I worked a retail job the summer between high school and the start of college. The manager joked that she couldn’t believe she hired me to sell jewelry because I came to the interview wearing not one piece of jewelry. I didn’t love that job, but I didn’t take it because my career goals included a future in the retail business. I took the job to make money and gain job experience for my resume that showed I could work well with people, be timely and responsible, meet and exceed goals and handle challenging customer service situations.
Whether or not you plan a career in blogging, it can be a great “summer job” for a career in public relations or communication. It’s an ideal training ground for skills that you will use in many communication jobs and skills that will make you more marketable to employers. These skills include:
- Writing that is grammatically correct and readable
- Writing for the web (pretty crucial when much of the content written for companies ultimately ends up on the web)
- Developing a strong point of view
- Positioning yourself or an organization as a subject matter expert
- Understanding the basics of search engine optimization
- Using a content management system
- Building and managing an online community
There is also a good chance that you will work with blogs in some capacity throughout your career. In The New Rules of Marketing & PR, David Meerman Scott outlines the four uses of blogs for marketing and PR:
- Monitor what lots of people are saying about you, your organization, your products, your industry
- Participate in conversations by commenting on other blogs
- Work with bloggers who write about your company, industry or products
- Shape the conversations by creating and writing your own blog
The job responsibilities for many public relations practitioners include one or more items from the above list. For additional insights, read the blogging success story from student Rachel Gaylord below.
I wrote a blog post after Kate Finley, founder and CEO of Belle Communications, presented at an Ohio State PRSSA meeting. I tweeted the link to the post, tagged Kate and Belle and in minutes was offered an internship with her company. Blogging is a simple yet effective way to get your name out there! – Rachel Gaylord
Guest blogs have allowed me to showcase my writing publicly and gain portfolio pieces without having to keep up with the hassles of a personal blog.