PERSONAL WEBSITE: Is It Worth It?
By Phil Rosario
Last Sunday, February 15th, I officially published my own personal website, PhilRosario.com. I’ve always found it pretty cool to see somebody make an awesome site of their own where they can display and/or share virtually anything that they desire. There’s something about a super aesthetically pleasing web page that draws me in and makes me eager to learn what it’s all about. I had always considered making a website but figured it just wasn’t that necessary. After a lot of consideration, I realized that making a personal website really has a ton of perks!
It all clicked with me quite recently. With senior year coming closer and closer to an end, I’ve been applying to a ton of jobs in advertising and haven’t been having much luck (partly because I’m being a bit picky). Particularly with creative agencies, many applications require a lot of thought and almost always request various items of content. In some cases, fields requesting links to portfolios, social media accounts, and websites are listed as “OPTIONAL,” but I’ve recently realized that these are the things that can make or break whether or not I am selected. I have pages on sites like About.me and Tumblr, but I don’t like sharing those because I feel like they tend to seem a bit tacky in a professional setting. I am so proud of my online presence, so why haven’t I been showing it off?
About a week ago I found a job listing for an agency position that I REALLY want and, before I submitted my application, I decided it was time to make a kick-ass website to go along with it.
Here are 4 reasons why I think making a website is really worth while!
CREATIVE FREEDOM. Yes, we all have our resumes and LinkedIn profiles, but how much room do you really have to show who you are? Even with an exciting resume, there is only so much personality that you can throw into it. With a personal website, you have all the creative freedom your heart could ever desire in regards to choosing a design, format, and overall tone! This idea of creative freedom bring me to my next topic…
CONTROL. With your own personal website, you have complete control over exactly what you want people to see and how you want them to see it. On a LinkedIn profile, you need to stick to a somewhat structured format, and although employers are familiar with navigating around it, that format could really affect how you are portrayed. With a website, you control the users overall experience! You have the power to decide how they feel and what they think of you, which comes in handy when you want to seem….
LEGITIMATE. Nothing says “I’m serious about my future,” like taking the initiative to make a website. This gives you a chance to show off your commitment to excellence by delivering a flawless array of content that you put together all on your own. When you’re trying to show off everything you can do, a website can really help you show off your skills in…
ORGANIZATION. If you’re really active online and have a strong digital presence, you want to be able to show off all of your digital content! I personally love to show off my social media content to employers, but sharing a list of links to videos, social media sites and pictures can get a little messy. A personal website acts as a central location for everything you’d like employers to see! A sexy “.com” domain name is the icing on the cake for a personal brand and always looks fantastic on business cards, resumes, or even just to share by word of mouth!
If I haven’t already convinced you, I’d like to let you know that it’s not that difficult to make a website!
I built my site with Wix, and there are plenty of other website builders out there such as SquareSpace, Weebly, and Jimdo that make it simple to produce a beautiful website with pre-made templates and special options such as purchasing your own personal domain name. If you aren’t sure which builder is best for you, read this article to see The Pros and Cons of Each! With Wix, I simply selected a sleek template and filled it in with content that best represented my personality, skills, and experience.
NEED INSPIRATION? Here is a brief walk-through of my personal website:
The HOME page of PhilRosario.com contains a title, description, menu bar, video, and links to my social media sites. I put the video on the home page because it is a great way to show my personality from the start. The social media links, menu bar and title are included on every page of the site.
In addition to the default site aspects, my BIO page includes an image of myself, an accent image, and a short bio. This bio includes information regarding my education, experience, and what type of job I am seeking after graduation!
The next tab on my site’s menu bar takes you to the EXPERIENCE page. This is my favorite page and features both video and photo content along with descriptions of some of my greatest educational, extracurricular, and professional achievements.
My RESUME tab brings you to a page with a link to my official resume as well as a section of testimonials from past employers and managers (not shown in this image).
The last tab on my site brings you to the CONNECT page, where I include large, more obvious social media links, just in case the user missed the ones on the bottom of the screen, as well as a message box that sends messages directly to my e-mail address!
If you haven’t ever considered making a personal website, I hope I sparked some interest! If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. You can contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or message me on PhilRosario.com 😉