12 Reasons Why You Should Absolutely Start a Blog in College

traffic Jun 12, 2019

Thinking about starting a blog? If you're a college student, now is the time to start. In this post, we'll share 12 reasons why you should absolutely start a blog in college.

Want to have lots of job opportunities straight out of college?

Want to become known as a voice of authority in your chosen industry, even before you graduate?

Starting a blog is a great way to do just that, and much more.

To give you plenty of food for thought, let’s take a look at 12 reasons you might want to start blogging right now (or as soon as you finish this 10-minute read)...

1. Sharing Your Studies = Marketing Your Skills

College blogs are everywhere right now, which means there’s loads of demand for new and engaging content. One of the best things to do is write about what you know, and what better topic than your studies and college lifestyle?

When Mary Fernandez, the founder of Persuasion Nation, started blogging in college as an exercise to re-write her notes, she had no idea it was going to help her market her skills. But pretty soon, people began contacting her with questions.

Simply by sharing what you're studying, you are demonstrating your skills.

You don’t want to make it too heavy on the lifestyle pieces because you won’t be able to carve out much of a niche for yourself with that kind of content. Instead, focus the majority of your posts on the details of your studies.

Here are a few ideas to start with:

  • Why are you studying, and what made you choose your major?
  • How do you study, and what motivates you to work hard even when you may not feel like it?
  • Which direction are you hoping to go in once you graduate?

These questions are really all about soul searching so that you start thinking about what you want to share. Take some time to reflect on them, and you’ll be amazed at the innovative and creative ways you find to talk the reader through your college experience.

2. Learn Your Subject by Actively Teaching It

Another great benefit of positioning yourself as a voice of authority is that it forces you to think about your subject in more details than you perhaps normally would.

It doesn't matter that you are still learning yourself– you can still teach someone who is a year, a month, or even just behind you in your studies.

When you teach your subject you’re going to have to think outside of the confines of the standard syllabus. You'll need to devise a dozen different ways to explain and demonstrate the fundamentals, and you’ll need to make sure you can back up your approach when called upon to do so.

Here’re a few of the benefits of teaching your major to your readers: 

  • It will force you to think of new ways to explain topics that you’re already familiar with to a layman audience.
  • You will find that your ideas become more fluid, and easier to get across the more you practice.
  • As time goes by, you will develop stock answers in your head that you can then tailor to the specific situation. This is particularly useful when you’re being assessed orally as part of your degree because you’ll need to demonstrate you can think on your feet.

3. Become an Expert Voice

We’ve already highlighted the importance and the benefits of becoming an expert or authority voice in your field, but how do you do it? 

For starters, you need to know your subject inside out, or at least the portion of it that you’re writing about for your current post. Take the time to write a good piece.

Next, you want to show that you have a breadth and depth of understanding that outweighs that required to pass the course. You can reuse your older posts to generate more traffic organically. It’s a great way to introduce new readers to your back catalog, and it helps cement your position as a voice of authority by showing you are well-versed in every aspect of your subject.

Here are a few ways you can do exactly that:

  • Provide topical content where your subject has made the news recently.
  • Talk about the trends and advances readers can expect to see in your chosen field.
  • Offer to answer questions from your readers.

4. Make Valuable Connections for Life After Graduation

Life after graduation is something that many students feel they’re not prepared for, which means there’s an opening for you to get ahead of the curve. Networking is a great way to secure places on postgraduate courses and internship programs, and your blog holds the keys.

As a new graduate no one is expecting you to have a resume that’s bursting with 2 decades of experience, but you do need to show something. Linking to your blog, and including a short paragraph on what inspired you to write it will help you stand out for all the right reasons. And obviously, if you have a network of engaged contacts prior to graduation, you’ll know who you need to get in touch with when you start entering the world of work. 

  • Your network of contacts should be relevant to the career(s) you want to move towards.
  • Never be afraid to approach someone and share your blog with them — if you don’t ask, you’ll never know if they’re interested.
  • Treat every blog post like you’re speaking directly to your network so that you always show them what you can do. 

5. Work Through Your Emotions

When you want to be able to get your thoughts and feelings in order, writing them down is a great way to work through them:

  • Writing slows down your brain so that you can start thinking things through.
  • You won’t be able to get distracted by your iPhone or social media.
  • It pushes you to articulate what you have to say in a way that’s coherent, and well thought out.

By being able to process your emotions you can learn valuable skills that will benefit your studies. You can work through the big conceptual ideas of your subject, and keep going over and over them in a self-critical way until you’re satisfied you understand them completely.

This is a great step on the road to being able to teach yourself new skills from scratch, and it’s a skill that will come in handy when you start your career.

6. Interview Leaders in Your Field

One of the great things about having a blog is that it opens doors by legitimizing your efforts and output.

If you want to interview a key thought leader in your chosen field, having a blog gives them a reason to actually take your call or respond to your cold email.

If you want to know what to do, follow these simple tips to give yourself sufficient authority to get noticed: 

  • Don’t contact them out of the blue, do your research well in advance.
  • Make it clear that there’s something in it for them too: exposure and an interesting opportunity to connect with the next generation.
  • Never use stock questions that you’ve thought up the night before. Invest time in asking the specifics that only a leader in your field can answer.
  • Outline the structure in advance: times, number of questions, and the likely format the interview will take on paper.

These 4 simple things will make your case far more persuasive because you’ll come across like a voice of authority in the making.

7. Improve Your Writing Skills

You need to motivate yourself to blog, and it’s something that’s often easier said than done.

One of the best ways to motivate yourself is to remember that you’re developing a skill that will serve you well for the rest of your life.

Being able to put pen to paper is such a valuable skill that you can make money for it as a full-time copywriter, so clearly, there’s a market for it. 

But what if you don’t want to do that? Well, thanks to the rise of the email you’ll end up doing most, or sometimes all, of your communication via the written word. If you can articulate yourself well on paper, and get your message across concisely and precisely, you’ll make a far more attractive candidate than someone who can’t.

8. Master Those All-Important eSkills

eSkills, like learning how to post, or how to format in HTML, are great additions to your resume. They show that you have the ability to learn something to complete a specific task — a great quality that businesses will love to see.

You don’t even have to be thinking about embarking on a technical career for your eSkills to be able to add value to your resume. They’re more about showing your willingness and ability to learn, and in the case of your blog, they’ll also demonstrate what a committed and proficient self-starter you are. Ideal if you want to make a case for getting hired straight away.

9. Support Your Fellow Students

College isn’t all about studying and preparing your resume for what comes after, there’s also a lot of growing you will do as an individual.

One of the biggest changes in the last couple of years has been the way that society has opened up to the issues surrounding mental illness. It used to be a label reserved for the condition of a select few, and yet now people from all walks of life are speaking openly about everything from depression and anxiety to PTSD.

College can be a stressful time for a number of different reasons:

  • The high tuition fees and competition for graduate placement programs means there is a virtually continuous pressure to perform.
  • Moving away from home can be a daunting prospect for many, as you’ll be distanced from the social structures you’ve known all your life.
  • There’s a constant stream of social engagements, events, and opportunities that some students find overwhelming.

You may identify with one, none, or all of the above, but the main point is that they’re now commonplace in the college experience. By creating a space where people can come to make sense of their emotions and feelings, you can do a lot of good in the world.

10. Give Yourself a Productive Distraction

Everyone needs a break from the rigors of full-time study, that’s just a given.

By being able to take a break in a way that still engages key parts of your brain, you can learn something new whilst also de-stressing. This is far better than activities like watching TV (passive) and playing online games (unproductive) because you’ll actually have something tangible to show for it at the end.

Here’re a few ways you can really benefit from a constructive break:

  • You rest the parts of your brain that you’re using in all of your lectures and exams.
  • You can de-stress by remembering that there’s more to life than this term’s paper.

You get the chance to gain some fresh perspective on your course and the world as a whole.

11. Personal SEO Really Matters

Ask any of the writers who work for TopWritersReview and they’ll tell you that personal SEO (Search Engine Optimization) matters more now than it ever has.

It’s all about ensuring that when someone searches your name, you show up in a positive way.

Most people’s Facebook and Twitter will show up, and that’s not a lot of interest to many people. Your blog, on the other hand, is a completely different story.

Because you’ve clearly taken the time to create something unique from scratch, whoever is searching you will instantly get a positive first impression. And if they like what they see, they’re likely to come back over and over again as a repeat reader. The more this happens, the more likely Google is to rank your blog highly because it will deem it as relevant content.

12. Keep Student Debt at Bay

Last but not least, it wouldn’t be an article about blogs if we didn’t open the eyes to the prospect of one day monetizing it.

Read these 3 common mistakes that college students make when starting a blog, and you’ll see the things you need to avoid:

  •  Writing solely to earn money, rather than earning money as a result of already having built a successful blog.
  • Creating click-bait style articles that get a lot of traffic, but do nothing for your position as a voice of authority.
  • Producing inflammatory or risqué content for the purposes of instantly going viral.

If you try to force it, it’s not going to work. Take the time to build a blog that you would actually want to read, and if enough people get onboard then, by all means, think about promoting relevant services.

Daniela McVicker is a passionate digital marketer. Daniela is interested in everything related to SEO and blogging. She collaborates with Ratedbystudents and other websites where she shares her experience and helps marketers make their name in the online world.

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