Menu

Blogging 101: Create a New Feature

As we wrap up Blogging 101, set yourself up for good blogging habits and engaged readers with a regular feature.

Welcome to Blogging U! This course isn't currently active, but you can learn more about what we offer and register for upcoming courses on the BU home page.

One of the best ways to inspire loyalty is to publish regularly. And the best ways to make sure you publish regularly is with a recurring feature — it’s like making a pact with yourself and your audience.

Today’s assignment: develop a regular feature for your blog.

Why do this?

  • Creating a regular feature means your readers have something specific to wait for at regular intervals — it gives your blog a hook.
  • It’s always a good idea to work on healthy blogging habits, and regular features help you stay on track.

We’re all creatures of habit, bloggers and readers. Adding a recurring feature — or simply planning posts at regular intervals — helps your writing stay sustainable. Even a purely personal blog of random musings benefits from a hint of structure. When you go serial, you ensure a steady stream of content.

Not sure what kind of feature will work for you? Look at previous posts to see what resonates with readers. Dip your toes into your stats page  — some posts are like-magnets, others generate lively discussion, others get shared on Facebook, and some are unicorns that get all three. Choose one you find meaningful, and spin that into a feature.

Some of you are already toying with the idea of publishing a regular post rounding up your favorite reads of the week. That’s fantastic — and a smart, time-efficient feature idea to boot. What other options do you have? We’re glad you asked.

  • A weekly photo post (or even better: a weekly photo gallery post).
  • A monthly Q & A with one of your blogging buddies.
  • A Music Monday, featuring the song that rocked your weekend.
  • A Flavor Friday dedicated to the recipe you experimented with over the previous week.

Your features don’t have to alliterate: a Tuesday Rant is just as good as Snarky Sunday. If a weekly commitment is too much, that’s fine: a monthly book review or current events-inspired reflection works just fine. Or devote a day — weekly, bi-weekly, monthly — to unleash the latest installment in your long-term fiction project (or senior thesis, or memoir).

Unless you want to, in which case: shoehorn away!

Whatever feature you decide on, it should fit into your blog. We’re not asking you to shoehorn a weekly photo into your poetry blog, or a post about food into your book review site. The topic and type of feature should be something that makes sense giving your blog’s focus and your blogging goals.

Once you decide on a feature, publish (or schedule) the first installment. If you’re not ready, publish a post announcing the feature to let your readers know what to expect, when. Once you’ve got a few installments in the bag, add a menu item or widget to highlight your feature.

Not sure about your feature idea? Head to The Commons to chat.

Hey, everyone — Blogging 101 is almost done! We’ll have a weekend post tomorrow for folks who want to do more, and a final task on Monday.

After the final task, The Commons will remain open for one week, until Monday, October 13. At that point, we’ll turn off the ability to post or comment, but the site will remain up as a continual reference for you.

If you’re ready to keep going, Blogging 201 starts on Monday, October 20. Sign up is now open!

Show Comments

49 Comments

Close Comments

Join the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Comments

    1. WAHHHhooo mister. I love your blogs layout/theme. Feels so official and fancy. But your “LongMonday” site name is what got me to click 🙂

      P.S. Your “Keep Me Updated” Button for followers is hidden, so I can’t see it unless I hover over it. But i’m now following!

      Like

    2. This seems like a good idea to me! I would have written something there, but can’t find your Friday messages?? Anyway, I follow you too now. Do stop by and maybe follow back. 🙂

      Like

    1. Your header with the photos in the name is awesome! I commented on your makeup post- thanks for the tips. You could probably incorporate that into your regular feature. You are off to a great start! 🙂

      Like

      1. Thank you so much! It took me forever to figure out how to create it, but I am very happy with it! I have been looking through your blog and the content is great! So interesting and making me self reflect haha! I will be visiting !

        Like

  1. The twelve of the month was hard for the first ten months after our son died. But then I decided to be thankful on the twelve for getting to be his mom for 20 years. So now I post “12 Things I am Thankful for on the 12th” each month. I also post about praying scripture on the first of each month.

    Liked by 8 people

  2. Perfect idea! Ever since I started my blog, I’ve been thinking about doing something like this, but I never knew what I could do it about… This post has given me some great ideas! Check out my blog to see what’s going to be new real soon! 😀 Thanks!

    Like

  3. I have never had a consistent feature because I never knew what I should write about consistently. But then I realised my blog is about self-improvement, so I should really do a monthly post showing how I improved. It’s taken a while but eventually the inspiration comes along.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’d been racking my brain trying to come up with a feature that felt authentic to my site. I think I finally came up with something I’ll debut next week. It’s something I’d been wanting to do and this just gave me the push I needed. I’m excited!

    Like

  5. I’ve been having so much fun with my first blog, I started a second. @.@ I have no idea what kind of regular feature would work on my primary blog http://writeoutofthedarkness.wordpress.com/

    but… I am going to try “Five Minute Fiction Fridays” on my 2nd blog “All of the Earth” (Creating something out of nothing reference.)http://allthisearth.wordpress.com/category/the-most-powerful-force-available-to-humanity/five-minute-fiction-friday/

    Criticism, critiques and suggestions are very welcome!

    Like