By now, you probably know the importance of your resume website, how to use a WordPress resume theme to launch your personal site, as well as how to promote it to increase your chances of getting hired.
You also know that the main goal of your personal resume website is to get you noticed by your ideal employer and help you get your desired position. Putting your resume online puts you ahead of the competition, especially if you’ve made sure to include relevant keywords throughout each section.
But, if you’re wondering if that’s all it takes and whether you can somehow improve your resume site further, the answer is yes. Yes, you can.
You can take your resume site to a new level by incorporating a professional blog. A blog gives you yet another chance of exposure and an opportunity to demonstrate your industry knowledge. It also increases your visibility in the search engines, which means you have better chances of getting found when employers turn to Google for new hires.
In this part of the series, we’ll walk you through the benefits of adding a professional blog to your personal resume website, how to get started and how to set up your blog to help you get the job of your dreams.
Why You Should Add a Blog To Your Professional Resume Website
As mentioned above, blogging offers many benefits for your personal site. From establishing your expertise to connecting with people in your niche, here are the most important reasons why you should include a blog on your resume website:
1. Blogging Demonstrates Your Knowledge
No resume should go without details about your education and experience. However, it’s always better if you can back it up with examples that demonstrate your understanding of all the knowledge you received. Blogging is an excellent way to do that, as you can blog about various pain points in your industry as well as share your ideas on how to approach them.
You can share case studies or talk about the details of past projects. If your dream job requires specialized knowledge of a particular piece of software or skill set, you can share tutorials or tips on improving the skill in question. All of this can be another sign to potential employers that you understand your niche and that you care enough about it to share your opinion with others.
2. Blogging Promotes Networking
When you get your blog up and running, you have a golden opportunity to get on the radar of key people in your industry. One of the ways to do this is by mentioning them in one of your articles and tagging them on Twitter to let them know about it.
Sometimes, your tweet might not get an immediate reply and sometimes you might earn a like and a retweet. In either case, business of all sizes do monitor their social profiles for mentions and your tweet is bound to get noticed.
This not only puts you on their radar, it also allows you to start building a relationship with them. Once you have that relationship, nurture it. It might lead to a new position or a partnership.
3. Blogging Keeps Your Skills Sharp
There’s an old adage that says “Use it or lose it.” It’s natural for our knowledge and skills to diminish over time, but writing about them on a regular basis, or using them in order to demonstrate the know-how, helps you keep those skills current. An added benefit is that it forces you to stay on top of industry trends so you can continually create new content for your audience.
4. Blogging Increases Your Visibility
It’s no secret that search engines, Google in particular, love regularly updated sites. In the eyes of search engines, each blog post you publish is a new page to crawl and index. Blog about your industry on a regular basis and search engines will crawl your site more often, giving you a better chance of appearing higher in search results.
When that happens, more people can click through to your site and you’ll start ranking positively for specific keywords. This also means that if an employer is searching for something industry-related on Google, they very well could end up on your site.
5. Blogging Gives You Content To Share
An online website, even a resume website, goes hand in hand with social media profiles. But if you’re not actually participating and making use of them, your social media profiles will appear stale and uninviting. You’ll also miss out on potential traffic from your profiles to your site.
The golden rule of social media is not only to actively engage with your followers and people you follow, but to also share interesting and relevant content. The content you share should include articles, infographics, and videos that come from authority sites in your particular industry. But, you should also share your own content that points people to your website.
If your resume website includes your education, experience, and a professional bio, tweeting about them or sharing them on LinkedIn every day will do you more harm than good. Add a blog into the mix and suddenly you’re establishing yourself as an authority, someone who knows what they are talking about and has the knowledge to back it up.
Your personal blog can not only help you showcase your skills, but can grow into an authority showcase and success of it's own. In our multi-part series, learn How to Make an Authority Blog, or jump into this tutorial to get started:
The Easiest Way to Start Blogging On Your Site
The easiest way to improve your resume site with a blog is by using WordPress. WordPress is a popular platform that powers 32% of all websites, ranging from personal blogs to small business and large corporate websites.
A few reasons why WordPress is so popular include:
- WordPress is easy to use. From the famous 5-minute install down to the dashboard and post editor, the interface is straightforward and easy to master. On top of that, the post editor looks similar to word processing software, so formatting your text is as easy as it is in Word or Google Docs. You can also add different types of content, such as images, videos, and galleries without worrying about using the correct HTML tags.
- There is no shortage of themes for WordPress. They range from free to premium WP themes and all of them have the blog already styled and ready to go.
- WordPress already comes with basic SEO optimization and there are a number of SEO plugins that can help you rank better in search engines
- Last but not least, WordPress is completely free to download and use as you wish. Thanks to its popularity, it has a large community that not only participates in the official forums, but you can find a plethora of websites offering free tutorials on WordPress and its variety of plugins and themes.
See how WordPress stacks up to other popular blog CMS systems:
How to Setup Your Resume Website Blog in WordPress
Once your resume theme is setup, incorporating a blog is easy.
1. Setup Your Blog Page
The first thing you need to do is click on Pages > Add New. Name the new page Blog, leave the contents empty in the page editor, and click on Publish. Then go to Settings > Reading > Front Page Displays > Posts Page and select the newly published blog page from the dropdown menu. Click on Save Changes.
2. Keep It Professional
Now that your blog page is set up, it’s time to think about the structure of your blog. The most important thing to keep in mind is that your blog should be a natural extension of your resume website. As such, your blog needs to reflect your professional side, rather than your personal side.
Forego sharing details about your private life. Instead, focus on writing posts that resonate with your industry and the position you’re applying for.
3. Create Categories
Before publishing your first post, it’s worth spending some time deciding on the categories your posts will belong to. You can setup your categories by going to Posts > Categories > Add New. Adding categories to your blog will help keep it organized and make it easy on potential employers to find the most relevant content.
If you’re applying for a social media management position, your categories can include building a following, optimizing social media profiles, case studies of successful social media strategies, and social media management tools.
If you’re looking to get hired as a graphic designer, your categories can include tutorials on various aspects of graphic design, tips and tricks for using graphic design software, a showcase of your portfolio, or details about past projects or case studies.
4. Install a Sharing Plugin
Lastly, install a sharing plugin on your site. A social sharing plugin will allow your readers to share your content on their social media platforms which leads to more traffic to your website as well as more exposure on social media.
Find the right WordPress blog theme for your resume website:
Start Your Professional Blog The Right Way
Since the purpose of adding a professional blog to your resume site is to get your dream job, you need to maintain your blog and promote it, which can often feel like a job in an of itself. But, with a little preparation, you can avoid the burnout and overwhelm and set your blog up for success from the beginning. Here's a professional example of a resume blog from Kemie Guaida:
1. Establish a Blogging Schedule
As tempting as it may be to start posting every day, refrain from doing so. It will put unnecessary pressure on you to come up with engaging content on a daily basis and that in turn leads to burnout.
Similarly, avoid posting three days in a row and then disappearing for a month. The inconsistency on your blog can easily be seen as your personal flaw which can hinder your job searching efforts.
Take into consideration your other daily activities and decide how many days per week you can devote to creating a blog post. Once you know how many posts you can write per week, decide on which days you’ll publish them and then stick to the schedule.
2. Brainstorm Blog Topics
After you’ve decided on a blogging schedule, brainstorm potential topics for your first few posts. Doing so will allow you to always have a topic to write about instead of staring at a blank screen wondering what to post next. The topics of your posts need to resonate with your industry and the categories you created in the previous section.
Here are a few basic post ideas that you can incorporate into your blog:
- List post or review of the best tools used in your industry.
- How-to post that teaches your audience an aspect of the skills you acquired during your college years that are necessary for the job.
- Infographics with useful statistics from your industry.
3. Give Credit Where Credit is Due
Blogging may not be the same as writing a term paper or an essay, but the most important rule still applies: attribute your sources and give credit where credit is due. Given the professional nature of your blog, you might want to quote an industry expert, include a link to a post that deals with the same topic or even include an image or video that illustrates your post.
Just like you had to list your resources in your term paper, you have to do the same online. Always link to the site where the information or visual aid came from. This will show potential employers that you know how to research your topic as well show respect for the sources you use.
4. Engage With Your Community
As your blog takes off and you start getting readers, encourage conversation by prompting readers to share their opinion or ask a question in the comments if they want to know more. Reply when someone comments and engage in the discussion. Believe it or not, this does paint a picture of how well you communicate with others which plays a role in the hiring process.
Improve Your Personal Resume Site With a Blog
No matter which industry you belong to, a professional blog can help you land your dream job. Take the first step toward improving your site with a WordPress resume theme and use the tips above to impress potential employers with a professional blog.