Tag Archives: professionalism

What it Takes to Have a Good Personal Website

pr girlThe past year I’ve been the Director of Communications for Ohio University’s student-run PR firm ImPRessions, and in my role I have not only learned what ‘good’ social media is, but what it takes to have a good blog or website. For starters, it’s not just about pushing out content. While you want a lot of content, don’t sacrifice the quality. Also, EDIT YOUR CONTENT. I’ve been sent blogs that were 1200 words, and I edited them down to 650. Content is king, and don’t ever send out a blog without editing it.

When looking back at my first blogs on High Heels, High Hope, I feel like I need to go back and fix them. It’s amazing how within a year your writing skills can go from good to great. And recently, I was asked “what makes a good personal website?” So after some thought and procrastination from researching Deutsche Welle for a paper, I decided to make a blog about it. My tips are below:

  1. Keep it simple. We all want to have beautiful color schemes with tons of images, a Twitter feed on the side, with a plug-in here and here. STOP IT. Keep your personal website simple, because today that’s what is aesthetically pleasing to most audiences. If you have a bunch of “fluff” (as I call it), you aren’t doing it right.
  2. Remember your brand. While you want to keep things simple, think of color scheme. I use black, grey, white and teal. I added in a black and white photo of Chicago, with a pop of teal at the top. It matches who I am – classic with a pop of fresh air.
  3. Don’t restrain yourself to one topic. I love to write about PR and talk about it non-stop, but you can’t limit yourself. You’ll just end up with a lot of writers block.
  4. Add in your resume and portfolio. While my portfolio section needs refining and I need to add in my recent resume, those sections are so crucial to a personal website. If you’re not a blogger, make sure those two sections are organized and always up to date. If you have a blog, also keep up with it once a month to show that you didn’t forget about your website.
  5. Be social. If you are a college student looking for a job in business or communications, the time is over for being inappropriate on social media. Private social media profiles are only a small hurdle for HR people. Get out of the shadows and put a Twitter or Instagram feed on your personal website – it makes it easier for an employer to find out who you really are online.
  6. Buy your domain. If you’ve had your website for over a year, buy your domain. I recently did, and on WordPress it cost $21. Not too bad if you ask me. Now no one else can have kellymshayes.com.
  7. Content is king, and remember to not use the oxford comma. Give up on MLA and APA – those are in the past and AP Style is your new friend. Also do yourself a favor, stop using the oxford comma – people don’t like it. Trust me, I edit out the oxford comma all the time.

In the end you want to keep everything fairly simple. Don’t have a long, artistic bio. Just say who you are, what you’ve done and how you’re going to be a kick-butt employee some day. You’re obviously not a slacker because you have a great personal website, so run with it and success will follow.

quote

I can’t wait for big-city living where the cobblestones won’t put my heels into an early grave.

x Kelly

Blogging isn’t just for the Complainers

If you haven’t seen my blog before, welcome! I am a college student and I have this blog. Some people think blogs are for complainers or extremely nerdy people who blog about video games. Wrong! Blogging can seriously help your writing skills and allow you to grow as a professional.

This blog is my third… ya… I would never keep up with any of my old blogs so I eventually just deleted them because they just sat there on the internet with one post. Blogging has taught me responsibility and motivation, because I have to keep up and posting or what’s the point in having one? Blogging can also help you network. Some of my followers are people in PR, studying PR or in other professionals in sectors that interest me i.e. fashion. Now this post is for the Scripps Summer Challenge (#ScrippsSummerChallenge on twitter) for my PRSSA chapter and I already tweeted I had a blog but had to be responsible and finish the challenge.

So if you have an interest in a career such as PR, journalism, fashion, sports, anything! You should blog. Remember it is not your online personal diary… I block those blogs. Yes there are people with video game blogs, but how else are you supposed to know how defeat the boss challenge? Blogs can teach you much more than you think. If you follow professionals, they usually give advice. You can find tips/tricks on anything, DIY challenges if you are crafty.Basically blogging can help you grow as a person, a professional and a writer. If you are bad at writing, well here’s your chance to become good at it.

P.S. Wearing heels out for my last hurrah in Dublin, yes I know there are cobblestones but if I fall I’ll at least look good!

x KMSH