After I arrived home from BlogHer, I was an exhausted mess. I will never forget the memories I made and the people I met, but I was also very overwhelmed and just plain, done. With over 5,000 attendees and multiple events to attend at any given time, it is no wonder I ran out of energy. There were days I forgot to eat until dinner time.
I have only been to three different conferences so far – BlogHer, Bloggy Boot Camp, and Type A Conference. So I asked my friends to share their thoughts on the other ones I wanted to attend – Blissdom, Disney Social Media Moms, Digital Family Summit and Mom 2.0.
Please share in the comments what your favorite conference is so far. I’d love to hear why you liked it!
Ticket Cost: $247
Location: Atlanta, GA
Type A Conference is focused on two main things: education and networking. When you attend, you can expect to come away with more knowledge than you will know how to put into practice, new friends for life, and contacts with companies that want to work with bloggers. I have attended Type A every year since 2010 (this year I missed due to a family camp out) and learned new strategies each time. Organizer Kelby Carr plans the conference with enough time between sessions to allow you to network with brands and fellow bloggers. In my opinion, it is one you will always be thankful you attended.
Emily Vanek from Colorado Moms is just as in love with this conference as I am. “[It is] The ONLY conference that I can come back from with actual leads, contracts and actionable items.”
Location – Laguna Niguel, CA
Cost – $300 (tickets go on sale September 2012)
Mom 2.0 is focused on enhancing the trade of blogging. Brands attend with the purpose of meeting bloggers to hire for projects. Speakers are uniquely experienced and you will have the chance to mingle and network with professional bloggers and learn from their experience.
Jill Berry, from Musings From Me, said it was the “highlight of my blogging career. It was at Mom 2.0 that I started seeing my self as a professional.”
Lisa Douglas (Crazy Adventures in Parenting), agrees. She said the ticket price was a worthwhile investment because she made money through the brands she met. “I met with two brands who set me up with contracts as a result of meeting them there. One on one brand interaction, absolutely! In fact, I still talk to those brands to this day.”
Cost – $298 (registration opens September 1st)
Location – Chicago
In 2012, BlogHer broke their own records with over 5,000 bloggers attending their conference and the biggest names speaking – President Obama, Martha Stewart and Katie Couric, to name a few.
BlogHer is so large that it is whatever you make it to be. It is part trade show, part educational conference, part party scene and part business networking. It is the only conference I have been too that kept me so busy I forgot to eat. Whether it is the right conference for you is entirely up to you. Since it is so large, you have a greater chance of feeling alone in a crowd and meeting up with friends is difficult. The sessions were standing room only and even the Martha Stewart lunch keynote was so packed people ate their food on the floor.
Location – Dallas, TX
Cost – $299
I have heard from friends that Blissdom is a very inspiring conference – one that reignites your love for blogging. It splits sessions into different tracks so you can find exactly what you need from each educational seminar. It has grown over the years but still maintains the intimate, encouraging conference it started out as.
Stacie from The Divine Miss Mommy gushed about this conference. “I liked that it was a ‘women’s blog conference developed by bloggers for bloggers.’ And it is larger but the sessions are still relevant to me and I enjoyed the speakers.” If you are new to blogging, you will catch the passion from the speakers and fall in love. If you are more experienced, there are tracks just for you and you will totally love the “blissfully” wonderful atmosphere.
Bloggy Boot Camps 2012 – See Schedule (next one is Sept. 15th in Dallas)
Cost – $99
Locations – next 2012 locations are Dallas and Vegas.
The SITS girls made an affordable one-day conference that moves across the country. If you are new to blogging or just want to get away for a day to see your blog friends, this is an excellent one to go to. Whenever someone that is new to blogging asks me what conference to start with I always suggest BBC. It is within your budget and gives you the foundational knowledge you need to grow you blog from hobby to business.
I spoke at Bloggy Boot Camp St. Louis this year and thought it was a super relaxed and fun conference. I really enjoyed the chance to share my experience with gals that were thinking of buying their first domain.
Location (in 2012, ’13 not announced yet) – Philedelphia
Cost – $200
Digital Family Summit was created for families with teens and tweens who are interested in digital media. Dresden from Creating Motherhood couldn’t hide her appreciation for this conference. “Great size, great location, great concept…It was cool to see the children of bloggers, the ones that grew up within our tech, getting to learn along side of us.”
Lolli Franklin from Better in Bulk agreed. ” I LOVED seeing bloggers in their element WITH their kids. And I loved sharing that part of my work with my 13 year old.”
So if you have a child interested in blogging, be on the lookout for next year’s conference!
Location – Las Vegas
Cost – $275
Blogalicious is described as a conference that embraces diversity in digital media. This conference is all about the community and beauty in our differences.
Jessica McFadden, from A Parent in America, fell in love with this conference. “I like that the conference is based upon goals I personally find essential: building community amongst women online, informing businesses about the importance of diversity and women in social media, and giving bloggers practical business growth strategies.”
If community building and diversity are at the top of your passions for blogging, then Blogalicious is created just for you.
EVO 2012 – July 12-14th (2013 not announced yet)
Location – Park City, UT
Cost – (last minute price) $399
EVO stands for “The Evolution of Women in Media.” It is a smaller conference with hands on workshops and plenty of opportunities to speak one-on-one with industry professionals and PR/marketing representatives.
It is set in the gorgeous hills of Utah and in addition to hands-on sessions there are plenty of opportunities for relationship building through activities at the resort.
Jessica Rosenberg from It’s My Life shared why she loves going every single year. “Evo is a wonderful smaller conference that really caters to food, craft, photography and journaling bloggers, though any blogger will get something out of the truly star quality keynotes and the high level interactive sessions.”
Other smaller conferences – dates and links
Be on the lookout for other conferences – I know I did not cover them all! Below you will find links to a few other conferences that are smaller and worth learning about.
Niche Mommy Conference - August 23-26th – New Orleans
Bloggy Conference – September 27-29 – Cincinnati Ohio
Brands & Bloggers Summit – July 21st, 2012 – Chicago
Disney Social Media Moms – 2013 not announced yet – Walt Disney World – Invitation Only
Keep chatting with local bloggers for other conferences that are close to you! I know Social Media Clubs are a fabulous way to network with local professionals and there are local blog groups putting on smaller meetups all the time.
What is your favorite conference every year?