simmer To be in a state of gentle ferment: thoughts simmering in the back of her mind.
Some of my most well received blog posts have been ones that I’ve let simmer for a couple days before publishing them. What I say simmer, what I basically mean is not creating your blog post in one sitting. Instead, you come up with the initial blog post topic and then mull over it for a couple of days. During this time period, I often do these three things to facilitate the simmering process:
- Take notes
- Do research
- Create a rough draft
1. Take Notes
Taking notes is very important because it keeps you from losing or forgetting a good idea for your post. Fortunately, our minds will often give us great ideas without our effort. However, we often get these ideas when we least expect it (in the shower, while driving, right after waking up, etc.). Therefore, it’s good to have a way to capture your ideas easily – whether you have some index cards by your bed or you use your smartphone as a voice recorder while driving.
2. Do Research
Research can form a valuable section of your blog post. By pointing to other sources, you give credibility to your views as well as point your readers to other perspectives on the same topic.
A couple days before you sit down to create your post, consume online content about your topic. Of course, taking notes works hand in hand with doing research, so keep your PDA or a pen and paper handy to capture interesting ideas.
If you’re really ambitious, I recommended reading a book or two on your subject.
One last thing on this point: don’t make your post just like a mini-research paper. Make sure to also include your personal experience since blogging is a personal medium and more importantly, your experience is the best source for content.
3. Create a Rough Draft
I don’t usually create a rough draft, but for the posts I let simmer, I’ve found it very helpful to create a rough draft. Rough drafts help a lot because those posts tend to be much longer and more in-depth than the average 200-400 word post. A rough draft can make the process more manageable so you don’t get overwhelmed with all the information you’ve accumulated. Also, if I’ve collected a great deal of data, I’ll create an outline too to organize the data before I write the rough draft.
Advantages and Disadvantages
You’ll end up with higher quality posts by letting them simmer first. These type of posts will be more in-depth than the vast majority of posts already out there. Your posts will stand out, attract links and traffic, and build your online reputation.
However, as you probably can tell, it takes time to develop these posts. Your post frequency will suffer if your try to do the simmering process on every single post. So, if you want to post multiple times a week, you probably can’t let every post simmer because simmering takes time.
Still, I would try to use the process 1-2 times a month. This strategy provides a balance between post frequency and post quality. You can post multiple times a week and still creating that memorable, longer, more in-depth post once or twice a month.
Over to You
Have you ever tried to let your blog posts simmer? If you have, what was your experience?