Sunday saw me attend Blog On, my first conference. I had been very unsure about it, as I would be going on my own and I’ve have only been blogging a few months. I got the ticket about 3 weeks before on a whim, and as it crept closer I got more and more nervous. A few days before it, I had to give myself a good talking to as I was thinking of backing out.
What spurred me on was my little girl, Cerise. She had auditioned, and got a part in a pantomime at the Echo Arena, in Liverpool at Christmas. On Sunday she had a four hour rehearsal, at the old Dance Mums studios and was a little nervous as she hasn’t done anything like this before. I thought if she can do something new so can I. Blog on was on the same day as James mum’s birthday, so he had his work cut out trying to get us everywhere on time, and visit his mum.
We left at 8:30, and got to Museum of Science and Industry at 09:20, I thought it would take me forever to get out the car, as I had been told to take a suitcase for the goodie bags you ge,. I was still a little skeptical though and didn’t want James to leave me with a suitcase if I didn’t really need it.As we pulled up I instantly saw a few people with suitcases.
I walked straight over to the cafe by the entrance and got a bottle of water. There were only a handful of people at this point, and I sat at a table with three other ladies Codie from Codiekinz Rachel from Rachelswirl and Karen from two tiny hands. They were all so friendly, and we just had a chat for about 20 minutes until it was time to start queuing up to get in.
As soon as we got upstairs where the conference was, we took our suitcases to a designated place so we didn’t have to cart them round with us all day. I then waited in line to get my Blog on badge and a badge to write my name and blog name on, which was a God send as now I could put faces to blogs.
I then walked around on my own for a while, looking at the different brand setups, until Kirsty from Motherhoodery rescued me.
We are both newbies and started around the same time, so it was nice to hook up with someone in the same boat.
We went through and found a seat ready for the welcome and keynote speeches.
The keynote was by Olivia Pennelle from Liv’s recovery kitchen who spoke about her addictions and how she has spent the last four years overcoming them. very inspirational.
We then went to our first session which was making money run by Mel from le coin de mel.
Lots of tips for us newbies but the main points I took away were:
- Never undersell yourself, and know your worth.
- Build your brand, you are your brand.
- There is always budget haha.
- All the different ways you can monetize your blog.
Very informative and I’m glad I went to this session.
Straight after this was lunch and it was a festive themed buffet, done very nicely, sandwiches, quiche, sausages wrapped in bacon, potatoes, mince pies and a selection of drinks.
Kirsty and I found a seat, and had our lunch. We talked about the session and what ones we’d like to see in the afternoon. We then got our raffle tickets and had a look at the wonderful prize table, it really was fab!
We then had a look around the brand setups and had an elfie selfie at the Elf for Christmas stand.
Our second session of the day was Planning creative blog content with Grace from Eat’s amazing. This was so much fun we got to make reindeer sandwiches and reindeer snack bags.
She spoke about themed posts and when to put them up.
She also showed us how you can benefit from having spider graphs to link all your ideas and themes together.
We then came out to a really lovely cake which sadly I never got a photo of before it was cut, but managed to get a slice of the chocolate layer.
Our third session was Getting the most out of YouTube by Lucy from Dear beautiful. I was pleased I went to this as although I already have a YouTube channel, I found out so many hints and tips from her that I didn’t know, like prioritising your tags as the first three are the most important, and that YouTube decide within the first couple of hours if your video is worth promoting, so it’s important to get the upload time right.
We then had our final break of the day when the wine started to flow.
I took a glass back to a table to wait for the fourth and final talk of the day.
Inspiring Instagram was the last talk by Kate from mummy, daddy,me, and Colette from We’re going on an adventure. I found this the most useful, I haven’t been on Instagram that long and need all the help I can get on how to build my following.
The main points I took from this were:
- Do not buy followers, people will be able to tell.
- Find out what times of the day are getting you the most traffic for your posts.
- Use hashtags that are going to drive people your way, and make sure they are relevant to what your posting.
- Do not do the follow/unfollow dance.
We then had the raffle draw. I didn’t win anything, but Kirsty did. The final keynote was from Darrell about The Art Of Being Brilliant, which focused on positive psychology.
That was the end of a fab inspirational day. But not before we got our glorious goodie bags. I put them in my empty suitcase and headed home absolutely exhausted. The kids had a ball going through the bags, but I managed to get a quick pic.
I had a fantastic day and am so glad I didn’t back out. Everyone was so friendly, but then I’d already heard that Blog on was the best for newbies. I would definitely go to another blog conference.
Cerise had a good day too. She learnt three dance routines. Everyone else had fun up at their nan and grandads for their nans birthday so all in all a good dy had by everyone!
See you soon