Setting Up an Online Portfolio

1. Read 15 Journalists’ outstanding personal portfolios (10000words.net) *note it is from 2008.

2. Google the pros and people you admire. Check out their web sites. Aim to be there someday.

3. Check out the portfolios of Rowan students or recent grads.

For example:
http://www.linkedin.com/in/stacyannj (grad student on Linked in)
http://afoodcoma.com/theintern/ (writing, multimedia)
http://www.afoodcoma.com/ (a separate blog)
http://matboyle.com/ (photo)
http://codychrusciel.net/main.htm (sports broadcast)
http://www.heelsandwheelsonline.com/ (writing/blogging/travel)
http://www.emilykostic.com/ (social networking)
http://jenniferlynnproductions.yolasite.com/ (TV/Film)

4. Ask yourself the following questions:

What is the purpose of my portfolio?
A vanity site? An interactive resume? A way to sell your expertise? A publication in itself?

Who is my audience?
Friends and family? Employers? A way to network with other people in your field?

How will this connect to my other social networking profiles?
Should it be separate, fully integrated, or a mix?

How can I distinguish myself?
How are you? What do you offer? Why should someone read your work or hire you for the job?

5. Do it. Create a portfolio site over winter break.

Tips:
-Keep your design clean.
-Provide simple, clear navigation.
-No typos misspellings, typos, or grammatical errors.
-Think “first impression.”
-Think web. Visual and easy to skim. Provide links to more information.
-Your lead sells your clip (and it will probably be the only part that an editor reads).
-Embeds and links are better than downloads.
-Don’t make visitor work to figure out how you are and what you can do.
-For multimedia (text, audio, photo, video, graphics), demonstrate a broad knowledge and versatility, but also an expertise.
-Make it easy for people to contact you, but difficult to spam you.
-Update your content regularly.
-Pick a platform you can upgrade.
For example, you can start with Yourname.Wordpress.com (free). Then later you can buy your own domain through WordPress.com ($15 a year). Later you can buy your domain and host web site yourself ($5-$7 a month). All of your content can be easily moved from one to the other.
-Redesign your portfolio every few years.
-Show it to others and ask them to give you feedback.

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