The headlines have not been kind to those who are interested in a career in journalism.
Newspapers, online publications, and other media outlets have had to cut staff to meet changing industry needs, and in response to COVID-19. Despite these challenges, there's still a path to a career in journalism.
There's a lot of talk about the economy going into a recession, but it's important to remember that businesses are still hiring—even hard hit industries like journalism. These jobs are just a little harder to find, and feature increased competition.
It comes down to being persistent and digging in for a competitive job search process.
Here are four other ways to improve your chances of landing a job in full-time journalism:
Take Advantage Of Freelance Opportunities
Freelancing is a great way to gain on-the-job experience and begin to put together a portfolio of work. There are even some people who prefer freelancing over full-time work.
While long-term freelancing isn't for everyone, it's an essential first step if you're unable to secure full-time work immediately.
One benefit of freelancing is that it provides you with the freedom to take on a diverse amount of assignments. Depending on your interests, you could take assignments reporting on news, sports, music, art, and politics.
Ultimately, having experience in multiple areas of reporting will help your resume stand out when you're competing with others for full-time work.
Share Your Work
Take pride in the work that you do and share it on your social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. There are multiple benefits to sharing your work.
First, if it catches someone's attention, it will continue to get shared and further expose your work to a wider audience.
Second, it helps with name recognition. If people see your name attached to good work, it can lead to additional freelancing assignments or greater opportunities.
It's also beneficial to have a website or other online platform to keep your best work on. It makes it easier for prospective employers to access your past work.
Network Like Crazy
Networking is essential for any job search, but it's especially important in journalism. Every editor you work for, every person you interview, and every competing reporter you meet while on assignment is a potential connection that could lead you to your next career opportunity.
Journalism is very much a "who you know" business. People will go to bat for those who produce quality work and are pleasant to work with.
Build strong relationships and nurture those connections. Read and share the work of fellow reporters and colleagues; they'll likely return the favor.
Remain active on LinkedIn and let people know what you're doing. A good connection that knows you're looking for work can make all the difference in finding your next career opportunity.
Find A Job That's Similar
If freelancing alone doesn't help you pay the bills, there are other professions where you can showcase your writing skills. Whether it's content writing, marketing, or public relations, some businesses just need good writers. These are also deadline-driven professions where good research and information gathering are essential.
These are industries where you can gain additional experience in blogging, social media, and video editing. While these professions may not have been a part of your original plan, it's still a great opportunity to gain skills and build your network. You may even find a career that you want to pursue.
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