This past weekend I had the amazing opportunity to not only attend but also serve as part of the social squad for the Blogalicious8 conference, held in Atlanta, Georgia.
To say that I enjoyed myself is an understatement. To say that I learned a lot is minimizing the fact that my mind was on overload when I left. And to say that I was thoroughly impressed is nothing but the truth.
While I had heard great things about this conference, I can not say that I was convinced. I have only attended one other blog conference in the past. I vowed I wouldn’t go back to that conference. Honestly, I was not sure that investing in this one would be any different.
I applied to be on the social squad as a recommendation from a friend. I completed the app and tucked the thought away. Needless to say I was shocked when I was actually selected to be a part of the team.
I am so thankful that I had this opportunity. While there is no way I can recap the full experience, I would like to share some of the people who I recommend that you know from this conference.
This list is in no-way all inclusive. There was so much happening that there is no way I could tell you about everyone that was there. Heck I had to make some tough decisions between sessions because of the bomb line-up.
But based on the sessions I had the opportunity to attend, and the content that I received, these are the 5 that I know you should check for. Blogger or non-blogger alike.
5 Dope Chicks From Blogalicious8
Ashley is the super momma behind the MommyWeek blogazine. That’s not a word in real life but soon as you set foot on her site you will know that’s just what it is.
Ashley had not one, but TWO sessions offering up tips and greatness that she has used in her own blog business journey.
If you are a blogger, then you need to check her out and get your whole life together. If you are not a blogger, you need to check her out for all the latest in mommy how-to’s from what to cook, where to go, homeschooling and so much more. She has something there for all of us!
Roni is the travel guru behind the self titled blog, Roni The Travel Guru. There she shares all her travel tips and journeys and helps you get your travel life in order.
At the conference, she shared some great tips on pitching to brands. This was just up my alley for all that is to come with my branding.
Not only did she give practical, real tips. She stood there and started crafting pitches on the spot for some of us in her session.
If you are a blogger you may want to get in touch with her for her pitching services, or help with crafting the perfect pitch. Not a blogger or brand influencer? You want to check her out for her travel tips and features.
A woman’s empowerment enthusiast and self-made mogul who shared her story of how she escaped the box that life wanted to put her in to build a life she never imagined by being herself and being different.
She shared how speaking out and speaking her mind as a young Cuban girl allowed her to become the first Latina President of Entertainment for Telemundo and so much more, eventually having her own entertainment network.
She spoke about how as women we need to make sound business decisions and think wisely about what we choose to invest our dollars into.
She said, “don’t buy shoes, buy buildings…”
Just a reminder that we really need to think bigger and go for more, whatever our lane is.
I had never heard of her before, and I didn’t get to make it to her table to grab her book, Self Made, but I will be hitting up amazon for it, and you should too!
So many people say that Luvvie is the crazy friend in their head. But she reminds me of my real life Nigerian friend, Alice.
She is strong minded and sure of who she is, she has something to say and she is going to say it – whether you like it or not. But she is mad cool, laid back and down to earth.
Luvvie opened the Dove sponsored #SpeakBeautiful session speaking about how we have to be mindful of the things we say about ourselves and to each other. We have to be careful of how we let social media affect us and what we ingest from it, and most importantly we have to stay grounded and help keep each other grounded by living authentically – online and off.
Not only did Luvvie drop some gems in that session, she also had a session where she shared with us her process of writing her new book, I’m Judging You and the publishing process behind it.
While I had heard of Luvvie and stumbled across her blog a time or two, she stood out to me when she came up in my twitter feed during the time of the Charleston massacre.
She used the platform to voice her opinion. She spoke about how we, as digital influencers, have a duty, to at minimum to acknowledge the things that are happening in our community. Many are so busy worrying about “being on brand” that we loose our humanness.
She got backlash for that, from bloggers who felt it was not their lane to speak up or turn all social activist.
She shared with us the perspective behind the situation. I agree with it. Some don’t. But even if you don’t agree with what she says she is one of those people who will drop some knowledge on you for a whopping Free.99. And if you don’t agree, you never have to even admit that she is the chick you love but wanna hate.
So blogger or not, you should be checking for her. That is all.
Last but certainly not least, there is Ms. Blogalicious herself, Stacey Ferguson. She is the lady behind this magnificent brand.
It takes a special person to conjure up and maintain all that good energy over a four day span. Everyone was so darn positive! Even even when something went wrong behind the scenes, it was handled so graciously.
After being there for just a little while and Stacey introducing herself in the social squad session, I understood why. That energy trickled from the top down.
I first heard of Stacey, also known as Justice Fergie, sometime within the last year. When one of her mentees whom I follow, shouted her out on social media. At the time, I had no idea she was the lady behind the Blogalicious brand. Don’t know when the connection was made. But I can say that just reviewing her IG profile made me follow her.
At the conference I realized that she actually remind me of one of my mentors from corporate America, turned friends.
She seems to be someone who treats everyone with equal respect and kindness. If she can help you she will. She never appeared as if she was the lady who was running the show, in a “larger than life” kind of way. Instead she seemed like she was there for the people who made the investment. And she wanted to grow and learn just like the rest of us.
For all of these reasons, and so you get Blogalicious9 updates and such, you should be checking for her.
Aren’t you attracted to real people? I sure am! This list encompasses that.
I needed to be there, and I am truly convinced that I was selected to be on the squad for that reason. Yes, I needed the information. But more than that, my little introverted self needed to meet some of the dopest chicks out here. I needed to see (and feel) the importance of building and maintaining awesome relationships while building a brand.
Again, this post, in no way can give you the full experience. But here are a few other posts out there that may help you get some more of the juice.
5 Things I Learned From BLOGALICIOUS 8 (Happily Ever Natural)
7 Simple Ways To Gain Financial Self-Reliance (The Positive Mom)
5 Things to Do After Blogalicious8 (Manifest Yourself)
Encouraging Girls and Women to #SpeakBeautiful at Blogalicious (Kiwi the Beauty)
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