I was in Manhattan for a whirlwind trip of exactly 4 hours yesterday, participating as a speaker at the Essence Women’s Conference – the theme was “Unleash Your Power.” I would never have imagined 15+ years ago that I would be invited by the very magazine that I admired, to serve as an expert during a jam-packed session at a conference featuring respected professionals such as Laila Ali, Judge Glenda Hatchett, Michelle Singletary and Dr. Ian Smith. The session I was asked to speak on was Blogging for Business – Blog Your Way to the Top!, a discussion with professional women wanting to learn about tools, tips and best practices for using the blogosphere to build their brands. And I was in impressive company! My fellow session speakers were Natasha Eubanks of TheYBF; Danielle Belton of The Black Snob; Emil Wilbekin of Essence.com; and Tricia Clarke-Stone of Global Grind.
The format was “speed-dating style” where each speaker sat and spoke to a round table of about 10 women for 10 minutes. The wonderfully organized Essence staff had given me some sample questions to prepare to answer – turns out I was beyond prepared! The first bell rang for us to switch tables before I knew it. The most popular questions I was asked were:
- How can I drive traffic to my blog and increase my readership?
- What opportunities can blogging present?
- How do I make money through blogging?
- How often should I post on my blog?
It was so energizing to meet such a variety of smart, ambitious professional women of color (it was like Blogalicious all over again!) I really had a blast and didn’t realize how much I would enjoy sharing Mamalaw’s story and the valuable knowledge we’ve gained along the way.
It was a shame that I wasn’t able to attend the entire day’s events, but my schedule didn’t permit; I did get to sit in on two general sessions that were off the hook: the luncheon keynote by Judge Glenda Hatchett and the afternoon general session called No More Drama — How to Get What You Really Want from the Men in Your Life. Talk about energizing! Both sessions were no-holds barred real talk that engaged the audience and made you think.
A big thanks to Essence for the opportunity and for the star treatment!