We are firm believer in blogs. Don’t take any notice of people who say they don’t matter, because there are so many of them.
That’s not the point. It doesn’t matter whether a billion other people have one. What’s important is that you have one.
People often ask me: ‘Do I need a blog?’ The answer is a firm ‘Yes’. Why? Simply because web and media employers say they are essential.
Many of them don’t even interview people who don’t have blogs. It makes sense. Why should they trust you to write, edit and curate their website when you can’t do the same with your own? There’s no better way to prove your web skills.
You may think that’s harsh. But it’s obvious, really. And that’s why it’s important to make your blog stand out. Doing a blogging course will definitely help to set your blog apart.
For people chasing web and media work, blogs fall into two categories. They’re either to showcase you and your work … like an online CV and cuttings file rolled into one. Or they’re to display your articles and photos. Or you can combine both. Make sure you know what type of blog you need before you start building it. And only use a self-build programme, like Blogspot or WordPress, if you’re confident of producing something professional.
Our partner organisation, Digital Creative Hub, can design and build one for you if you’re stuck. They offer an exclusive 20% discount on all of their creative services for CMP students. They designed this career blog for CMP sports journalism course graduate, Bernard Chyzy.
When you’re writing the content, stick to things you know about – draw inspiration from your work, lifestyle, skills and qualifications. And write about them from your own perspective. This makes your blog unique. There’s no point in just echoing other people’s information and opinions.
Here are some other tips I have given to people doing our online blogging course:
1. Helpful tips are always valued – and link them to YouTube ‘how-to’ videos, if you can find any. Make sure you ask readers to share their tips, too.
2. Decide if your blog is a ‘you’ blog, where you write about anything, rather than a ‘subject’ blog, where you write about one subject.
3. Your blog can make money. You can make money from anything if it’s good enough. Remember, too, you can get blogs published as eBooks on Kindle these days. But your content must be original. What can you say that no-one else can? What original ideas do your background, skills, experiences and qualifications provide?
4. Do brainstorms to decide what to write about. Try to find someone who ‘sparks’ you – sometimes you get new ideas by bouncing things off other people.
5. Use Twitter. Make sure you integrate it with your blog in terms of tone, design etc … and use it to drive traffic to the blog.
6. Use the Plugoo chat tool. This makes your blog more accessible and interactive.
7. Only blog when you have something to say.
8. Use Pinterest to show your photography and your favourite relevant images.
See our online blogging courses