A blog can link you to the world of work
I KNOW it sounds crazy but you could be highlighting your expertise and creating opportunities by sharing your ideas and insights… on a blog.
Before you hear some reasons why blogging could help your job search, here is a tale from the other side.
Recently New York start up, SeatGeek, was looking to hire a communications director so they tasked their candidates to write a sample blog post and promote it on the social channels. This allowed them to see who could write the clearest, most compelling and engaging content and promote it the furthest. Obviously this is an important part of this role but blogging can be useful in other ways.
In my work I come across a lot of frustrated job seekers, some whom have been out of work for a long time, who just cannot get a break.
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Take Jenny, she returned to university as a mature student and completed a degree in nutrition but she just couldn't get a break.
She tried every idea and tack to no avail. I suggested she try writing down her experiences in a blog.
Now she is using her blog as a way to highlight her expertise. Rather than feel down about the stopgap job she's in, she uses the people she meets through it as inspiration, talking about changes they've made in their nutrition and the affect it is having on their lives. The benefits to her are twofold, she can attract private clients and when applying for a role, she can offer a web link to her ideas along with her standard CV, setting her apart from the rest.
So where do you start?
If you're like me and have a lot to say and you can commit to writing regular blogs, go to WordPress or Blogger and get cracking. If you have less to say, try a site like Tumblr where you can use a mix of your own posts and articles by others.
Work out the purpose of your blog and always write with your reader in mind.
Sure you want to highlight your expertise but what better way to do that than to solve another's problem with helpful advice. For example, this blog offers advice on careers and job search while this post aims to inspire you to showcase your expertise as a new blogger and, hopefully, along the way it shows my expertise, subtly. Make sense?
In my experience, I've found it's great to mix my blogs up. Sometimes I have a genuine up-beat rant about something I am passionate about, or I may bring in another voice through quotes or I'll go into reporter mode and interview someone who I feel is of interest to my readers.
So you've written and published your post, now what?
Tell the world! Use your social media networks to get the link out there and add it to social news websites, like Digg, Reddit and Delicious. If you've included pictures, pin them to your boards in Pinterest. Add your blog address to your email signature, CV and online profiles too. Look for forums or niche networks and use your post as a conversation starter.
Don't feel that you have to stop there either. Is your post topical or newsworthy? Journalists are regularly on the hunt for stories, search for them online or have a look at #journorequest on Twitter. Many trade magazines now include blogging sections where, as long as you abide by their rules, you can write posts and get noticed.
Finally, look for other bloggers in your field. Comment on their posts, get them chatting and connect with them on social networks because they just may know someone who is looking for you. Don't be afraid to ask if you can write a guest post, just remember to add value and write for their readers.
So have I convinced you or do you think it's a crazy idea?