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5 Essential Tools You Should Have in Your Blogging Arsenal

5 Essential Tools You Should Have in Your Blogging Arsenal

There is one thing that distinguishes successful bloggers from penniless ones – they treat their blog like a business.  They do everything possible to maximize their productivity, which includes taking advantage of a number of different tools to make their blog profitable.  Darren Rowse of ProBlogger is one of the many bloggers that have emphasized the importance of blogging tools over the years. Rowse has found that blogging tools help his team communicate with each other and, most importantly, with their readers.

Ready to maximize productivity in your own blog?

Here are the most important tools every blogger needs in their arsenal.

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Google Analytics

How much traffic are you receiving? How are visitors interacting with your site? How has their behavior changed over time? Which topics get the most interest?

You can’t answer these questions without an analytics tool. Google Analytics is the best free analytics program available.

Aweber

Most website visitors visit your site and never return. They are also unlikely to buy a product from you the first time they visit your webpage. This means that you need to get them to subscribe to an email list, build a relationship with them, and then pitch them.

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Aweber is the best email marketing software on the web. It allows you to create custom opt-in forms, organize your subscribers, and send automated messages to them. It only costs $19 a month, which is a great deal for bloggers on a tight budget. Hubspot and many other email marketing tools cost at least ten times as much.

TextOptimizer

Google has evolved considerably over the last few years. Rather than emphasizing keyword density, it takes a close look at the relevance of keywords to the content surrounding them. This is a difficult concept for many bloggers to grasp, which is why many were penalized by the first Google Panda update in 2011.

TextOptimizer is one of the few tools that allows you to see how semantically optimized your content is.

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Thrive Themes Suite

The vast majority of bloggers rely on WordPress as a Content Management System. Gael Breton is a prolific blogger who invested $50,000 in blogging tools between 2013 and 2016. Breton states that Thrive Themes Suite is one of the most valuable WordPress development tools he has ever used.

“I seriously can NOT imagine building a site without Thrive Themes at this point. It’s incredibly powerful, user AND budget friendly and fun to use. The drag&drop editor can easily replace a monthly sub to a landing page service and make your blog posts look awesome, the themes are incredibly fast and full of smart features and Thrive Leads quite literally tripled our opt-ins with its powerful a/b testing features.”

If it’s so valuable for a blogging legend like Breton, you should take advantage of it as well. It’s great for creating custom themes and running split tests to optimize your content.

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Hootsuite

Every serious blogger needs a strong presence on social media. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to take time throughout the day to be constantly tweeting or sharing posts on Facebook.

Hootsuite solves this problem. You can create content ahead of time and schedule posts across your social networking profiles. If you are running a blog with evergreen themes (or at least aren’t in an industry that requires extremely fresh content), then you can create all of your social media content at the beginning of the week, which helps you be more productive.

There are a lot of tools out there for bloggers, but these five can give you a head start in getting the most out of your hard work and creating a productive business.

Featured photo credit: tranmautritam via pexels.com

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Ryan Kh

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Last Updated on March 29, 2021

5 Types of Horrible Bosses and How to Beat Them All

5 Types of Horrible Bosses and How to Beat Them All

When I left university I took a job immediately, I had been lucky as I had spent a year earning almost nothing as an intern so I was offered a role. On my first day I found that I had not been allocated a desk, there was no one to greet me so I was left for some hours ignored. I happened to snipe about this to another employee at the coffee machine two things happened. The first was that the person I had complained to was my new manager’s wife, and the second was, in his own words, ‘that he would come down on me like a ton of bricks if I crossed him…’

What a great start to a job! I had moved to a new city, and had been at work for less than a morning when I had my first run in with the first style of bad manager. I didn’t stay long enough to find out what Mr Agressive would do next. Bad managers are a major issue. Research from Approved Index shows that more than four in ten employees (42%) state that they have previously quit a job because of a bad manager.

The Dream Type Of Manager

My best manager was a total opposite. A man who had been the head of the UK tax system and was working his retirement running a company I was a very junior and green employee for. I made a stupid mistake, one which cost a lot of time and money and I felt I was going to be sacked without doubt.

I was nervous, beating myself up about what I had done, what would happen. At the end of the day I was called to his office, he had made me wait and I had spent that day talking to other employees, trying to understand where I had gone wrong. It had been a simple mistyped line of code which sent a massive print job out totally wrong. I learn how I should have done it and I fretted.

My boss asked me to step into his office, he asked me to sit down. “Do you know what you did?” I babbled, yes, I had been stupid, I had not double-checked or asked for advice when I was doing something I had not really understood. It was totally my fault. He paused. “Will you do that again?” Of course I told him I would not, I would always double check, ask for help and not try to be so clever when I was not!

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“Okay…”

That was it. I paused and asked, should I clear my desk. He smiled. “You have learnt a valuable lesson, I can be sure that you will never make a mistake like that again. Why would I want to get rid of an employee who knows that?”

I stayed with that company for many years, the way I was treated was a real object lesson in good management. Sadly, far too many poor managers exist out there.

The Complete Catalogue of Bad Managers

The Bully

My first boss fitted into the classic bully class. This is so often the ‘old school’ management by power style. I encountered this style again in the retail sector where one manager felt the only way to get the best from staff was to bawl and yell.

However, like so many bullies you will often find that this can be someone who either knows no better or is under stress and they are themselves running scared of the situation they have found themselves in.

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The Invisible Boss

This can either present itself as management from afar (usually the golf course or ‘important meetings) or just a boss who is too busy being important to deal with their staff.

It can feel refreshing as you will often have almost total freedom with your manager taking little or no interest in your activities, however you will soon find that you also lack the support that a good manager will provide. Without direction you may feel you are doing well just to find that you are not delivering against expectations you were not told about and suddenly it is all your fault.

The Micro Manager

The frustration of having a manager who feels the need to be involved in everything you do. The polar opposite to the Invisible Boss you will feel that there is no trust in your work as they will want to meddle in everything you do.

Dealing with the micro-manager can be difficult. Often their management style comes from their own insecurity. You can try confronting them, tell them that you can do your job however in many cases this will not succeed and can in fact make things worse.

The Over Promoted Boss

The Over promoted boss categorises someone who has no idea. They have found themselves in a management position through service, family or some corporate mystery. They are people who are not only highly unqualified to be managers they will generally be unable to do even your job.

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You can find yourself persistently frustrated by the situation you are in, however it can seem impossible to get out without handing over your resignation.

The Credit Stealer

The credit stealer is the boss who will never publically acknowledge the work you do. You will put in the extra hours working on a project and you know that, in the ‘big meeting’ it will be your credit stealing boss who will take all of the credit!

Again it is demoralising, you see all of the credit for your labour being stolen and this can often lead to good employees looking for new careers.

3 Essential Ways to Work (Cope) with Bad Managers

Whatever type of bad boss you have there are certain things that you can do to ensure that you get the recognition and protection you require to not only remain sane but to also build your career.

1. Keep evidence

Whether it is incidents with the bully or examples of projects you have completed with the credit stealer you will always be well served to keep notes and supporting evidence for projects you are working on.

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Buy your own notebook and ensure that you are always making notes, it becomes a habit and a very useful one as you have a constant reminder as well as somewhere to explore ideas.

Importantly, if you do have to go to HR or stand-up for yourself you will have clear records! Also, don’t always trust that corporate servers or emails will always be available or not tampered with. Keep your own content.

2. Hold regular meetings

Ensure that you make time for regular meetings with your boss. This is especially useful for the over-promoted or the invisible boss to allow you to ‘manage upwards’. Take charge where you can to set your objectives and use these meetings to set clear objectives and document the status of your work.

3. Stand your ground, but be ready to jump…

Remember that you don’t have to put up with poor management. If you have issues you should face them with your boss, maybe they do not know that they are coming across in a bad way.

However, be ready to recognise if the situation is not going to change. If that is the case, keep your head down and get working on polishing your CV! If it isn’t working, there will be something better out there for you!

Good luck!

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