As a content writer, it can feel like there are a million things to do every day (and a thousand distractions getting in the way). In this fast-paced world, good time management is of the utmost importance, and productivity starts with your ability to stay organized.
When you work out how to manage your time, you’ll get more things done and take your productivity to a whole new level. Here, I’ll be sharing some time management tips that will help you churn out more content this year.
Track your time to know how much you’re spending on certain tasks
If you want to get better at time management, you need to figure out where your time is going. Keeping track of the time you spend on certain tasks will make it easier to manage your time and allow you to do a better job of estimating how much time it would take you to complete a job.
Not only does time tracking help you stay focused, but it also makes it easier to charge clients what they owe you. As a content writer who might be working by the hour, keeping track of your time allows you to accurately calculate the amount you should be charging.
Many people prefer to use a time tracking tool like Minterapp, which helps you track every second spent working on a project. Once installed, you can integrate it with your favorite project management tools or use it as a Google Chrome extension to track your activities in real-time.
Choose a niche and try to stick with it
As a content writer, choosing a specific niche can help you save time. By specializing in one area, you won’t have to do as much research. You’ll be able to get jobs done much more quickly and confidently, as you will already be an expert in that area. People will also begin to see you as a person of authority, so you won’t have to work as hard to get clients.
To select a content writing niche, you first have to consider what you are passionate about. Also, do your research to identify if there is a market for your niche. You don’t want to pick a niche and then find out that nobody is hiring writers for that field.
Acowebs has a great guide to finding your niche, which is well worth reading if you would like more help in this area.
Use templates to streamline your processes and store information
Creating templates for work you have to do over and over again can make your life a lot easier. They’ll act as a guide and can be very useful for repetitive tasks. You can also use these templates to store information that you might need in the future, so it’s easier to access and use.
There are lots of different types of templates you could use for different purposes. For example, an invoicing template can help save time whenever you need to bill your clients. You could also use SEO templates, like those from Loganix, that make it easier to achieve success in your content marketing efforts. There are backlink gap templates, keyword research templates, and content strategy templates that will help you to make plans and collate all of the information you might need to use in your work. Having everything in one place can streamline your processes and save you time so you can get more work done.
Bulk schedule social media posts to promote your content
With the rising need to stay on top of social media trends, it can be stressful and time-consuming having to create new posts on a daily basis. With social media bulk scheduling, you can plan your posts and schedule them to be posted at specific dates and times on any platform.
Devoting a chunk of time to scheduling all of your posts for the next week or month is a lot more time-efficient than putting each post out every day.
There are plenty of tools you can use to schedule all of your social media posts. If you need help with choosing the right platform, make sure you check out SocialPilot’s guide to the best Facebook publishing tools for businesses.
These tools aren’t just for Facebook alone. They can also be used to schedule content on other platforms like Instagram, LinkedIn, and Tumblr. Try scheduling your posts in advance, and you’ll be surprised by how much time you can actually save, so you can devote more to your writing.
Focus on one job at a time
Content writers can often be spinning a lot of plates — you might be checking content for plagiarism, writing advertising copy for one client, email newsletters for another, and social media posts for someone else. It can be tempting to switch between tasks without finishing them, so you feel like you’re making progress in different areas, but it can actually lead to your wasting time. Instead, the best way to manage your time is by concentrating on one job at a time and completing them as you go wherever possible.
If you struggle with this, there are freelancer apps specifically designed to help you stay focused on your work. An example is Focus Booster, an application that helps you minimize distractions using the Pomodoro technique. This is a time management trick that allows you to break your work schedule into 25-minute intervals of uninterrupted work and 5-minute break periods. The Focus Booster acts as a time tracker and helps you focus on your projects while also alerting you to periodic breaks so you don’t feel too overwhelmed.
Outsource the tasks you aren’t good at (or that you dislike)
If you’re a freelancer or you run your own business, it can feel like you have to do absolutely everything yourself. But this often leaves you with little time to do what you’re good at — the writing.
Things like accounting, sending emails, and managing your social media for your business can take up a lot of time, so it might make sense to outsource these parts of your job to others. This will free up more time for you to do your work to the best of your ability.
Take a look at what tasks you tend to perform all of the time, which ones you’re good at, and which ones you like doing. Then start to develop a plan of how you could offload everything else to people who will enjoy it or who are better qualified.
As a freelance content writer, managing your time is going to be one of the most important things. With several projects requiring your attention all at once, your ability to manage your time effectively will help you stay on top of your game and keep you from getting overwhelmed.
This is why you should implement tips such as time tracking, focusing on a niche, bulk scheduling, and outsourcing jobs that will take up your time unnecessarily. There are also several time and project management apps available to help you effectively manage the time you spend on different jobs.