The World of Digital Portfolios

Posted by Stephanie Kocer

We all know that it is important to walk into a job interview with examples of your work. In today’s ever-changing, technological world journalists usually have their entire portfolio on their own website. A recent Poynter article by Susanna Speier called “Digital Portfolios for Journalists: What are Your Options?”  explains that more and more journalists are using portfolio platforms to help them create this personal site.

Screen shot 2013-04-15 at 3.51.21 PM Photo courtesy of theother66.

Here are a few tips the article highlighted about some of the portfolio sites out there that I found useful for building a personal portfolio site:

1. Be organized– First, make sure your site is user-friendly, so employers can easily find what they’re looking for on it. You should also make sure that your site is tailored to the type of job you want to get. For example, if you’re wanting to get a job that has something to do with audio, make sure all of your clips are together and are easy to find quickly.

2. PDFs are a must- Having links to online clips is great, but you should also always include a PDF with it too on your site. You never know when things from the web could be taken down or lost, so having a PDF of your clip for backup is a must. Pressfolios, one of the newest personal portfolio sites, goes so far as to automatically add a full PDF version of a clip you upload to the site, regardless of how you originally uploaded it (like if you just put up the URL to a clip). The PDFs are also only made for the user and never seen by the public. It serves as a nice little backup for you just in case.

3. Use what you already have- Sites such as lets you create accounts with other social media logins you already have. You can also embed an RSS feed from your portfolio site onto your LinkedIn profile. If you’re a multimedia journalist you can embed YouTube, Vimeo, AudioBoo, SoundCloud, and Storify clips to your portfolio.

4. Let editors look for you- On a site called Contently journalists are able to get a premium package that allows them the option of being approached by editors from newsrooms and corporate publications for writing opportunities.

5. WordPress is still good- Even with these new portfolio building sites, WordPress is still a valuable one to check out. It can show that you know how to build your own website and it offers you the chance to change your theme a little by coding.

Do any of you have personal portfolio sites? Is anyone currently working on one? If you don’t have one do any of these platforms sound interesting and useful to you?


7 responses to “The World of Digital Portfolios

  1. I don’t have a portfolio site but I know that I should have one. It seems like there is never enough time to get things compiled but after spending a lot of time finding clips for internship applications lately, it probably would have been worthwhile to just invest the time at once.

    This past summer I initially tried to combine my work on a Wordrpress blog but I think using one of the sight suggested might be a better option.
    Pressfolios sounds like the best option for me because I am always looking to get my work in PDFs because it takes forever to find it on the website for the company I currently write for.

  2. I also don’t have a portfolio site and I definitely plan on getting one.They are becoming the new norm. The issue I see with obtaining a portfolio site is that I want it to be well designed by myself to give more insight to possible employers of my multimedia ability. The issue is right now is I’m not the best with coding, HTML, etc.

    For now maybe I will stick with WordPress or check out Pressfolios, but I think a self created website offers more information to employers.

  3. I am currently working on a personal portfolio site: I’m using WordPress mostly because I’m familiar with the platform, and I think it offers more opportunities to be creative. I think it’s good to have a digital portfolio because they are expected by potential employers. They also get your name out there, and you should want that. I’m curious to see how digital portfolios will evolve through the use of mobile devices…

  4. I do not have a personal portfolio site but as Monica said I know I should! I think it would be so cool to walk into an interview with an iPad and be able to show off my work that way because you are, just with that, demonstrating skills and being trendy, professional, technical and prepared!

  5. Like others, I don’t have a portfolio site either, but it is something I’ve thought about. Increasingly, many of our clips will be in online or even tablet formats like with the capstone projects this year. This creates new opportunities to display work, but also a lot of new challenges. I like the Pressfolio idea because it creates some sort of longevity to digital work with PDFs, but honestly, I’m still wary of an all online portfolio. Since I don’t have an ipad and still have a lot of print clips, I don’t personally believe that we’re at the point when all digital portfolios are ubiquitous. However, I agree with Hali that we’re definitely headed in that direction, and it’s smart to take these tips and try to prepare for an increasingly digital future.

  6. I also don’t have a personal portfolio site. Like everyone else it has been on my agenda for some time. I even heard a lot of internships will not hire you without an online portfolio. I’ve started creating one on a couple different sites, but always got bogged down and frustrated because I didn’t really know how to create the website I saw in my mind. This post helps me feel a bit more collected about the whole idea. I know what’s expected, and I like that you threw out a few sites that are helpful. Thank you!

  7. So, I guess I would make the sixth person that also does not have a personal website. But judging from your article it looks like I most defiantly should. I was in the process of creating an AboutMe page but, I didn’t know what exactly to put on it. I have a blog and a LinkedIn that I maintain, but I would like to do more. Bianca’s page was inspiring and has motivated me to maybe start working on my own this summer. Like Rachel said, thank you for such an informative post, professionally keeping up with the times is important.

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