Val Matta, Vice President of Business Development, CareerShift
Career counselors, you’re probably wondering, “How can a newsfeed of gifs and memes possibly make me better at giving career advice?” Well, if you use your professional blog that way, it probably won’t.
Sixty percent of businesses use a business or company blog to communicate with the information-seekers of the world, and these blogs receive 528,000,000 page views each month. That’s a lot of exposure for a brand. Why aren’t all career counselors doing the same?
Blogging offers professionals and students a unique way to network with others on a global scale. Here are a few reasons you should blog to connect with your job-seeking audience:
Your target audience blogs. Tomorrow’s workforce is primarily comprised of young bloggers. According to Nielsen, 12 million people write blogs using social networks, and 6.7 million publish blogs on websites. More than half of these bloggers are aged 18 to 34, and within that group lies a large audience in career transition. A study from Pew Research Center reveals 82 percent of these young adults think finding a job is harder today than it was for the generations before them. And it shows: only meager 54 percent of adults aged 18 to 24 are employed.
Distinguish yourself as an expert. You can become an expert on a niche topic of the job-seeker industry. With the vast amount of bloggers out there, it will be vital to set yourself apart. For example, if you want to reach college students who need career planning advice, blog about choosing a major and college courses. If you want to reach aspiring interns, use your blog to give advice about all aspects of an internship.
Build trust with Gen-Z. Those in the up-and-coming members of Generation Z trust information from digital sources 48 percent more than people from any other generation. They grew up alongside the Internet, so it’s familiar. Bottom line: the better your online presence, the more trustworthy you are.
Help your audience find you online. You can use blogging to strengthen your online presence and grow your audience. This is where SEO and keywords come in. Let’s say you’re writing a blog post to give tips for writing an effective resume. Make sure to use the keyword “resume” or “write a resume” in the title and first and last paragraph of the article to improve the search ranking. Then, people who search for information on that topic will be able to find it more easily, and you will gain more followers.
Teach students to use a blog in the job search. The concept of using a blog to land a jobis not new. It goes hand-in-hand with using social media as a job search tool. Sixty-five percent of recruiters search for talent on Facebook alone. Make sure your blog can be seen by all of your followers, and teach students to share their blogs on social media channels. Advise students to follow blogs and write content related to the industry in which they want to work. This will give them a chance to be seen as an authority on certain topics, and professionals in the industry who are familiar with their work might lead them to a dream job.
Blogging is one of the best ways to put theoretical skills into practice by documenting passions and experiences in a creative way. Now more than ever before, employers are looking for candidates beyond a skill-set. They want employees who will fit well into their company culture, and sometimes the best way to learn about a person’s values and thought process is to read his or her blog.
If you maintain your own blog using the best practices in the industry, you’ll be able to give advice to today’s job-seeking bloggers.
Career counselors, what are some ways you’ve used blogging to help build your personal brand and advise job seekers?