How to Use Evernote as a Blogger

A few weeks ago, I started using Evernote as my primary “blogging workbench.” It is where I store blog post ideas, collect various post components, and then write the post itself. This has proven to be a robust solution that enables me to be working on several posts simultaneously.

My Evernote Blogging Workflow

I thought I would share my workflow with you. Yours will be different, I’m sure. But, hopefully, this will provide you with a few ideas.

If you are just getting started with Evernote, I suggest that you buy Brett Kelly’s remarkably practical e-book, Evernote Essentials, 4.0. It is worth setting aside a couple hours to work through this brief, 95-page book. It will save you DAYS of learning Evernote on your own.

My go through the following six steps in creating a new blog post.

  1. Set up a blogging template in Evernote. There are certain components that I want to create or collect for every blog post. For example, I am now using the SCORRE™ method from the Dynamic Communicators Workshop (DCW) to prepare every post. This is an acronym for Subject, Central Theme, Objective Statement, Rationale, and Evaluation. I store my template in an Evernote notebook called Templates, along with numerous other templates I use on a regular basis.

    The template looks like this:

    My Evernote Blogging Template

  2. Create a new note for every blog post idea. Whenever I have a blog post idea, I go to my Template notebook, select my Blog Post Idea template, right click on it, and select Copy to Notebook. This puts a fresh copy of the template in my Blog notebook, complete with a “post ideas” tag. I then give the note title a unique name (the working title for the post) and then fill out as much of the not as I have the time and inclination to do. As a result, at any one time, I have dozens of post ideas in various stages of completion.
  3. Assemble the various post components. When I get ready to really work on a blog post, I begin assembling the various pieces. I usually begin with the subject and the central theme. Then I add whatever is easiest to add first. It might be the relevant links, a few images, and then the objective statement. (I don’t have space in this post to go through what these elements are. If you want to learn the SCORRE™ method, I highly recommend DCW. You can get a $200 discount by using the special discount code: HYATTVAIL) Although it is primarily designed as a speech preparation tool for public speakers, it works equally well for bloggers.
  4. Write your blog post in Evernote. I write the first draft of my post in in Evernote. i like having everything in one place. I don’t worry about formatting. I just try to get the post out, resisting the urge to edit my work as I am creating it. Once I have the first draft, I go back through and edit it. Once I have a stable draft that I am relatively happy with, I am done in Evernote.

    The completed note may look like this:

    A Completed Blog Post in Evernote

  5. Copy your post to your blogging software. I select all the text in my post and copy it to MarsEdit, my blogging software of choice. This is where I add the metadata (i.e., post category, tags, and description). I also add all the formatting, including bold text, italics, lists, and other styling. I like a lot of control, so I personally work in HTML mode. However, this is not necessary for most bloggers. In fact, you could copy and paste your draft directly into WordPress.

    Here’s what blog post looks like in MarsEdit. Keep in mind that this is HTML code.

    The Same Blog Post in MarsEdit

  6. Schedule the post and review your work. When I am happy with my work, I edit the date I want the post to appear. I always schedule mine for 4:00 a.m. CDT. I then upload the post to WordPress. I then usually preview the post and review it on my site. The post isn’t live yet, but it gives me a chance to see the post in my blogging environment. I then proofread it a couple of more times and declare it done.

Evernote has enabled me to be more productive in my blogging. I love having one place where I can store everything.

Question: Are you tried using Evernote as a blogging tool? If so, how is it working out for you? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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  • http://twitter.com/AnnieMueller Annie Mueller

    Hi all, just a tweak to this system: using a script to open your template up in Evernote with one click. There’s now a little icon in my top menu bar – one click and I’ve got my template of choice opened up in my notebook of choice in Evernote. You can create a script for each template you have. I like this method because 1) I don’t have to have another notebook for Templates (I like to keep it as streamlined as possible) and 2) It’s one less bit of copy-and-paste.

    I followed the instructions here for setting it up on my Macbook: http://www.mysimplecuriosity.com/getting-things-done-with-evernoteprojects-part-2-note-templates-for-mac/#more-352There are also instructions at that site for Windows users. 

  • douglasmcclure

    Mr. Hyatt,

    I came across this post and wanted to thank you for your openness and generosity in sharing!

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  • http://www.empoweringthe80percent.com/ Ellory Wells

    Michael, thank you for sharing your template and your methods in this article. I just completed my first article using your outlined strategy and I have to say, it was easier and faster to collect my thoughts and clarify my message using your guidelines than using my own.

    Thank you for your wisdom!

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  • http://soulofatlas.com/ Mark David Henderson

    Under Evaluate, there are tiny checkboxes that look like they have been checked later. What are those and how do you put them into the template?

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      That’s just Evernote’s standard To-do. Just select it from the menu under Format | Insert To-do.

  • http://www.coffeeforthebrain.blogspot.com Aaron Maurer

    Michael, can you share this template? I would like to use it to write up some blog posts.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Sure, Aaron. You can find it here. Thanks.

      • http://www.coffeeforthebrain.blogspot.com Aaron Maurer

        Thank you so much. Going to test this template out and see how to improve my writing.

  • Arin

    Nice workflow. On that note, have you tried using postach.io (http://postach.io)? The service lets you post markdown formatted posts to your blog and create a specific notebook in your evernote only for blogging. Somewhat like what you’d do with using github and jekyll for blogging but much less fuss.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      No, I have not tried that, but I am looking into it now. Thanks.

  • markjl

    Hello try using postach.io which creates a blog site automatically from Evernotes you choose to tag

  • Graeme Spice

    Thanks very useful – I use Evernote for loads of stuff and htis makes a lot of sense for me – I have 3 different wordpress sites with Blog elements which I crosspublish and post out via social ledia accounts – I always have ideas but pulling them all together is my challenge!

  • RonnieTabor

    I’ve been riding on the Evernote train for the last 12 months and have in the last 3 months improved my effectiveness with Evernote ten-fold. Thanks for sharing all the great resources and information Mike.

    Ronnie
    http://www.ronnietabor.com

  • RonnieTabor

    One of my new favorite evernote features is being able to embed audio notes into a note

  • Stephen Fisher

    I love Evernote and I plan on using it more in the future. It’s a great tool that I can use through all my devices. I haven’t found as much functionality as Michael yet, but as I use it more, then I believe it will become even more useful

  • http://brianmittelstadt.wordpress.com/ Brian Mittelstadt

    Obviously I’m late to the party here, but thank you for the post. I have been using Evernote, but not at this level. I created a copy of your template to help me with my blog posts!

  • Rose

    Absolutely love this post and the comments only make me want to write more! (always a good thing) I’m just starting out with blogging for an audience and this post has given me lots of ideas, like actually creating a template to follow. Yet as much as I love Evernote, I still can’t get myself away from using Word to type my draft. I know many of the things you can do with Evernote (I’ve been using it for at least 2 years)…but I can’t break out. I think I lean on Word’s spell-check, grammar-check automation a lot. Perhaps that won’t be needed as much once I write more. Anyway, thanks for posting this and your other Evernote posts.

  • http://myharpblog.com/ Elliott J. Scott

    I made the decision a couple of days ago to start using Evernote more to my advantage. Before, I only used it to backup a few files. Thanks for posting this, Michael!

  • http://www.DavidJBradley.com/ David J. Bradley

    Years later and this is still an excellent post… The list is very helpful in my blogging! Thank you @mhyatt:disqus!

  • reason19

    Very useful, thanks.

  • sony

    thank you so much…. the information you provided were very interesting and helpful …. It would be better if you make the matter more easier to understand for common people…. Make Money , Blogging Tips

  • Williesha Morris

    Just saw this – super awesome. Only problem with directly copying and pasting from Evernote into WordPress are those darn tags that prevent proper spacing. I usually take the text from the WordPress editor, paste to Notepad/WordPad and find/replace and then put it right back in!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com/ Michael Hyatt

      Have you tried pasting into the Text editor of WordPress rather than the Visual Editor? I don’t get any HTML at all when I do that.

      • Williesha Morris

        That’s brilliant, no I haven’t tried that. Thanks!