Ohio University ImPRessions

Ohio University ImPRessions

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3 Reasons Why Your Blog Should Have A Theme

May 27, 2014 11 Comments

By: Allison Rumsas @allisonrumsas

It seems that every time I check Twitter or go on Facebook I have another friend or follower that has recently created a blog. Blogs are no longer solely used as an outlet to share your opinions or the details of your everyday life, but are now great tools to enhance your portfolio, gain more writing experience and connect with a greater audience.

Starting a blog is relatively easy with help from websites such as WordPress, Tumblr, and Google+; the difficultly comes after the blog is created. It’s easy to get carried away with the hundreds of different possible backgrounds and layouts to choose from, not to mention perfecting your “About Me” header and uploading links to your resume and online portfolio. Once all these tasks are completed, the final step, and sometimes the hardest, is to decide what your blog’s theme will be.

I am a big fan of blogs having a theme. The theme doesn’t necessarily need to be narrowly focused, but it should be able to be used to describe the blog as a whole. If a reader stumbles upon the blog, they should understand this theme when reading the different posts. Deciding on a theme may take a while, but in my opinion, having a carefully chosen theme for your blog will prove beneficial in the end for both you as a writer and for the readers.

Originality

With millions of blogs accessible to anyone that has Internet access, originality is key and can be achieved by having a clear and creative theme. This is especially important if you plan on using the blog to help advance your professional career. As PR stars, it is given that we are all good writers and know how to reach and attract an audience, so it is important to have a creative and original theme to separate your blog from the millions of others. 

Focus

Having a theme, no matter how narrow or broad it may be is extremely beneficial when finding topics to write about and keeping your blog consistent. A theme makes it easier for you as the writer to decide what your posts should be about and which angle they should be written from. Most importantly, it keeps your blog organized and allows readers to read the posts in any order and still understand how they all tie together. 

Attract A Loyal Audience

We all have blogs we love and check daily or weekly. Why do we love them and continue to read their posts? Because we know what to expect in terms of content and writing style. When beginning a blog it takes a lot of work to spread the word and attract an audience. The easiest way to find readers that consider your blog a must read is to have a theme that generates posts and topics that readers expect you to write about.

If you weren’t always on board for blogs having a theme, hopefully these three reasons changed your mind or gave you something to think about! Good luck choosing a theme and happy blogging!

 

 

Blogging – Your Own Blank Online Canvas

November 15, 2013 2 Comments

BrickIf I had a quarter for every time a class, professor or professional stressed the importance of being a good writer I’d be rich enough to have a closet full of Louboutins and Louis Vittons. (A girl can dream, right?!) From press releases to ad copy to news writing to social media lingo, a successful PRofessional is one who can creatively communicate and articulate a message to their audience.

Blogging allows you to demonstrate your strengths and style as a writer. Whether you’re writing for a company or trying to develop your own personal brand, a blog can be your blank online canvas. Plus, it’s a great way to create clips for your portfolio. Whether your blogging about the best blueberry pie recipes or a new fortune 500 company’s philanthropy initiative, a blog can help you be seen as a thought leader. In our ever-changing technological world, brands and businesses are even implementing blogging into their social strategies. In fact, businesses that blog average 55% more website visitors than those who don’t.

Over the years, I’ve blogged a little, writing posts here and there for an organization’s or internship’s website, but this semester I’ve upped the aunty on blogging. In a professional setting I’ve been blogging for my marketing 4900 class taught by Nate Riggs. In an effort to recruit students to next semester’s class, my peers and I have been contributing to our blog – Ohio Marketing Students. From case studies to podcasts to how-to’s and more, our blog showcases the world of content marketing.

Through the purchased version of WordPress, we’ve been utilizing different analytical tools to help gain the best SEO. For example, instead of creating clever or cheeky blog titles, we create titles based on actual search terms. We’ve love for you to join our conversation by subscribing to our blog.

On a personal level, this semester I’ve also started by own blog – One Brick at a Time. In an effort to make the most of my senior year, (because YOSO – you’re only a senior once). I’m blogging about all of my bucket list experiences. From Larry’s Dawg House to karaoke at the Smiling Skull to stealing an Athens brick, each post will follow my journey as I complete signature OU/Athens things that I haven’t done before I leave this special place. Although it’s somewhat of a silly topic, my blog not only gives me a creative outlet, but it also is a way for me to showcase my writing skills.

You too can become a blogger! Choose a topic your passionate about and go!

-Sara Lowenstein is a senior studying public relations with specializations in sociology and community health. Check her out at @SaraLowenstein.

What Your Favorite Social Media Says About You

November 5, 2013 10 Comments

As young people – especially as PR students – we hear it over and over again: “Social media is taking over the world!”

New social networking sites are popping up faster than we can download the apps on our smartphones, and your social media drug-of-choice can give a lot of insight into your personality. What does your favorite say about your personality?

FacebookFacebook: You social butterfly, you! You’re an extrovert who loves to be in the know about all your friends’ current events. Most likely, your friends have learned to stop sharing new gossip with you because your reaction is usually “I saw that already on Facebook!” You like to live in – and document – the moment, and try to live life to the absolute fullest.

PinterestPinterest: You’re a dreamer who loves making plans and lists. You love to organize in a fun way – no dry agendas or boring PowerPoint’s for you! You have big plans – and a lot of them – but whether or not you follow through on them can sometimes be anybody’s guess.

Work-wise, you may be a bit of a procrastinator – but you’re great at keeping the mood light and moving things along. You can generally get along with most people – as long as they don’t steal your photo album titles.

TwitterTwitter: Constantly on-the-go, you don’t have time to slow down and explain your whole life to someone. You’re fast-paced, like things neat and concise, and love it when everyone else can keep up with your whirlwind lifestyle. One of your greatest joys is when the barista nails your “Grande-hot-triple five-pump-vanilla-non-fat-no-foam-whipped-cream-extra-hot-extra-caramel-carmel-macchiato” without batting an eye

You can be demanding, but you get stuff done – and while you might butt heads when working in a group, the final result always blows everyone away.

TumblrTumblr: You dabble in a little bit of everything and have interests in a wide variety of categories – art, music, books, movies, fashion – whatever it is, you’re tracking the tag on Tumblr! You like to have things all gathered in one place, and often tackle projects by breaking each major component into smaller blocks.

WordPressWordPress: You’re pretty no-nonsense – chances are, you have your ideal career all mapped out and know exactly how it is you want to get there. You know what you want in life and are driven, but still enjoy having a creative outlet to vent every once in a while.

You’re the go-to person when people want to get down to business. You’re quick, efficient, organized and great at delegating.

LinkedInLinkedIn: If LinkedIn is your favorite social media tool, props to you. Seriously. Obviously, if you’re a fan of keeping your online resume (more or less) up-to-date to the minute, you’re focused on your career and have a clear goal in mind. You can get a little bit of tunnel vision sometimes, but as long as your Facebook-loving friend reminds you to stop and smell the roses, you’re able to keep a balance.

You’re not the type of person to turn down an opportunity, either – you have a lot on your resume, and you’re definitely proud of what you’ve done, but you’re not cocky. You let your ‘rents gush about all your achievements for you.

So how do you stack up? Maybe you fit the description to a T, maybe not – as long as you stay proficient with whatever social media outlet you choose, you’ll be on top of the game!

-Kelsey Tucker is a junior with a double major in strategic communication and Spanish. Follow her at @kelseyptucker.

Blogging 101: What Should I Call Me?

October 29, 2013 3 Comments

blogTrying to figure out the theme of a blog, let alone the name could take hours, weeks or months if you’re really stuck. It’s like the epitome of writer’s block but worse because there’s not a definite focus. What did I do when it came to creating my blog? I thought about what I liked, what I am passionate about and what I am going to do with my life. The first two were easier, but the last one helped me with what I was going to write. My advice, follow these steps and you’ll have your own blog in no time!

Step 1: Pick a website. If you look online right now you’ll see that there are more blog websites than you can count on your hands. If you’re going to pick a website, think about what you’re going to use this personal blog for. I do write about other things than PR, but I find WordPress to be geared more towards professionals so that’s what I chose. If you’re not a WordPress fan, check out other blog websites such as Tumblr and Blogger.

Step 2: Pick a theme. This means color theme, blog theme and layout. On WordPress I chose the ‘Suburbia’ theme because I really liked the layout. As for my color theme, since I want to go into fashion and I traveled I chose black, white and teal. My background photo is a picture I took in Dublin. It’s somewhat blurry but it’s a photo of postcards laid out and it creates a great background. When you think about what the theme of your blog is remember to think about what you like, what you are passionate about and what you think you want to do with your life.

Step 3: The Name. The last step is to think of the name of your blog… the dreaded name that could take you hours. I chose ‘High Heels High Hopes.’ My cover photo is a picture of high heels with the name in italics. I love fashion and I do own very high heels and my hopes in life are much higher than that. When you’re thinking about the name for your blog, don’t be afraid to do a little research. Look up favorite quotes, past times, etc. Do whatever you need to, to figure it out and once you find what you’re looking for, you’ll feel that ‘aha!” moment.

These are the basic steps to making your own personal blog. I guarantee you step three will take you the longest amount of time. However, if you are still stuck check out some popular blogs to gain inspiration, my favorites are NYC PR Girls, Literally Darling, the Career Kid and the PR Woman. Just remember one last thing, it’s not just about the words written but the writer behind those words.

Happy blogging!

“Blogging is a great way to show your talents and interests to prospective employers, while adding an edge to your resume. If you blog consistently it shows your dedication, passions and creativity – all of which are key attributes employers look for in job candidates.”

-Lauren Conrad

–Kelly Hayes is a junior strategic communications major with a specialization in German and a Global Leadership Certificate. Follow her at @kmshayes. 

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