Pop quiz! Which answer best describes your file organizing system?
- Imagine the aftermath of a 3-year-old’s birthday party.
- I can find things … sometimes … using the search feature.
- Saving every file to my desktop counts, right?
- Girl, I’m a folder-making, file-naming ninja.
A’s, B’s and C’s, this post is for you.
(Hey, D’s. My kindred spirits. Jump to the comments and share your wisdom.)
You love blogging, but sometimes the process is SO daunting.
You feel scattered, unsure of where to start and frustrated that it takes so long to pull together ONE post. Some bloggers post every single day and make it look effortless. What’s their secret?
You can be too.
Establish a file organizing system.
Systems are a lot like habits – the process becomes easier and faster the more consistent you are with using it. Create a system that’s easy to follow and intuitive to the way you work.
This is the file organizing system that I’ve been using for years. Feel free to personalize the folder names to reflect how you naturally search for things. If the year of the post doesn’t matter to you, try organizing your posts according to what category they belong in. I suggest keeping the date in the actual blog post folder name though, because it’s helpful to have them organized chronologically.
Create a template folder for new posts.
One of my favorite time-saver tips is to embrace templates. In this case, create a folder template that you can quickly duplicate and rename for each new post.
Within the blog post folder is another folder called working. This is where I save text and graphic templates.
Photoshop Templates – I save layered Photoshop files that are pre-sized to my blog and social media specs. Each PSD includes layers with the fonts, colors and other graphic elements that I use regularly. This way everything is in one place, is quicker to customize for each post and helps to manage brand consistency.
When my graphics are ready to go, I save the final jpegs/pngs in the final files folder (not the working folder) so I always know where the final files are. Make sure to give your image files relevant names, such as title-of-post.jpg (not image32.jpg). Google will love you.
Text Document Template – Each text document template starts out with places for headline options, categories and research notes/links. It’s so much easier to fill in the blanks as opposed to starting off with a blank document. As with the final images, I save the final blog post text in the final files folder as backup.
Social Media Template – I also keep a text document in my working folder with social media guidelines and sample tweets/FB posts (for inspiration). After I finish writing a post and creating the graphics, I take 10 minutes to write all of my social media messages and schedule them all at the same time using the CoSchedule WP plugin.
Consistency is the key to efficiency.
With a clear game plan for organizing your blog files, you’ll have more time to focus on the important things – creating great content. Commit to your system, but don’t be afraid to refine it over time as your blog grows.
Any questions? Are you pumped to get your blogging files in order? Do you have a system that you love? Share in the comments.