Task Batching - How To Batch Create Your Content!

Sunday, March 20, 2022

This post is collaborative, but all opinions are my own

Some bloggers work full-time alongside their blogs. It means writing/content creation has to happen around life. Maybe you are a full-time creative looking for better ways to spend your time and get more things done. Batching your content and to-do list tasks can save you time and improve productivity. Here's how you can successfully batch your content creation to maximise your time!

What Is Content Batching?

Task batching is when you schedule some time to focus on one job. You group similar jobs and have a productive and focused session to get it all finished. Have you ever started something and then paused to answer emails or do something else? It can knock your focus, so task batching allows you to cut out distractions and get things done. For example, you answer emails and DMs until your inbox is zero. Once you've done that, you don't look at your emails until you have finished your next task. You spend an hour planning content, writing meta tags etc.

So what is content batching? Content batching is where you set aside a few hours to brainstorm and write content. You could take an hour to plan blog posts and social media posts and then take another hour to write or photograph what you've planned. Once you have taken the time to create content in bulk, you could have a few weeks or months worth of content to use! It can be demotivating when you're busy and have nothing to publish, so by batching it in advance, you can post when you need it!

Related: How to create a content calendar for your blog/social media

How To Start Content & Task Batching

Task batching is one of my favourite ways to get things done. Nothing can stop me from getting things done when in the creative zone. I want to use that burst of productivity in the best way possible. The hardest part about task batching is knowing where to start when is setting up your time. Here's how to start batching your time: 

1 - Brainstorm your to-do list

Before you start grouping tasks, you need to write down a to-do list. You could write a list or do a mind map of all the little jobs you need to get done. It could include answering emails, creating content for a brand you're working with or scheduling tweets for the next week. I like to do this with pen and notebook, but you could do it digitally if that's something you prefer. I'd recommend using Notion or Excel as those are user friendly and have a lot of creative range. If it's easier for you, you can break down each task into smaller chunks if there are lots to complete.

For example, you could write complete brand work, but that may include creating a YouTube video, writing a blog review and creating social media content, which differs in skills. If you have paid and admin work to sort out, you could divide your jobs between those to help you decide what is of more priority. 

Related: Blog maintenance jobs you should be doing regularly! 

2 - Divide and conquer 

Once you have written out your to-do list, you can batch the tasks together. I like to use different coloured highlighters to split jobs into similar things. You could group answering emails, comments and DMs as they are all similar. It may be easier when you're in customer service mode to do those jobs together! Group things that make sense to you. If you don't think emails and comments are the same, don't do it in the same time block! Some other tasks you can batch together are:

  • Taking photos for blog and social media - including PR products
  • Tidying your workspace as a whole
  • Brainstorming ideas for content, photo ideas, keywords etc. 
  • Scheduling social media posts across multiple platforms
  • Writing content, newsletters and editing old posts

3 - Schedule your time

Once you have slimmed down 20 tasks into 6-10 more manageable blocks, it's time to schedule those into a calendar! You don't have to stick to your time block. It's easy to change when you do things, so don't feel pressured to force yourself if you don't feel like it. I use Google calendar to put in my time blocks as it's free and accessible over multiple devices. I colour-code them depending on if it's work, blog, admin or school-related.

I like to estimate how long I think it will take me or how long I want to work on each thing. Once I've given myself that time, I must stop working on something when the time is up. It helps me to stay on track and avoid demotivation. Unless I am really in the zone, I stick to my block. Give yourself a break between each task, or you could burn out. You should also avoid circling back to things after your time, or you could be working on it all day! Eventually, you could hire someone permanently to deal with certain tasks such as payroll or social media management to give you more time to do other things. It's great to batch work, but if you're on your own, you may not have time for everything. As your blog or business grows, you may want to put your time into key things. Outsourcing certain batch tasks could be useful and boost your brands growth. 

Related: Improving your productivity with a life admin day!

Tasks You Can Batch

There are so many tasks you can batch. Whether you are creative, work a 9-5 or hustle on the side, there are some things you can batch! These things are for creatives and hustlers to batch, but you can do most daily tasks in bulk to save you time. You are also not limited to this list. It's worth writing a list and seeing what distracts you the most as you work on your business, self or blog. For example, when I am listing on eBay, creating each listing one by one is time-consuming. Instead, I take photos in bulk, create a template and then create the listings. It also means my listings end near enough at the same time, rather than one every 10 minutes!

For Bloggers:

  • Answer all of your blog comments
  • Answer all your emails/DMs 
  • Look for & download stock images for upcoming posts
  • Batch content ideas 
  • Come up with titles, keywords and meta descriptions
  • Create blog posts in bulk (or write each subheading/notes to fill out later!)
  • Edit and update old content in bulk
  • Take photos of products for upcoming posts
  • Take social media photos in bulk
  • Create Pinterest pins
  • Schedule tweets and promotions
  • Writing newsletters and scheduling them
  • Tidying up your workspaces 

For Entrepreneurs/businesses/hustlers:

  • Answer all of your blog comments
  • Answer all your emails/DMs 
  • Tidy up your workspaces
  • Create product ideas or brainstorm side hustles
  • Work on product designs in bulk
  • Take images for your products
  • Edit and upload images together
  • Create listings in bulk/ upload drafts when needed
  • Schedule promotion on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest
  • Write future newsletters
  • Fill out surveys for an hour
  • List eBay items all at once or use the scheduling feature
  • Schedule meetings and appointments

Top Tips For Task Batching

Task batching is a great way to focus and get things done. It's great if you have lots of small tasks that get in the way of the more important ones. Here are some tips for batching your tasks

  • Make sure you're focused - It's easy to say you'll get your inbox to zero, but if you aren't focused, you'll procrastinate. Put on some music and power through each session with a focused target.
  • Move things around - If you don't want to take photos, swap the blocks around! Just because you've allocated an hour to take social media photos doesn't mean you need to do it in that hour.
  • Digitalise your lists - I will forever be a fan of pen and paper. I love using my planner to organise my time, but it's not for everyone. If you are creative and want to use Notion, Google calendar or another digital organisation space, go for it! Whatever will help you keep on track. 
  • Have everything you need ready - If you're taking lots of photos for upcoming social media and blog posts, make sure you have props to hand. If you want to write blog posts, make sure you have your ideas, keywords and hints ready. Running around for each task takes time and eats away at your blog. 
  • Use a time - There are lots of aesthetically pleasing clocks and trackers which can help you track your time blocks. It could be on your monitor screen or a physical clock. It's also worth having to ensure you're adding in breaks! 
  • Apply do not disturb - The best way to content batch is when your head is in the game. Focus on one thing at a time and put your phone on silent. I know scrolling through Instagram is addictive, but it won't help you finish your tasks!
  • Use it with your daily life - Task batching doesn't just need to be for creative work. You can apply it to your full-time job and home life! Batching meals in advance or organising parts of your home are both things you could consider doing in a task batch. 

Task batching isn't for everyone, and it takes a bit of planning. I love having dedicated slots to fit things in, as it helps me organise my time. When I have a set time to complete things, I am more productive and inclined to do those things. Sometimes working down a list can take a lot of motivation! Do you task batch your creative content? I'd love to hear how you group blogging jobs and how you've managed to make it work for you!

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