The role of bloggers has grown immensely in the last decade. In the early 00s bloggers mostly wrote. They’d find a topic of interest, pontificate for a bit, and let the commenters have their digs. As the decade trucked along, the face of blogging changed in a way that required bloggers take on more responsibilities. There were:
- Banner ad campaigns to track and manage.
- SEO considerations in code and content.
- Link building and other marketing technniques.
- Additional writers to manage and edit.
- Social media identities to control.
Undertaken manually, these tasks would amount to more than a full-time job for any blogger. The only reason bloggers can maintain sane schedules is through the use of tools.
These tools have evolved through the years, providing more and more assistance with the various tasks that blogging involves. While many of them cost a few dollars, the amount of time they save the average blogger more than pays for them.
If you’re looking for additional tools to help you manage your blog, take a look at the entries on this list for good starting points.
Though they wear many hats, bloggers are writers first and foremost. Without composition skills, bloggers will find difficulty building a loyal audience. When it comes to content creation, many if not most bloggers have the necessary skills. But from time to time every writer needs help with the process, especially when there are issues such as SEO to consider.
1. Scribe: Even great copywriters can get lost in the sea that is SEO. There are so many keyword considerations. On top of that, you have to balance keywords with writing that humans will enjoy. Scribe content tools help you create that balance, no matter your audience or keyword needs.
2. Wordtracker: While Scribe will help you integrate your best keywords, do you know your optimal keywords in the first place? Wordtracker can give you a huge number of ideas. It spits back so many keyword possibilities that you can also generate new content ideas from it. With a free trial available, why not give Wordtracker a try?
3. Bottlenose: The best way to attract readers is to write about topics that people are already talking about. The more recent the data, the better. Bottlenose live social intelligence gives you a stream of social activity, which will give you dozens of ideas for your next post.
It’s not enough to write a blog post and hope that people find it. Bloggers must promote the post through various channels. On a more general scale, bloggers need to promote their properties through various tactics. A balanced promotional and marketing strategy will lead to a steady supply of new and loyal readers.
4. Blogger LinkUp: MyBlogGuest is a popular entity in this field, but it is now a crowded space with plenty of abuse. Blogger LinkUp is a much lower key, easy to use guest post exchange. Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday owner Cathy Stucker emails out a list of prospects for those seeking guest posts. If you need to promote your blog, check out Blogger LinkUp guest posting services.
5. HootSuite: Social media management can be a pain. Not only do you have multiple platforms to manage — such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Instagram, and others — but you also have both personal and professional identities to maintain. HootSuite social media management makes all of that easy. There are multiple columns to help you sort your data, and you can switch accounts with ease.
6. MailChimp: One of the most effective ways to promote your blog is through a newsletter. When people sign up for a newsletter, they are granting permission. As anyone who reads Seth Godin knows, permission is one of the most valuable assets a marketer can possess. MailChimp’s mailing lists can help you manage your newsletter and ensure that it is not only delivered on time, but also looks professional.
7. CommentLuv: In old days, leaving comments on other blogs was a great way to refer readers to your own. Now comments are over-crowded, and few people click the links in them. The CommentLuv plugin lets people see the most recent posts from commenters. Install it on your blog and watch people flock to comment. And since there are links to their site, they’re more likely to remain civilized.
Beyond creating and promoting content, bloggers also have the unsavory task of managing their blogs. As with the first two aspects, this has become much more involved in recent years. You’ll need a number of tools to get by.
8. Raven Tools: As a blogger you can’t just start performing SEO tasks, link building, and social media campaigns on a whim. You need a plan. Raven Tools help you keep track of all these tasks, providing you with insight and metrics along the way. It might be the most expensive tool on this list, but it is also the most useful for any kind of blogger. You can check out Raven Tools marketing tools free for 30 days.
9. Trello: Most blogs today are written in teams. When you have a team of creative people, you need a management system. While shared task lists can work, they’re not always the best tools for creative types. That’s where Trello comes in. It’s essentially a souped up Basecamp, allowing users to create schedules, add notes, and generally keep track of what everyone is doing. Trello is free so give it a look and see if it will help you manage your site.
10. QuickBooks: We save the biggest headache for last. Online income typically comes from multiple sources. You have ad networks, affiliate marketing, and other sales that require all different kinds of treatment. That means you either need a full-time accountant, which is too expensive for most blogs, or powerful accounting software. Accounting software from QuickBooks is simple enough that anyone can figure it out. It will help you manage income, pay invoices, and file taxes without hassle.