Hey friends!! It took me a minute but I got this up. I was going to break it down by day, but said F it. It was an epic weekend so I figure an Epic #blogher16 Recap was in order.
If you are friends with me on Facebook you may have seen my FB Live videos sharing my experience this year at the annual Blogher conference. If you havent… go check em out here:
Blogher’s annual conference is my jam. I love the connection, the learning, the fun…
This year I took a bit of a different approach to the weekend. I wanted to specifically connect with certain people, have a #blackgirlmagic blogger meetup, attend one specific session, and strategically work the expo. Also, I wanted to try to document it live via social media….
So, here’s my superfantastic recap for you… in case you didn’t live vicariously through me on FB Live:
Thursday morning my freshly straightened hair and I drove from palm beach county down to Ft Lauderdale airport. Hopped on my jetblue flight and saw this:
And got freaked out….but Jetblue calmed my nerves tweeting to me that it waas totally normal.
Met up with Kendra and Claudia and ubered to JW Marriott LA Live
We immediately went down to a brand event and then came back to the hotel for the Evening at the Expo:
(that vid was taken on Friday afternoon, but you still get the point)
I also went over to the booths I was excited to ambassador for…GoRVing and MeInEndo… but I’ll post on them separately.
My fave part about Thursday night was spotting all my efriends, and making new connections.
Up at the crack of dawn I went to the Staples Breakfast. We got to see Aunt Becky and Gabby Reece! They shared about Staples’ great back to school deals and programs, but also about motherhood at various stages. The back-to-school struggle is real yall. And I’m not sure homeschooling is gunna make it any easier. The homeschool prep feels very similar to what the back-to-school prep feels like! *gulp*
They sent us home with an adorable bag of goodies and a Staples gift card. (yay for swag!)
After this fun event I saw Sarah Michelle Gellar talk about life, motherhood, her clean/vegan brand and deftly handle Elisa’s tricky political questions! Oh yeah…and… Buffy and I totally hugged it out at a private meet and greet afterward. Cuz.. I’m like…fancy and junk. LOL
As soon as I get it, I’m uploading our pic together…but I like this stealth stalkery shot taken by Mrs. Houseful. She’s my blogging e-friend who made the bag you see me toting above, and whom I generally can’t stand. Not sure how she coerced me into taking the selfie below.
I went to an offsite brand event and came back for a bit of work, filmed the expo video up above, and went to the Goodnights event discussing bedwetting in children. Ro has been potty trained since just before he turned 3 and he stayed dry at night for a while, then started nighttime bedwetting again. I learned that’s called secondary bedwetting and is totally normal. Oh yeah… Fin was there….
You don’t know Fin? He saves us from Sharknados! Oh my bad… his name is Steve…Steve Sanders!
Ian Ziering is a dad who uses GoodNights with his children so he weighed in along with the moms and doctors on the panel.
Then we made out.
That wasn’t enough 90210 for one day so Kelly Taylor and I went for a ride in an RV. Ian was jealous, I’m sure…
Jennie Garth spent so much time hanging out and talking with the women at the GoRVing party. She was super sweet and fun. She seemed really into the RVing lifestyle! I had to show her my pic of Ian from earlier and she was cracking up.
But before this I went to the fantastic VOTY (Voices of the Year) awards and watched some of my friends win well deserved awards for their written, digital, video, photo creations. I found out you can nominate yourself, so I’ll try to write something funny or smart one day this year so I can nominate myself for an award! 🙂
I went to my room to rest and recharge for a few minutes and ended up just hanging out with Roni and Kendra before our #blackgirlmagic meetup. Which was so lit.
I really enjoyed it and from what everyone was telling me during and after, all who attended had a blast as well and was happy something was put together for our community. I hope to be able to do it again next year (but maybe sponsored or with a budget so I can at least feed folks or give em a drank or 3)
Afterward I went to dinner with a few fun efriends I was happy to connect with offline:
I wish I had a better pic… my lamb burger was the ish tho.
Saturday morning I was up early for a breakfast with the #MoretoMigraine folks. I didn’t expect that breakfast to impact me the way it did. I’m a migraine sufferer, and there are so many ways it impacts my life outside of just the pain. I don’t talk about it often because it’s so misunderstood. It’s HARD dealing with migraines and raising 2 kids. There are complete days I just…miss. Anyway… the event was super informative and oddly normalizing for me. I have to work on my embarrassment and guilt about how severe my migraines are.
After the breakfast I went to the first (and only) session I had planned for the weekend. It was about pitching yourself to media. I feel like that’s a step coming soon for me so I’m pumped to put the tips into practice.
My major takeaways:
- Own your expert status
- Niche down bigtime
- Pitch with focus and clearly stated takeaways for the audience
- Follow up and don’t be afraid to call
I headed to the expo and got to connect with several of the brands I had on my list. Then I went to my roundtable on Blab.im. (Not the most popular topic….) I got a bunch of work done, and caught up with my efriend Jenelle of Thirtysomething Mommy.
Afterward I got to catch up with the folks from a few more brands I wanted to chat with and visited the Aldi suite which was super cute and decorated like a baby shower. They have an awesomely priced baby line now. I have a few items that I’m excited to try out with Ro and Kai.
I wanted to give Dr. Jessica Shepherd my card to interview her in the future for FitNoire and instead she was like “Um, no. Interview me now… on video.” So we did an impromptu video shoot and then she gave me a mini media training right there. Super helpful with great tips and tricks. I love that woman and want to be her when I grow up.
The closing session was the best session I’ve ever had at BlogHer. Social justice, feminism…it was just awesome. My wokebae Matt McGorry was there… along with Jurnee Smollet.
Closing party was dope but I was so hungry I didn’t stay too long. The DJ was still in diapers, but he knew what to play for us old ladies to get us milly rockin’… ok ok… two-steppin’
Chatted briefly with some chicks…heard a cat rapping story I will NEVER forget, and then headed out to dinner with some fab chicks… (do NOT ever eat at Wolfgang Pucks Bar & Grill in LA Live)
So that was my whirlwind weekend recap. I love me some blogher conferences. I’ve been every year since 2012 and I doubt I’ll stop going anytime soon. I just hope to speak there, learn there and connect there for years to come.
Didn’t get to join us this year? Here’s how to make the most of a conference you didn’t attend: