Next month I will have been blogging for 3 years but it’s only really the last 12 months that I have felt like an actual blogger, I’ve dipped my toes in and out so many times even closing my blog completely at one point but I kept coming back to it which tells me that it’s what I’m meant to do, I love to write and after many years of shutting off from the world I love to share so this year I decided it was time to pull up my socks and attend a blogging conference for the first time.
I had thought about going to Blog On in Manchester as it’s local to me and I thought it would be a great place to meet other bloggers and learn how to improve my blog, I kept putting it off but when I saw there were tickets left for this year I booked them without thinking twice and I’m so glad I did.
Blog On is run by Laura Seaton who blogs at Tired Mummy Of Two and her team of volunteers.
Last Sunday armed with my suitcase (for all the goodies) and a note of which sessions I wanted to attend I made my way inside the Museum of Science & Industry in Manchester, I’m so glad it was held there as I’ve been visiting since I was a child and it feels very familiar to me.
I had been following the hashtag #blogonmsi all weekend and although a little nervous I was also excited, I was ready to learn new things that would help take my blog a little further and I couldn’t wait to meet the bloggers who I have only ever had virtual conversations with, I also couldn’t wait to meet Di Coke I’ve been a comper for almost 14 years and her advice and enthusiasm has been invaluable and has helped me win a few competitions over the years.
I headed straight for the loo behind two ladies and I recognised one of them from a picture of her shoes she had posted on Instagram earlier. She must have thought I was a right nutter when I asked her if she was the blogger I thought she was because I recognised her shoes! She was lovely and friendly and told me there were a crowd of bloggers waiting in the museum coffee shop, it was in there that I met up with another lovely lady who takes part in the same weekly linky as me and I ended up spending most of the day with her which was really nice.
I can honestly say that even when I was standing alone every single person had a friendly smile or a hello and I also met some lovely bloggers who even knew who I was which shocked me as you never think anyone is reading really.
The sessions I attended included
- How to make your blog attractive to brands (Portland Street)
- Earning beyond the blog (Emily Leary-A Mummy Too)
- Hosting competitions (Di Coke -Super Lucky)
Every single one of those sessions taught me so much, I have pages of notes and have already started implementing some of the advice. I wanted to attend a session about Pinterest but I got so distracted by all the wonderful brands and their very interactive stands that I missed it.
I was so nervous about approaching brands as it’s new territory for me but I needn’t have been worried as they were all so friendly and I came away feeling so much more confident, playing in the giant Swizzels Matlow ball pool certainly helped.
As well as the sessions drinks, snacks and lunch were all included and even a glass of wine towards the end of the day and not to mention the amazing goody bags , I really don’t know how they pack so much value into the price of the ticket. You certainly get so much more than you paid for and the museum is a fantastic venue.
This amazing cake not only looked beautiful it tasted delicious too.
I won a few prizes on the tombola and one prize on the raffle which I was delighted with, there were so many awesome generous brands who donated prizes and the items for the goody bags we were all really spoilt, I’ve included some photo’s but I took so many it would be impossible to show you everything.
I could go on all day, I could include so much more in this post but what I really want to sum up is that if you have never been to a blogging conference before then Blog On MSI would be a fantastic place to start you really won’t regret it, there might be another one coming up for Winter this year and I will definitely be there.