So, I debated starting a second blog or trying to integrate career and blogging related posts into Killer Harmony. I decided that I want to grow this blog and help out my already amazing group of readers, so I am introducing Killer Careers, where I will be blogging about blogging and about things related to blogging. I will be giving advice about how I started and more! This series will focus on options for the future and what to do after completing college or music school.
Now that that’s done, we will get to the good stuff…blogging about blogging (and other related things)! I hope that this series can help me grow as a blogger and that I can use this platform to help anyone who needs it! This first post is going to be similar to a post I did a while ago, which you can check out here
! Only this time, I am going to talk more in detail about starting a blog for the aspiring professional in addition to the average college student. So, here goes.
First things first, what exactly is a blog? A blog is short for weblog, and blogs can be used for many different purposes. Some people use them as online journals whereas others, like myself, use them as a way to gain expertise in an area of interest in order to build their careers. There are many people who have built entire businesses through a blog. How cool is that?
Why should I start a blog?
In two words: it’s fun! Starting and running a blog is a relatively inexpensive hobby, and you can get going in just a couple of hours! If you want to grow your online presence, whether for personal or professional reasons, you need a blog. A blog can be whatever you want. It can be a portfolio, an online magazine of sorts, or you could even create a static website.
How is blogging relevant to a music major? Blogging is relevant to anyone. It is a place for you to write about what you know about and to help others who are in similar situations. With a blog, you can prove yourself in your niche, and it looks insanely good on a resume.
For music majors, it can help open doors to non-music jobs, because it will show that you have practical hands on experience with writing, photo editing, internet marketing, and more. It has even taught me that I enjoy things like writing, editing, and marketing. Now I don’t have to be stuck in the whole starving artist mode after graduation. Woo hoo!
What do you need to start? If you want to stick with just the bare necessities, all you really need is a computer with internet access and an email address. If you have a Google account and chose to start on Blogger, that’s even easier, because a Google account comes with access to Blogger. You should also have a decent camera (a phone works fine if it is good quality), and a little bit of cash to buy a domain name.
Is blogging expensive? It depends. If you have the means, go ahead and splurge on a domain name, a hosting package, and whatever else that might be relevant to your blog. But, if you’re broke or just don’t want to invest so heavily into something that you don’t know if you’ll even enjoy, you can start for free. Choose a free platform, use a subdomain, and you’re good to go!
What is a blogging platform and which ones are the best/most popular? A blogging platform is the place where you go to work on your blog, and in some cases, it is where your blog is hosted (where it lives online). The two most popular blogging platforms are Blogger (which I use, because I can’t afford paid WordPress at the moment), and the two versions of WordPress: free and paid. Most blogs are on one of these platforms, but there are others out there, such as Squarespace, Wix, and Weebly.
How often should you post? That is one of those questions that really depends on you, your subject, and how much time you are able to dedicate to blogging. I say that no matter what, you should post regularly. Even if that means you only post once every week or two, that looks better than a bunch of posts one week followed by a month of nothing. I try to write one to two posts each week, even though they might not be published for a while.
Is blogging just about writing blog posts? What else goes into it? Blogging is very much like running a business, even if you aren’t making money. You are writing posts, but you also have to find and create images (either graphics or regular photos) to add to your posts to make them interesting. You also need to be able to edit your writing, edit photos, market yourself on social media, and much more. Blogging is great experience, and it can help you with many skills businesses are looking for.
How much time does it take? Again, it depends. Your blog is what you make of it, so use it well. Don’t go hard for two weeks then blow it off for six months. If you don’t have much time to dedicate to blogging (i.e. you have a ton of classes, rehearsals, and a job), I would suggest picking a topic that won’t take as much time to blog about or a technique called batching.
I need to do this more, but batching is basically where you do similar tasks together. You write all of your posts for the week or month in one go, take all of the pictures together, edit all of your images in one sitting. You get it, right? Blogging can take however much time you can give it.
Well, I hope this first post helps. I’m not so sure about the name of this series, though. Let me know if you have any ideas for a better name or any questions or ideas for future posts in the comments or tweet me at @HannahHaefele
Thanks for reading!
Interested in learning more? I have a whole eBook on blogging and getting started which you can find more information about here!