When you get chatty bloggers (like Alyson, Liz and James) together to talk blogging with students (like Kenton Larsen‘s Creative Communications class at Red River), they’re bound to skip some of the important stuff.
Like a clear understanding of the benefits of big undertakings like “be your own PR machine through blogging.” So here ya go, future communications professionals
Professional blogs are basically there to serve as an expanded resume, and it helps to know why you’re bothering to become a little publishing machine. What is it employers are going to see for all this effort?
Everyone can tell when you’re stoked about something (so write about stuff about which you are stoked. It’ll be a better read). Employers ❤ passion.
“Thought leadership” is the more grandiose buzzword for strong analysis. Tear something apart. Put it back together. Show me you saw beneath the surface, figured out a motivation, or connected some previously unconnected dots with your keen, keen mind.
The fact that you bother to construct this whole persona, do research to impress me with your investigative skills, and make images to ease my understanding & please my eye says “hey, this person really wants it”.
An employer who wants to get to know the you behind the resume will know PDQ if your charming, quirky self is the right fit for their organizational culture. This can help you find a good corporate fit, so be yourself within the realm of good taste.
Posting struggles, successes, media you’ve produced, and plain ole’ writing shows me what kind of communicator you are. Visual skills translate especially well in the blog medium—cartooning, animation, slideshares, infographics. If you make it and it doesn’t suck, post it. If it does suck, ask for critique so you can improve.
Besides showing your knowledge of subject matter, social media & communication, frequent blogging on topical stuff shows me you know what’s going on in your industry & you’ve got the commitment to prove it.
Comments show people are reading. Retweets show your stuff is worth sharing. Clips of speaking engagements or presentations demonstrate your ability to work a room.
On a meta level, outside the subject matter you blog about, you’re making it clear you know how to think like a publisher. Brand journalism and content marketing are a growing underpinning of social media marketing. The future employer is relieved to see you’ve worked out all your blogging disasters on your own dime