During my visit to Olivet Nazarene University this week, I picked up a copy of Empowered, the PRSSA chapter’s impressive newsletter. On page 12, I found the following article recapping blogging tips from Anne Waddington and me. Perfect timing for this week’s guest post. Thanks, Jessica.
By Jessica Kilbride
Employers scoff at physical resumes. Nowadays they go straight to your digital footprints you leave behind on the Internet. Employers look at your social media platforms to see who you truly are and if they want you on their team. Blogging is one of the best ways to build up your portfolio, and it’s also a way to express your creativity.
Ron Culp, renown blog writer for Culpwrit, and Anne Waddington, contributing writer for Loxa Beauty, shared 10 Tips on How to Create a Blog Worth Reading.
A lot of bloggers are not successful. Why? Well they don’t follow these simple steps . . .
- Inspiration: What drives you? If you don’t have a clue, check out other people’s blogs for ideas or write down what you are passionate about. For your first few blogs, write about whatever you want and see what interests you most.
- Gather Thoughts: Always have something with you to write down any idea that pops in your head. Keep an “Inspiration Binder” or Pinterest Board of all your ideas, so you can reflect on what you have already written about and have an idea of where you’re heading next.
- Test Ideas: Write down 150 legitimate ideas you could write about. If you have a particular topic in mind, do the same. Can’t come up with 150? Then blogging is NOT for you!
- Experiment: Right now you may not know what topic to write about so explore and learn. Hated the Halloween party you attended? Blog about it! Lean how to make graphics, do whatever it takes. Already an experienced blogger? Avoid boredom with your readers by deviating from your normal posts.
- Personal Branding: Market yourself and your blog. Who are you? How are you different from everyone else? Don’t forget to ensure all your social media platforms coincide with one another because you don’t want to cause confusion.
- Plan Ahead: Let’s be real, if you want a quality blog, you need to do research. Slopping something down last minute won’t cut it, unless you sincerely don’t care. What do you want to discuss with your readers? Think about what visuals (i.e.: infographics, video statistics or images) will drive your point and appeal to your audience?
- Invest in a Blog: Yes, this means spending money. Is this a hobby or something bigger? In retrospect, compared to your college tuition, this is nothing. Plus, you might get an internship and even a potential job out of your blogging.
- Be Authentic: This is YOUR blog, so be YOU. Share your original thoughts, ideas and content with your readers.
- Avoid Haters: Literally, block out the haters. “Don’t second guess yourself,” Waddington said.
- Connect and Engage: As Waddington outlined, your readers are YOUR support system. They are giving their time to you by reading your content and commenting, so COMMENT BACK. Give them the light of day by responding to every email, question and comment.
Successful blogging is not easy. It takes guts.
Jessica Erin Kilbride is a sophomore public relations major at Olivet Nazarene University and vice president of the PRSSA chapter. She also is Associate Account Executive for the college’s student-run agency, Inspired Strategies Agency.