Excited to share my experience from my first blogger conference. What started off as a Facebook post about a conference application and a girls trip turned into reality last weekend. Myself and a few of my Dallas Fitness Ambassadors were accepted to attend Blogfest and IDEA world in LA and we all came away with so much. IDEA World is the largest fitness expo and convention for fitness professionals. It attracts tons of fit pros to learn about new workout formats, business and marketing smarts, bask in the overload of inspiration and of course, SWEAT! Blogfest was a small, but special part of that and catered to all things blogger. Hundreds of fitness bloggers came from all over to learn as much as they could from industry professionals and finally put a face to the name of that instagrammer! It’s an incredible learning experience on so many different levels.
Blogfest took up all of Thursday and Friday and was jam packed with informational sessions, tweet breaks, workouts, and more. It was also largely sponsored by Siggi’s, Vital Protein, Gymgo, General Mills, and Propel Hydration. Here’s a sample of the sessions we got to take:
Some of my favorite sessions would be learning about brands, food photography, and content marketing. It’s all about working smarter, not harder. I most definitely enjoyed hearing from Melissa Hartwig of Whole30 and how to establish yourself as a thought leader. Her story was so compelling! I also enjoyed hearing from Amanda Tress, a biz coach for female entrepreneurs about the wonders of building a business and her new favorite platform: Facebook Live. So much good information.
I was absolutely thrilled to go on this trip to learn as much as I could and have fun doing it. I spent Thursday and Friday soaking up as much as possible from all the sessions. Here’s what I took away.
Always be a student: No matter how much I read online or research for myself, I know never to think that I know it all. Because, frankly I don’t. Things are changing so rapidly that even the rules are becoming obsolete (ahem… Instagram). There were still some really eye opening lessons learned from the sessions. It was great to be able to set a benchmark based on what the experts said and gauge where I was in that learning curve. I couldn’t help but feel excited all over again in a classroom setting nerding out over what brands are looking for and why Snapchat is important. Not only were the sessions helpful, but also chatting with the blogger friends I made about what they were up to. The knowledge sharing is invaluable. And so was the support and encouragement.
You grow outside your comfort zones: This trip was an amazing learning experience on both a personal and professional level. I never thought I’d actually take a leap to attend a blogger conference and sit in a room with 200 other inspiring (and sort of intimidating) bloggers. On a personal level, I am usually very private. But for whatever reason, magic happened on this trip and I was able to bring my walls down a bit with women I have come to admire over Instagram and really form stronger relationships. It felt good!
It’s all about making connections: Gosh, if I could have cloned myself, that would’ve been amazing. I could’ve covered more ground! For my first conference ever, I wish I had spent more time talking to more people instead of being wrapped up in the sessions. I totally got nervous. The whole thing was overwhelming. Ha! As someone who considers herself outgoing, I definitely got the jitters approaching different brands and talking about myself. It was great practice for me and exciting to see that blog partnerships aren’t as uncommon as I formerly thought. People know what we are and what we are capable of!
It’s all about perspective: Doubt will alway be gnawing at the back of your mind, but instead of letting it cripple you, channel it into something more. There are no dreams too big if you want it badly enough. Plus, in the blogosphere, you really make up your own rules. If you change your perspective to test your limits, there’s nothing you can’t do.
Always have fun: Don’t take it too seriously. I’ve seen so many successful bloggers do great because they worked hard and had fun. I headed into this weekend with an open mind and went with the flow. I’m glad I was able to find balance in both work and fun. In addition to learning a ton, doing all the things I really wanted at the conference, I also made plenty of time to explore LA with my friends, eat at different restaurants, hike up to see the Hollywood sign and more. I even met up my people’s for a last night of dancing! I had one of the most memorable weekends and I’m still giggly from the high of it all.
Would I come back next year? Definitely. It’s a great conference with lots of opportunities to learn, connect, and grow. In addition to the sessions, there was also a huge expo with hundreds of brand reps eager to share their products was a great way to put into action what you just learned. Plus, we got to wear workout clothes all weekend long. Who isn’t in love with that idea?
The next Blogfest is going to be in VEGAS! I can already picture all of the debauchery if a larger group of Dallas Fitness Ambassadors decide to go. It’s going to be SO fun.