As a marketer and writer, I follow other blogs to learn about marketing, to see what other entrepreneurs are up to, and to brainstorm ideas for my own blogs. I like blogs that are truly informative and serve a purpose, that provide great resources, and that show a little humor and personality. It is through reading others’ blogs that I’ve developed and defined my own writing style.

Here are 5 of my favorite blogs:

HubSpot – The first shout out goes to these guys. Years ago, when I was brand new to content marketing, one of my long-term clients recommended HubSpot to me. From there, I spent a few hours each week reading their blogs, studying and taking notes, and polished my writing.

From there, my exposure to HubSpot only grew. I had the opportunity to attend the HubSpot Inbound marketing conference back in September 2015, and I even became HubSpot and Inbound marketing certified this past January. All of these experiences and opportunities have shaped and powered my writing and marketing career.

CoSchedule – This is one of my favorite blogs for resources. This blog always has great cheat sheets, templates, and other worksheets that I can use and customize for my own business needs. One of my favorite templates is the social media calendar. I’ve been using it to plan, coordinate, and schedule my own social media posts each week.

Neil Patel – If you haven’t heard of him, this guy is like the King of content marketing and the digital marketing space. The best thing about Neil Patel? He always seems to know what I’m looking for at the very minute I’m looking for it.

For example, about a month ago I was researching ways to boost our SEO strategy and really combine forces with our content team, which is really things should work in a perfect digital marketing world. Now, I know enough about SEO to make it work for content purposes, such as writing meta descriptions and keyword placement, and so on, but I don’t know enough about the “behind the scenes” details of SEO. And at the moment I was researching this information, Neil Patel freakishly sent me an email all on SEO best practices. Creeper or genius?

Pardot – This blog is great to learn about marketing automation, how to get sales and marketing to work together (“smarketing”), and great email marketing examples. If I’m drafting a marketing email template to send to clients, I look up Pardot’s blogs for examples of great designs, email subject lines, and review the “do’s” and “don’ts”.

Project Eve – I stumbled upon this blog several years ago when I was researching “female entrepreneurs”. This is a great blog for female entrepreneurs, the working woman and mom, and tips for boosting productivity and finding the perfect work/life balance, which I’m always a fan of…

I believe most of this site’s blogs are all third-party contributors or “guest bloggers”, but I think this strategy is effective at generating a diverse knowledge base and providing a wealth of information to its readers, like me.

Because I read blogs for informational and educational purposes, I collect all my notes in Evernote app, which is organized into “notebooks”. I also connect this to my Insightly account so I can “assign” and file notes for specific clients, projects, and opportunities.

I know. I’m a nerd.

I’ve learned through the years that I can go crazy reading and reading and reading all kinds of great blogs, but I easily became overwhelmed with information, so I had to organize it in a way that made it easy for me to find specific notes later. And after doing some research, Evernote seemed to be the best way to do this. The best thing about Evernote is you can use it for anything: recipes, shopping lists, electronic files of any kind—the possibilities are endless.

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