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Digital CoLab and #FinCon2015 Review

Each year, when choosing my travel schedule, I know that I will be attending Digital CoLab. Without a doubt, I know that Digital CoLab is the one conference where I can go and learn something that will change the direction of my business in a very good way.

GIVEAWAY! Awesome blogging conference combo for bloggers in personal finance and more! Save the date for September 2016 in San Diego.

This year, since Digital CoLab preceded FinCon, I decided to stick around and attend both conferences.

Session Rewind

Digital CoLab was two days of intensives and round table discussions. I was excited to train others on Periscope and still have time to learn.

Digital CoLab Sessions

Steve Chou, Getting into E-commerce

Steve, founder of My Wife Quit Her Job, brought a tremendous amount of content in his session. He walked a group of about 30 (maybe 40) people step-by-step through the process of finding a marketable product, negotiating with the vendor, and listing the product for sale… and more. Despite being so comprehensive, Steve helped me realize that breaking into e-commerce was actually easier than I thought.

Jim Wang, Membership Sites

Founder of Wallet Hacks, Jim has worked side-by-side with Erin Chase of $5 Dinners to create and amazingly successful membership site. As the owner of two membership sites, my largest take-aways was the importance of surveys… lots of surveys. Upgrade surveys, purchase surveys, exit surveys, product creation surveys… Keep asking questions. Then, use snippets from the responses to write the copy for your products. (Why didn’t I think of that?!)

Bob Loitch, Adsense Hacks

Bob is the founder of Seed Time, formerly known as Christian Personal Finance, and he shared how he has increased his Google Adsense revenue by consistently setting experiments. Through simple A/B testing, Bob has been able to secure an additional $1,000 a month but only spend about 5 minutes on his Adsense account each week, and he had us walk through the simple process with him so we could take this knowledge home with experience.

Just a little light conversation at the #DigiCoLab round table with cjwtaxpro.net. #blogger #Blogging #taxes

A photo posted by Tabitha Philen (@tabithaphilen) on

Roundtables

Each roundtable was restricted to ten or less and was extremely hands-on. I learned how to implement A/B testing, the best tax entity classification for my blogging business, and much more!

FinCon Sessions

Oh my! The number of sessions available at FinCon is quite overwhelming, even for this seasoned blog conference attendee. But, that is a GREAT thing because you can be sure to find topics that apply to you even if your niche is not personal finance.

Jared Easley, Getting Interviewed by Podcasters

I had a fabulous time meeting Jared, co-founder of Podcast Movement, and not just because he originates from my home state of Alabama. (Although we did have a blast sipping sweet tea and talking in our deep south accents.)

Remember #podcasting is intimate because you are right inside someone’s earbuds @jaredeasley #FinCon15 — Tabitha Philen (@TabithaPhilen) September 18, 2015

Being resistant to joining the amazingly talented podcasters I listen to each week, I realized that I could still offer my expertise to podcasters and help them develop content without needing to start a podcast of my own.

Noah Kagan, Email Subscribers

Founder of OK Dork and Sumome, Noah is a powerhouse of information. While his session was about blowing up your email subscriber list, I learned much more than that. My biggest takeaway was actually through his tips on creating Facebook ads, one of my biggest deficits.

FinCon was also packed with sessions featuring success stories (from people who quit their jobs to work from home, started using Pinterest, and more) as well as expert panels (where you could have your website reviewed and business model adjusted.)

Networking

There was always something to learn during the day and if you thought you might have some time to put your feet up, you would remember the extensive vendor hall packed with sponsors or the amazing keynotes… and I can’t forget the parties every night and the PLUTUS Awards.

Truly, the opportunities to network with powerhouse podcasters, millionaire bloggers, and really cool nerds were numerous, but the best part… it was like a huge family reunion. No pretenses. No stuffy suits. Just blue jeans, flip flops, and a bunch of friends talking about business over dinner.

Next Year’s Digital CoLab and FinCon

I already have my tickets and hotel reservation for Digital CoLab and FinCon 2016, hosted in San Diego from September 20 through September 24, and I would LOVE for your to join me!

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Networking: The Overlooked Benefits of Blogging Conferences

Today we welcome Dollie Freeman, founder of the Focused Blogging Conference to share how networking can often be one of the biggest overlooked benefits of attending a blogging conference.


 

Blogging conferences are an investment that any business-minded blogger should be investing in for the growth of their online business. Often times, conference attendees solely focus on the learning benefits of the conference, without taking the consideration of how important networking is to their blog’s growth. I want to highlight how networking is the overlooked benefit of blogging conferences and what you can do to increase your rate on investment through networking.

Networking is often overlooked when weighing out the benefits of blogging conferences. Here are 7 tips to help! www.InspiredBloggersNetwork.com

Networking: The Overlooked Benefits of Blogging Conferences

Investing in a blogging conference is always a good thing to continue growing a blog and the learning that comes from the sessions speakers are always filled with nuggets to improve your current efforts. However, there are always so many more opportunities for growth through networking at blogging conferences that I would love to highlight the ways you can benefit from making this a focus for your future conferences.

Networking Opportunity One: Social Media

Prior to attending the conference, be sure to get connected on all the social media platforms available through the conference. They may offer an attendee only group on Facebook to connect with the other attendees, conference team, speakers and often times the sponsors. If the conference is offering any Facebook parties be sure to participate and start the learning and networking prior to attending.

Twitter is another social media platform that conferences utilize to grow community prior to their event, as well as during and after. Follow the Twitter handle for the conference and also the hashtag. Join in on the conversations and start using the hashtag prior to attending the conference. Mark your calendar for any Twitter parties the conference could be offering, as it is a great opportunity to follow other attendees and become a part of the growing community.

Dont’ forget Instagram!

Instagram is a really fun way to connect with others attending the conference and get a feel for those that really resonate with you, building what could be amazing relationship for years to come. Follow the conference and begin using their hashtag!

Networking Opportunity Two: Arrive Early on the First Day of Conference

Organize a lunch or relaxed meeting with those who have arrived early and start to get to know each other FACE to FACE. Don’t just meet up with your establish friends! This is one of the biggest mistakes I see bloggers making all.the.time.

Make the most of every opportunity to connect with other attendees. Exchange business cards, take selfies together and share them with the conference hashtags, follow each other on your favorite social media platforms.

Take some time to share your elevator pitches to each other, so you can identify those within your niches, and than put a * on their business card if you want to network further for a future project together.

Networking Opportunity Three: Always Eat With New People

Networking can be difficult for most people, especially those who aren’t comfortable in new environments or a conference setting. Sharing a meal together makes it so much easier!

Conversations around a meal can feel less threatening and open up more potential when you have a table of people to enjoy a conversation with and get to know in a relaxed setting.

Nothing is easier than just simply asking, “Tell me about your blog” or “Where have you seen the most growth in your blogging journey?”

Networking Opportunity Four: Accept Invitations That Are Offered

One of my favorite networking parts of a blogging conference is the impromptu meet-ups, whether they are for brain-storming, grabbing a bit to eat, enjoying an evening in a room to laugh and eat chocolate or just working on a project.

It is important to be watching the Twitter hashtag, or the Facebook group for things that are put together last minute. These are golden opportunities and worth taking advantage of because often times they are inspired by something that is taught at the conference and people are ready to network with others who share their vision or within their own niche.

Pack your own chocolate and open up your room for a late night debriefing of the day, where you all share your top 3-5 things you loved best about the learning for the day. Then put a plan together and see if others share your idea… you may just get a business partner for an idea!

7 ideas that get overlooked when networking at a blogging conference. www.Inspiredbloggersnetwork.com

Networking Opportunity Five: Don’t Assume Another Blogger Is Too Big to Get to Work With

Some of the most successful bloggers are the easiest to approach and network with, but you need to get past the star-struck ideas. They started their blogs with no traffic, no followers and no knowledge, so they know how important it is to network.

I approached many of the most successful bloggers I have met through blogging conferences to work on several projects and each time I was thrilled to see they were completely excited about the opportunity to work with me, and never asked my blog size before jumping in on the project.

Networking Opportunity Six: Niche Networking Is Powerful

Learning about the bloggers who are attending the conference that are writing within your same niche can be a powerful way to network together. Have a few project ideas in mind to share with those you are meeting during the conference and see if they are interested to join you or have additional ideas to share how to make it even better.

Embracing those that share your influence online will strengthen your message and grow your platform because you are focused on meeting the need of your readers, not competing with a fellow blogger.

Networking Opportunity Seven: Follow Up After the Conference

Once all the knowledge of a conference sinks into your brain, and you have had time to sleep, digest the information and make a plan of how to implement the key take-aways from the conference, you will want to be sure to follow up with those bloggers that you met that stuck out to you.

You may want to invite them to a private Facebook group to discuss a project, start a mastermind group or have an accountability group where you work on the key things you really want to do to grow your blog.

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Get Your Digital CoLab Tickets Now

Don’t miss your chance to attend Digital CoLab in sunny San Diego on June 19-21, 2014!

Digital CoLab

 

Only a few tickets remain. If you are wanting to monetize your blog or just move to the next level, DO NOT miss this conference. Yes, it is an investment but not one you will regret. The caliber of speakers is beyond what you will find at any other US blogging conference.

This WILL change your business. Get your ticket before they are gone!

Buy it now

 

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The Ultimate List of Blog Conferences

This post contains affiliate links.


I am often asked, “Is there a a blogging conference close to me?” Or perhaps, “How do I find a blog conference to attend.” So, my goal was to create a list were you could see all of the blogging conferences in one spot.

Don't blog alone. Looking for ways to grow your blog? Want to make money blogging? Attend a blogging conference. The more you learn, the more money you will make.

The Epic Blog Conference List

2:1 Conference

“A faith based conference for homeschooling parents who blog (not just about homeschooling), or are otherwise interested in social media.” (Virginia, October 12-14, 2018 )

Activate

“ At ACTIVATE 2018, you’ll walk away from our 2-day live event with a fully completed, working action plan that you can begin applying immediately, as you connect and network with other bloggers, and get direct feedback on the work you’ve been doing. It is a fully immersive experience that will bring more clarity, purpose, and direction to your blogging journey than you ever thought possible. ” (Florida, September 14 – 16, 2018)

Affiliate Summit East

“Digital marketers looking for new connections, innovative visions, cutting-edge technologies, and to get a better understanding of the ways in which the best businesses are leveraging them to grow and improve their bottom line.” (New York, July 29-31, 2018)

Affiliate Summit Europe

“Digital marketers looking for new connections, innovative visions, cutting-edge technologies, and to get a better understanding of the ways in which the best businesses are leveraging them to grow and improve their bottom line.” (Singapore, October 1-3, 2018)

Alt Summit

“Altitude Summit is the premier business conference for pioneering and rookie bloggers and creatives in this space.” (SOLD OUT)

>>Improve your blog without a blog conference.<<

Join the Inspired Bloggers University before April 15th and save 15%.

>>Join the Inspired Bloggers University.<<

BEA Bloggers

“BookExpo is carefully crafted with content and experiences for all those that play a part in the publishing industry. It’s where authors, booksellers, distributors, librarians, literary agents, publishers and more unite to build relationships, learn tactics to bolster business and get the pulse of what’s trending in today’s shifting marketplace.” (New York, May 30-June 1, 2018)

Beer Bloggers and Writers Conference

“Beer bloggers and writers are not only passionate about beer. They are energized by writing about beer, breweries, and the people that make up the beer industry. They are motivated by communicating their views to their communities via their blogs, industry magazines, and social media.” (Virginia, August 10-11, 2018)

Blogalicious

“Hands-on, in-depth workshops with leaders in their fields; advanced topics where we take you to the next level in terms of content; and relationship building.” (Canada, May 6, 2018)

Blog Life University

“Inspiring and equipping bloggers with the skills for success!” (Florida, October 18 – 19, 2018)

Blogging Concentrated

“Geared to advanced level bloggers who know there are things they could be doing better, faster, cheaper, smarter.” (Los Angeles, August 22-24, 2018 and future events TBA)

BlogWell Retreat

“ What is it? – Blogging Successfully is an education and information site run by me, Katie Hornor. For Whom? – I teach midlife women entrepreneurs to expand your influence and to make money online. What will I find? – Our trainings concentrate on the areas strong #relationship marketing, content, connections and cash flow. ” (Multiple Cities, Multiple Dates)

Bloggy Con

“Whether you are a seasoned pro-blogger or a novice just dipping your toes into the vast sea of social media, Bloggy Conference invites you for a time of learning, networking and cultivating your presence in the online community.” (Ohio, September 14-16, 2018)

BlogHer

“Inspiring women to find their voices and turn their passions into content, community and commerce, attracting some of the web’s best talent and top social sites, in topics from food and fashion to politics and parenting.” (New York, August 8-9, 2018)

Want a printable copy?

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Download The Ultimate List of Blog Conferences to keep as a handy reference.

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BlogHouse Memphis

“BlogHouse is a nearly all-inclusive three-day and night opportunity to live, work, and learn in a small group environment with both experienced and newer bloggers. There are workshops, panels, networking, and helpful one-on-one attention and advice. There are also some unique surprises, outings, activities, and opportunities for all participants!” (Tennessee, TBA 2018 Sold Out)

Blog Jam

“Entering its fourth year, BlogJam 2018 is a fun, informative, and unique event for the region’s blogging community. This two-day conference will be a hub where this community can come together to create, share, and engage! All topics related to blogs, bloggers, and blogging, will shine in a positive, inclusive atmosphere.” (Canada, October 27-28, 2018)

BlogPaws Conference

“Our 3-day conference jam-packed with educational sessions, brand events and influencer interactions. The conference is designed for bloggers and microbloggers of all levels, and pets are welcome.” (TBA)

Christians Writer’s Conference of the Blue Ridge Mountains

“The Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference is the premier training and networking event for both seasoned and aspiring writers and speakers.  This event allows participants the ideal opportunity to interact with editors, agents, professional writers and readers, offering outstanding workshops and continuing classes in a wide array of creative categories.  Whether you are a professional writer expanding your skills and networking contacts, or a brand new writer just beginning to chase your dream, this Christian Writers Conference is the ideal opportunity to take your creative goals to a higher level.” (North Carolina, May 20 – 24, 2018)

ConFab Central

“Learn from the industry’s best and brightest about the topics, trends, and best practices that shape successful content strategies everywhere.” (Minnesota, May 21–23, 2018)

Confluence

“We’re for the specialists, the jacks-of-all-trades, and the managers. We’re for digital entrepreneurs and small business owners, and we’re for marketing departments big and small. We invite speakers whose lessons will apply whether your job is more technical or more creative.” (Oklahoma, September 20-21, 2018)

ConnectHer Media

“The ConnectHER Media Conference is primarily an invitation-only event for Influencers, Brands, PR, Marketing and Entrepreneurs. This unique and exclusive event is designed to deliver rich content and facilitate direct interaction for those in attendance. #ConnectHER18 guests looking to learn and engage in the conversation. Our focus is on providing quality content in a unique environment where our guests are able to take the information from our event, straight to into their projects. ” (Nevada, August 4-5, 2018)

Content Marketing World Conference

“ Content Marketing World is the one event where you can learn and network with the best and the brightest in the content marketing industry. You will leave with all the materials you need to take a content marketing strategy back to your team – and – to implement a content marketing plan that will grow your business and inspire your audience. ” (Ohio, September 4 – 7, 2018)

CVX Live

“Learn from the industry’s best and brightest about the topics, trends, and best practices that shape successful content strategies everywhere.” (Utah, September 21-22, 2018)

Dad 2.0 Summit

“The Dad 2.0 Summit is an open conversation about the commercial power of dads online, and an opportunity to learn the tools and tactics used by influential bloggers to create high-quality content, build personal brands, and develop business ideas.” (Texas, February 21-23, 2019)

Declare

“A blogging conference desiring to equip, encourage, and support a community of women as we seek to know God and make Him known.” (Texas, October 4-6, 2018)

Design Bloggers Conference

“Join interior design bloggers, new media innovators, and interior design industry leaders for the fifth annual Design Bloggers Conference – the premier conference and experience for professionals actively using or interested in learning about new media and the interior design industry.” (Georgia, February 24-26, 2019)

Digital Atlanta

“Digital Summit is the destination for the latest trends, technologies, best practices, and hands-on techniques you need to stay relevant in the digital marketing ecosystem. ” (Georgia, May 22-23, 2018)

Digital CoLab

“An accelerated three day experience including learning intensives, small group labs, expert presenters, hands on projects, networking, and more.” (Florida, late September 2018)

Digital Growth Unleashed – formerly Conversion Conference

“Conversion Conference is committed to providing the latest techniques and strategies around conversion testing and optimization. Each event offers a 360-degree view of the entire conversion rate optimization discipline, and the strategies presented are constantly evolving.” (Nevada, May 16 – 17, 2018)

Everything Food Conference

“Everything Food Conference is for food bloggers who want to grow their blogging business while enjoying engaging, hands-on experiences with other talented and seasoned food bloggers… and, of course, indulge in some crazy-good food.” (Utah, May 10-12, 2018)

Exposure and Profit (EP5)

“Exposure & Profit is a Content Marketing Conference hosted by Kelly McCausey of Love People + Make Money. August 2018 is the fifth EP event and promises to be the best ever!” (Georgia, August 10, 11 & 12th – 2018)

FinCon

Four days of discovery, business, learning, and connecting with your peers in the personal finance and frugal living niches. This is a large event with extensive vendor hall packed with products and services to make your blogging business easier. (Florida, September 26-29, 2018)

Focused Blogging Conference

“Focused will … give each attendee that desired focus to implement the next step of success… TOGETHER, with our successful mentors.” (Virginia, July 11-14, 2018)

Food Allergy Bloggers Conference

“This unique conference unites food allergy bloggers with the advocates, medical professionals, and the companies who support food allergy living and safety at one event. With dual tracks of panel discussions focused on disease management and blogging information attendees have chance to learn from experts, which can later be applied and shared with their readers and communities.” (Colorodo, November 9-11, 2018)

Haven

“Conference sessions will focus on DIY instruction with a mix of blogging and social media.” (South Carolina, July 12-14, 2018)

Hispanicize

“Hispanicize 2016 Week is the iconic, largest annual event for Latino trendsetters and newsmakers in digital content creation, journalism, marketing, entertainment and tech entrepreneurship.” (TBA)

Idea World – Fitness Blogfest

“IDEA World Fitness BlogFest was created to give fitness, wellness and nutrition bloggers a place to network, share ideas, learn from experts, empower one another and connect face-to-face with industry brands. This sold-out, invite-only conference brings together bloggers for 4 action-packed days of in-depth blogging sessions, unforgettable celebrity workouts and exclusive behind-the-scenes access to the largest fitness conference in the world, IDEA World Convention®.” (California, June 28 – July 1, 2018)

Indulge Conference

“Indulge Conference is a weekend filled with fun, laughter, exploration, education and delicious food. You’ll walk away with a stronger sense of community, enhanced skills, confidence in your business and maybe even a few extra pounds.” (TBA)

International Food Blogger Conference

“Be prepared for amazing seafood, cajun, and creole, from swanky restaurants to casual food trucks, supplemented with creative cocktails and live music on every corner.” (Louisiana, August 24 – 26, 2018)

Mom 2.0 Summit

“An open conversation between Moms + Marketers + Media” (California, May 2-4, 2018)

MozCon

“Join us for a three-day, one-track conference full of forward-thinking, tactical sessions in SEO, growth marketing, the mobile landscape, analytics, content marketing, and more. At MozCon you’ll connect with our amazing community of industry leaders, chat with the speakers and Moz staff, pick up some cool swag, and even get a hug from our friendly robot, Roger.” (Washington, July 9 – 11, 2018)

Pinners Conference & Expo

“Learn from experienced international and local speakers and enjoy practical training you can go away and implement.” (Utah, November 2 – 3, 2018)

Podcast Movement

“Simply put, the goal of Podcast Movement is to bring together and educate active and aspiring podcasters, and to grow the podcast community and industry as a whole. We do this through educational and informative breakout sessions and panels spread across six tracks, enlightening and encouraging keynote presentations, and fun networking events and parties. ” (Pennsylvania, July 23 – 26, 2018)

ProBlogger Training Conference

“Learn from experienced international and local speakers and enjoy practical training you can go away and implement.” (Texas, September 24-25, 2018)

SearchLove

“A two-day event, SearchLove brings together some of the world’s leading thinkers in online marketing.
Get up to speed on the latest in search, analytics, content creation, optimizing your website, paid promotions and more.” (Multiple cities)

Simply Stylist

“The SIMPLY Conference has one main goal: to connect individuals and give them the tools they need to succeed in the fashion & beauty industry. For our SIMPLY LA Conference, we’re taking those goals to heart and changing our programming to give YOU, our fellow bosses, the most valuable experience. ” (California, August 11, 2018)

SNAP! Conference

“A community where imaginative bloggers can come together; learn from one another and walk away invigorated.” (TBA – April annual conference)

Social Media Marketing World

“Join 3,000 fellow marketers at the mega-conference designed to inspire and empower you with social media marketing ideas—brought to you by Social Media Examiner.” (California, March 20-22, 2019)

SXSW2019

“SXSW 2019 registration and housing information as well as participation opportunities will be announced this summer including PanelPicker, film submissions, artist applications, and more.” (Texas, March 8 – 17, 2019)

Tastemaker Conference

“This conference is for food bloggers, foodie influencers, and content creators—for all levels, from beginner to professional!” (Utah, September 14-15, 2018)

TBEX Con

“Every year, TBEX partners with fantastic destinations in North America and Europe to bring the travel industry’s most creative minds together to learn, network and do business.” (Various cities, Worldwide)

TECHmunch

“Our blend of networking, panels and demos will inspire even the most seasoned culinary and lifestyle blogger.” (TBA and Virtual)

The Southern C Summit

“The Southern C Summit is a niche multi-day conference filled with networking opportunities and educational sessions from the best and the brightest.  Attendees, presenters and sponsor connect through carefully crafted events and unique experiences that create meaningful conversations and provide memorable takeaway.”  (Georgia, Winter 2018)

The Toy Insider

“ Top digital influencers and members of the press from the U.S. and Canada will gather for the biggest night of play, meeting face-to-face with the biggest companies in the toy industry to be the first to play with some of this holiday season’s hottest toys.”  (Apply for Invite – New York, July 2018)

TravelCon

“ This three day conference will connect you with industry leaders, influencers, and celebrated writers through keynote speeches, small group writing and photography workshops, breakout tutorial sessions, and industry panels. You will learn what’s working in today’s competitive travel industry, timeless business practices, and the skills you need to succeed as a creator.” (Texas, September 20 – 22, 2018)

Travel Writers and Photographers Conference

“ Book Passage has served the Bay Area for more than 40 years, providing the community with an array of author events, writing and language classes, and highly-respected annual conferences. A world renowned community bookstore, we offer a wide variety of books ranging from children’s literature to travel guides, from top-selling fiction to mystery novels, and we continue to work diligently with community and nonprofit organizations. ” (California, August 9 – 12, 2018)

Type A Parent

“Top-notch learning and networking at the world’s top parent blog conference.” (Illinois, September 27-29, 2018)

We All Grow Summit

“We All Grow Summit is a conference for Latinas in the digital space. The conversation, networking and learning experiences — all bilingual and in-culture — are crafted to create unique and long-lasting connections, as well as professional growth experiences.” (California, October 20, 2018)

Wine Bloggers Conference

“In 2018, entering its 11th season, the Wine Bloggers Conference will return to Walla Walla, Washington from October 4-7, last having visited the state in 2010.” (Washington, October 4 – 7, 2018)

Women in Travel Summit

“The Women in Travel Summit by Wanderful is the first and only travel blogging summit by and for women. Even Wanderful started as a blog and we wanted to give back to other women pursuing their dreams to start a career in travel.” (QC, May 4-6, 2018)

WOW Summit 2018 – Moms Meet

“The WOW Summit is two days of learning, exploring and connecting with moms like you! This event is designed to inspire, connect and empower moms to live and raise a happy, healthy family. Attend expert-led seminars and workshops, sample better-for-you products, and walk away with a huge goody bag. Plus, for bloggers, attend educational workshops focused on blogging and network with brands and other bloggers.” (California, November 2-3, 2018)

Did we miss one? Please let us know in the comments. Thank you.

More information to help you at blog conferences

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Advice for Bloggers Seeking Conference Sponsorhips

I will be the first to admit that I have a different approach to seeking a conference sponsor. While I am not saying that others are wrong in their approach to sponsorships, I just have this fear… I never want ANYONE to say of me that they did not get a good return on their investment.

Conference sponsorships - how a blogger can get one

So, with that in mind, I am going to guide you through how I seek sponsors who will be a perfect match for me.

Identify your strengths

You have special talents, whether you realize it or not, and you need to find them.

Maybe it is blog numbers. Maybe it is something completely different like a penchant for vlogs. Do you enjoy researching? Could you write guest posts about a particular product you love? Do you enjoy Instagram, Vine, Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest and have a unique understanding of how to maximize that social media platform? Think outside the box and make your list.

Make a list of potential sponsors

Start with a list of all your favorite products. Have you mentioned using a particular product on your blog or social media? Is there something that you use daily in your home and could not live without? Look around your desk, your sink, and your child’s room. Add all the makers of all your favorite products to your list.

Then, add to your list with the companies think you would like to work. Perhaps it is a product you saw mentioned on another blog or in a commercial. Maybe you are just passionate about their mission statement. Add those companies to your list.

>>See the Ultimate List of Blogging Conferences<<

Also on your list, write down the names of the companies following you on Twitter and those following your page on Facebook. If they have already expressed an interest in what you do by following you in social media, they might also be interested in getting to know you better.

Fill in the gaps

Look at your list of strengths and then look at the list of companies you have made. Would any of your strengths fill a need for any of those companies?

Social Media is a BIG deal for companies. Could you start an Instagram or Vine account for a company and maintain it for them for six months? Do they need an admin on Facebook? Could you organize a series of guest posts where you write about their product on different blogs? Get creative. Match your strengths to their weaknesses.

Write your pitch

Comparing your skills with the list of your favorite company’s needs, decide what you have to offer them and write it down. Do not let your numbers (or lack thereof) hold you back from approaching a company. Brands are not just interested in numbers. They also want originality and passion.

If you love their product, tell them.

If you have a great idea, tell them.

Be very clear about what you want to offer the company and focus on their needs.

Follow up

If you sent your pitches and have not heard from the company after a week or two, send a little note that says, “Hi! Just wanted to verify that you received my partnership proposal since sometimes I accidentally end up in the spam box. I am really looking forward to working with you. Thanks again for your consideration.”

Face the two-letter word

What is the worse thing that could happen? The company you writes says “no.”

So what? Does that make you less of a blogger? No. Just means you can proceed with your idea without their sponsorship or can go a different direction.

A “no” or a “wait” can be a blessing in disguise. Do not fear rejection. Just use it as a sign to keep looking for that perfect match.

What tips can you share for finding a conference sponsorship?

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Why Attend a Blog Conference?

If you want to grow your blog quickly, you need to attend a blog conference.

Looking back over the analytic history on my blog at MeetPenny.com, I have what I call “the dividing line.”

On that blog, you can clearly see a difference before I attended my first blog conference and after. My first conference was The 2:1 Conference, and the impact of that one weekend changed the direction of my blog, my life, and my family.

Why should you go to a blog conference?

Could our family afford for me to attend this conference? No. But we made the sacrifices necessary and I am so glad because our lives have never been the same.

Why?

The experts

A blog conference gives you the opportunity to learn from the best.

The conference founders are the leaders in our field and they take tremendous pride in finding the experts on topics that matter for our growth and development, bringing them together so you can pick apart their brains.

The networking

Not only do blog founders work hard to hire great speakers, they bring in excellent sponsors and give you the opportunity to speak with these brands, face to face. Some of the connections I have made at blogging conferences have become major sources of income, not to mention the amazing relationships.

The friendships

Speaking of relationships… Before I attended a blog conference, the other bloggers I “saw” online were just avatars. I would tweet with them and might leave a comment on their blogs, but they didn’t come to life until I met them face to face, shared a hotel room with them, and ate meals with them.

The ladies and men I’ve had the pleasure to meet at blog conferences have become my mentors, blog traffic referrers, biggest cheerleaders on new endeavors, best friends, and the main reason why you should attend a blog conference.

>>Find a blog conference to attend<<

You can make no greater investment in your blog than to go to a conference and meet your peers.

Even if you are at a point where you know everything there is to know about blogging and you could easily be the keynote speaker in every session, you still should find a conference to attend each year because no matter how much attention you pay to SEO or social media, it is the relationships that will take your blog to the next level.

Why do you consider a blog conference a wise investment?

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How to Prepare for a Conference

Please welcome my friend, Jim Wang, to the blog. Jim is the founder of Microblogger and all-around great guy.

Conferences are a fantastic way to meet people you’ve only ever communicated with online. Facebook, Twitter, email and even the phone are only poor substitutes to meeting someone in person and really getting to know them.

Headed to a blogging conference? Check these tips for how to prepare and get the most from your investment.

To that end, the key to having a successful conference is to ensure you meet everyone you intend to meet. I like to separate, in my mind, my meetings into two categories – personal and professional. Personal refers to people I’d like to meet because I’m friends with them online. A fellow blogger falls under the “personal” category.

Professional refers to people I’d like to meet because we have an existing business relationship. An affiliate manager or a public relations representative falls under the professional.

Build a rough schedule of events. The first step is building a rough schedule of events you want to attend so you have a sense of where you’ll be and when. At conferences where there are ten different tracks and eight happy hours each night, it’ll be tough to remember what you wanted to do when – creating a list now will help.

Create a list of people you want to meet. This starts by asking your blogging colleagues if they’ll be attending. If they are, try to make sure you go to some of the same sessions or networking events.

Then, get a list of the attendees, speakers, and exhibitors in order to build your list of people you want to meet (your target list).

Email or tweet at your target list. Introduce yourself, let them know that you saw them on the list of attendees or speakers or exhibitors and that you’d love to meet up. You might set up a “formal” meeting at a particular time or just agree to look out for each other, just something where meeting in person will seem like a foregone conclusion.

Set up a few meetings beforehand. I like to keep my conference schedules flexible with only a handful of meetings pre-scheduled. I do this because I have my list of people I know I want to meet but I don’t want to feel constrained. I don’t want to feel like I’m going from meeting to meeting to meeting.

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This flexibility gives me the structure of a few scheduled meetings but also the freedom to continue a fun conversation I’m having with someone on the coffee line.

Research your target list. This makes the most sense for big brands but knowing what big announcements they have can go a long way in showing them that you are aware of their work, their goals, and might make a good partner. If there is an opportunity to work together, knowing what they’re doing and being educated can help.

Prepare your blog for your absence. You’ll want to make sure your best content is published on your blog when you’re away. You’ll be meeting a lot of new faces, telling them about your site, and you’ll want the best stuff on the homepage for them to see should they load it up.

Conferences can be tiring and you’ll find that your ability to write good content will be compromised. It’s much easier to write it beforehand and schedule it to appear when you’re at your busiest.

I hope those tips help you prepare for your next conference, I know they’ve treated me well over the years.

Do you have any conference prep tips I missed? I’d love to hear them!

Jim Wang is the founder of Microblogger, where he teaches readers how to build a small business empire they can be proud of. In a few short years, he was able to turn Bargaineering, his humble personal finance blog, into a $3 million business and he shares all he knows. For actionable advice on how to build your own business, join his free newsletter.