How To Choose What To Blog About + Make Money At It

“Well, it’s a lifestyle blog for smart, funny women. So you’re allowed to read it.”

(Finger guns, awkward winking)

This is something I say 3-4 times a week when I meet strangers and tell them what I do. (I only recently stopped following “I’m a professional blogger” with “yesthatsathing.”)

If they’re interested, I go on to tell them how I wanted to create a space on the internet that didn’t pigeonhole women and combined smart, interesting things (like career, travel, self-development, finances) and less serious stuff (cats, cheese, cute outfits).

As much as I love it, I realize that Yes and Yes doesn’t really fit into a neat, tidy blogging category. Is it a travel blog? What’s going on with those True Story interviews? Did you seriously write a post that’s just photos of animals smiling?

While it’s true that I frequently publish things simply because I think the internet needs to know about sleeping bag skirts and homemade oreos, there’s definitely a method to my madness. If you’re in the process of developing an editorial calendar for your blog, here’s a behind-the-curtains peek at my on-going post series and why I started them.

Post Series:
Real Life Style Icons
How often: once a month

  • I want to introduce my readers to new blogs + support interesting, thoughtful content
  • These posts remind us that there are heaps of gorgeous, stylish humans in the world and we come in lots of different packages
  • When I interview other bloggers, they (hopefully) link to the post on their own blog or social media. I send traffic their way and they send traffic my way. Win/win!
  • If I’m feeling ambitious, I’ll pull affiliate links for clothing items featured in the fashion blogger’s outfits - like this. Remember, you need to disclose when you’re using affiliate links - my disclaimer is in my blog footer.
  • After asking their permission, I compiled my interviewees’ best, most clever style tips into a free ebook, which I used to get 1,000+ fresh newsletter subscribers!
  • Style posts helps diversify my content and make my blog appealing to more advertisers
  • It adds more ‘Pin-able’ content to my site. Pinterest runs on fashion, food, and craft posts - which I don’t post very frequently. This interview series changes that!


Post series: Mini Travel Guides
How often: once a month

  • Share local + expat insights into cool travel destinations
  • Introduce my readers to other blogs and writers
  • Benefit from guest poster’s traffic when they link to the post
  • Remind readers that I wrote two travel ebooks and if they like these posts, they might like my ebooks!

PicMonkey Collage

Post series: Read // Eat and The Kitchen Globetrotter
How often: once a month, each

  • Introduce my readers to other blogs
  • Benefit from the bloggers’ traffic when they link to the guest post
  • Diversify my content
  • Post more ‘Pin-able’ content
  • Stuff my face with great recipes, drool on my keyboard


Post series: Network of Nice
How often: once a month

  • Support my readers in making awesome things happen
  • Build community
  • Close the karma circle
  • Differentiate myself from other blogs


Post series: Web Time Wasters
How often: every Sunday morning, at 6 am

  • Introduce my readers to awesome new blogs
  • Give my readers cool things to read on a Sunday morning - a time that’s usually ‘dead’ on the internet
  • Non-sleazily network with the people I’m linking to
  • Insert affiliate links to cute things I would/will/have purchased
  • Promote conversation about interesting or thought provoking things that I’m linking to
  • Empty my favorites folder, already!


Post series: True Story
How often: Every Monday at 6 am

And that, friends, is the ridiculously transparent, somewhat mercenary break down of my seemingly directionless, lifestyle-ish blog. If this level of steely-eyed strategy doesn’t terrify you (or even appeals to you) you can hire me here.

Now you tell me!  Why do you post what you post? What’s your strategy?

photo by death to the stock photo // cc


Sharlyn Lauby

One feature I post on my blog HR Bartender ( is called Friday Distraction. It only runs on Friday because sometimes by then we can use a good distraction. The content is lighter and usually a visual - cartoon, infographic, etc.


So, I feel like you might have answered this somewhere on your blog and I’m either too lazy or not observant enough to find it…but how do you find the people you interview for your True Story posts? I realize you travel and meet tons of fascinating people, but a lot of those stories are things you don’t really find out in casual conversation (but maybe I’m wrong). It’s just something I wonder about every time you post it.


Good question, Katie!

I find them in lots of ways:
1) I meet them in real life, they tell me their story and I ask if I can interview them
2) I post a list of people I’m looking to interview and then they email me
3) People hear about the interview series and then email me, offering to share their story, in hopes of helping other people
4) I think of someone I want to interview and then google ‘Blog [topic]’


I love your blog(s) and how diverse the content is. It keeps me coming back every day for sure!

My posts revolve around health and happiness as I see it. Most are all about the things we do - both on trips and locally (happiness is exploration). So one day there will be a write up of the gardens we went to see on a trip to Texas, and the next there will be a feature on a piece of public art on the campus where we work/school. My other regular features are some box reviews (the health part - healthy eating and taking care of yourself with a little pampering), Friday photos (any photos that don’t fit into other posts), and Goal Recap, which is something I think sets me a little apart. I laid out my goals for the year (health, blogging, education, business) and I provide updates on everything each week. It’s very transparent and keeps me accountable :)


This was such an interesting read Sarah. It’s great to see that all of your features are in line with your core branding/message and yet you still manage to instill so much personality into them.

I also have a lifestyle blog. Mine is for young women who want to infuse a little bit of style into their everyday life (through fashion, food, traveling etc) without having to put in too much effort. So I tend to write easy fashion tips ( I also feature ‘real women’), easy recipes, general travel tips etc.

I’m hoping to refine my strategy this year so you might get a call from me in the future :)


I didn’t realize you had this small business blog (just added you to feedly a week ago). But, this post is awesome! I’m hoping to speak at the Healthy Living Summit in September about Series vs. Link ups, and I might have to reference this post (I’ll make sure to credit you, but just wanted to make sure you were cool with it!)

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