I arrived in Melbourne at 9 pm the night before the blog-in after a 35-hour journey, solo with a preschooler. Perhaps not the wisest move on this host’s behalf. I felt a bit muddle-headed in the morning, but again, like the past two blog-ins, the warmth and great energy of the attendees kept me going the whole day. It was simply brilliant. The next blog-in is pencilled in for Saturday, September 9, 2017, more than a week after I arrive back in Melbourne for another short trip. See? I’m learning 🙂
What I love most about the blog-ins is getting to meet other people and watching friendships form. Blogging and writing are such usually such solo activities. So many of us are introverts. We spend our time behind the screen, but when we get together with other like-minded people, the magic happens. Often we’ve met someone online, and when we meet in person, it’s like meeting an old friend. That’s what it was like when I met Fay Chan from Budgeting 123 in real life for the first time at the last blog-in. It was like, ‘Oh hey, Fay, how are ya?’ No intros required.
This blog-in had a great mix of familiar and new faces. I’m pleased to see people coming back to each blog-in – it means I’m doing something right. And fresh faces are always welcome, too, bringing something new to the group.
I’m going to keep the event free for as long as possible. While the acoustics at the venue aren’t the best for a speaking gig, it’s in a great location, has great food, it’s accessible, it’s free, and the Spottiswoode staff take good care of us.
We had three guest speakers at this blog-in. Each spoke about different topics:
- Linda Reed-Enever: Running a Facebook group to support your business or blog
Linda Reed-Enever spoke at my very first blog-in and I loved her infectious enthusiasm and amped up energy, so I was pleased to welcome her back for some more insights that could help us with our blogs and online adventures. Linda runs the very popular Business Business Business Facebook Group and I asked her to talk about running a successful Facebook group to help your business or blog. With more than 16,000 members and still growing, she knows what it takes to set up, manage and sustain a Facebook Group.
- Carly Findlay: Getting paid to write for the mainstream media
Carly Findlay is an award-winning writer, speaker and appearance activist. She challenges people’s thinking about what it’s like to have a visibly different appearance. Carly spoke to us about making the leap from blogger to paid writer for the media. She opened her tool bag and showed us what had worked for her and gave us actionable steps to take to see our work published in the media and getting paid for it.
- Sharon Gourlay: How to make money from blogging via affiliate marketing
Sharon Gourlay is well known in the travel blogging scene. Her travel blog Where’s Sharon? gets around half a million visits each month and is frequently listed in the top ten best travel websites in the world. But Sharon isn’t just ‘another travel blogger’ – she is a savvy digital marketer with a portfolio of digital real estate properties that use affiliate marketing to generate a tidy income. She runs Digital Nomad Wannabe and spoke to the group about getting started in affiliate marketing to make money from your blog.
Not only did we have guest speakers who generously donated their time, we also had generous guest speakers and a sponsor who donated door prizes to a few lucky #TGMBI attendees. I feel like #TGMBI is maturing into a ‘proper’ event hee hee. Thanks to:
- Sharon who gave away a copy of her book How to Make Money From Blogging
- Linda who gave away a place in her new Content Creation Tools and Tips course
- Attendee Clive Enever who gave away a copy of his book Inside Business
- Carly gave every attendee a copy of her new eBook ‘Writing your blog for the media and beyond‘ (I promise I’ll email you guys with it soon!)
We also had a fabulous giveaway from Cas McCullough from Writally. Cas donated a place in her course, Blogcrastination Obliterator Course: Create Your 12 Month Content Calendar in Just 7 Steps.
Writally is a super cool online software program that helps you create quality content in half the time by using its customised blog post ‘recipes’, which are kind of like blog templates with guidance. Need to write to write a behind the scenes post about your business? How about a Q&A interview with someone? Researching and writing a gift guide? Want to be seen as an authority in your field? Whatever you’re planning to write, Writally will help you craft the perfect recipe to pull your blog post together quickly and with expert advice.
The best way to understand Writally is to experience it yourself, so sign up now and you’ll get free credits to try it out.
And don’t just take my word for it. Writally recently came third in the Anthill [SMART 100, 2017].
When I met Cas at the ProBlogger conference last year (I’ve also read her book – Your Brilliant Un-Career: Women, Entrepreneurship, and Making the Leap – so I knew who she was) and she described Writally, I was horrified. As someone who gets paid to write blogs for others, I could see my pipeline of work drying up! But no, Cas reassured me that Writally could help me as a professional writer reduce the time I spent preparing a blog post for a client.
Check out the video to see how it works.
That’s a wrap for #TGMBI May 2017.
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