Instead, focus on enjoying the writing process and think about your readers as your write - give enough information about the topic to get your point across and that they won't be left confused.

This is 2 two of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

How To Write Attention Grabbing Blog Post Titles


attention grabbing blog post titles One of the very things I struggle with is one of the most important pieces of your blog - the blog post title. You have a very small window of opportunity (we're talking seconds here) to grab the reader's attention. This means you have to create titles that catch the reader's attention and make them want to know more so they'll read the content. Let me be blunt - if you have a sucky title it doesn't matter how awesome the text in your post is, most people won't take the time to read it...well unless your mom or best friend reads your blog, they probably don't care how crummy the title is ;-)

Not only is a good title important so you capture the interest of a reader, if you want search engine traffic a good title is also important. Using the right keywords in your title will help ensure your content gets ranked in the search engines. More about this a little later.

Alright, now let's get into the meat of this:

How do you write attention grabbing blog post titles? 

One of the first recommendations I have, which doesn't always work for me - sometimes I do this last, is to start with a title and then create the text of your post. Remember, this is just a working title so you have an idea of what the content is going to be about. You'll finalize the title once you follow these tips suggested below.

Make it Interesting but Don't Exaggerate 

The worst thing you can do when it comes to writing an attention grabbing title is to exaggerate or hype things up too much. Don't over exaggerate or hype things up too much just to make the title catchy. Sure, that might ensure you get some extra click-throughs but you'll end up losing credibility which is what we don't want. You may have seen some titles like this before on social media where a title piques your interest so you click through only to be disappointed because the content had nothing to do with the title.

Instead, make it interesting without the exaggeration or hype. One of the best ways, I know, to do this is to think about it from your readers point of view.

Keep It Short and Engaging

It isn't always easy to keep a title short but shorter is better. Short and sweet as I like to say. Try to be as to the point as possible with as few words as possible. Again, this isn't always easy but best if you can make it happen. Ask a question, use numbers (example: 7 best tips for...) or make a thought provoking statement.

Something I've been doing for awhile and recommend to my clients is to create a swipe file. Anytime you see a title that grabs your attention, copy it down into this swipe file. See if there's a way you could tweak them and use them for your own needs.

Work In Your Keywords

And last but certainly not least, let's talk keywords in your title. I always do this last and honestly, sometimes I don't even worry about it. Instead, it's more important to me that I provide quality, helpful content for my readers. But when I do use keywords in my title it's the very last thing I even think about. Ranking well for something your readers don’t want to read or don’t want to click on doesn’t do you much good. Focus on your audience and then optimize for search as an afterthought and you’ll do well.

Now that you have these tips to help write attention grabbing blog post titles, start paying attention to what's working and what isn't. Each market, blog, and readership is different - what works for one, won't work for another. Use these tips as guidelines to help you find your own style that resonates well with your audience and gets you the results you want.

This is part 1 of a 10 part series on how to write a good blog post that engages people.

25 Ways To Put PLR To Good Use

PLR content also now frequently being called 'done for you' content, can be a huge time saver when it comes to content creation...that is, if you actually put it to use and don't let it sit around collecting virtual dust. Not that I would know anything about buying something, letting it sit on my hard drive and well - oh, never putting it to use ;-)

What is PLR?

If you're not familiar with PLR, it's content that has already been created and you purchase the rights to it. Meaning you can then tweak it, brand it, etc. to fit your needs. Different sites have different rules of how it can and can't be used so it's always important to read their guidelines first.

I've bought PLR but now what? 

Excellent question and one I think all of us have wondered at some point or another. Heck, even after being a Virtual Assistant all these years and being hired to rewrite PLR content and then post it as blog posts, social media blurbs, etc. I sometimes wonder what to do with the stuff I have bought!

There really is a lot you can do with it. My friends Tracy & Susanne over at Piggy Makes Bank have an excellent resource of 25 things you can do to put your PLR to good use. Their article is referring to one basic PLR package that comes with 10 PLR articles. Also, when reading the article keep in mind that while they're referring to one specific PLR bundle about bone broth, the list can be used with any topic.

Here's a couple of the tips they share:

7. Turn all the articles into a small paid eBook. 16. Use small excerpts of the articles as Facebook posts and tweets.

Head on over to Different Ways To Use A PLR Bundle now for the rest of their 25 ideas. 



Help Someone Face Today With God's Word

Devotions are bite sized chunks of the Word paired with thoughts that apply to real life in a special way. I can't tell you how many times I've turned to a book of devotions for a dose of light during a dark time or encouragement on a rough day.  There's nothing like finding 'just what I needed' on the page.  Those brief moments connected me to my Father's heart and gave me courage to face the world.

I'm so glad the authors were so faithful to write them - so brave about putting their work out there for publication.

What if they had not?  

What about you?

Have you thought about creating devotions yourself?

In my many years working at church, heading up our women's ministry and writing for print and the web, I've personally written hundreds of devotions aimed at ministering to the hearts of women and another small collection just for entrepreneurs.

I believe devotional writing is one of the most important types of content we can lend our words and creativity to.  The world is so busy, people are so rushed and pressed for time.  Some only have a few spare moments - and a devotion is perfect.

I feel so strongly about this, I've decided to deliver a training - to share my simple formula for creating devotions in five steps.  Click here to learn more.


What Is Content Curation?

content curation
content curation

After posting Build Traffic, Be More Visible & Build Relationships With This One Strategy I received some questions from people. They were still confused as to what content curation really means/what it means to be a content curator. So this post is the first in a series all about... you guessed it content curation ;-)

What Is Content Curation?

Content curation means pulling together content from various sources and presenting it to the reader in your own way. It may be easier to understand content curation by defining what it is not. Content curation doesn't mean presenting a list of stories or a weekly roundup of links. It's definitely not going and copying, word for word, someone else's content!

The idea is to take the information available and make sense of it for your readers. This means you'll have to take time to sift through all the content that's out there and choose what you think is the best and most valuable for your readers.  Once you've done that, you create bite size nuggets of info about that piece of content and point your readers to the full piece of content.

Why Curate Content?

One of the questions people asked was what's the point in curating content? The content is already out there, my people will eventually find it on their own.

True. The content is already out there. But the key point to curating content is that it's not just a pile of information. Every minute of the day all of us are inundated by large amounts of information thanks to the internet. And while the internet is a great thing, it also leads to overwhelm. Everyone has to sift through all that's out there to find what they're truly interested in reading. A good content curator does this for you!

How Content Curation Helps You

One misconception, and a big one, when it comes to curating content is that people choose to do it because it's a way for them to not have to come up with their own content - since you're pulling together content from different sources, this offers a shortcut to writing it all yourself. However, this isn't true. The content you curate can help you establish authority and create a connection with your readers.

Think of it from the reader's point of view. Your blog or website is a source of the exact information they want on a regular basis. It saves them from having to do their own sifting online. Over time, they come to see you as a go-to source for their information. They see you as a knowledgeable expert in your field. An automated program that uses keyword algorithms to suck up content from other sites won't do that.

If your content is relevant and helpful to your readers, they'll keep coming back for more. It doesn't matter to them whether you're the actual content creator or have taken the time to weed through all the info out there to find and share the best and most useful to them.

Curating content should be taken just as seriously as creating your own content from scratch, but one of the advantages of this approach is that it is easier and more cost effective than writing your own content or hiring a writer. It's just a matter of understanding your readers well and choosing the right content.

Ready to learn even more about content curation? 


Build Traffic, Be More Visible & Build Relationships With This One Strategy

smart-curation-skillsBlogging is hard work. It takes persistence, time, a will to not give up when the going gets tough. And of course as faith based bloggers - it also requires lots of prayer! Starting your blog is the easy part. Building a successful blog is the hard part. A successful blog requires: 

  1. Traffic
  2. Visibility
  3. Community/Relationships

While that list could be bigger, I believe these are three of the most important elements. But if you're not creating content on a regular basis all three of those areas are going to suffer.

I don't know about you, but my biggest struggle when it comes to blogging is...well blogging. At least blogging on a consistent basis ;-) And that's an issue. Without consistent, fresh content we'll lose traffic, visibility & our community may stop coming back if they regularly look for new content only to find none.

To prove my point, look at this snapshot of Faithful Bloggers statistics from January and February. I posted nothing in February and my stats took a nosedive.

January 2016 Traffic 


February 2016 Traffic 


Without consistent activity on your blog there's nothing for you to share. And as the two images above show, when you're not creating content and sharing it, your traffic suffers. Search engines love fresh content!

But what do you do when you've hit the dreaded writer's block and can't come up with anything to write about or you just don't have the time to write your own blog post? 

Curate content!

I fell in love with the idea of curating content when I heard about it a couple years ago from Kelly (McCausey).

Content curation is a great content supplement to help ensure you're posting on a consistent basis. It's an easy way to quickly add a piece of content to your site. But don't make the mistake of just throwing up a curated post for the sake of having new content added.  Instead, it's important to curate content that will benefit your audience.

What exactly is Content Curation? 

Content curation is organizing and sharing content with your audience.

Yes, it's that simple! If you're interested in seeing an example of how I curated a piece of content, check out this post here.

Looking for tips on how to curate content to maximize your blogging time? Try Smart Curation Skills and you can save hours each week.   (I even got Kelly to throw in a sweet discount! If you use coupon code LETSCURATE at checkout, you'll save $12!)