I’ve been intimidated at the thought of trying to recap my trip to #BlogHer12, but seeing Chris Lam’s post this morning gave me confidence that I could do it. Plus, I know that actually putting it on paper will force me to revisit the high points and to actually remember all of the great connections I made and information that I absorbed.
I’m not sure if it’s because I am getting old (I turned the big 3-5 the week before BlogHer!) but this year’s conference was overwhelming for me. The logistics, the amount of people, the constant networking and the slew of parties = TOO MUCH. You know I am usually the main person down for a ginormous party, but I think I arrived in New York already out of steam – thanks to my bang up birthday weekend – and completely unprepared, mentally, for what was to come. All last week I’d been saying that I was suffering from BlogHer PTSD. And I was only half-kidding. But, in true Stacey fashion, I’m choosing to focus on the positive experiences because that’s the name of my game.
After having a lovely time at End of the Rainbow, I went back to my room and was met by the smiling faces of my fab roommates, Amy and Jessica. I’ll just say that these two kept me in stitches for most of the time I was in the room over the 4 days. They convinced me not to order the $24 (+tax + service charge) hamburger from room service and so I ate from Amy’s assortment of snacks instead – she’s always prepared, that one.
The next morning I headed to the BlogHer Pathfinder Day; I was seriously excited to attend the My Blog As a Media Company track, since I have a dream of ramping up Justice Fergie Lifestyle Media into a full-fledged media company with multiple properties and the whole nine yards. In all of the social media conferences I’ve been to, I’ve never seen a session like that one, let alone an entire track, on the agenda. And? It turns out that this Pathfinder was my very favorite part of the entire BlogHer week – $79 well-spent! The day kicked off with remarks from Amy Jo Martin – someone who I hadn’t heard of before but am so glad that she’s now on my radar. I love hearing stories about game changers and people who think outside of the box. She calls herself a renegade – I can dig it!
Amy Jo Martin Takeaway: Do a personal brand audit.
Kathryn Finney of The Budget Fashionista and Jaden Hair of Steamy Kitchen presented the My Blog As a Media Company session – both bloggers who have definitely mastered the concept. Their presentation was organized, comprehensive and offered concrete takeaways – I kept thinking: “I am definitely in the right place.”
The broke down their talk into “The 7 C’s of Building a Successful Media Company”: Commitment, Content, Channels, Community, Commerce, Crew, and Conversion. I appreciated the global view and the emphasis on not only your vision, but also the fundamentals that every successful company must have (Note to Self: Please get on the Executive Summary and/or Visual Business Plan, stat!)
The Budget Fashionista and Steamy Kitchen Takeaway:
My content should be useful, entertaining, engaging, searchable and compatible across multiple platforms.
And then, the party started.
After an intimate and meaningful good time at the American Cancer Society’s Hope Lodge, where a small group of bloggers painted tiles for a mosaic being created in honor of our dear friend, Susan Niebur, I headed off to the Happier at Home book launch party for my Mighty Summit pal, Gretchen Rubin. Isabel, Laura and Maggie outdid themselves hosting the event, which was gorgeous and perfect from the setting (the terrace!) to the food (seriously.) to the parting gifts (Bliss! Anthropologie!) – it was definitely a highlight of my week.
Next up was Slow Churned Social Luxe Lounge where I got to meet Jill Zarin of Real Housewives of NYC fame who was there with Bissell, and spend some time chatting up brands like Edy’s and UnJunked and Ubisoft.
After that I headed to Lipstick and High Heels, hosted by Trina of Baby Shopaholic and then ended the night with a great dinner and conversation with some of the #OneMoms crew and made some new friends.
I was laden with swag, had traveled up, down and across Manhattan, attended half a dozen events…and BlogHer ’12 hadn’t even officially started yet. So much for pacing myself.