I’m the most successful blogger in North America – well, probably the world. I have monetized my blog so well that I’ve quit my job and now I earn six figures while typing on my laptop in my living room watching TVLand re-runs in my underwear with a beer at my side! I get so my comments to my posts that I have to shut down comments after only 48 hours, and my site gets so many hits that I had to lease a quad-processor dedicated server with 8gb of ram. Jason Calcanis, John Battelle, and GigaOM have nothing on me! Have you ever heard of a site with over 2 million backlinks?

That’s what most of us wish for isn’t it? I wish I was the most successful blogger in the world. Then again that would be an awesome responsibility. To have that many backlinks would require significant content. To have that many readers would require building a huge community. To have that kind of monetization requires planning, marketing, and probably some very experienced help. I think that as we (bloggers) build our sites these are admirable goals to strive for. Honestly, the majority of us will never become one of those top bloggers – but what’s the worst that can happen if we aim that high? At the very least, we’re going to be more successful than we currently are!

None of the top bloggers got to where they are without a significant amount of work. And none of them just did that work by the seat of their pants, I’m certain that each and every one had a plan. If the only thing sitting between you and the blog superstars is a methodical plan, and a regular system of work – what are you waiting for? I mean, the roadmap is already out there isn’t it? Maybe that’s why I’m not a blogging superstar, there really isn’t a personal ‘blogging roadmap to success’. What is out there are fragments….nuggets of gold and wisdom….1,000′s of posts full of enough knowledge to catapult your blog into the top 100 in the world. If you just keep reading them and implement haphazardly what you find as you find it (like I have) you will be more successful. But – if you want to be “uber-successful” you’ll need to spend some time physically writing down your personal blogging plan for success. Even if you read an entire book on the subject, or took a course – you would need to apply your situation.

My Blogging Mistake #1: Not Having a Written Plan to Follow

So – what am I going to do about it? I’m going to spend time developing one. It’s not something I can (completely) do in a day, and maybe not even in a week. I’ve read a lot of “blogging success” articles, which I’ll be linking for you in future articles. Each has contributed to what I think I need to do to make this a successful and profitable blog. For now, I’m going to start at a very high level.

I think my plan must consist of three very basic things:

  1. Setup (20%)
  2. Content (30%)
  3. Promotion (50%)

Blog Setup: In my best practices for wordpress blog post, I talked specifically about how I setup this (and other) wordpress sites. I think that parts of that are “pieces” of what I would consider the “Setup” portion of a plan for blogging success. I think a lot of the points could be elaborated on, so I’ll spend future posts on that. Setup to me just means getting the blog up and running, but I also consider it maybe ‘blog maintenance’ over time….adding and removing plugins, refining your theme, backing up your database, etc. I put 20% next to setup, because I think that setup and maintenance are never ending, and in the end it can consume all of your time if you aren’t careful. One fifth of your time seems about accurate as far as the amount of time you should be spending setting up your blog. Any more and you won’t be writing or promoting anything. Any less, and your blog won’t be user-friendly enough to keep people reading.

Blog Content: Content is of course king, and what in the end your visitors are actually coming for. 30% of your time may seem low, but honestly your blog has to be setup properly so users can easily subscribe, comment, search, read, etc. And promotion is 50% simply because the most important thing of all is driving traffic to the site and then monetizing it (if of course that is your goal). 30% is not low if you consistently have high quality content.

Blog Promotion: For the reasons I just stated – blog promotion is (to me) the most important thing. This would include things like seo work, building links, commenting on other blogs, building relationships with other sites, writing articles for link directory submissions, analyzing stats and visitor habits, and ads, affiliate links, or methods of monetization.

Ok – so far my grand “plan for blogging success” only consists of three bullet points. But now I have a plan…..er…an outline rather. I have a starting point from which to build on. But it was obviously a huge blogging mistake not to have a plan at all. Fleshing out the details of that plan will be the subject of many future posts (I’m sure). Do you have a plan for blogging success? Will you create one now? Will you come back here to see how my plan is working out? Please comment now below…!

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