I often come upon the advice that you should keep a blogging schedule. In fact, it is often said to be essential for building an audience. Sadly though, it just as often misses data and studies to back this statement up.
The reason behind keep a blogging schedule is apparently to have your readers know when to expect new content. Then in turn they can come visiting your blog the days or hours when you have posted. Sans a schedule, they say, you will lose these return visitors.
A thing of the past
But really? Who actually visits their favorite blogs one by one, manually checking for new content?
A mere 2.4% of my readers, that is who. And that includes visits from links in emails, chats, etc.
I would propose that manually visiting blogs one by one is a thing of the past. Long dead and buried. The way readers follows their favorite writers today is through updates on social networks, via subscribing services and by email newsletters.
Looking away from your visitors, there is another tangible upside to keeping a blogging schedule — your own motivation.
If you have committed to a schedule where you know tomorrow is publishing day, it is so much easier to find those 30 minutes of time to finish your post. Especially when starting a new blog I believe this can be powerful.
It could also grind you into a creative mindset, where everyday incidents can turn into blog posts and where you are more indulgent to scribble down your thoughts and ideas for future dissection and research.
Downside of blogging schedule
So with two points (one moot) for keeping a blogging schedule, what are the downsides?
For one you will run the risk of publishing nonsense blog posts, just for the sake of keeping with your schedule. I believe this is a cardinal sin and you should never give your readers the idea that your posts suck — that will definitely drive them away.
Another important aspect, for me, is stress. I love writing and would not want to ruin that by feeling constantly stressed about having to follow a blogging shema.
I run schema free
I find that I already have a nice pace in my blogging and I like writing whenever I feel like it, when I have something of substance. However adjective that is…
So for me that weighs in heavier towards continuing without a blogging schema. But maybe I am missing something? I would be interesting to hear your thoughts on this — please let me know in the comments or on Twitter!