I posted about it last week, but I won an entry to BlogFest from Fit Approach during a Twitter chat a while back. I was super excited, yet a tad bit nervous about heading to the conference. I was excited because I have been blogging for 8 years and would LOVE to take my blog to the "next level" - whatever that means (just because I have been posting for that whole time does NOT mean people have been reading it). And like I mentioned in last week's post about the trip, I was nervous because although I have a blog, I wouldn't necessarily consider myself a "legit" blogger and I wasn't sure if I was going to be WAY out of my league at a conference like this.
Let me set some ground work... I went into this conference
The truth of the matter is, although the speakers are AMAZING people (I don't want you to read this post thinking I didn't like what they had to say or they aren't great bloggers/ fitness professionals/ human begins), I have to say I was a little let down with the conference.
Don't get me wrong, I loved running with friends at the #betruBlogFest fun run, trying Zumba for the very first time and having the class taught by the creator, Beto Perez, himself, hanging out with friends (both new and old), getting my butt kicked by Gabby Reece in a HIGHX workout, etc, but the BLOGGING PORTION of the conference, for me, was lacking.
|Source: @SharpEndurance's Instagram Feed|
It was sort of like a Blogging 101 class. And shoot, there are TONS of people that would benefit from classes like that, so I am NOT knocking it, I am just saying that with the way it was marketed, and for what I was expecting, it didn't live up to the hype I made it out to be. I think if they were trying to get the fitness professionals who attend IDEA World to come over and learn about starting a blog, it is an amazing resource, but it seemed as though most of us already had fairly established blogs (at least the folks I spoke with).
There were definitely a few nuggets I walked away with, but no where near the level of information I was hoping for (and, hey, maybe it was my fault for having such high expectations for BlogFest).
I guess when I was sitting in a session about Instagram with an amazing woman who has 25,000+ followers I was expecting to hear things about how she got the followers and what tips she had for us - not just "it happened organically". For example, does she follow people back / is she posting personal pictures or just workout type pictures / does she reply to all comments / how many pictures a day is she posting / is she posting pictures or maybe making quotes or infographics / does she search hashtags and comment on folks posts that might be into the same things she is / or maybe she doesn't use hashtags at all. Obviously not everything that works for one person will work for everyone else, I get that. I realize there is not a cookie cutter formula out there that leads to success, but I guess I was hoping I would hear a few things that I wasn't currently doing that I wanted to start trying.
Or when it came to the presenter who spoke about Pinterest who mentioned she made $30,000 in a month due to Pinterest - I WANNA KNOW HOW! Sure, your background story may be inspirational and interesting, but honestly, if I want to know it, I will read your bio or buy your book - I'm here because I wanna know the nitty gritty of how you use your social media to make money. Are you selling something? Maybe you are working with sponsors who pay you on a per click basis. Or are you creating images for ads? But I walked away knowing nothing more than I started with...
The point that was being continually hammered home was "Be Authentic". Yes, thank you! That is UBER important, but I think A. we heard it every single talk and B. it is something I am well aware of. I started this blog as a way to keep my family and friends in Michigan involved in what I was doing once I moved across the country to California. What you see is what you get with me and my blog (or else it wouldn't be a very good journal, now would it?!).
Again, I don't want this to come off like I am bashing the people, program, or presenters - that is TOTALLY NOT my intent. I just want to let you know what I was expecting and hoping to walk away with and why I felt as though it didn't live up to my expectations - that way if you want to go in the future you can tailor your hopes a little better than I did.
Today's Tweetable: The people were amazing, the workouts KICKED BUTT, but find out why @CarleeMcDot left disappointed from #BlogFest. http://ctt.ec/Ie9af+
For me, like I said, I won my registration, but if I would have paid my way, I probably would have walked away disappointed. Now obviously I cannot speak for everyone who was there, so please make sure to get feedback from more of the attendees if you are planning on going in the future, but these were my general feelings about BlogFest 2015.
Have you ever gone to a conference that didn't live up to your expectations?