A lot of people think blogging is a pretty easy gig. Think about it: you interact with other bloggers, sit around on your laptop writing about interesting topics, and don’t even need to put your pants on if you don’t want to. However, blogging is like any other job, paid or not; you need to develop certain skillsets and enter certain networks to be successful.
This is where an opportunity like a writing internship comes in – by working for a company that pushes you to create strong content and interact with professional writers, you’ll learn the tools of the trade and improve your blog before you know it. Here are some specific ways that taking a writing internship can help give your blogging a boost.
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Why you should consider writing internships
Connections to the Writing World
Networking is one of the most important aspects of being a successful blogger – even more so than the writing itself. You can have the best content in the world, but if nobody sees it then what’s the point?
Networking allows you to connect with other bloggers and industry leaders that can help spread the word about your writing. By establishing connections with others in the online writing industry, you can set up credibility by contributing to other blogs and publications, get your name out in the blogosphere to attract more readers, and trade information about leads with other writers.
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A writing internship can provide you with connections to the very experts you’re trying to get in touch with. From fellow interns to the head of marketing, an internship will give you access to people in the field who can provide you with advice, connections to media outlets, and potentially a paid gig. Networking in your internship could be the jumpstart you need to increased readership and better posts.
Building a Social Presence
Standing out in the blogosphere is no easy task – there are millions of writers out there trying to get noticed, so you’ll need some extra tools in your arsenal to make an impression. Setting up a strong social media presence is one way to attract readers.
This isn’t as easy as setting up a Facebook account; you’ll need to treat your social media profiles like a job. Posting regularly on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Reddit, interacting with your audience and other bloggers, and leveraging your social media presence effectively to direct readers to your blog will all help you increase your readership.
By getting involved in a writing internship, you’ll learn tips from social media experts on how to increase your presence: from the best time of day to post, to how to attract different demographics of readers. Working alongside people who do this for a living is possibly the best way to catapult your social media profiles into wide recognition.
Honing Your Skills
Now we can finally get to the actual writing. Although it’s vital to get your blog out there in the public sphere, if the writing isn’t good then you’ll lose readers. Without creating engaging, unique, and well-written content, it will be near-impossible to be a successful blogger. This means that you’ll need to continually improve your blog-writing skills to keep readership up.
The best way to develop your writing skills is by reading well-established blogs and by writing every single day. There’s no better way to do this than by getting involved in a writing internship that will push you to continuously create content and read up on what competitors are doing. By writing every day under the supervision of a more experienced writer, you’ll naturally improve grammar, syntax, and tone-related skills – which you can then use on your own blog.
Even better, an internship will show you the best web writing styles to attract readers, like layman word usage, proper post length, and a casual but polished tone.
Learning New Skills
Along with honing your existing writing skills, a writing internship can help you master new ones that are essential to having a successful blog.
The best blogs are so much more than just words on a screen. To stand out from every other amateur, you’ll need to include visuals, out-of-the-box content and formatting, interactive features, and other technical capabilities. Relying on pre-made templates and simple text won’t help you increase your readership, as more established blogs have great content and style.
A writing internship can teach you these extra skills – like SEO, basic HTML and CSS coding, and visual design – to help make your blog successful. The best part is, you’ll learn these skills under the watch of an experienced supervisor, and will be able to practice them in the context of the internship before trying them out at home.
There’s no shortage of wannabe bloggers out there. However, there is a smaller supply of bloggers with the technical skill, connections, and social media prowess that’s necessary to make it big. A writing internship can help you develop your skills and gather a following that will take your blogging to the next level.
This post was written by David Wither, a professionally accredited leadership and marketing coach who works with young founders and early stage teams to help them navigate through emerging marketing opportunities with a current focus on artificial intelligence and virtual reality.
David is also a weekly contributor to The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, Business.com, and Tech Cocktail. He graduated with a degree in Business Administration from the University of Southern California.