Looking for Something?
Monthly Archives

March 2010

Are You a Hunter or a Soaker?

Author:

I have been thinking about my conference behavior after reading Deb’s excellent conference personality article.

How I operate at a conference varies depending on the location, topic, who I will be meeting and so on, but it seems the conference activity is split into two main “modes” and I would be interested to hear if your experience.

Conference Hunter

These are people on a mission. It could be about meeting certain people, picking up as much schwag as possible, give the talk, get business, promote something, or to learn something that will help with a specific project. In my entire conference history I would say this is the most common as I mainly go to conferences that I am speaking at, and regardless I always have in mind people who I want to meet there.

I imagine these are the kinds of people who feel like they get the most value out of a conference because they have a goal in mind and a sense of accomplishment when they achieve it.

Conference Soaker

As a contrast to the people who are on a mission, the soaker is there for an undirected experience. They might party hop, flit from session to session without any kind of agenda, or just “hang out”. For them the conference is an event to “be at” rather than extract some tangible value from. They might anticipate learning something or meeting cool people, but do not set out to do anything consciously and take things as they come.

There have been a few conferences I have attended where I have very much been in this mode, and I would say this recent SXSW was one of them. Due to my speaking engagements not happening I was kind of there my default rather than with anything business rational in mind. While I did not There is something to be said for having an open diary!

Why Does it Matter?

Obviously you can be a blend of the two. It only matters in so much that I think if you do not know what you hope to get out of a conference, even if it is just to soak up the experience, then you might come away dissapointed. Before you book, ask yourself why you want to go, and then go do that :)

What do you think? Please share your thoughts in the comments …

You can read more from Chris Garrett at chrisg.com or follow Chris on Twitter with @chrisgarrett

7 Ways to Promote Your BlogWorld Speaking Engagement

Author:

It’s that time of the year. Twitter is buzzing about BlogWorld ’10. Hopeful speakers are waiting (im)patiently to send in their proposals and hopeful attendees are waiting for news and discounts. We promise not to disappoint on either front.

If you’re hoping to speak at BlogWorld, first check out Rick Calvert’s advice to potential speakers.  It’s OK, we’ll wait…

Great. Now you know what we’re looking for.

Here’s something else to consider. The speakers who are asked to come back and talk again each year, not only have the ability to produce good content and keep their audience engaged and awake. They can also fill the room. In other words, they know what to do to promote their event beforehand.

If you’re looking to pitch your talk, or if you’re accepted to speak, you’ll want to let us know how you’re going to fill those seats.

Here are a few suggestions:

Create a Facebook Event

Facebook, Event Brite and other online event promotional tools are simple and free to use. Fill in all the pertinent details, let folks know why your session will rock and blast it off to your friends and followers. Make it an open invitation so others can help you spread the word. Don’t create the event now, wait until six weeks to a month before your event so the talk is fresh in their minds.

Create a Calendar Reminder

Use Outlook or Google Calendar to create a reminder for those who RSVP’d to the event you created on FaceBook or an another announcement service.  This will remind them ahead of time, and, also, it will ping them on the day of your talk so they don’t forget.

Create a Blog Post on the BlogWorld Blog

Accepted speakers are required to submit a post to the BlogWorld blog discussing their sessions. Don’t forget to stop here and tell folks what you’ll be doing and what they’ll be taking away if they come to your talk.

Blog at Your Own Blog or Guest Post at Other Blogs

Go on a virtual world tour. Chat on your blogs and others regarding topics relevant to your session. By all means, don’t spam. Talk about your topic and let folks know that this is also what you’ll be talking about at BlogWorld. Build a buzz.

Tell Your Twitter Followers

Again, don’t spam. However, every now and then remind folks of your session. Talk about your talk and ask if there are any questions. Drop a “takeaway of the day” to create a buzz and build of an audience. Have fun with it.

Create a Video

How ’bout a sneak peek? Create a video and post it here or at your blog talking a little about your topic and what you hope to achieve during your session at BlogWorld. Show attendees how engaging you are. Make it enticing enough for them to want more, but don’t give up so much that they’ll feel they already know anything. Consider this your teaser or trailer.

Give Stuff Away

Have a book? Ebook? Online course? Workbook? Offer to give it away to someone in the audience at your session. Create and promote a contest beforehand and choose the winner live.

Tell us…

How will you promote your BlogWorld speaking engagement.

What is Your Social Media Conference Attending Personality?

Author:

After attending a few social media conferences, one becomes very aware of the various personality types of the different attendees. Many  are nothing at all like their Twitter personalities, and some of them are downright surprising. If you spent any time at one of the big social media conferences, you no doubt recognize some of these personality types:

1. The Partier: You attend conferences for one reason, and one reason only; to party. Sure, you may show up at the convention center and shake a few hands for an hour or two, but your days are mostly spent making up for your nights. Nights you don’t remember until you catch glimpses on YouTube. Not too much business happens  when you attend conferences, but you come home with enough business cards so your employer feels it’s justified. It’s all good though, no one really takes you seriously as a business person anyway. They like having you around because you’re buying the drinks.

2. The Vacationer: Like the Partier, you don’t necessarily attend conferences for their ROI value. Instead, they’re a vacation. They get you out of the house and away from the spouse and kids for a few days, making them well worth the expense. You can go out to dinner to restaurants that don’t serve crayons with the placemats, and sleep as late as you want in the morning. Maybe, just maybe you’ll even attend a session or too.

3. The Swag Collector: You travel to conferences with an extra, empty duffle bag in tow in order to bring home your swag. You’re not so much interested in the speakers or networking, and a sponsor paid for your ticket so it’s not like you have to work. For you, it’s all about what you’re coming home with. Free T-shirts, pens, and even laptop stickers have you squealing with delight. You go to the trade show as soon as it opens looking for the big ticket items so you can grab a few freebies before they run out. When you get home and your kids ask “what did you bring me” you don’t disappoint.

4. The Engager: For you, it’s about the people. You attend conferences to meet up with old friends and cultivate new relationships. You’re always seen in the hallways talking with groups of people and your dinners are never intimate affairs for two. The more the merrier. Unlike Partiers and Vacationers, you really are hoping to meet with people for both business and pleasure. You’re looking to build relationships for now and for the future. It’s no wonder you have no problem finding collaborators for your projects and know exactly who to call when specific situations arise.

5. The Star Gazer: You come to catch a glimpse of the big name superstars. You attend their sessions, stand in line for their book signings and make sure you don’t go home until you have a picture featuring you and the biggest names in the biz. For you, it’s not as much about meeting people as it is meeting the right people.

6. The Learner: For you, it’s the sessions. You came to learn from the best, and by golly, that’s what you’re going to do. You want Chris Brogan to teach you about trust and John Chow to show you how to make money online. You’re serious about getting ahead in the game. Parties and dinners don’t interest you. It’s the talks you come for.

7. The Job Hunter: You’re on a mission and that mission is to score employment. You show up in a suit and have a briefcase full of resumes. You learn who is hiring and arrange for meetings. You’re all business….not that there’s anything wrong with that.

8. The Volunteer: You can’t afford tickets to conferences because they’re so expensive. However, you found a loophole. You volunteer to help out. The only problem is, you’re so busy running around, stuffing bags and manning elevators you don’t get a chance to enjoy the conference itself.

9. The Speaker: You’re THE authority in your field and you want everyone to know it. Speaking is the best way to promote your books and your services. If there’s a conference, you’re sure to be found on a panel or session. Your advice is dead on and you can’t leave the room after your talk because your admirers have questions and want to snap photos for their blogs. Your talks go so well, the conference isn’t over before you’re planning your next talk.

10. The Pimp: You attend conferences because you have something to sell or promote. You wear T-Shirts proudly displaying your message and hand out a business card and spiel to everyone you meet. You WILL go home with multiple sales if it’s the last thing you do.

11. The “We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Badges” Guy: Conferences aren’t really your thing. You don’t like the sessions or all the hand shaking and you’re not really into frivolity. You fly to the city where the conference is held and even sign up for some parties and interesting events. However, you don’t buy a badge. You don’t need one. Everyone you want to speak with will meet you for dinner or at a party. You’ll put in a few appearances so everyone can see you were there, but you stay as far away from the actual conference as you can.

12. The Celebrity: If there are Star Gazers in attendance, they won’t be disappointed. You show up to see to be seen.  You and your entourage are front and center at all the parties and events. You have a pocket full of sharpies  for autographs and drink only the finest champagne. You time your entrances, and your exits, and never met a camera you didn’t like.

13. The Reluctant Celebrity: You’re famous in your circles but you’re not really into your fame. You want to be able to walk down the hall without stopping for autographs and photographs. You want to be able to sit and chat with your friends for more than two minutes at a time. You’re happy life is working out well for you and don’t mind sharing your secrets to your success, you just wish you could attend these things without an entourage.

What are some of the personality types you spotted at the various conferences? Do you see yourself in any of the above?

Deb Ng is founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs network. Follow her on Twitter @debng.

Stressed Out in the Blogosphere

Author:

Some of my friends are quitting the blogosphere, supposedly for good. One of them even sold off all his old blogs and domains. The pressure to keep up and succeed “on the web” became too stressful and they decided to step back and do other things. Real world things. One of  these friends went back to corporate America, while another entered the wacky world of retail. I reflect on my my love of writing, the flexibility and ability to call my own shots and wonder why anyone would want to give it all up and enter into the rat race.

I realize how much I take for granted. I’m very happy with the success I’ve achieved as a blogger, but this hasn’t happened for everyone. Blogging isn’t the same big old kumbaya for everyone. We have to come up with unique content every day and market the hell out of our work and ourselves. We have to network online and offline and continue to pimp and push in order to bring in a few Adsense dollars each month.

Do only the strong survive blogging?

It’s been my experience that the folks who do best with their blogs are the ones who:

  • Post at least once each day.
  • Join the conversation on forums, social networks and other blogs
  • Network both offline and online
  • Collaborate with others
  • Work at it every day
  • Treat their blogging as a business

Very few bloggers can put in a minimal effort and hit it big. From what I can tell, the people who don’t do well are the ones who give up after a certain amount of time or don’t follow up on their good intentions. For example, a couple of blogs I started are languishing because I don’t have time to post to them each day. The one that does the best gets several hours of attention each day – from me and others. I imagine it’s even more frustrating for bloggers who put quite a bit of time and effort into what they do only to give it up when it doesn’t pay off.

Another blogger told me that there’s incredible “pressure to perform” with blogging. He said it’s not easy to talk about the same topic each day and not sound redundant, especially if you’ve been doing this for as long as I have. I don’t know about that. I enjoy writing about blogging and writing each day. After five years I’m not sick of it and I haven’t run out of things to to talk about. I think my community’s high expectations keep me from slacking off, though.

Stress and pressure? This is the least stressful gig I’ve held yet!

What do you think? Are you ever challenged to find stuff to write about each day or do you feel stressed if you’re not constantly putting out content or promoting your stuff?

Is there pressure to peform?

Deb Ng is professional blogger and founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs Network. Feel free to follow her on twitter @debng.

BlogWorld & New Media Expo 2010

Author:

We just officially announced over the weekend at SXSW that our 2010 dates are October 14 – 16 and we are moving to Mandalay Bay Hotel & Convention Center!

I apologize for not getting the news out sooner but wanted to put up a quick post to let you know why it took so long, why we are moving and give you some other details.

First off this is a very big deal to move the show from the Las Vegas Convention Center to Mandalay Bay. I hope you can appreciate we had to keep this top secret until everything was finalized. Rumors suck and we didn’t want anyone to be confused about the dates or the location.

While we love the LVCC (our home for the last three years) we had outgrown the meeting space they had for us. Particularly for our keynotes and all of our community tracks (more on those in a bit).  If you have been to the show before you know the LVCC is massive (the 3rd largest convention center in the United States), but we took up every single meeting room next to our exhibit hall and actually had to build out our keynote area on the tradeshow floor. Exhibit halls are not known for their acoustics so this caused some problems with the audio particularly as we grew and it cost us a fortune to put down carpet, AV and a massive 20 foot high drape to divide the keynote area from the exhibit hall.

One other major factor was the location. The LVCC is in a great location for huge events like CES, SEMA and MAGIC, but for us it was inconvenient for our attendees. We couldn’t everyone into the Renaissance hotel which is a 2 minute walk from the South Hall where our show was located. So most people stayed at the Las Vegas Hilton. While it is directly adjacent to the North Hall of the LVCC thats about a mile long walk to where BlogWorld was! Like I said its a big convention center. So our community was spread out and obviously the community feel of the event is a very important thing.

At Mandalay Bay those problems are solved. We have a huge ballroom for our keynotes located right next to the exhibit hall, and all of the other meeting rooms for our breakouts and community tracks surrounding. Of course the convention center is attached to the Mandalay Bay Hotel (my wife’s favorite hotel in Vegas).  Mandalay Bay has over 3,300 rooms so everyone can stay there if they like and we were able to negotiate a killer deal for everyone. In large part because the management there sees the huge value of having 3,000 + bloggers, podcasters, and social media influencers staying there.

Whats the deal?

Rooms for $109 a night! That includes free WiFi in your room and of course free WiFi in the conference and exhibit area.  Those rooms will go on sale through our site in the next couple of weeks so stay tuned for that announcement. These are very nice rooms!

If $109 a night isn’t cheap enough for you, we will be announcing even lower rates at Luxor and Excaliber soon. Both of these hotels are connected to Mandalay Bay via a free monorail.  Oh and you high rollers can stay at the very quiet and very cool “The Hotel” which is directly connected to Mandalay Bay, or the even more posh Four Seasons; also directly connected.

A couple other quick items about the conference content. We will be hosting once again the Social Media Business Summit. This content is meant specifically for business owners and business executives to help them understand how to navigate the social media space, and how to use social media tools to build their business, communicate better with their customers and internally. Anyone who had been before knows we have a blockbuster line up of speakers who are offering real actionable business solutions.

We will have tracks on Monetization, Audio, Video, Advanced Podcasting, and New Media 101 for people just getting started with their blogs, podcasts, video and social networking.

Of course we will have community tracks, returning this year we have Sports, Travel, Health Care, Non-profit and Cause Marketing, Politics, Real Estate, Milblogging, Music & Entertainment.

And we have one new community track that everyone seems to be excited about; Food.

Oh and if you haven’t heard our opening Keynote will be Mr. Scott Stratten Author of the UnMarketing Blog, @Unmarketing on Twitter and author of the sure to be best selling upcoming book….. UnMarketing. Yes the man knows a thing or two about brand building =p.

We will be releasing lots more details over the next several weeks so check back at the blog, follow me on Twitter @blogworld or sign up for the newsletter here.

If you have any questions about the event feel free to leave a comment under this post message me on Twitter, or shoot me an email rick@blogworldexpo.com

Blog on!
Rick

BlogWorld & New Media Expo 2010

Author:

We just officially announced over the weekend at SXSW that our 2010 dates are October 14 – 16 and we are moving to Mandalay Bay Hotel & Convention Center!

I apologize for not getting the news out sooner but wanted to put up a quick post to let you know why it took so long, why we are moving and give you some other details.

First off this is a very big deal to move the show from the Las Vegas Convention Center to Mandalay Bay. I hope you can appreciate we had to keep this top secret until everything was finalized. Rumors suck and we didn’t want anyone to be confused about the dates or the location.

While we love the LVCC (our home for the last three years) we had outgrown the meeting space they had for us. Particularly for our keynotes and all of our community tracks (more on those in a bit).  If you have been to the show before you know the LVCC is massive (the 3rd largest convention center in the United States), but we took up every single meeting room next to our exhibit hall and actually had to build out our keynote area on the tradeshow floor. Exhibit halls are not known for their acoustics so this caused some problems with the audio particularly as we grew and it cost us a fortune to put down carpet, AV and a massive 20 foot high drape to divide the keynote area from the exhibit hall.

One other major factor was the location. The LVCC is in a great location for huge events like CES, SEMA and MAGIC, but for us it was inconvenient for our attendees. We couldn’t everyone into the Renaissance hotel which is a 2 minute walk from the South Hall where our show was located. So most people stayed at the Las Vegas Hilton. While it is directly adjacent to the North Hall of the LVCC thats about a mile long walk to where BlogWorld was! Like I said its a big convention center. So our community was spread out and obviously the community feel of the event is a very important thing.

At Mandalay Bay those problems are solved. We have a huge ballroom for our keynotes located right next to the exhibit hall, and all of the other meeting rooms for our breakouts and community tracks surrounding. Of course the convention center is attached to the Mandalay Bay Hotel (my wife’s favorite hotel in Vegas).  Mandalay Bay has over 3,300 rooms so everyone can stay there if they like and we were able to negotiate a killer deal for everyone. In large part because the management there sees the huge value of having 3,000 + bloggers, podcasters, and social media influencers staying there.

Whats the deal?

Rooms for $109 a night! That includes free WiFi in your room and of course free WiFi in the conference and exhibit area.  Those rooms will go on sale through our site in the next couple of weeks so stay tuned for that announcement. These are very nice rooms!

If $109 a night isn’t cheap enough for you, we will be announcing even lower rates at Luxor and Excaliber soon. Both of these hotels are connected to Mandalay Bay via a free monorail.  Oh and you high rollers can stay at the very quiet and very cool “The Hotel” which is directly connected to Mandalay Bay, or the even more posh Four Seasons; also directly connected.

A couple other quick items about the conference content. We will be hosting once again the Social Media Business Summit. This content is meant specifically for business owners and business executives to help them understand how to navigate the social media space, and how to use social media tools to build their business, communicate better with their customers and internally. Anyone who had been before knows we have a blockbuster line up of speakers who are offering real actionable business solutions.

We will have tracks on Monetization, Audio, Video, Advanced Podcasting, and New Media 101 for people just getting started with their blogs, podcasts, video and social networking.

Of course we will have community tracks, returning this year we have Sports, Travel, Health Care, Non-profit and Cause Marketing, Politics, Real Estate, Milblogging, Music & Entertainment.

And we have one new community track that everyone seems to be excited about; Food.

Oh and if you haven’t heard our opening Keynote will be Mr. Scott Stratten Author of the UnMarketing Blog, @Unmarketing on Twitter and author of the sure to be best selling upcoming book….. UnMarketing. Yes the man knows a thing or two about brand building =p.

We will be releasing lots more details over the next several weeks so check back at the blog, follow me on Twitter @blogworld or sign up for the newsletter here.

If you have any questions about the event feel free to leave a comment under this post message me on Twitter, or shoot me an email rick@blogworldexpo.com

Blog on!
Rick

Why I Don't Want to Be Chris Brogan

Author:

Man, I wish I was Chris Brogan.

This is what a blogger told me at the Blogger Lounge at SXSW as we watched Chris interact with a mob of people. I thought about this for a minute. Chris is someone to admire, for sure, and I’m happy to consider him among my friends at these events, but do I want to be him? Chris is famous now, maybe one of the most famous people in the social media space. He’s accomplished so much at a very young age. He surely has it all, but do I want that?

No. I don’t think so.

With all due respect to Chris who worked so very hard to get where he is today, I don’t want his life. Here’s why:

  • Travel: Chris is always on the go. I can’t speak for him, but I imagine it isn’t easy. It was hard enough to be away from my family for five nights while attending SXSW. If you want Chris Brogan’s rock star life, consider how much time he spends away from home and decide if that’s a perk or a pitfall.
  • Mob Scenes: For all the times I’ve seen Chris, we must have spent a total of 15 minutes talking. That’s because we generally chat for about 30 seconds to two minutes before he ‘s on to the next person. Chris is generous with his time and makes sure to say hello to everyone. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him when he’s not surrounded by people. So if you’re hoping to be Chris Brogan, considering how you won’t even be able to head for the men’s room without being stopped by 20 people. I’d be worried I’d have accident.
  • Favors: Everyone wants something from Chris including retweets, free books, jumping to the head of the line at the Mashable party, and lots and lots of taking without actually offering anything in return. As someone who receives at least 1000 bits of email each day, many asking for favors, I can tell you this can get old very quick. Do you want people contacting you all day, every day, asking you for stuff? Do you want people to only contact you when they need something and not to say hello?,
  • Expectations: Again, I can’t speak for Chris but I imagine there are rather high expectations being sent his way. Chris Brogan mostly likely can’t have a bad day. He can’t be cranky because folks would write him off as a jerk, he can’t be off his game because folks would complain that he’s not “all that” and he probably can’t just blow everyone off and go to the beach or something because they’d probably say something about his ego. If you want to be Chris Brogan consider whether or not you can be on your game 24/7 and what would happen if you aren’t.

I like Chris. I never saw him be unkind to anyone and he always makes me feel as if I am someone. He’s someone too, though. He’s not a God, he’s a human being. Before you say you want to be him, consider whether or not you truly want his lifestyle.

Rock on, Chris.

Deb Ng is founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs Network. Follow her on Twitter @debng.

Why I Don’t Want to Be Chris Brogan

Author:

Man, I wish I was Chris Brogan.

This is what a blogger told me at the Blogger Lounge at SXSW as we watched Chris interact with a mob of people. I thought about this for a minute. Chris is someone to admire, for sure, and I’m happy to consider him among my friends at these events, but do I want to be him? Chris is famous now, maybe one of the most famous people in the social media space. He’s accomplished so much at a very young age. He surely has it all, but do I want that?

No. I don’t think so.

With all due respect to Chris who worked so very hard to get where he is today, I don’t want his life. Here’s why:

  • Travel: Chris is always on the go. I can’t speak for him, but I imagine it isn’t easy. It was hard enough to be away from my family for five nights while attending SXSW. If you want Chris Brogan’s rock star life, consider how much time he spends away from home and decide if that’s a perk or a pitfall.
  • Mob Scenes: For all the times I’ve seen Chris, we must have spent a total of 15 minutes talking. That’s because we generally chat for about 30 seconds to two minutes before he ‘s on to the next person. Chris is generous with his time and makes sure to say hello to everyone. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him when he’s not surrounded by people. So if you’re hoping to be Chris Brogan, considering how you won’t even be able to head for the men’s room without being stopped by 20 people. I’d be worried I’d have accident.
  • Favors: Everyone wants something from Chris including retweets, free books, jumping to the head of the line at the Mashable party, and lots and lots of taking without actually offering anything in return. As someone who receives at least 1000 bits of email each day, many asking for favors, I can tell you this can get old very quick. Do you want people contacting you all day, every day, asking you for stuff? Do you want people to only contact you when they need something and not to say hello?,
  • Expectations: Again, I can’t speak for Chris but I imagine there are rather high expectations being sent his way. Chris Brogan mostly likely can’t have a bad day. He can’t be cranky because folks would write him off as a jerk, he can’t be off his game because folks would complain that he’s not “all that” and he probably can’t just blow everyone off and go to the beach or something because they’d probably say something about his ego. If you want to be Chris Brogan consider whether or not you can be on your game 24/7 and what would happen if you aren’t.

I like Chris. I never saw him be unkind to anyone and he always makes me feel as if I am someone. He’s someone too, though. He’s not a God, he’s a human being. Before you say you want to be him, consider whether or not you truly want his lifestyle.

Rock on, Chris.

Deb Ng is founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs Network. Follow her on Twitter @debng.

SXSW: The Cool and the Lame

Author:

This year was probably my most rewarding SXSW experience ever. I learned a lot, renewed friendships, made new friends, was presented with some very attractive opportunities and all in all, had a blast. With that said, there was plenty of lamery to go around as well.

If you didn’t attend SXSW here’s what you missed (or didn’t miss…)

SXSW: The Cool

At SXSW ’10, one didn’t really need to purchase a badge because everything worth mentioning happened outside the sessions and panels. While I did attend a couple of excellent Core Conversations, the truth is, the highlights from “Southby” didn’t come from scheduled talks. As Chris Garrett said, “I paid $500 to hang out in the blogger lounge.” That doesn’t mean SXSW wasn’t worth the experience, just that sometimes the experience isn’t what’s scheduled in the official guide.

The Blogger Lounge: If you were looking for friends and conversation, the blogger lounge was the place to be. This is where we worked, shared ideas and caught up with those we hadn’t seen since the last conference. The blogger lounge provided tables and sockets for our laptops, food and drink, and even some entertainment. A good time was had by all.

The hallways: I learn more in conference center hallways than from listening to the same panelists say the same thing at each different conference. In fact, I think I spent more time in the hallways at SXSW than anywhere else. Lest, you think I was wandering aimlessly, I was talking and sharing ideas with published authors, bloggers, social media people, marketing people, and even a couple of filmmakers.

The restaurants: Whether it was Stubbs, Rudy’s or Ironworks, whether it was BBQ, Hawaiin or Tex Mex, Austin has something for everyone. Each night we tried something new and I’m happy to report that nothing sucked. Even better than the food was the company and the conversation…

The people: I’m not going to indulge in a festival of name droppery, but I will say this, I have terrific friends. Bloggers are the nicest people ever. No, really. There’s nothing better than a bunch of great minds sitting together and thinking alike. Or, even, not agreeing but having a terrific, respectful discussion.  I have more phone numbers than I can fit into my phone and more business cards than I have a box to hold them.

The City of Austin: Kudos to the City of Austin, Texas for handling this logistical nightmare. More than one person told me the college spring break is scheduled at the same time as SXSW so that there are thousands of people leaving the city at the same time thousands of people are coming in. Though SXSW is sure to be an income booster for shops and businesses, I’m positive most residents will be happy it’s over. Driving around Downtown is a nightmare for residents, for sure. Still, everyone is pleasant and well mannered and the drivers are the most polite I’ve ever seen. I don’t know if this type of conference could happen anywhere else.

SXSW: The Lame

Zone Bars: Every where I went someone was waving a Zone Bar in my face. While I’m thinking they were the reason many attendees didn’t starve, I’m also thinking most of us are leaving Austin hoping to never see another Zone Bar for as long as we live. Or at least until next year.

Panels and sessions: There were very few SXSW panels that interested me this year. Maybe it’s because all the panels are picked as the result of a popularity contests. It doesn’t matter if a session is necessary and timely, if it doesn’t get the votes it doesn’t get in. Someone with a lame panel and a large network of friends  has a better chance of getting picked than someone with a decent topic and not as many friends. Problem is, if those friends aren’t attending SXSW, does it really matter if they’re voting for panels?

Fire alarms: So we’re sitting in the audience at Darren Rowse‘s book reading and the fire alarm went off and we had to exit the building.  I mean everyone. There was no panic, and no pushing. Everyone was respectful and cooperative. Still, it was a pain in the butt to empty out a massive conference hall and then put it all back together again. The fire alarm was a dream for the Zone Bar people who stood in the stair wells passing out Zone Bars, but for speakers such as Darren Rowse, it almost put an end to the talk. We were back in the building about 20 minutes later, a little behind schedule, but it all worked out in the end. Oh and the alarm? It was a false one.

Drunk social media gurus: Hey famous social media people. Yes, you. People remember when you get drunk and sloppy in public. Folks can do a lot with a cell phone cameras nowadays and there are certain things you don’t want captured on film, if you know what I mean. Seriously though, some folks treat SXSW as nothing but a big party and forget that many of their peers and professional contacts are in attendance. It’s probably a good reminder not to do anything you wouldn’t want splashed across the front page of the New York Times, besides acting drunk in public is just obnoxious.

What are some of your takeaways from SXSW? What did you find lame and what did you enjoy?

Deb Ng is a professional blogger and founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs network.

Why is "Linkbait" Such a Dirty Word?

Author:

As bloggers, we’re supposed to be building traffic with good, useful content. Though it’s something we all strive for, we’re not supposed to publicly state how much we want to build traffic and back links. We don’t want anyone to know we want our posts to go viral. We would be scandalized if folks knew we secredtly hoped for a massive response from Digg or Stumble Upon. It’s all about the vibe, you know?

Why is this?

Seriously, why?

Hear me out…

As bloggers, we want to build up traffic, right? We want people to visit our blogs and we want to profit from them. Sure, we have good intentions too. We want to share what we know , build relationships and teach some useful skills, but if you think most bloggers aren’t in this for marketing or money making purposes, you’re in need of a reality check.

Bloggers want traffic. Lots of traffic.

So why is “linkbait” such a dirty word? Isn’t it our goal to have folks link to us? Don’t we want to write headlines that will draw in readers? If no one else will say it, I will. Yes, that is our goal. We want readers and we will do what we have to do to bring them to our blogs.

Why, then, do we talk about linkbait as if it’s something dirty as in “Oh, he’s just using obvious linkbait tactics.” Well, so what?

I’ll even go as far as to say often times linkbait posts are more interesting than the regular “evergreen”content.

Granted, linkbait traffic is shortlived, but there’s no denying people will drop by often and stick around if they know there’s a good read coming up. If the purpose of linkbait is to solicit traffic and links, isn’t everything we write a ‘bait?

What do you think? Why aren’t we supposed to admit to using linkbait?

Deb Ng is founder of the Freelance Writing Jobs blog network.

What’s New on the NMX Blog:

NMX 12 Days Of Giving: Day 1 – Complimentary VIP Upgrade

NMX is pleased to once again present our annual 12 Days of Giving event, where we offer a special gi...

Learn About NMX

NEW TWITTER HASHTAG: #NMX

Recent Comments