If it doesn’t directly help you get a job in digital, it will certainly play an important part in getting you there. One of the deciding factors that helped me land my first job, was one of the articles I wrote while I was on trial at ManageWP. My blog was named after my favourite teenage movie “Not So Clueless”, and the article was all about Catherine the Great. This combination got me into editorial for a world famous product.
Why is blogging so important?
Since 2003, the initial release of WordPress, a free and open CMS (Content Management System), blogging has become accessible and available to everyone with internet. The idea of having the freedom to write, and publish independently has changed the publishing industry in the past ten years, and will have an even bigger impact in the future. It has not only affected individuals, but also how businesses position themselves in the marketplace.
Publishing has become democratised, and your blog is a platform to express who you are. Blogging can be the new gateway to your career, but you have to be careful, because its biggest benefit can also be its weakest link.
Quick sideline here. WordPress is much more than a blogging platform, but we can talk about that another time.
Be SMART about blogging
Your blog once live can be read by everyone, it becomes your digital footprint, so you need to be smart about how you blog. Some people chose not to sign their name, and use a pseudonym. This was very popular back in the 19th century, when writing was a male-dominated profession a lot of female authors used male names. Some authors still do it, do you know who Elena Ferrante really is? However, if you want to get noticed by a future employer this isn’t really an option, so how can you be smart about blogging,
To get you a good answer I went back and asked my former COO, why in fact did they hire me. This is what he said:
There are more and more companies that are doing business in several countries around the world, but they can’t do it without hiring globally minded people – Ivan Bjelajac, CEO at MVP
Being globally minded isn’t just about how many languages you speak, it’s about how you think and interact with others. He was impressed by my ability to write about a wide range of topics, from Catherine the Great, to an article titled “Stop being a fruit and start owning it“, talking about body shapes and sizes, which as you might know often get compared to the likes of apples or pears. Regardless of the topic of your blog, your future employer can get to “meet you” by reading your articles, admiring your blog design, or simply ticking that skillset on their must have checkboxes.
The 10 things you need to know about starting your first blog
- It won’t take you a few days – it will probably take you a few weeks, so don’t get frustrated by that.
- It won’t look like anything you imagined, it will be much uglier. Don’t worry, you will figure it out with time.
- There is no quick easy fix, even these 10 things I am listing here won’t help you unless you sit down, do the tutorials and spend hours starting your new blog.
- Pick a topic/theme – don’t create a blog that’s random. You will have so much more trouble writing anything down, and everything will seen irrelevant.
- Create an editorial calendar. Plan your first 5 blog posts, if you can’t do this you have probably picked the wrong topic.
- Yes you can have more than one blog, but please start with one.
- The first article you write will take you ages, you will publish, un-publish, edit and re-publish at least 10 times.
- The first 10 people on your blog (and probably for the first few months) will be your parents, relatives and friends. That’s totally ok.
- Don’t be afraid to do a big announcement on social media when you start your blog. You can tell the world, before it’s perfect!
- Don’t be afraid to say what you think. This is probably the hardest thing to do, but if you try and please everyone no one will like your blog. Be you, and people who think like you will love your blog.
Resources to help you leap into blogging
Let me get you started with some useful resources about blogging.
- WPBeginner; a blog that takes you through the first steps, and has video tutorials
- WordPress Tutorial For Beginners [20 MIN GUIDE]
- WordPress Tutorial for Beginners Step by Step
- The Blog Starter
- Blog Basics