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Along with 700 other bloggers, I attended the 2015 Problogger Conference a week ago to gain an insight into the fascinating world of blogging. What is the official definition of blogging you may ask? I think a lot of people think it’s a personal diary or journal of daily events of bored SAHM’s (stay at home Mums)!
However I have learnt that blog is actually a truncation of the expression weblog. Many blogs provide commentary on a particular subject ie: photography; others function as more personal online diaries ie: travelogue; others function more as online brand advertising of a particular individual or company ie: beauty products.
I entered the world of blogging approximately three years ago when I saw an opening for a ‘bright young thing’ like me to express her feelings on becoming a half centurion, an empty-nester and a grey nomad (all in that order). At the time everyone thought I was a crazy old bat entering the blogosphere and putting myself out there on the net. Hmmph, that was like a ‘red rag to a bull’ to me because it made me all the more determined to make a success of my blog.
So I managed to start up my own blog and almost three years on it is idling along quite nicely with a good following and a few offers of sponsored posts happening. However, like all things in life, we can’t get too complacent and there is always something new to learn and implement to make your blog more attractive to your followers.
Hence, I decided to venture into the world of ‘problogging’ and off to the Problogger Conference I went to see what I might learn from some of the experts in the blogging world.
The event, fortunately for me, was held on the Gold Coast at RACV Pines Resort and commenced Thursday afternoon with registration, a ‘newbies’ orientation to the conference, drinks in the bar and then a pre-arranged dinner with other Travel Bloggers.
When I walked into that bar the noise was deafening. Can you imagine 500 to 600 women all in one bar all trying to talk at once! Luckily I spotted a young friend of mine, because I didn’t know a soul. The evening then progressed to dinner where I got to meet some other lovely travel bloggers, swap business cards and talk about the world of travel blogging.
Saturday morning we all arrived at the Royal Pines in keen anticipation of the day’s events with a selection of workshops and presentations to attend. That was the most difficult choice that I had to make over the two days of the conference – which presentations to attend. The day started with an extremely motivational presentation by Mr Problogger himself, Darren Rowse and then moved onto another inspirational presentation by Jadah from Simple Green Smoothies.
I was very fortunate to register for two fantastic Olympus photography workshops over both days where I improved my photography skills immensely and finally worked out how to get my camera out of the auto settings.
One of the highlights of the conference was a talk by one of most awe-inspiring young men I have ever met. Brandon Cowan of Beauty and the Geek TV show fame, spoke about his life of dropping out of school when he was 12 years old, his progression into alcohol and drug taking, then more failed attempts at returning to high school plus university and then masterminding a couple of brilliant phone Apps and becoming an overnight success. What a story! He has now given up all the fame and glory of designing Apps to work in a Sydney animal shelter.
RACV Royal Pines provided top quality facilities for the conference and the food was to die for! I was expecting a cup of tea and a biscuit for morning and afternoon tea, however we were treated to themed treats of fresh strawberries, strawberry juice, strawberry melting moments on Friday and then on Saturday we had pineapple themed delicacies! The buffet lunch was a delicious spread of fresh salads, seafood, cold meats and hot dishes.
There were many top quality speakers and presenters at the conference that offered extremely helpful and solid advice about blogging. I have pages and pages of notes and ideas that will probably take me the next 12 months to get my head around!
I think the ‘one thing’ I got out of the conference was that I need to utilise and develop my Instagram account to show off my travel blog to its benefit. I have literally thousands of magnificent photos that I need to show off and Instagram is the perfect platform for this.
But also, I am thinking of writing an eBook regarding my travels around Australia in 2014 which I will promote via my website. Exciting times ahead!!
Did you attend the Problogger Conference? What was the one big thing you got out of it?
Kathy was a 50 something year old when she started up this blog 6 years ago, but has since turned over another decade and is now in her early 60s. She is married with two adult children and lives on the Tweed Coast of New South Wales, Australia. Kathy enjoys living life to the fullest and loves to keep fit and active by maintaining a healthy diet and exercising regularly. Some of her interests include reading, photography, travelling, cooking and blogging! Kathy works part-time as a freelance writer but her real passion is travelling and photographing brilliant destinations both within Australia and overseas and writing about it.
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