Three words: search engine optimization. That's one of the most important things to know about in today's world of web, even if you're not into the whole "print is being dominated by digital" spiel. As one of my friends put it in non-techie language, SEO means making yourself Google-fabulous (def: coming up within the top few results in a Google search). We had a intern session yesterday during which I learned all about the joys of SEO, blogging, and other web tips. So I'm gonna give you the exclusive scoop!
-Resumes are important, but the concrete work you have to show for yourself is more important. Flaunt your personal blogs (even if they're just rants about your boss at work, or about how Twitter is taking over the world). Talk up that Web site that you helped to build. This work speaks volumes more than resumes. But I'm not underplaying resumes - you'll definitely need one to simply get in the door. Making a resume Web site is also a cool tool!
-Learn Dreamweaver. The Noble Desktop on Broadway offers free seminars, and you can also check out the ones that are advertised on MediaBistro. Or teach yourself by perusing the online guidebook! ("Dreamweaver for Dummies," anyone?) Even if you haven't made a web page with Dreamweaver, being able to brag that you know the skills will help you one-up others vying for the same job or internship.
-Know the difference between writing for the Web and writing for print. Online, those clever, witty headlines that editors spend oodles of time thinking of don't really work. Users are less likely to click on something like "Come Undone" (for a look-book of summer dresses) even though it might totally work in the actual mag. Instead, online, you need titles that tell users exactly what they'll get: think more along the lines of "Our 10 Favorite Summer Dresses." There's lots of opportunities to combine creativity and straightforwardness - you just have to dig!
-A surefire way of getting a job in digital: think of ways that Web sites can make moolah (besides selling ad space or charging for online content). That's the biggest issue Web is facing right now. People are still clinging to the print model beacuse that's the primary way of rakin' in the dough.
Hope this post made everyone a bit more web-savvy! In other news, for your viewing pleasure, here's a hilarious video that one of my fellow interns found. All I'm gonna say is Lady Gaga, Just Dance, and Congressman McMahon. Watch it here!