Friday, November 15, 2013

Blogging Basics for Resume Writers

Starting a career-related blog can be a great way to increase your profile as a careers industry expert, allowing you to attract new clients and driving traffic to your website. However, deciding to start a blog is a commitment. The more you publish, the more you'll get out of your blog. Here are some things to think about as you consider publishing a blog.


Where Most Resume Writers Go Wrong With Their Blog
When you're blogging, you're building your brand (or destroying it, in some unfortunate cases). Having a social media presence online is important for the majority of resume writers, since more and more resume prospects find their resume writer through online sources (it's second only to referrals as the source of new business for most resume writers). You can use your blog to build your social media following (Twitter, Facebook Business Page, LinkedIn, etc.) and you can also use your social media following to increase readership of your blog.

To get the most out of your blog, you'll need to deliver a certain number of blog posts per week (usually a minimum of two), and you should also consider finding guest blogging opportunities (where you can blog elsewhere and link back to your main blog). Blogging "for fun" is different than blogging to build your resume writing business. Don't confuse the two. It's fine to have a personal blog (I'm really enjoying resume writer Barbara Safani's "Across the 59th Street Bridge and Back" blog), but a personal blog has different objectives than a professional blog. You can tie in personal experiences on your career blog (Julie Walraven does this quite well, as does Jacqui Barrett-Poindexter), but make sure there is a lesson to be shared when you do!

Make Blogging Part of Your Routine
This is the part I have the most difficulty with. All the blogging experts say you should be consistent with your blogging. They say that it's better to to write one post per week — every Friday, for example — than to blog haphazardly. More power to you if you can do that! I just can't. Sometimes I get in the mood to blog and sometimes, it's at the bottom of a lengthy to-do list.

The good news is, blogging is something you can do anytime — in the morning before work, on your lunch hour, after work and on the weekends. You can even write your blog posts in advance and schedule them to post. (I should do this.)

Like writing resumes, blogging is a real business when you start pursuing it for financial reasons. Yes, it gives you much in terms of happiness — but when you’re making money doing something you love, it’s very rewarding.

And, as I mentioned earlier, your blog can also establish you as a leader in the career services industry. One thing that’s important is that you make sure that you love writing about career industry topics. You should want to wake up every day, eager to get to your computer. Don't start a blog because you feel like you "have to" — do it because you "want to."

If you dread it because it bores you or it’s depressing, then you won’t help your readers and the blog won’t "work" for you.

Make a list of possible blog topics before you start. If you can't come up with at least 10 ideas, don't start until you do. You can set an entire editorial calendar for your blog where you choose which topics are presented to your readers. You also get to pick the tone for the blog pieces.

Developing a Relationship With Your Blog's Readers
Having a relationship with your readers means they value your blog and they share the link to it with other people. You want that type of connection because as a professional, the traffic and branding that you gain will be priceless.

When blogs have a loyal readership, they enjoy a fantastic word of mouth traffic flow. While many bloggers are out there buying links back to their site and paying people to help them get traffic, you can do it all for free.

First, pick topics your readers want to know about. Part of your job in relationship building is to listen to your audience and meet their needs. There are many ways you can do this.

Do some preliminary keyword research to find out what people want to know in your niche. Visit some of the job search-related groups on LinkedIn and see what people are talking about.

This is known as a sentence starter — and it gives you some insight into what type of blog post you might want to do, such as:
  • If someone is unemployed for a long period of time, how can they get back in the workforce?
  • How to find a job that allows telecommuting
  • Top three reasons you may not be getting called for interviews.

You can also simply invite your readers to submit questions to you. You can do this on your email autoresponder opt-in form, or have a special contact form on your blog where people can engage with you that way. Or you can ask them to post their questions in the Comments section under each post.

Whenever someone emails you with a question, you can assume there are more people out there who are wondering the same thing. Use those questions as fodder for your blog topics.

When you start blogging about all of these things, it makes the audience feel like you’ve really got your finger on the pulse of the marketplace — like you have great instincts.

Next, write in a highly conversational style and end each blog with an invitation to connect. People need to feel like you’re speaking just to them.

When you write, make sure it’s conversational and not stuffy like you’d write for a professional publication. If you make a video blog, look right in the camera and be casual and relaxed, not stuff and nervous.

When you end a blog post, you can ask a question or invite people to share their own $0.02 about the topic in the comments. Make sure that whatever comment system you’re using, it’s easy to find — because some are almost hidden.

Participate in the conversation that goes on in your blog comments. If people are kind enough to take you up on your invitation, then make an effort to have a dialogue with them.

Thank them for their comment, call them by name, and open up a discussion about what they had to say.

Making Money From Your Blog
While there are several ways to monetize your blog, the easiest — and most common way — is to turn blog readers into resume clients. This can happen naturally as they recognize your expertise as a career industry professional (be sure to give a "call to action" on individual blog posts or on your page so they know how to get started working with you), or you can invite them to opt-in to your email list, where you can share more resources, and convert them from a prospect into a client.

Speaking of lists, build a list from your blog so that whenever you have a new blog post, you can notify people about it. Also have an RSS system set up for people who use RSS feed readers to get notified of your new content.

Whenever you have a list, it gives you a certain amount of power — the power to instantly communicate with your target audience when you are selling or promoting your resume services and related products (webinars, teleseminars, workshops, membership programs, and other information products).

Another easy way to derive revenue is using Google AdSense. You can put different sized ad banners on your blog, from buttons to skyscraper ads. You can include images or go with just text. Don't expect to get rich from AdSense, though.

You can also sell ad space directly on your blog. You can arrange a specific area of your blog for ad space that people rent on a monthly basis, paying the ad revenue to you directly. If you go this route, make sure you have specifics in place to control what kinds of ads can get placed on your blog — all the way down to the colors and whether animation is allowed on it, if you want.

One thing you have to remember whenever you place any ads on your blog is that yes, it gives you some money when people leave your site for somewhere else – but in leaving, it also means someone else is capturing their name and email address and selling something to them, not you.

Promote products as an affiliate. You can sign up as an Amazon Associate and promote anything they sell there that they offer a commission on. Digital products can be found at sites like ClickBank.com. You can sign up for free and get a hoplink (affiliate link) where you earn around 50% for each sale.

Create your own products and sell them from your blog. You don’t have to promote other people’s stuff. Why not create an info product (ebook, video, or audio course) and teach something you blog about in more depth — or in a more comprehensive manner?

Offer your resume services from your blog. Coaching is also something you can offer. Many people pay top dollar for one-on-one coaching sessions via Skype or even email!

Blogging can be a very fun and very profitable venture if you approach it correctly. Don’t make the mistake of flying by the seat of your pants. If you do this, your blog will be scattered with topics, have no set monetization plan, and you’ll end up unhappy with the effort you’ve put in.

With proper planning and enthusiasm, you'll attract a steady stream of readers (prospective clients!) and new business. In fact, you might be the one putting out feelers for a professional blogger to come onboard and help you with your content needs!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks a lot for sharing this information related to resume writing. As we all know resume writing play an important role in one's career development. the more will be the resume attractive, it increases the changes being employed.

    ReplyDelete

ShareThis

Facebook Like