The web has done a lot of good for the world and its mainstream adaption has created countless jobs across the United States - not to mention the dissemination of information to every corner of the world. Unfortunately, the change to digital put a serious hurt on newspapers as more and more people turn to the web to find news and local information. The loss of subscriptions and ad revenue hit newspapers hard. Some struggle, others close, yet some still thrive as they embrace a digital model to supplement their print base.
Because of that, there's still opportunity land a job with a newspaper as a reporter, journalist, column writer, stringer, editor, associate editor, blogger and more. In fact, those newspapers who embrace the digital model have a wider variety of staff positions to fill. Here's how to grab up those jobs when they become available: Research the paper - This included both on and offline. When you make your introduction and follow up you want to prove not only that you understand the structure of the paper but that you also have a sense for where you can contribute
Asses yourself - Look at your credentials closely and what you have to offer. If you want to write a column then keep in mind that they want content that sells papers and brings in readers. Make sure you have something to offer because you need to sell the editor on the value of your idea.
Make contact in a compelling way - Your introductory letter is used to sell yourself and the idea of having you work at the newspaper. Keep it short, to the point, and write with brevity. State your purpose, your credentials and what you can bring to the table.
Check, proof and review - Run through your communication with an editor using a fine-tooth comb. No errors, good flow, no punctuation issues. Even a single error could disqualify you for a job in a newspaper if you're dealing with a strict editor.
Follow up - Editors are solicited on a regular basis. Develop a system to keep track of the letters you send out and follow up with phone calls and emails. It could take weeks to get a response. Following up keeps attention on you.
Expand your skills - Since many major newspapers also publish to the web, it pays to understand writing for the web and different audiences. Research content marketing via blogs along with etiquette on engagement and responding to comments. Take the time to educate yourself on content management systems. Skills in managing digital content could make you an asset to a newspaper with a large digital subscriber base.
Newspapers aren't dead - they're out there looking for the right employees to help them grow. FirstJob works with college students and recent college grads to help them connect with great job opportunities in a variety of industries, both virtual and real-world.