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August 2009

Blogger Sponsorship for Conferences Part III: Your Proposal



If you’ve been following our series on how to land a sponsorship in order to attend conferences, you already know about figuring out what to offer in return for a sponsorshipand also, choosing a sponsor. I’m going to assume you have your lists at the ready and it’s time for you to write a proposal to send to your potenial sponsor.

Proposals take a bit of finesse. Potenial sponsors want to know the person they’re hiring to represent their brands are smart, coherent and can deliver as promised.  Write your proposal with as much care as if you were writing a college application essay or applying for your dream job.

Your proposal should include:

  • An introduction, including a brief bio
  • Information and stats regarding your blog
  • Information and stats regarding the conference(s) for which you’re seeking sponsorship
  • What you propose in return for sponsorship

Here are a few helpful links to get you started:

Now all you have left to do is write up your proposal and send it to your list of potential sponsors. Keep in mind that you won’t hear from everyone. I sent out 30 proposals and heard from two people in return. One who was interested in a sponsorship and one who said he would get back to me and never did. However, the one who responded in a positive manner is now a major advertiser on my blog and would like to sponsor me for a couple of upcoming conferences in the late fall – including one of his own events. My campaign was a success. I’ll continue to follow up on my campaign(s) and others as we approach 2010 and I hope you’ll do the same.

If this series helped you, if you landed a sponsorship or if you’d like more information, please post in the comments.

On Track with Travel Blogging at BWE09


Travel Blogging by Shannon Hurst Lane Are you a travel blogger? Do you want to be one? Does your marketing company work in the travel industry? Then you NEED to be at Blog World & New Media Expo this year.

I’m so excited that travel is a dedicated track, which means we’ll have an entire day of panels and sessions dedicated to the travel industry. If you are a travel writer or marketing and want to learn more about blogging and new media, then you really should make plans to attend this fantastic event. It isn’t just the travel aspect that will benefit your business, but the expo floor and the various panels about general marketing, case studies, ethics of blogging, and so much more.

I’ll be honest with you, as travel bloggers and writers; we live in our own little world and sometimes forget about the tools available to us. As travel industry experts, we take research trips and return home to our solitary worlds, writing away and trying to sell our stories to various outlets with different angles, so that we can get a better ROI. A few of us have dabbled in the blogging world and there has even become somewhat of a war between “real” writers and bloggers. This is true in all industries of the written word (ye old journalist vs. blogger debate).

The travel track at BWE is a dream of mine I’ve had for years, melding all sides of the travel industry so that we can grow our businesses as a community and help consumers at the same time. Old school writers can share their wisdom with a new breed of publishers and the tech savvy peeps can help the old schoolers stay in the game. Travel industry marketers and agencies can figure out how to reach bloggers and their audiences, and also how to determine which outlets will be a good fit for their company or client. Lets think of BWE as a public service, which will boost the economy, help us reach target audiences through our words, get them to forget about that taboo word “Staycation” and get consumers to start using that awesome word “Vacation” again. This will lead them spend money on hotels and restaurants, which brings in tax money to help towns and cities stay in business.

Let’s all take a breath now, then click that little registration tab, and enter the code TTVIP20 for a special travel industry discount. Check out the schedule and start thinking about the panels you want to attend. Don’t worry, I won’t be talking your ears off at the event. I’m just putting together the travel track and blogging my way to Las Vegas for the most amazing event called Blog World and New Media Expo.

Keep checking back here as myself and other track leaders will be introducing you to some of our panels and speakers that are on the lineup. You can follow me on Twitter, and feel free to share the discount code TTVIP20 for #BWE09.

Doctor Anonymous Brings BWE to Blog Talk Radio


628bd932-5e0c-4001-ab47-3091dd2578a6drcase300-real Doctor Anonymous (aka: Mike Sevilla) will be discussing BlogWorld Expo tonight,  as he celebrates the second broadcast anniversary of his popular Blog Talk Radio show.

Mike will be moderating the “Staying on the Good Side of HIPAA: Safe and Ethical Blogging Practices” panel during the upcoming Medblogger track at BWE.

When he isn’t blogging, broadcasting, tweeting or updating Facebook, he spends his non-virtual time a a Family Physician in Ohio.

You can catch the show, August 27th at 9:00 pm Eastern time (2100 for our fellow Milbloggers out there!)

Come and meet some medbloggers, share your BWE experiences and join in the conversation!

What Talks About


food and drink, sports, weather, politics, travel, and the intricacies of counter-insurgency operations? Your friendly local milblog does, that’s who. Millbogs cover a variety of topics and issues, from reports from the front lines by those there doing the fighting to the challenges facing the spouses who hold down the homefront. In between, you find everything from posts, tweets, and comments on cooking to movies, automobiles to music, and travel to technology. You may be surprised by the range of topics expertly covered by the milblog community.

My name is Blake Powers, and I blog as Laughing Wolf and am Civilian-in-Residence at Blackfive milblog. I also am putting together the milblog track for this year’s Blog World and New Media Expo. The milblog community has a milblog conference to talk amongst ourselves. What we want to do here is introduce ourselves to you, invite you to join in our discussions, and — most importantly — help us to start planning next year’s panels.

We are not a closed track: anyone who wants to come and listen, engage in rational discourse, and just have a good time is welcome. If you have a suggestion for a panel for next year, something you would like to see discussed, drop a line and let me know.

Meantime, we have a full day lined up and — we hope — some surprises on the way. Our panels this year include:

• They Also Serve: Spouse Bloggers
• Best Milblogs You’ve Never Read
• Milblogs: Not Your Standard News Source
• Getting the Picture: What’s Next for Milblogs?

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing more about these panels and the people participating in them. I will say up front that not all of our participants will be able to be present in person, but we are making arrangements for them to take part from around the world. I will also be introducing you to the participants, letting them introduce themselves and discuss things in their own words. As noted earlier, I also hope to have some surprises to mention.

Stay tuned, and I hope to see you at the milblog track.


Medblogging Meets BlogWorld/New Media Expo


funny pictures Never underestimate the power of a rant!

This year will mark the first ever Medblogger track at BlogWorld/New Media Expo.

And it all started because of a rather indignant blogger.

That would be me.


An introduction may be in order.  I’m Kim, a registered nurse who has been blogging about my life and times as an ER nurse over at Emergiblog.

It was 2008 and I had just come home from attending BlogHer. So many bloggers! So much energy! So much inspiration!

And not a single session or special interest group for medbloggers.

I looked at other conferences.  Even those related to health 2.0 had nothing for those of us in the trenches, the day-to-day regular medbloggers. I looked at BlogWorld Expo. Milbloggers, sports bloggers, political bloggers, real estate bloggers…but nothing for medbloggers.

Humph! That just would not do! So I did what any self-respecting blogger would do.

I ranted.

Rick Calvert saw that rant, and left a comment.

“There is a place for you at BlogWorld.”



A small group of us made it to BlogWorldExpo 08, and to make it even better we came with a potential sponsor!

By the time we left, we had potential topics and speakers lined up for ’09.

Johnson & Johnson confirmed their sponsorship. Dr. Val at Better Health was instrumental in lining up our panels and confirming our speakers (aka, she did all the work!) and MedPage Today entered as a co-sponsor.

The die was cast; the game was afoot; we were ready to roll.

Here is the result, the Medblogger track line-up:

Panel #1 The State of the Health Blogosphere: We’ve Come A Long Way, Baby

Moderator: Kim McAllister, Emergiblog
Panelist: Kevin Pho, Kevin MD
Panelist: Nick Genes, Blogborygmi
Panelist: Kerri Sparling, SixUntilMe

Panel #2 Staying On The Good Side of HIPAA: Safe and Ethical Blogging Practices

Moderator: Mike Sevilla, Doctor Anonymous
Panelist: Rob Lamberts, Musings of a Distractible Mind
Panelist: Bryan Vartabedian, Parenting Solved
Panelist: Bob Coffield, Health Care Law Blog

Panel #3 Blogging For Change: How To Influence Healthcare Through Blogging

Moderator: Val Jones, Better Health
Panelist: Neil Taverner, Other Things Amanzi
Panelist: Terri Polick, Nurse Ratched’s Place
Panelist: Gene Ostrovsky, Medgadget

Panel #4 The Value of Blogs To Hospitals, Industry, and News Organizations

Moderator: Gary Schwitzer, Health News Review
Panelist: Marc Monseau, Johnson & Johnson ‘s JNJBTW Blog
Panelist: Bob Stern, MedPage Today
Panelist: Paul Levy, Running A Hospital

From blog post to full track in less than a year.

Never underestimate the power of a rant!

Announcing Wordcamp Las Vegas At BlogWorld Expo


Wordcamp Las Vegas @ BlogWorld Expo

We wanted to announce something very exciting that we have never done before now, Wordcamp LasVegas @ BlogWorld Expo will take place this year on October 16 – 17, 2009.

I had the opportunity to speak at Wordcamp Las Vegas in January in conjunction with a trip to Las Vegas.  I was very impressed with the way they ran the conference and their great lineup (perhaps except for me).  This was mostly due to the hard work and passion behind the WordPress community, but especially  part of the organizers.  I am very glad they have been brought on our team to make our event that much better.  I am especially pleased that John Hawkins will be at the head of the class.

We will be organizing and conducting the second Wordcamp Las Vegas at BlogWorld & New Media Expo this October and it will probably be the largest Wordcamp ever for attendance.  The reason I am sure of this is that anyone that purchases a ticket in any of the packages available will be able to attend Wordcamp absolutely free as part of your pass.  For a discount you can enter code WordCampVIP.

We will be making some announcements on some of the speakers for this event very soon, but I can assure you with the many very well known speakers already taking part in our lineup of conference presenters, we will not run short of dynamite WordPress experts.  As if that was not enough, we will also be hosting a WordPress Genius Bar, where you can ask the experts about your WordPress problems or get tips of using the platform or other information that will make your blog the best it can be, in things like design, SEO, content, and many other facets.  We will be updating the Twitter page regularly and you can follow along @lvwordcamp, or the subscribe or read the blog.  I will also be posting here.

I will be speaking at Wordcamp LA later next month and I have been to Wordcamp Las Vegas, Wordcamp Denver, Wordcamp Reno-Tahoe, and Wordcamp Chicago.  To say the least I am a big proponent of their application.  Join us and let the WordPress community talk to you about why this is one of the hottest blogging platforms.  I know I’ll be there, will you?

Join us Friday, August 28, 2009 as we have on BlogWorld Expo Radio special guest John Hawkins to discuss this new addition to our event.

Blogger Sponsorship for Conferences Part II: Finding a Sponsor



Finding sponsorship to help defray the cost of  attending conferences isn’t as simple as it sounds. There are a lot of steps involved, but the hardest part is finding a sponsor. Finding a brand that shares the same message at your and your blog, and, is willing to pay for you to be a spokesperson is no easy feat. Why should they send you when they have P.R., Marketing and even social media people already on staff? It’s with this is mind that you should seek out sponsors.

Ask yourself:

  1. Who is the biggest advertiser for my blog or community? Is there a person, business or brand with whom you already share a relationship? There’s a major online name I’m negotiating with for a few upcoming events. I sent a proposal to them because they’re a major advertiser and because my community benefits from their service – and vice versa. Check your blog’s advertisers first. They might surprise you and say “yes!”.
  2. Who shares the same message? Is there a brand or service promoting the same thing as you on your blog? If the advertiser thing doesn’t pan out, approach the like-minded brands first. It doesn’t make any sense to choose a sponsor who has nothing to do at all with your niche or topic. Find the folks who are the best fit.
  3. Who will best benefit my community? Choose your sponsor with your community in mind. If the brand is a product or a service your community can relate to, they’ll be more inclined to take you up on your recommendation. This will make the sponsor happy. If it’s a product or service having nothing to do with your community, there won’t be much love on either end. Remember, your sponsor is looking for a little ROI action. If they’re footing your bills, they want to get a little something-something in return.
  4. Who will best benefit from my community? See above. If a business sponsors you and your blog, how will it benefit? Are you sure your community will respond? How likely are they to invest money in this product or service? If this brand can’t benefit from your community, it’s not a good fit.
  5. Who will best benefit from my expertise? Community is important but so are you.  What brands will benefit most from your expertise? Do you have a blog with very high traffic? If so, an ad will do well. Are you a social media expert (if there really is such a thing)? Perhaps your guruosity is just what your brand needs to spread its message. Target your areas of expertise and then target the places that can benefit the most.
  6. Who needs a conference presence but doesn’t have a large staff? Maybe there are some startups that would like to have a presence at conferences but don’t have the team members or funds to invest in a booth. It might be more cost efficient for them to pay your airfare and hotel then to lose their own staff for a few days.

Once you have some idea of who or what makes an ideal sponsor for your blog, make a list. First start with advertisers or people you already have a relationship with. Then do a websearch for products, services, startups and websites that are a good match.

Next in the series: Writing up a proposal for sponsorhip.

Also see: Blogger Sponsorship for Conferences Part I: What Do You Have to Offer?

Image via John Weise’s Flickr Stream

Blogger Sponsorship for Conferences: Part 1 – What Do You Have to Offer?



If you’ve been attending conferences for the past couple of years, you may have noticed some bloggers have sponsors paying their conference entry fee and other expenses. In return these bloggers are helping to promote their sponsors. For bloggers who can’t scrape together the funds to attend conferences, this can turn out to be a mutually beneficial solution. I spent the past month researching and seeking out my own sponsorship – mostly to report here, but also to help defray my costs.

Before you begin the hunt for a sponsor for blog conferences, make a list of what you have to offer. If a business or brand is going to kick in a couple of grand to fly you across the country and put you up at a hotel, you’ll have to  give them something in return, otherwise, why would they bother?

Here are some suggestions:

  • Blog advertisements – It goes without saying your sponsor will expect some for of advertising on your blog.  This can amount to a small banner or large sidebar widget depending on your agreement.
  • Sponsored By” blog posts –  A “sponsored by” banner or boilerplate for a certain amount of blog posts each week or month.
  • Live blogging from the event – You can live blog on your sponsor’s behalf.
  • Live tweeting from the event – Ditto. Every now and then mention your sponsor (without being spammy).
  • Handing out promotional material at the event – If your sponsor has any promotional material to give out, you can do so at the event.
  • Wear your sponsors shirt – Hey if that space is for rent, go for it!
  • Interviews from the event – You can put your sponsors logo in the bottom corner of the video.

These are only a few ideas of what you can offer to your sponsor. In the upcoming days, we’re going to go over how to choose the perfect sponsor and how to write up a proposal.

Keep in mind, once you sign on the dotted line, there’s not going back. If you decide to seek sponsorhip, you have to be willing to go the distance and put in the work. Sponsors don’t send bloggers to conferences for nothing, they expect promotion, and some heavy promotion at that.

So what do you have to offer a sponsor?

Last-minute pass give-away to Gnomedex 9.0


Jim Turner, our illustrious Social Media Director (@Genuine on Twitter) will be winging it up to Seattle tomorrow for the sold-out Gnomedex 9.0 event. It’s one of our favorites, and it’s put on by Chris Pirillo.
Gnomedex logo

Here’s your chance to join him with a FREE All-Access Pass worth $299.00!

  1. Put up a blog post BY NOON TOMORROW (Wed) Pacific Time, telling why you should win this badge (use text, but if you want to get creative, add an original video, original song, take chances!)
  2. In your post, link to http://www.gnomedex.com and  http://www.blogworldexpo.com
  3. Come back here and leave a comment, letting us know you’ve entered and with a link to your post
  4. We’ll review the posts tomorrow (Wed) at 12:00 Noon, Pacific Time and choose a winner!

Some Gnomedex basics:

  • Who? Influencers, Entrepreneurs, and Tech Enthusiasts
  • What? A confluence of leading bloggers and new media
  • When? August 20 – 22, 2009
  • Where? Bell Harbor Conference Center in Seattle, WA

Good luck in the give-away, and have fun!

19:00 hours ’til the deadline. Plenty of time…you can do it!

Speaking of Speakers


keynote It has been a long road or journey, one that I might pack for differently given what I know now, but a journey that has been fun.  I first agreed to help work this conference as far back as 2006 when I first met Rick Calvert in Seattle at a blogging conference.  I have seen our BlogWorld & New Media Expo go from an idea to one of the largest, if not THE largest conferences in this industry.  I am very thankful for the opportunity to have worked in the capacity of Conference Chairman this year, putting together the lineup.  I have some big shoes to fill with Dave Taylor having done this in previous events.  It has been a number of 20 hour days and lots of phone calls and meetings and emails and tweets and pony express riders to get to this day but we are finally here.

The speaker “grid” as we like to call it has been posted and we will be discussing it at length today on Blog World Expo Radio on Blog Talk Radio.  My guest on the show will be Rob Walch, the brains behind the podcasting and video tracks.  The tracks Rob worked on were very important because they are a culmination of experts that will be representing our first blending of New Media Expo and BlogWorld& New Media Expo.  As you may remember, we acquired that event that was similar in nature to ours and that announcement was made back in December of 2008.  We hope that the lineup we have for this year will be as great as the podcasting and videocasting world has come to expect from that event.

Feel free to give us feedback on the lineup thus far.  As you can see with its current state it is a living and breathing document.  Believe me when I say I have tried numerous times to beat it into submission and make it behave, and most of the time it has beat me back.  There are some tracks that we have yet to put into the system and some that are still be worked on and probably the most difficult items are yet to be completed, the keynotes for the event.  I can assure you those will be dynamite!

Thank you for your patience, especially to all of the hundreds, of people that made submissions for sessions or presentations.  It was very difficult to choose from the number of presentations.  We did not have any difficulty in getting quality speakers from the many that submitted.  I would urge you to get your ticket and register for this group of fine presentations. The speakers and experts we have assembled will allow you to justify spending some time in Las Vegas, October 15-17, 2009.

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