What I Learned @ the Southern Bloggers Conference

As a first time attendee of a blogger’s conference I was really unsure of what to expect.  When you read  posts from other’s on conferences that they have attended in the past, you get a little idea of what might happen, but in no way do they really prepare you.
I blog for the fun of it and always have.  Sometimes I wonder about numbers, but quite honestly I’ve never really thought blogging to be more than my outlet; first for my recipes and now for the new season in my life.  Listening to the knowledgable panel of speakers Saturday really inspired me to step it up a little, if for nothing else, my own pride.
While I can’t begin to share everything I got from the weekend, here are a few things I picked up this weekend.

 

 

*I have a voice which makes the blog uniquely mine.  I don’t have to channel anyone but me and I sure don’t need to copy someone else’s ideas, because I know I have my own.  Write as if you are conversing with a friend.
*Don’t compare yourself to someone else.  Is that ever a hard one, especially with all of the successful bloggers out there.  We all have our own story & should tell it our way.
*Get to know other bloggers.  Visit around, leave comments, join blog hops, etc… The more you visit, the more likely someone will be to visit you.  There have been some great friendships formed this way.
*I was reminded the true connotation behind the words, “Bless Your Heart”.
Thanks Barb (from the Everyday Home) for the giggles!
*Make your blog a place people might want to visit.  Keep it clean, organized, & easy to navigate. Find your signature style and stick to it.
*If you are trying to grow your blog, don’t be afraid to use social media (Google +, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc…) to interact with readers as well.
*Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there.  If you cook an amazing dinner, set a fabulous table or create the most beautiful wreath ev-ah, share it!  You can share it more than just on your blog.  Shout it out!
Awesome websites to shoot out your accomplishments!
*Network.  Hook up with like-minded bloggers for joint projects & posts.
*Use photos that are pertinent to your post.  Make sure they are sharp, clear, and large to catch your readers attention.  People are more likely to stay and read you post (or at least mark it for later), if you have good pictures.  And, watermark your pictures.  Not everyone knows the definition of integrity.
*Don’t sell yourself short.  As a stay-at-home mom who has moved 12 times in 17 years, I don’t have the greatest confidence in myself.  Part of my “lifestyle” change is finding confidence in myself again.  If I can do that through writing, so be it!
*For ultimate confidence, find a rocking pair of earrings.
KariAnne from Thistlewood Farm totally rocked her session!
*There are some really great paints and directions you can go to really transform a piece of furniture and make it “new” once again.  And, I can’t wait to get started!
“What a Croc!”

 

Created using the Maison Blanche Paints

 

Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint
*Make sure you are posting quality content.  Even if your post is about something random like hair color or makeup, make it interesting, informative, and don’t lose your voice.
*Don’t be afraid of sponsors/advertising.  People will look to true life testimonials before they will the advice of a TV ad.  Bloggers have pretty powerful voices.  It’s OK to use them, just don’t lose yourself while working with sponsors.
And finally, I learned that packing a suitcase and venturing off to a conference with 100 ladies I really didn’t know wasn’t nearly as scary as I thought it would be.
 
Maybe some of my self-confidence is returning, at last.
 
 

5 thoughts on “What I Learned @ the Southern Bloggers Conference

  1. From what I'm reading, I'd say that this conference has a lot of good advice for those who are really trying to have a big blog. Thank goodness, I'm not. I'm just trying to have some fun and a place to say things I feel like saying. And that is what separates the big players from the little ones like me. I think the big blogs take on a life of their own. Those bloggers stop sharing their personal stories as they once had and focus more on content that will draw an audience, usually fantastic recipes, tablescapes, and diy projects.

  2. Sounds like you had a good experience at the conference! My friend Brenda just started another blog to help bloggers – I have a link to it on my post today. That may be a good place for you to get additional motivation and ideas.

  3. This is a very well written post. I'm so glad that you made it to the conference, but I'm sorry that I was never able to spend any time with you! I think we kept “passing in the night”. lol

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