We’re all on the hunt for ways to make our lives easier, right? We’ve got things we need to do and things we want to do, and they don’t often intersect.
Well, good news. If you’re a blogger spending way too much time trying to grow your email list or increase your page views, InDesign can help. Here are 9 ways it will make your life WAY easier.
1 | You don’t have to look for a designer.
When you have InDesign, you don’t have to hire a designer. It’s super easy, so you can just do it all yourself.
Finding a designer is super stressful. It takes a ton of time, because there are so many designers out there. You’ve got to go through all of the ones who specialize in your field, then pick one that you like the best.
Do you go with the one that costs the most? Doesn’t that imply that they’re the best? Or do you go with the cheapest one, and potentially sacrifice quality?
Is there even a correlation in expertise vs. cost?!
Then, if you’ve figured out which designer you want, let’s say you’re ready to book. Oh wait, they have a 5-month-long wait list. Ouch.
When you use InDesign on your own stuff, you don’t have to spend all of your time researching what to look for in a designer, deciding what you can afford, and waiting for an opening in their schedule. You just do it yourself, on your own time.
2 | You don’t have to wait for a designer to finish your stuff.
Let’s say you’ve found a designer you’re happy with. Awesome! Now you’ve come up with a blog post idea, and it’s got a killer content upgrade that goes with it. You send the idea to your designer, and they tell you they’ll have it for you in… two weeks. Because their schedule is packed.
While this isn’t a huge deal in some situations, it can be a real downer in others.
For example, a few months ago I was reading Marianne’s post about creating Fake Leadpages with WordPress and ConvertKit. I was bummed that it required ConvertKit, so I figured out how to do it with Mailchimp instead. Yes!
I messaged Marianne on Twitter and told her what I’d figured out, and she said if I wrote it up in a post, she’d link to it in her original post. Double yes!
I knew this post would get a ton of traffic, so I wanted to include a content upgrade. I moved around my editorial calendar, wrote up the post, created my content upgrade, and posted it three days later.
Imagine if I’d had to wait for a designer to create the content upgrade for me. There was a lot of excitement around Marianne’s post for the first week or two, so waiting would have been a big damper on my page views and email list.
Instead, I was able to open up InDesign, create something super fast, and put it up on my site right away.
3 | You don’t have to find room in your budget for a designer.
Now let’s talk money.
InDesign on its own costs $20/mo. If you wanted to add other programs like Photoshop and Illustrator, you could get all of Adobe Creative Cloud for $50/mo. That’s not exactly a cheap investment.
But let’s think about it this way: if you’re going to hire a designer, they’re going to charge you at least $25/page for your content upgrades, not including things like your media kit, ebooks, etc.
If you’re serious about wanting to offer content upgrades and the occasional ebook, it’s worth the cost to pay for InDesign on its own or Creative Cloud as a whole.
Plus, with Creative Cloud, you know exactly how much you’re going to pay each month. With a designer, your costs could change a) based on how much content you want to put out, or b) if the designer wants to raise their rates.
Budgets are already stressful. Don’t add unexpected costs in there if you don’t have to.Not sure if you can afford a designer? Then do it yourself!Click To Tweet
4 | You can create checklists in InDesign to keep yourself organized.
I’m super Type-A, and therefore absolutely love a good to do list.
The hardest part, though, is finding the perfect to do list or planner that fits my exact needs.
Luckily, I can just design my own in InDesign. I set it up exactly how I want (with as many pages as I want), and print it out.
Or, if I want to be eco-friendly, I can add interactive elements that allow me to check off the boxes directly on my computer. Yes, please!
Want to figure out how to create interactive checklists in InDesign? Sign up for the InDesign Adventure Guide and I’ll show you exactly how to do it!
5 | You can create templates in InDesign to speed up the creation process.
Now let’s talk about speeding up your blog process.
When I create content upgrades, I’m not creating everything from scratch. I came up with a content upgrade look and feel when I first started offering them, and I built a template for any future content upgrades.
I simply keep a folder titled “Content Upgrade Template” with the file inside, copy and paste the entire folder into a new location, and work on the copied file. That way the original stays intact for me to go back and copy later.
Not only does this take a good chunk of time out of my design process, but it also helps me create a consistent look. I want to make sure people know who gave them the content upgrade, and having a consistent brand with my content upgrades helps them remember me!
Plus, by making the process super simple, I’ve made it easier to create more content upgrades. It’s not a daunting task, so I’m able to have more on content upgrades my blog (and therefore a bigger email list!).
6 | InDesign is super easy to learn!
Here’s the thing: Adobe is super intimidating. People believe that programs like Photoshop and InDesign are pure wizardry and take an advanced degree to be able to figure out.
Well, good news: InDesign is super easy to learn!
In fact, I found it easier than programs like Microsoft Word to write out term papers in college. Everything is customizable, so it’s super easy to move things around on your page. You don’t have to try to line things up based on where text is; even the text can be moved around where you want it.
To be honest, a lot of it is drawing shapes and changing colors.
Plus, there are so many tutorials out there for you. You can check out all of my posts about Adobe InDesign here, or enroll in my InDesign course, the InDesign Adventure Guide!
7 | A-Master helps you stay consistent with your pages.
When you’re creating ebooks, it can be super daunting to create the same exact layout on a ton of different pages. Copying and pasting backgrounds, chapter titles, and page numbers doesn’t sound like the ideal way to spend my time.
Luckily, it doesn’t have to be! You can use A-Master (or B-Master or C-Master or Z-Master… however many master pages you want!) to design the basics of your page (background, page number, etc), and apply that Master to any of your pages. Then voila! Those elements show up on every page that A-Master is applied to.
How easy is that?!
Interested in learning more about how to use A-Master? I go through a step-by-step tutorial in the InDesign Adventure Guide! Sign up below!
8 | You can grow your list super easily.
It’s no secret that content upgrades are an awesome way to grow your email list.
You create a super helpful giveaway (like a worksheet or workbook or spreadsheet) that relates to your blog post. In exchange for their email addresses, your readers can get access to this goodie for FREE!
Not only does it help position you as a super helpful expert in your field, but it’s also an awesome way to grow your email list.
Content upgrades aren’t nearly as intensive as other list-building strategies like webinars and giveaways; you simply create whatever goodie you want to give away for free, and bam! People sign up for your email list.
Plus, once you’ve nailed down your process for creating content upgrades, the process is a breeze. This means you can create content upgrades more often because they aren’t a huge time investment!
Interested in learning how to create content upgrades? I’ve got the tutorial for you here! Oh, and here’s how to send them out with Mailchimp, and here’s how to create fake Leadpages popups with Mailchimp.
9 | You can grow your income by creating your own ebooks in InDesign.
So, InDesign is great for growing your email list. But it’s also awesome for growing your income, too!
Once you’ve mastered creating content upgrades in InDesign, you’ll be able to create super awesome ebooks that you can sell for extra income! Awesome, right?
Plus, with ebooks, you don’t have to deal with printing them or paying for anything up front. You simply design it, export it as a PDF, and put it up for sale. Easy, right?
PS Want a free ebook template to get you started? Here you go!
And did I mention that the InDesign Adventure Guide walks you through the whole process of creating an ebook to sell? You’re actually walking away with a real product that you can use to grow your income!
Are you ready to give InDesign a try? If you have any questions as you go, let me know in the comments! I’m always happy to help!