Today's feature is a little different - we asked a TypePad blogger and About.com job search expert Alison Doyle to write us a guest post about how you can use a blog to help your job search. We'll be writing up extras about how to use TypePad for your job search, building a resume, and more. Thanks for posting, Alison! Want to write a guest post? Just let us know in the comments.
Are you looking for a new job or are you in career-building mode? A blog is an ideal way to showcase your skills and accomplishments to prospective employers and a terrific opportunity to build your credibility as an expert in your field.
A blog can help you find a new job in several different ways. You can use your blog to provide insight on your expertise and use it to let the world know that you are seeking a new opportunity.
In addition, it’s very typical for hiring managers and recruiters to Google prospective applicants for employment. Your blog will most likely rank highly (Google Alison Doyle and you’ll see my blog ranks #2) and it’s got exactly the type of information that I would want a prospective employer to see right off the bat.
If you already have a personal blog that you’re happy with, don’t mess with it. Start a new career-focused blog. That way, you can keep your personal life separate from your professional life, which is always an issue online. There is, of course, such a thing as too much information and you don’t want to share that information with prospective employers. You can use your career blog for job search purposes and your personal blog for family and friends.
Bloggers have had success with different types of employment-related blogs. Before you start blogging consider what you want to focus your blog on. Do you want to write about your job search? Or, do you want your blog to supplement your resume and focus on the skills and expertise you have to offer? Both options work well.
Rachel Levy, for example, is in the midst of a job search. Her blog is directly focused on her job search. The title and sub-title are:
Rachel Levy: Job Search & Social Networking
How I’m using social networking tools like Twitter in my search for a marketing job in Boston
Rachel uses her blog to talk about her job search, to discuss what it’s like being unemployed, and to share her expertise in public relations, marketing, and social media. Her blog also includes a portfolio of her work and information on how to contact her.
Philip Morgan is a technology communicator. His blog philipmorgan.net is full of posts that show his expertise in the field including tips for technical trainers and effective software certification. His blog includes a link to his resume and detailed information about his background.
Blogging Job Search Tips
The goal when you’re using your blog as a job search tool is to spread the word – to get your name, your credentials, and your expertise on the Internet in as many places as possible. The more visibility you have, the better.
- Start simple. Choose a professional style template and go from there. You don’t need to know anything technical to get started. It’s a quick and easy process.
- Use your name. If possible get your name or a variation of it for your blog (here’s mine: alisondoyle.typepad.com). It’s a good opportunity to reinforce your online presence.
- Share your profiles. Add links to your Facebook page, LinkedIn profile, StumbleUpon, Digg, Twitter, etc. from your blog (in TypePad, click on Control, Profile, Your Other Account).
- Feed your blog. Set up feed from your blog to your Facebook page and to Twitter so your connections can see what you’re blogging about.
- Include links. Include links to your blog on your resume, your LinkedIn profile, your VisualCV, and your other professional networking profiles.
- Update your blog. A stale, out-of-date blog isn’t going to do anything for you. Update your blog, even if it’s a short post, at least a few times a week.
- Be nice. Do not say anything nasty about your previous or current employer. It not only can get you in trouble, it can jeopardize your chances of getting a new job. Nobody wants to hire someone who might do the same to their company someday.
- Have fun. Even though your blog, in this case, is work related, there’s no need to be boring. Be creative, share your perspective, and share your personal stories. Your blog should be readable, engaging, and personable.
Alison Doyle’s Bio
Alison Doyle is a job search expert with many years of experience in human resources, career development, and job searching, with a focus on online job searching and job search technology. She has covered job searching for About.com since 1998. Alison is also the author of her personal blog (alisondoyle.typepad.com) with advice and commentary on the world of work.
Alison is the author of Internet Your Way to a New Job: How to Really Find a Job Online (2008) and the About.com Guide to Job Searching (2006).