Two nights ago I attended this amazing event. I had never met any bloggers in real life before, so it was wonderful to meet like-minded people! Since I've been away from social media for a little while, I wasn't sure if any of you guys were going but I kept my beady eye out anyway! Let me know if you were there, it would be fun to know that we were under the same roof!
The event began with a glass of champagne and general chatter with lots of friendly people. I soon learnt that business cards are a must for these kinds of gatherings, I felt very unprepared in comparison to some ladies. I ended up making my own business cards, not quite as professional looking as some peoples'!
After chatting with the other guests for a little while, we found our seats (and amazing goodie-bags!) and sat down ready to hear all about the world of blogging from an amazing panel of inspiring people!
Louise Court, Cosmopolitan's Editor, chaired the evening, asking questions to the panel. In my opinion, the most helpful and informative part of the evening was when she asked each of the panelists to give one 'do' and one 'don't' when it comes to writing a blog. These do's and don'ts are particularly helpful for those that would like to turn their blogs into a business. Here is what these incredible people had to say:
Dominic Smales, founder of Gleam Digital advised us to be tenatious and to not give up, something that spoke straight to my heart after my recent absence. I've been rather nervous about coming back to blogging, so he really inspired me to keep going.
Vicki Fogwill, social-media manager for Next said do think about the brands that you can work with. Picking them specifically to suit the angle of your blog means that you will have much more to offer and, of course, more to gain. However, don't send bland emails just asking for work. It's essential to know the brands that you want to work with, that you have something that you can write about in terms of products. Sending out emails to any company you can think of won't help you in the long run.
Andreas Pouros who is the COO of Greenlight Digital couldn't stress enough the importance of honesty. He reiterated this later, when I (very bravely - I'm terrified of talking in front of people!) asked how to go about regaining the trust of my dear readers, after abandoning you all for so long! He told me that honesty is the best policy, to open up to you guys and let you know why I've been away. I'm planning a post for this in the near future. Actually, it's quite a difficult topic for me to write about, but I'd like to be honest with you and let you know why I have such a tendency to write so sporadically at times! As for his 'don't', don't assume that people are interested in what you write. If you want to gain a wider readership then it's useful to use the Google key-word search. Think about three things you'd like to write about, then check the stats using a key-word search and see which of the three has been most searched over the past month. This will boost your 'search-factor' and increase your traffic, whilst helping you to find readers who are genuinely interested in what you have to say.
Kat Williams from Rocknrollbride.com advised us to value our worth, both commercially and emotionally. She told us not to be afraid of thinking with a business brain. She said that Brits are often shy when it comes to discussing money, something that I believe to be very true. Kat told us that it's ok to think business and that we shouldn't be shy of talking about money.
Emily Johnston, founder of Fashionfoiegras.com explained the importance of social media. She said do use social media as far as possible to put yourself on the radar and organically gain more readers. She told us that social media is very good if you want to work with brands and that if you write a post about a product or a company, you should tag them in it as they do very often check these posts out. Another excellent 'don't' for me was don't get frustrated. Blogging is not always a quick process so stick with it, you just have to keep going. This is so true in my case because I get so discouraged when I go through a period of having low readership, despite working hard on my posts. However, these things happen. We mustn't give up.
Finally, two bonus pieces of advice: Don't misbehave on twitter! Nobody likes a ranter, a complainer or a creator of twitter storms! Secondly, try not to just sit at your computer, churning out post after post. This is the fastest route to writer's block. Instead, go outside, get some air, find inspiration and look for your stories. Keep a fresh and open mind and let the creativity come to you!
I hope you found this helpful my dears, I definitely learnt a lot from the evening and met some very lovely people who I hope to keep in contact with. I'm off to delve through my goodie-bag, you know how I love a freebie ;)
the little nordic cabin
PS: Don't forget to enter my giveaway!! I'm giving away some beautiful little handmade hair-clips. The giveaway ends on the 21st May and a winner will be picked at random :)