Getting together in person with other pet bloggers is one of the best experiences ever! This past June, I attended the BlogPaws Conference in Pheonix, Arizona. The resort was gorgeous, the weather was over 100°F (about 38°C), and the pets were plentiful. I attended 6 educational sessions, 2 awards ceremonies, and visited every brand in the exhibit hall. Whew! Allow me to share my (crazy busy) experience from BlogPaws 2016.
Learning From Other Pet Bloggers
There is a lot you can learn about blogging online, but there is something to be said for actually being in the room with the person teaching you. Asking questions and creating relationships with other people helps me a lot! I take part in as many of the educational sessions at BlogPaws as I can. I love sharing what I’ve learned with others as well, that’s just the teacher in me.
In an attempt to keep this post from becoming a novel, I’m going to list each of the sessions I attended with a link to my notes and just 1 or 2 main takeaways from each. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me by email.
Update: Some people have been having trouble with the links below. If you’re having trouble with the links below, try this one.
- “Secrets of the Best Selling Indie eBook Authors” by Mark Coker
- If you want to sell an ebook, everything about it has to be top quality. There are millions of ebooks out there, so the competition weeds out everything with flaws.
- Be patient while you wait for sales. Most ebooks don’t take off right away.
- “Cat Lovers Don’t Read Books” by Gwen Cooper
- Knowing detailed information about your target audience and being able to identify the emotional reactions that audience will have to your book are important to getting agents and editors on board with your book.
- “Lifestyle Time Management for Bloggers” by Robbi Hess
- Don’t multitask. Most people can’t multitask effectively.
- Block out your time (example – “Write Blog Post -Tuesday 12 PM – 2 PM “). Make sure to leave room for unexpected demands on your time.
- “What is your ecosystem? Leveraging networks, influencers by Pamela Slim
- You are connected to everyone through the people that surround them (think “The 6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon”).
- You need to know what your brand is and exactly who it is trying to reach.
- “Analytics: Using Data to Take Your Blog to the Next Level” by Adam Greenbaum
- Keep track of the important numbers for your blog and analytics (views, likes, follows/unfollows, etc) on a monthly basis to gauge the effectiveness of each tactic you try.
- “Content Creation for Brands: How to do it with Panache!” by Chole DaVita and Felissa Elfenbein
- Brands want the best cost per engagement price possible in the media they pay for. The more other people want to engage with your blog and social media posts, the more brands will be interested in working with you.
- Get to know a brand before accepting a campaign with them.
The Cat Writer’s Association Awards Banquet
The Cat Writer’s Association Awards Banquet was a night for cat lovers to shine! The dinner was absolutely delicious and it was great to see all of the wonderful things people are doing to help cats. I was not nominated for any awards this year, but I still had a blast at the banquet. You can find full lists of all of the nominees and winners has been posted on the CWA website. Congrats to all of the winners!
Here are the Muse Medallion Winners in the online article and blogging categories:
- Online Article/Health & General Care – Dusty Rainbolt for “Researchers Study Kitten Mortality” AND Kim Campbell Thornton for “Catch It Early“
- Online Article/Behavior & Training – Janiss Garza for “5 Myths About Cat Walking“
- Online Article/ Rescue & Advocacy – Marci Kladnik for “How One Massive TNR Project Broke My Heart and My Spirit“
- Online Article/Any Other Topic – Camille Dodero for “Corporate Cats Still Suck“
- Online Column – Phillip Mlynar for “Monday Miracle Column“
- Blog Entertainment – Lisa Richman for A Tonk’s Tail
- Blog/Any Other Topic – Melissa Lapierre for Melissa’s Mocha’s, Mysteries, and Meows
The BlogPaws Nose-to-Nose Awards
I attended to not 1, but 2 star-studded award ceremonies while at the BlogPaws Conference! The Nose-to-Nose Awards include pet bloggers with any species of pet. The full lists of finalists and winners can be found on the BlogPaws website. Cat bloggers really shined amidst tough competition. The feline winners were:
- Best Cat Blog – Ingrid King for The Conscious Cat
- Best Humor Blog – Debbie Glovatsky for Glogirly
- Best Pet Blog Video AND Best Use of Social Media by a 501(C) 3- Ollie Davidson for The Real Tree House Cats of Chicago
- Outstanding About Page – Lisa Richman for A Tonk’s Tail
The Cat Style Lounge and Cat Brands
There were plenty of brands showing off all of their latest and greatest cat products at BlogPaws. The Cat Style Lounge (arranged by Kate Benjamin of Hauspanther) was a huge treat as always! Photos are worth a thousand words, so I’ve put together a gallery of some of the pawsome cat products that I saw. Keep any eye open on Playful Kitty’s social media. I plan to share photos of more cat products and my cats receiving their goodies on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google +.