Online presence is a vital part of your job search. Building a powerful presence can expand your network, establish your expertise, and promote your personal brand. If you’re looking for a way to expand your presence beyond social networking sites, a professional blog can be a great tool.
Do you enjoy writing? Do you consider yourself to be a strong writer? As seen in the diverse community of bloggers, you don’t need to have a degree in journalism to have a successful blog. If you like writing, this step-by-step guide can help you through the initial questions about blogging.
What to Write
For some, the answer to this question might be natural. For others, deciding what to write about is the hardest part of starting a blog.
Write what you know. And since one of the main goals of building your online presence is to build professional credibility, stick to professional topics. Where you go from there depends on your field and your experience. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- How-To: Share your knowledge and write how-to guides that relate to your field.
- Reviews: As your field expands, keep up-to-date on all of the latest changes. Write reviews of new products and developments in your field to demonstrate your level of expertise.
- Predictions and Trends: Analyze the trends in your field and share your predictions based on your insight and professional opinion.
- Anecdotes: Share personal stories that relate to your industry.
- Mix it Up. While it’s important to maintain a consistent voice and to stay within the topical scope of your blog, sharing a combination of anecdotes, reviews, predictions, and how-to’s can help keep your blog interesting for both you and your readers.
Where to Write
There are a wide range of blogging services available, many of them free at a basic level. The most popular services are WordPress, Blogger and Tumblr. (The Jobfully blog is published using WordPress.) Most blogging sites allow the user to choose from a selection of free templates, and offer more options for customization with a paid account.
If you already have a custom domain, you can incorporate a blog into your site by using one of the above services. If you don’t have a domain but want one specifically for your blog, you can purchase a domain through a blogging service.
How Often to Write
To maintain the interest and engagement of your readers, blog at least once a week. Start off at a pace that won’t overwhelm you, then increase your blogging frequency as you get the hang of it. It’s also a good idea to research and balance your topics in advance. It’s important to understand blogging requires commitment. Be sure you’re ready before jumping in.
Just remember the ways blogging can enhance your job search effort:
- Demonstrate your expertise beyond what’s on your resume or online profile
- Show your personality and build your brand
- Let your passion come through
Keep evaluating whether or not your blog is serving at least one of the above purposes, and you can make blogging an enjoyable career booster.