If you’re a prolific blogger you’ll know that the process of research, writing, and publishing can be very time consuming.
First you have to find a relevant topic, then there are a huge amount of research resources to trawl through, compile, condense, and read, and that’s before you get down to the nitty-gritty of actually writing. After which you have to add appropriate images and make sure everything looks good in WordPress before hitting the “publish” button.
There are many tools available to make the individual tasks that go into producing a great blog article easier. News sites, social media and other blogs are excellent topic and research resources. Tools like Evernote make pulling together the various strands of research into one place a breeze, and there are any number of very good text editors, word processors, and dedicated blogging applications that help streamline the writing process.
However, it can be inefficient to rely on multiple different tools. Spundge is an online application that can help streamline the blogging process by bringing many of the tools bloggers need into one coherent application.
Spundge can be used for many different workflows, including for journalism and content curation, but we’re going to have a look at one way you could use it to improve your blogging productivity.
What Is Spundge?
Spundge has three main tools that are of interest to us. Firstly, it pulls in data from a variety of sources, including social media, RSS feeds, and sources curated by the Spundge team, and allows users to apply a series of filters. The result is a customizable stream of relevant information that bloggers can monitor and search for useful content.
Secondly, it allows users to gather relevant material from those streams into notebooks. You can have as many notebooks as you like, and they can be shared with other people, who can either just view them or collaboratively add their own content.
And finally, once the research material has been collected, articles can be written within Spundge. The contents of notebooks are displayed right next to the editor, so writers have everything they need on hand.
The free version of Spundge is great for research, but you’ll need a Pro account to fully take advantage of the publishing features.
A Blogging Workflow
First you’ll need to create an empty notebook and give it a name.
When you open it, you’ll see a page with three panes. In the middle is the stream of information, to the left are filters that will determine the content of the stream, and to the right is the (currently empty) space where the notebook’s contents will live.
The most important of the filters are the keywords. As you might expect, it’s here that you’ll choose the terms that will populate your stream with relevant information.
Below the keywords are a set of “firehose” toggles, so you can add and remove sources.
As you browse the stream, you can click the checkmark on articles of interest to add them to the notebook. It’s also possible to bring content from outside of Spundge into notebooks with a browser extension or bookmarklet.
Once you’ve gathered all the sources you need, it’s time to write. To get started create a new story.
On the left you’ll see a list of notebooks, and on the right is the editor. You can browse through all your notebooks, choose one, and drill down into the individual articles you curated earlier.
There are two ways to publish stories to a WordPress site: embedding and syndication. To embed a story on a WordPress site, you simply take the HTML snippet that Spundge gives you and paste it into WordPress as you would a Youtube video embed code.
Before sending an article to WordPress, you’ll need to add it as a syndication target in the Spundge settings.
Once that’s done, return to the “Story” list, hit the syndicate button, and your new article will be uploaded to the WordPress site.
And that’s all there is to it! Research, writing, and publication all in one streamlined workflow.
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