Blogging is an incredible thing. You are able to reach TONS of people with your words, which you can then use to educate, motivate, or simply fire off a quick rant.
Developing and maintaining a blog is a LOT of work, but through that process you are able to learn an incredible amount. With that knowledge, there are several ways to go beyond your blog and branch out into other roles that can help bring in some extra income (or land you a new job!).
I’m a big proponent of taking the skills that you possess and using them to achieve more than the rudimentary roles you may start in. If you are gifted with a talent, a unique life perspective, or even a passion, I believe that you should take those and make the most impact that you can.
You never know what you’re able to achieve unless you go out and try. Don’t only limit yourself to what you know or what you feel comfortable doing or you may miss out on even more rewarding opportunities. Ok, end pep talk.
Given the current digital landscape, you have loads of opportunities at your fingertips. Here is a non-exhaustive list of possible venues outside of your blog:
- social media managing
- freelance writing
Related: How To Start Freelance Writing
I know that these are arenas that you can reach through promoting your blog because I’ve done them all in one way or another. I’m sure there are more, but this is just an initial list to help get those wheels turning.
At some point, you may wish to expand beyond your blog into other related areas, but to do so you need to be able to qualify why your blog makes you able to fill these roles. Take a step back and look at every component to your posting process to see exactly how many different skills you use in publishing one single post. Make a list of those skills and see if you have any interest in pursuing them outside of your own personal work.
In addition to knowing what skills you possess, in order to properly utilize your blog as a resume and portfolio, you should also have a few other things in place:
1. Media Kit
A media kit is essentially a resume for your blog. It contains who you are, what your blog is about, and other optional sections such as what types of projects you are interested in, social metrics, and companies or publications you may have already worked with. There are TONS of examples of media kits online if you search for them and even sites like Etsy where someone will design one for you, but they’re really simple to make and with programs like Canva, you should have no problem making your own.
The best resource I know of for media kits and someone who was speaking on and helping other bloggers before it was cool is Katy Widrick and you can check out what she has to say here.
If you are looking for a job in the social media or marketing field, for example, make sure to highlight your knowledge of how you marketed your posts and any important metrics concerning the growth of your site over a certain time period.
2. Popular Posts Page
If you want to direct potential employers or companies to some of your best writing or photography on your blog, make a dedicated “Popular Posts” page. Some themes come equipped with this capability, but if yours does not, you can easily download a plugin such as WordPress Popular Posts or Top 10. These are WordPress plugins since that is the platform I’m most comfortable with, but if you are on another platform such as Squarespace, simple Google your platform + popular posts.
This way when asked about samples, you can direct people to one location instead of simply giving them your URL and having them wade through everything.
3. Publications Page
If you’ve already been able to do some work outside of your blog, make sure you create a separate “Publications” page. This is a one-stop shop for any outside writing, photography, or other related work you’ve done. It helps make your brand look more professional and reputable.
Related: Press & Publications
4. Your Role As An Editor and Owner
Even if you only consider your blog a hobby, remember that it is still YOUR blog. You are the owner and editor of this blog land and those are two very powerful roles. Think about it — you make sure to read and reread (and reread) blog posts as you edit them before publishing and you are also responsible for all executive decisions from content to imaging to marketing. As your blog grows, make sure to give yourself credit for putting in the work to achieve growth and make sure to own those titles.
Writing and maintaining a blog for even a matter of months means that you have editing experience that you can add to your list of capabilities when looking outside your blog.
Remember, just like with any job, they’re not all going to come to you. Look for job listings or simply pitch companies or brands that you have a desire to work with. Approach them professionally and remember to give yourself credit for the amount of work you do and the skills that you possess!
- Bloggers – have you found opportunities outside of your blog?
- Do you have any to add to the list?