This past weekend was the third annual Blog Connect Conference #theblogconnect hosted by PHL Bloggers. PHL Bloggers is an amazing community of bloggers and small business owners from the Philadelphia area. The conference was held at the lovely Saxby’s Headquarters at 2300 Chestnut Street. As the event was located at the Saxby’s Headquarters there was free tea and coffee all day long (including latte, espresso, etc. in any size)!
Once you arrived and checked in, you could get your headshot taken by Julia Dent (which I definitely got taken!). Breakfast which was provided by Saxby's consisted of bagels and cream cheese, fruit, and pastries. There was a chance to mingle and get settled in before the conference started promptly at 9:00AM. As this was my second year attending the conference it was so nice to see both familiar and new faces!
This year’s blog theme was: Find Your Roots. It’s all about going deeper into the skills you already have, developing good habits and creating content. There were many wonderful speakers and sessions all day long!
Listing of Speakers:
Andy Shaw // Instafather
Sarah Von Bargen // Yes and Yes
Tara Gentile // CoCommercial
AK Brown & Diamond Hudson // Just Bloggers: No Explanation
Len Markidan // Podia
Antoinette Minor // The Young Professionalist
Michelle Conron // Cashman & Associates
Judy Freedman // A Boomer's Life After 50
Amber Burns // Space on Third
After the morning speakers, we had lunch catered by Snap Kitchen. Snap Kitchen provides fresh, prepared meals using high quality ingredients. After lunch came the afternoon session with more speakers and breakout session. There was also a mid-afternoon snack break with Federal Donuts (seriously they are SO yummy!).
Here are the FIVE biggest takeaways which I took from the conference:
Morning keynote speaker, Sarah Von Bargen from Yes and Yes made us think What does blogging success look like to you? Success looks and feels different for everyone. In order to reach your version of success, you need to create habits which set you up for success. Those habits can be daily, weekly, monthly, etc - whatever it looks like to you. Success is not measured in how many likes you might get on Instagram or how many followers you have (which is SO important especially in today's world!). It's what makes YOU feel successful.
Len Markidan from Podia did a great presentation on How to earn a living from blogging without sponsors, advertisers, and affiliates. He discussed useful tools and steps in order to come up with a profitable course idea and using Google.com and Reddit.com to do your research in order to find a topic worth teaching. I thought was very informative and this got me thinking how I can apply this to my blog.
Judy Freedman from A Baby Boomer Woman's Life After 50 discussed How to avoid blogger burnout. And YES blogger burnout is a real concept! Judy spoke about mindfulness and certain techniques we can use everyday. One of my favorite techniques she taught us was
STOP – BREATHE – BE.
Antoinette Minor from The Young Professionalist spoke about What to post and how to post on social media. She suggests posting 1x day on Instagram, 2x - 1x day on Facebook, and 3x - 5x on Twitter. I have to admit I never gave much thought into how often or how less I was posting on these social media websites and it's so helpful to have a guide!
Michelle Conron from Cashman & Associates gave us insight into How PR agencies work with Influencers and Clients. Michelle gave us tips on what they look for when vetting through bloggers and influencers. It's also important for bloggers to have consistency among social media platforms (for instance when it comes to branding) and be able to back up your numbers.
Overall, if you ever have the chance to attend a blogging conference I highly suggest it! It may seem intimidating but it’s really great to get out there, network and to meet new people! You honestly never know who you may meet and what new things you may learn. It’s also awesome to be in a room full of individuals who have similar interests with you!