It’s summer blog conference time! One of the bigger conferences bloggers attend is BlogHer. This year it’s in San Jose, California. Ah, the Silicon Valley, such an amazing place. If you are going to BlogHer for the first time, I’ve got some tips to help you ease through your nervousness. While most of my blog conference tips are centered around my experiences at BlogHer, they can be applied to just about any blogging conference.
Blog conference tips #1: Be friendly.
Honestly, most of the gals there are welcoming and friendly. Just say hi and start chatting. You have an opening line. You all have a blog. Ask them what they write about…that always breaks the ice because bloggers love talking about their blogs. Other things to talk about: Where they are from? Have they been to BlogHer before? Have they been to California before? How long have they been blogging? What sessions/parties are they going to attend?
See? I’ve given you tons of things to talk about with people you haven’t even met yet! Where can you use this blog conference tip? The meals are a great place to break the ice. Seating is usually at tables with 10 chairs, so sit down next to someone and say hello.
Blog conference tips #2: Breathe.
Get over your nervousness. Take a deep breath. Most of the other women are nervous too, especially if it’s their first time there. Women who have been to these things more than once are there to hang out and have a good time. It’s not high school anymore. I’d say most of the women at BlogHer conferences were NOT the popular kids in high school, and they are OK with that. Just be polite and you’ll have fun. Take a chance and say hello. If someone is rude to you, now you have blog fodder!
Blog conference tips #3: Wear comfy shoes.
And bring more than one pair of them. You will do ALOT of walking. We are talking Vegas strip and/or Disneyland amounts of walking. Sure the hotel might be right next to the convention center, but I’m pretty sure you’re going to have a hike from your room to the Expo floor. It’s also nice to change your shoes after a long day of walking. Before going to the parties, you’ll likely head back to your room to freshen up anyway. Bring some cute shoes (that are comfy) for the parties. It sort of gets me out of expo/session mode and into party mode to put on fun shoes.
Blog conference tips #4: Work on your elevator speech.
What do you blog about? Is a great way to break the ice, but what if someone asks you that question who works for a brand? My blog started out as a way to vent my frustrations, which isn’t very enticing to brands. Now, it’s a lifestyle blog with a dash of humor. My guess is that if you are at a blogging conference, you probably want to get paid to blog at some point in the future.
All business people have an elevator speech about their business. It’s a two to three sentence summary of what they do. If you are going to be wandering the Expo, you will want to have this blog conference tip memorized, so you feel more confident when interacting with the brand folks. Don’t be afraid to sell yourself. You are awesome and you need to tell others how awesome you are.
Blog conference tips #5: Have fun.
Honestly, BlogHer is what you make of it. The last time I went, I barely went to any sessions. I just walked around the Expo and went to parties. Maybe you are meeting some social media friends in real life for the first time. It happens. I’ve done it and it was FANTASTIC.
Go to as many sessions as you want. Go to none. Spend all day getting swag at the Expo. Sleep in until noon. Go to all the parties. Throw your own party and bring along these social media photo props I made. See sights in the Bay Area. Listen to all of the speakers and blog about them.
There is no right or wrong way to do BlogHer. Enjoy yourself and bring back some goodies and some good memories.