Nashville was home to my second BlogPaws Conference. My first was last year in Las Vegas. I felt really different this year. There were a lot more familiar faces and I had an idea of what I should expect. It was still quite the adventure! As soon as I touched down in Nashville, I was already being greeted by other cat bloggers. I really felt like there was a great sense of community among us. A bunch of us had dinner at the hotel restaurant on Wednesday night. It was great to meet people face-to-face and get to know them.
The Sessions I Attended
This year, going to BlogPaws was all about finding ways to grow my blogging business. I took the time to go to as many sessions as I could. As usual, I took a lot of notes and I plan on typing them up. If you want a copy of the notes (there’s a lot more than I’m jotting down here), just send me an email and let me know what you are interested in (robinsplayfulkitties at hotmail dot com). Below is a list of the sessions and a few main points from each.
- CWA – Bridging Journalistic Excellence and Blogging (Deb Barnes, Janiss Garza, Alana Grelyak, and Layla Morgan Wilde)
- Check posts for typos and grammatical errors.
- Adapt your blog and style to what is happening in the industry.
- Your readers will trust you more if what you write is credible.
- Branding can help you to get recognition
Your Message…Your Mission…Your Movement (Kathleen Gage)
- Your reputation precedes you.
- Your blog is a springboard for many other opportunities.
- Look for joint venture projects.
- As who is my purpose, not why.
- Content Marketing (Karon Thackston)
- Short copy includes things like social media posts, blog post titles, book titles, and email subject lines.
- Short copy should be one topic written to one segment of the population.
- Authentic Blogging (Maggie Morton)
- Know your audience.
- Write blog posts like you are talking to your readers.
- Tell a story with each post.
- Understanding Contracts Better Than Your Lawyer (Paul C. Jorgensen)
- There are 3 essential parts to a contract: 1) an offer (“I will give you…”), 2) acceptance, 3) consideration ( “I will pay you…”).
- It is best to use written contracts with people you don’t know personally, rather than verbal contracts.
- It isn’t a great idea to use forms for contracts because they might be out dated or miss parts that are important to you.
- Contracts should be written in plain, easy-to-understand terms.
- How to Profit from Your Blog Business (Kimberly Gauthier, Beke Lubeach, and Jim Nelson)
- Only promote products that are a good fit for the message of your blog.
- Monetize your most popular posts.
- Partnerships can boost your exposure and general market awareness.
- Look at the marketing campaigns being done by the sponsors you want to get and try to fit in to their strategy.
- Making Video Profitable (Robert Semrow)
- Be a connector of people as much as you are an expert.
- Before you start a video ask your self why, what, who, and how.
- Don’t put videos up that don’t represent your brand well.
- Make sure you know your bottom line for doing each video.
- Youtube will only give you 2 views per computer that the video was watched from.
Where Playful Kitty Is Headed
As mentioned, I am looking to make Playful Kitty into a bigger, better business. I am working on my official business plan (still) and refining my mission and my goals. Coming up with a phrase or a sentence that defines Playful Kitty has me a bit stuck. After talking to a lot of people at BlogPaws about why I started Playful Kitty, I realize how important education is in my mission. The passion I have for helping other cat owners understand their cats even surprised me as I told my story about my late, Obi Wan. I may even do some slight re-branding to reflect some of that.
A challenge that I am working through is figuring out what to do with Playful Kitty’s newsletter. I hold myself to a high standard and I’m not happy with what I’ve done with it so far. I know that I can make it a pawsome letter that people are excited to see pop up in their inbox. I just haven’t found that unique thing to define it.
Over the next month or so I will be starting the launch of Playful Kitty’s Youtube Channel. I have some new equipment and I now have the ability to make great videos. There are a lot of great ideas swirling around in my mind. Video gives me another way of reaching cat owners and help them learn about their cats! Oh yeah, and there’s the fact that I love to be on camera. If there is anything you want to see, let me know!
Nashville Photo Gallery
I took a lot of great photos while I was at BlogPaws. Below is a sampling of what I saw there! Click to enlarge.