5 reasons to become a journalist in 2017

 

Newsrooms are shrinking in both print and broadcast media as technology makes the job of delivering instant news ever more easier with fewer resources.

That might persuade some to look elsewhere for a career in journalism.

Fewer jobs means more competition when it comes to finding that first role on a newspaper or a television news outlet.

But advances in the internet mean employers in every industry are crying out for people who can write great content, which can be posted online and increase traffic to their website.

By training or studying how to become a journalist you are actually opening up a myriad of potential careers, both in the journalism sector and outside it too.

Here are five reasons why you should consider some form of journalism training as we start the new year:

 

1 You can enjoy a rewarding career as a journalist

We’ll start with the whole purpose of studying journalism, to become a newspaper reporter or a broadcast journalist, for example.

In terms of being able to deliver breaking news, it has never been more exciting to work in the industry.

Not that long ago, trainees or newly-qualified journalists would cut their teeth on ‘soft’ news stories on weekly newspapers where the content would often be a week old when it went to press.

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Now, if something breaks you need to post your story online within minutes on your media outlet’s website and promote it via social media.

You can live tweet from a court case, council meeting or football match and tell people the news in real time in the same way that Sky News or a national newspaper does.

2 You could move into a career in public relations (PR)

Many journalists are finding their skills are highly transferable for a career as a PR executive or consultant.

Content is king and brands, both big and small, multi-national and local, are desperate for people who can tell their story online.

Journalists remain a trusted source of news because their training teaches them the importance of checking facts and observing publishing laws.

Consequently, you will find that many companies now stipulate some form of journalism training as highly advantageous when they advertise their vacancies in communications and PR.

3 You have an option to become a website copywriter

There is a constant battle for businesses to attract online traffic to their websites, either to sell products and services or to give potential clients information on what they do.

This is where the role of the copywriter comes in. Their task is to write content which will influence people to log on to the website and stay there.

If the site contains poorly-written or dull material it will turn the online audience off.

An ability to write well will come through studying journalism and learning what is newsworthy and what ‘hooks’ can be used to interest a reader.

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4 It will help you become a self-publisher and write books

Anyone can now self-publish their own books for very little cost.

The platform provided by Amazon means there are lots more publications out there but not all of them are high quality.

By training as a journalist you will learn all the important skills to be able to write great content in your books, proof-read them yourself so there are minimal or no errors and promote them through newspapers, broadcasters and social media.

My career as a journalist has certainly helped me write successful non-fiction books which I’ve self-published myself as eBooks and paperbacks on Amazon.

 

5 You can set yourself up as a professional blogger

There may come a time when you become an authority in a certain area and you turn your thoughts to making money from it.

Blogs are a great way to do this because if you write great content and get it widely shared on social media you can start selling advertising on your page.

More and more parents have started blogs – the so-called ‘mummy blogger’ genre – and there are also a multitude of lifestyle, leisure and business bloggers who make good money through blogging.

Some of them are not trained journalists but it is undoubtedly a massive advantage if they are.

Being able to write great content in their posts and know exactly what will attract a reader can only help enormously in this process.

 

Are you considering a career in journalism? I have written a guide on how to become a journalist, which is available as a paperback or eBook on Amazon.

If you have any questions about how to go about training or studying a journalism qualification please feel free to leave a comment below.

 

 

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