Wednesday, 22 July 2015

How These Smart Job Seekers Used Blogging To Find Jobs

7 case studies of people who blogged their way to a new job.

How These Smart Job Seekers Used Blogging To Find Jobs

Photo credit: Becky Stern

In the past, I’ve told you how I regularly receive job offers because of what I’ve done here with JobMob, and a big part of that success comes from having done the Blog Mastermind course when I started blogging (a phenomenal course which has since been refreshed).

While my story is about building my personal brand, showing off my expertise and growing a network, the best fit for you might be different.

To inspire you, here are 7 other bloggers’ stories on blogging to job search success.

Case study #1: blog a hobby into a career

My blog was more helpful in my job search than my degree was
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Name: Allison Hitz

Job acquired through blogging: Digital Content Strategist

Personal blog: The Book Wheel

Allison’s story:

“I leveraged my personal book blog to get a job with a company who who works with authors. Interestingly, I recently graduated and my blog was more helpful in my job search than my degree was.

I recently graduated with my Master’s of Public Policy but have been running a book blog for the last three years. Despite two relevant internships to my degree, those interviewing me were more interested in The Book Wheel than they were my education.

After a bit of job hunting with zero success, I decided to look into jobs that were relevant to the publishing industry and found a job working with authors, doing much of what I already do with my blog. I find it pretty amusing that my personal hobby was more beneficial to my career than my degree and while it’s disappointing, I love that I was able to follow one of my passions.”

Case study #2: blog to track and focus on interested employers

Having a URL that showed the company’s name helped create a connection with them
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Name: William Anderson

Job acquired through blogging: Director of Marketing

Personal blog:

William’s story:

“I use my site to own my public (and sometimes private) voice, while using other sites (iTunes and Soundcloud, Twitter and LinkedIn, etc.) as additional distribution channels. The idea being that at the end of the day, people can learn more about me on MY website.

I used my blog to help me find my current job (going on three years in August!) by creating a specific landing page (similar to this one) that targeted those skills that seemed most relevant for Align [From Jacob: his now-employer]. When I applied for the position, having a URL that showed the company’s name helped create a connection with the company and the location while also showing off my technical and marketing skills.

Adding Google Analytics to track domains and networks that were hitting specific sites helped me refine which companies were more interested and that I could follow up with.

When I came in to interview, the companies knew about me and I knew about them, allowing us to concentrate more on gaps and matching skills.”

(William even used his blog to get a new kidney!)

Case study #3: blog to build an online presence and show initiative

He gave the fact that I was a writer and blogger extra weight when I interviewed for the position
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Name: Kevin Espiritu

Job acquired through blogging: Head of Marketing

Personal blogs: and

Kevin’s story:

“The writing I did on my blogs got me connected to a buddy, Justin Mares, who I met up in San Francisco while doing some networking for a startup that I co-founded in early 2014. He introduced me to Zach Obront, who ended up being the co-founder of Book in a Box with Tucker Max.

When my startup failed at the end of November, Zach had reached out to me looking for a marketing person for Book in a Box because he’d read and liked a few of my pieces (he has a blog of his own). Tucker, being a writer, also gave the fact that I was a writer and blogger extra weight when I interviewed for the position. My interview was AWFUL (I’d never done one before in my life) but the fact that I’d been proactive enough to build a little online presence and show initiative in that way was the tipping point that led to my hire.”

Case study #4: blog to show off your skills and expertise

I made myself my own job to blog once a day while I looked for work
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Name: Jonathan Alonso

Job acquired through blogging: SEO Analyst

Personal blog:

Jonathan’s story:

“I had a CV website that did nothing but send users to view my resume, portfolio and letters of recommendations. All of it was just information sitting there with no real fresh contribution to what I really do. So I made myself my own job to blog once a day while I looked for work.

The blog was centered in the SEO industry and I would lay out tactics, new strategies and other methods to use in a successful digital marketing campaign. During interviews, I would bring up these case studies and blog posts and it was like having a promoter on the Internet showcasing my true skills instead of just me saying it in a 10 minute conversation. Soon almost 80% of my phone interviews became in-person or over Skype.

(Another marketing tool I used was social media. Using inbound marketing tactics, I boosted and advertised my posts and had clear calls to action like “Hire Me” or a small bio after the article with a 1-800 voicemail phone number.)

Living 1-2 hours from Orlando is stressful since Melbourne (Florida, were I live) is really scarce when it comes to Digital Marketing positions, but because of my blog strategy, I was able to land a job 25 minutes from home, allowing me to have a better quality of life and more time with my family.”

Case study #5: blog to be memorable and build rapport with employers

My blog helped me stand out and gave the hiring manager something to remember.
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Name: Anna Rice

Job acquired through blogging: Senior Publicist

Personal blog: The Blonde Banana

Anna’s story:

“A couple years ago I was already working full-time in public relations, but was dying to break into an agency that would offer me the chance to gain experience in the field I was truly passionate about: travel.

I found the perfect PR agency with a mix of fashion, outdoor and travel clients and sent in my resume along with a cover letter linking to my blog, The Blonde Banana, which is about seeing the world on weekends and in 24, 36, 48 and 72-hour stints.

Even though they weren’t hiring at the time, the hiring manager was impressed by how well my interests aligned with their client base, and called me in for an interview. During the interview, she revealed that she was actually hoping to hire someone soon but hadn’t posted the job yet. She asked if I would be able to complete a writing test by the end of the weekend and I had to inform her that I was going to be in Ecuador for the weekend, but that I’d work on it as soon as I returned. Instead of being annoyed at the inconvenience, she thought it was really cool that I was willing to travel to Ecuador for the weekend, which sparked a discussion about my blog.

Long story short, I landed the job and once I was hired, I was frequently asked to contribute to the company blog and help out with social media initiatives because of my expertise. I won’t say that my blog got me the job, as I think my background in the PR industry played a larger role, but it definitely helped me stand out from other candidates and gave the hiring manager something to remember.”

Case study #6: blog as personal showcase

My blog is not only a creative outlet for me, but serves as an online portfolio
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Name: Vanessa Labi

Job acquired through blogging: Digital Engagement Specialist

Personal blog: Babesicle

Vanessa’s story:

“I’ve been blogging for the last few years on my personal style blog, Babesicle, and I believe it’s helped me get my current full-time position as a digital engagement specialist at Creative California, a digital marketing firm based in Sacramento, CA.

My blog is not only a creative outlet for me, but serves as an online portfolio for the type of web writing, promotion, and social media marketing I am capable of. It has helped to get my foot in the door, so to speak. My boss, Creative California founder Josh Rubin, was more apt to meet with me for an interview because he was able to see my face and “get to know me” a bit online rather than simply browsing my resume and LinkedIn page.”

Case study #7: blog to build credibility and prove your track record

The blog changed the discussion from being about me to being about how I could help the employer
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Name: Steve Robins

Job acquired through blogging: Director of Product Marketing

Personal blog:

Steve’s story:

“My blog helped transform my last job search. The blog changed the discussion from being about me to being about how I could help the employer, which was much better.

Before I started the blog, employers would ask me “what other companies have you talked to? How is the search going?” etc.

But once I started the blog, people focused much more on that instead. Interviews often started with something like “I read your blog and really liked your post on solution marketing,” which gave me instant credibility with the hiring manager. That helped change interviews from Q&A about my background into more useful discussions about my opinions and how I’d help the company.”

Learn and copy their success

While Blog Mastermind is a great course, its focus is on making money with your blog (whether you already have one or not).

However, if you’re more interested in blogging your way to job offers like myself and the 7 bloggers here above, I can teach you.

I’m thinking of creating an online course about using blogs to get jobs, leveraging the above tactics and others, with simple-to-follow videos, office hours so you can ask questions and much more.

Sign up to the early interest list now

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