By: Lindsey Zimmerman @lindseyzim716
Any PRSSA guest speaker or industry professional will tell you that good writing skills are absolutely crucial if you want to get ahead in PR. Luckily, it’s easier than ever to showcase your writing talents by creating your own blog. I think it’s safe to say that a professional, well-written, consistently updated blog could be the deciding factor between two equally qualified candidates for the same internship or job.
Many students may find the concept of blogging to be daunting. After all, you have to come up with interesting, relevant ideas; update your blog regularly; and promote your content without being annoying or clogging up your friends’ newsfeeds. However, with a little bit of blogging strategy, you’ll be writing your way to the job of your dreams in no time.
- Update your blog regularly. If you have to set a reminder on your iPhone to remind you to post, do it. For busy college students and young professionals, once a week is a fairly reasonable goal. Pick a spot during the week where you have an hour or two of free time, whether it be a lazy Sunday afternoon or that awkward free period in-between classes. Make a habit out of sitting down and writing during your designated time and soon enough, it’ll be part of your routine.
- Come up with unique, original content. As easy as it might be to reblog the latest from Thought Catalog, chances are your readers will want to see something fresh. Coming up with blog topics is easier said than done, but it’s often the hardest part of creating great content. Think about experiences in your everyday life that could be of interest to readers, comment on a recent event that’s been getting attention in the news, or put your own twist on one of the thousands of topics you can find with a quick Google search.
- If your blog has a theme, stick with it. If you have a fashion blog, your audience will want to read about fashion, so it wouldn’t make sense to start posting about food or cars. You don’t necessarily have to have a theme for your blog, but it’s a good idea if you pick one that’s related to an area you’re particularly passionate about and in which you’d be interested in pursuing a career (using the above example, a fashion blog would be great for someone who wants to work in fashion PR). If you do choose a theme, keep it consistent in order to retain your target audience.
- Engage with other bloggers. This is how the Golden Rule comes into play in the professional world. Reading, commenting on and sharing posts by your fellow bloggers can do wonders to increase readership of your own content.
- Promote wisely. Nobody wants to see five tweets or Facebook updates in a row from the same person promoting his or her blog – doing so is a great way to get unfollowed or muted. There’s a fine line between promoting your content professionally and doing so obnoxiously. Look up the best times to post on your social platform of choice and use those to help you decide when to post links to your newest posts. Additionally, try not to post the same link too much – an initial update followed by an “ICYMI” post the next day is enough.
Follow these tips for a blog that will attract a large audience and portray you in a positive light to potential employers. Best of luck!