We’re so excited to have our friends from Darby Smart share 5 awesome online resources every blogger needs. Although blogging isn’t the main part of our business at Dear Handmade Life, it is an integral part of what we do. Our blog is our chance to offer our audience advice and tips from our (and our colleagues) years of experience as independent business owners, share recipes, DIY tutorials and inspiring makers we know as well as tell you about our adventures traveling and at our events. When we first started blogging to support our business we not only didn’t have an editorial calendar but didn’t put much thought into the images we included in our posts (we were still using our phones to take photos back then). Before we get to the 5 awesome online resources every blogger needs from Darby Smart I want to share one of the things that has helped us get our blog organized.
Chances are that you’ve heard bloggers talk about editorial calendars and how they help them stay on track. I had a blog for years before I created an editorial calendar. I liked the spontaneity of posting whatever inspired me whenever I wanted to post it as well as not having the pressure of posting on a particular schedule. BUT once I created an editorial calendar I miraculously felt MORE inspired and less stressed. I set our calendar with three posts per week. I intentionally chose a frequency that felt doable. I use Google Docs for our editorial calendar. I love Google Docs because it allows me to quickly move things around as well as share it with our contributors. It lets me keep everything in one place and choose what I want to share with particular people. Aside from dedicating time to our content and images, creating an editorial calendar has been one of the best things I’ve done to feel less stressed about organizing our blog as well as confident about what we’re sharing.
Our friends at Darby Smart have a few more tips below but before I turn this post over to them here’s a bit about Darby Smart:
If you don’t know about Darby Smart yet, they are an online community where creative minds come to share, shop, and discover creative ideas. Their site features DIY projects from designers and bloggers, which Darby Smart makes shopable. Darby Smart has a ‘showroom’ where you can upload photos of DIY projects you created, a blog featuring tips and insights for DIY entrepreneurs and aficionados, a marketplace where you can sell and buy craft supplies and handmade items, a monthly subscription box for DIY kits for kids and adults AND tons of free DIY tutorial videos.
Darby Smart is not only a great place to find DIY inspiration but also an amazing resource for DIY bloggers. You can apply to be a Darby Smart designer. Once you’re approved you can upload ideas and projects, which have their own pages where people can favorite them, ask questions and buy the supplies to make the project. Their site gets 7 million impressions a month and they link back to your blog so it’s a great way to build your audience and followers. They’ll also help you create DIY videos. Just send your video to them and you’ll receive text overlay, music, and of course an idea feature page. Plus they share data and insights on your dashboard so you’ll see where your traffic is coming from. I’m consistently getting inspired by the projects they share. Now onto their tips.
Create boards around your blog topics and dedicate time to do research and pin to those boards weekly. It’s basically the modern way to save magazine clippings. Also, create boards that give recognition to other bloggers for networking and more ideas.
- Darby Smart
Become a Darby Designer to help increase traffic to your website. We provide a direct link to your blog and a super easy way to upload your ideas so that they can be showcased to 7 million other crafters and creators. Plus, you get access to fun challenges (for a chance to get featured in Darby Smart social media platforms) and the weekly Darby Designer e-mail filled with tons of helpful tips and tidbits.
- Google Adwords Keyword Tool
Discover the easiest way to create the best headlines and hashtags. This helps to increase you visiblity in search engines and ensure your content is both timely and relevant.
- Use Hyperlapse
Create awesome DIY tutorials using Hyperlapse. Darby Smart will even help you edit by adding music. Overlays, and more. Read their blog on how to make videos that go viral here.
If you’re not photoshop savvy, Picmonkey is the easiest way to go. With a quick and easy way to edit and design images, it’s free and can be used right on your browser for fast photo fixes and graphics.