A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to head up to Vermont for an absolutely fabulous blog experience called Blog Brulee - if you missed my pre-Blog Brulee post you can read what it's all about, but now that I'm back, I wanted to share some and highlights, pics, and what I learned from my trip!
Disclosure: My attendance to the Blog Brûlée was partially funded by Sponsors of the Blog Brûlée; I was not compensated for this post, just wanted to share my experience!
First of all, Vermont is gorgeous, especially in fall! And let me say, for a Texas girl used to the recent 100 degree days, this two day break in some chilly temperatures was SUCH a treat!!
There were twenty nutrition bloggers (including me) attending this event at Smuggler's Notch Resort, so we started out with a "meet and greet" on Friday evening.
I can't even describe how awesome it was to have the opportunity to meet all of the talented ladies participating and all of the event founders and speakers (who I admire so much!) in person after getting to know them in the online "blog world" over the past couple of years.
Here's a brief re-cap of the sessions and a takeaway from each of them:
- Friday night we began by learning from Deanna Segrave-Daly from Teaspoon of Spice about how to take amazing food photos with iPhones! Takeaway: The "Camera Plus" app from tap tap tap is really neat. It gives so much more control over different elements of a photo compared to just going to "camera" on your phone! It basically turns your phone into a mini "real camera."
- Next Regan Miller taught us about making videos - side note here: Cooking videos have been on my to-do list all year, so this session was exactly what I needed as a friendly nudge in the right direction and confidence to actually get started! So stay tuned... :) Videos are a big thing in the world of blogging right now. Regan encouraged us to just get started. It doesn't have to be perfect, and it's a good thing to get out of your (or my) comfort zone!
- Saturday morning we had a scrumptious breakfast bar featuring Siggis yogurt and then the great Siggi himself shared the incredible story about how he got in the yogurt business and taught us all about making yogurt.
- Katie Webster from Healthy Seasonal Recipes shared really valuable tips on taking great food photos and even walked us though her process step-by-step. I can't wait to practice these techniques and give "dark and moody" photos a try!
- Gretchen Brown from Kumquat walked us through the photo editing process in Lightroom - biggest takeaway for me: I need more photo presets in my life. They can save soooo much time when editing photos!
- Katy Widrick is a website/SEO/business genius. There was a ton of great info in her talk on ways to better our search traffic, and the biggest takeaway for me was learning how to go back and better optimize older posts to boost current web traffic. Also, "no follow" links. They're kind of a big deal. If you're a blogger, you need to check out Katy's post about no follow links.
- Sally Kuzemchak from Real Mom Nutrition shared strategies for creating the kind of content readers will love. I left this presentation feeling completely inspired to up my writing game! Quick takeaway: www.thesauraus.com - use it. Your writing will be more engaging. :)
- Amanda Finks from The Wholesome Dish and Aggie Goodman from Aggie's Kitchen are super Instagram and Pinterest savvy, so I took lots of notes in this session! I didn't know Instagram could be a great source of traffic and business for a blog, but I was wrong! And Pinterest....oh Pinterest! Aggie taught us several strategies for building Pinterest momentum. It takes a little time, but scheduling and pinning (and pinning, and pinning...) does pay off!
- Anne Mauney from Fannetastic Food taught us the secret to a creating a great media kit, the art of pitching ideas to food companies, and how to charge for posts and business services. Takeaway: Have your media kit ready and be open to new opportunities! And don't put prices on the media kit - this is something that should be customized based on project details.
- We finished out the conference with Regan Miller and Robin Plotkin delving into some very important business/blog related questions. Takeaway: your blog is a business, treat it like one and you'll be successful!
I'm so grateful for the opportunity to attend Blog Brulee this year. I can't believe how much I was able to learn and take away from this two-day experience.
This is definitely a must-do for any healthy food blogger looking to better their blog and have an amazing time, so if you're interested, head over to the Blog Brulee site to apply! Thank you so, so much Regan, Deanna, Gretchen, and Robin for everything! :)
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