Blog Conferences are Amazing
I have been to a few now, my first one being Blogfest in November 2016. I remember just how terrified I was going to London alone but I met up with some amazing people and I couldn’t wait to go to another one. I managed quite a few in 2017 including my first BlogOn event and it is one I have been craving to go back to ever since because it was amazing.
BlogOn Toys 2019 in Bracknell
I can’t tell you how thrilled I was when I found out that BlogOn Toys would be in the South! I’ve previously travelled to Manchester and whilst I would do it again, especially now Adam is driving, it was so much better just being an hour away from home rather than the other end of the country. I completely get that location is going to be hard for a conference to suit every blogger but there seems to be a consensus that there are enough events in London for us southerners. The truth is London isn’t always feasible either so having something close by that didn’t involve getting into the capital has been amazing.
What to expect at BlogOn Toys Conference
I decided to stay at the hotel the night before to make getting to the conference nice and easy. I came down in the morning just before registration and there was the opportunity to decorate a Christmas tree. At 9am registration opens where I collected my name badge and goody bags before quickly running them back to my room (a benefit to staying on site). Others decided to bring a LARGE WHEELED Suitcase (Yes, you REALLY do need to bring a LARGE suitcase if you’re coming to BlogOn) and stashed their goodies in there to save carrying them around for the day. Between 9am and 10am there was a chance to grab some breakfast baps, tea and coffee.
The welcome began at 10am which has all the usual expected annoucements, where everything is, the routine of the day and a lot of laughs. The keynote speech was delivered by the very funny Fran & James (who are very lovely people) and then the sessions begin! Each session is an hour long and divided by two breaks and lunch. The last session ends just before the raffle begins. I then went along to the main meal and the party began at 8pm.
I really enjoyed the sessions I attended and learned a lot. I have a pretty big to do list now but I have come away feeling really inspired actually. It helps getting together with people doing the same as you, especially if they’re doing it better. You can learn a lot from people that have been where you are. Having the soda stream bottles available to use throughout the day helped me stay hydrated and it was great seeing all the brands.
The best part for me was socialising really. There were plenty of breaks, chances to sit down and have a chat with others. I saw so many people from previous events who I haven’t seen in such a long time. Of course it never feels like that when you’re online with them all the time and interacting with each others blogs but still.
Why I Love BlogOn Toys
There are so many reasons why I love BlogOn and why I think it’s such a successful conference. Laura has been doing this for a long time and she works incredibly hard to deliver a day that is attractive, engaging and fun for everyone. She always asks for feedback on what the bloggers want to see and she works really hard to build a fantastic relationship with brands which help to get us work for the coming year. Here are a few other reasons why I love this particular conference and why BlogOn 2019 was my absolute favourite.
BlogOn is more affordable than other conferences
One of the things I’ve always loved about BlogOn is that you absolutely get your money’s worth. Even though things like food might not be to everyone’s taste the value of the ticket for the sessions, the food and refreshments, the entertainment, the brand den and of course the goody bag is superior to any other event I’ve ever been to. Having an affordable ticket price means I can stay an extra night and spend more on the raffle.
Blog Conferences are like our office parties
It’s a chance to meet people from all over the country, get together with old friends and get that social buzz that’s really hard when you’re self employed. I’ve made some of the best of friends since I started blogging and whilst I can chat to these every day online, getting together in person and catching up properly is the best thing. Conferences bring so many people together and I honestly don’t think I would not be as confident in myself and my writing if I didn’t occassionally get together with these people.
BlogOn provides an opportunity for work
I have met some fantastic brands, PR’s and individual businesses at BlogOn and other blog conferences over the years which is a chance to collaborate, review products and get involved in sponsored work and projects. It’s a chance to network and build great relationships with brands that I might not have known about before. BlogOn Toys is especially good for this as you see a lot of the upcoming stuff for Christmas which I’m really excited about. Not only do I get to see things that would appeal to my own children but things I know friends and family members would love too. It’s like the first sneak peak of what is always an exciting few months in the lead up to Christmas.
Learning and Improving Skills at BlogOn
BlogOn 2019 provided me with sessions that I’ve learned and gained value from. I don’t always attend all of the sessions but the ones I do attend are interesting, inspiring and occassionally very funny. You can learn skills and techniques from people that are doing an amazing job and that in itself is going to improve my blog.
It gives readers an insight into what Blogging is like
Not everyone really understands blogging – and that’s okay! There are lots of jobs that I don’t understand either because they’re not my thing and I have no experience but sometimes it’s nice to read or listen or see a bit of the behind the scenes stuff. It’s particularly great to share these conferences with any aspiring or new bloggers who might want to go to their first conference and they’re not sure what to expect. I think writing up about BlogOn and blog conferences really helps to show that there’s a lot of fun to be had in blogging. It also doesn’t have to be a lonely self employed job, it can be as social as you want it to be.