Copyright 2006 Margaret Stead
As CEO and Chief Career Coach for CareersNet.com, I see teeming hordes of people wanting to change their career. Trouble is 99% haven’t got a clue how to go about it.
The problem is most Career Advisors haven’t got any idea either. Ask yourself: “Who advised you at school, college, university, at the job centre? As Dilbert once said ‘Would you trust your career counselor, if they worked that hard?”
I’ve been on both sides of this equation. While I was unemployed I worked very hard at presenting myself well. When I’ve been the recipient of resumes, I realised that many career change artistes fail because they put themselves first, rather than the addressing the OTHER’s problem.
In fact, I cannot remember a time when an applicant first thought of what I might WANT or NEED before telling me what a great guy or gal s/he was, thus sounding like every other ‘Knuckle-headed loser.” – “I’m great take-me.”
Every recruiter and prospective employer thinks that the NEXT person they see is going to be the ‘One’. They want you to be the ‘One’. In fact, somewhere, someone is desperate for you to be the ‘One’.
Believe me. That’s why producing a blog, a two minute job, is a fantastic vehicle for your self promotion, because first – you have to find the problem that you can solve and become the ‘ONE’ that they are looking for.
Below, I share my Top 10 Tips for creating a blog that helps change your career. Enjoy, and do pass these tips along to those who you feel would benefit from reading them. Think Content: If your blog contains rich relevant content, you will keep your audience returning for more.
Well thought-out position statements that run counter to business as usual are another avenue to explore in the content arena.
Visualize Your Audience: Don’t write for a “demographic.” Too many press releases seem to be writing for some vague audience.
Personify the reader(s). Imagine them reading your blog or ‘a lift from it that a reporter might use.’ If you can’t visualize this, start over.
Optimize Your Blog for the Search Engines: Everyday, more people get their news from Google News or Yahoo News and the like. When writing your blog, think about the keywords your target audience uses to make up that filter. Don’t overuse those keyword phrases, but don’t ignore them either.
Try New Circuits: Don’t just use the same old search engine directories you’ve always used. (but don’t neglect them either) I’ve recently gotten much better bang for the buck by using RSS feeds as part of the service for no extra charge that results in “links” with more blogs and other sites syndicating content via RSS.
Be Quotable: Say something that is not part of the daily drone. That PR clutter can be your friend so long as you say something relevant and different that breaks through it.
Get Help: Many blogs are terrible because they’re written by individuals obsessing about themselves. Get help with discovering what makes you tick and how you can use the strengths you undervalue.
Be Tough on Yourself: After you have drafted your post to your blog, before you submit it – read it as if you never laid eyes upon it. If the headline was a subject header in an email, would you open it or delete it? As you read through the copy, where do you start to lose interest and start thinking about supper?
Jump Page: I sometimes offer 3 out of 10 tips or trends within my blog and a live link thereafter for readers to jump to my site where they can read the remaining 7 tips. Very effective.
Create News: Much news is manufactured, not only for B2B but B2C as well. Creating an event that you can repeat annually, such as a competition or review of something interesting to your target audience, can generate traffic for your site for many years to come.
If you establish a “Hall of Fame” or some other perennial competition, you’re likely to also create a clamour for other firms to be heralded in your final results that will be announced in your blog.
Track Your Results: See what works best by tracking your results for days after your blog has gone out. Any blogging service worth it’s salt should offer you this feature for little or no extra.
Furthermore, you yourself should search for citations of your blog in the major blog search engines for days after to see how well it has propagated.
Bonus Tip: Edit, Edit, Edit. With the onslaught of so much information coming at all of us, editors and readers alike are less and less patient with puffery and prose that don’t get to the point quickly.
As Net Guru Mac Ross advises, “Make every word work hard.”
See my Change Your Career With a Blog! and receive a five day no charge ecourse!