The Great Melbourne Blog-in V4

Harnessing the power of Facebook and Instagram, building your personal brand and making your site ready to attract sponsored posts were the topics for the latest Great Melbourne Blog-in V4.

On my recent trip to Melbourne to visit family and friends, I hosted my fourth Great Melbourne Blog-In.

I’ll be honest, I had my doubts about doing another one – organising it from another hemisphere and fitting it all in during a short trip to Melbourne seemed kind of crazy, but I’m so glad I did. These events keep getting better and better. It’s so worth it. Thank you to everyone who came, especially our generous guest speakers.

Every time I host a blog-in, I promise myself I’ll write the round-up post that week. Then it becomes the next week… life and clients get in the way of good intentions. Every. Single. Time.

Next time, perhaps?

Held at the Spottiswoode Hotel (again!) there was a great mix of old timers and some fresh new faces drawn to this event. You can check out the photos from TGMBI on my Facebook page.

We had door prizes, and Jenny De Lacy from The Visibility Coach gave away a choice of two prizes.

The Great Melbourne Blog In Obligatory Selfie
What a warm and friendly and generous group of people at The Great Melbourne blog-in. Beautiful bloggers!

The best thing about this blog-in was learning lots of actionable tips we could immediately put into practice. I’ve been working on my social media strategy for my wallpaper store this past month, ready to implement my plan in November.

Facebook and Instagram Q&A Panel

We had the fabulously knowledgeable Catherine and Cherie from The Digital Picnic to talk about all things Facebook and Instagram during a Q&A panel. You’ll need a microscope to find what these lovely ladies don’t know about social media marketing. I could have talked to them ALL day.

Cherie and Catherine from The Digital Picnic
Social media experts Catherine and Cherie generously shared some brilliant Facebook and Instagram tips

There are too many learnings to fit into this post, so I’ve separated it into its own post, Using Facebook and Instagram like a superstar.

Setting up your ‘Work with me’ page

Next up, we had the very effervescent Erin Bender from Explore with Erin to give us some good insider tips for how to set up our ‘Work with me’ page on our blogs … cos we’d all like to make some money from our blogs, wouldn’t we?

Erin Bender talking about creating a Work With Me page
Erin enthralling us with her personal experience of working with brands

Firstly, Erin assured us we don’t need to have a huge number of followers to be attractive to brands. Engagement is a more important metric than follower numbers.

Your ‘Work with me’ page needs to define the problem a brand has and show that you understand this issue. Then tell them how you can help them overcome this frustration. Show empathy for their situation.

By understanding what their goal is and showing how you can help them achieve it will position you in such a way that it makes you and your blog a desirable combination.

Show them how you can help them and the benefits they’ll get by working with you. This could be your website stats, a media kit and testimonials from others you’ve worked with.

Overcome their objections and remove the risk of working with you.

I must say, this is sounding a lot like writing an About page.

Having a personal image of yourself can help connect with the person behind the brand reading your page.

Have a clear call to action. How do you want people to contact you? If it’s by email, add a contact form to your ‘Work with me’ page so it’s easy for them to get in touch. Otherwise, give them your phone number or ask them to get in touch via one of your preferred social mediums.

Erin Bender full-time blogger
Erin Bender and I after her TGMBI talk

For an excellent example of a ‘Work with Me’ page, check out Erin’s!

Using social media to build your personal brand

And finally, we had the delightful Debasree Das Mall from Travel in Style with Debs talk to us about personal branding and our social media approach to promotion. Debs shared quite a funny stories about her recent experiences working with brands.

Debasree Das Mall Presenting on Personal Branding
Marketing expert Debasree Das Mall presenting at TGMBI on building a personal brand

Debs reassured us that we don’t have to be in all places on social media. Like Erin, she also reassures that you don’t need to have a huge following to be attractive to brands. What we are seeing now is a big shift away from vanity metrics of large followings to the rise of the micro influencer. It’s an exciting time to be a blogger and engaged with social media.

If you choose to be on Twitter where your Tweet has a shelf life of about 18 minutes, stay up-to-date with what’s trending. What’s trending? Is it relevant to you? If it is, jump on it. If you’re on Instagram, only the follow the people you should be following – not randoms. Know the platform you choose. Know how it operates, how its algorithms work and how to get the most out of it.

Find your niche and create the right marketing funnels to bring people to you and bring them back to you. There are tools you can use that will collectively help build your brand and your audience:

  • opt-ins to attract people to join your mailing list
  • surveys to find out what your audience needs and wants
  • email marketing to keep your subscribers up-to-date
  • automation for email sequences and social media
  • on page search engine optimisation to bring organic traffic to your blog.
Debasree Das who spoke about personal branding
Debs and I after her talk with her gorgeous bouquet from Petite Blooms

I’m not sure when the next Blog-in will be… I’m heading to Melbourne for the  Christmas break, but that’s a terrible time to organise an event and we’re not sure yet when we’ll be coming to Melbs for our next visit. It’s all a work in progress. But rest assured, there will be more TGMBI events. If you want to hear about the next one, subscribe to my newsletter below.

    1 Response to "The Great Melbourne Blog-in V4"

    • Janet Camilleri

      Oh wow, it looks great Sandra and is a real credit to you, especially how you managed to pull it off even though you live in another country!!!! I’m hosting something similar in Brisbane next month, which I’m calling the “Pop Up Blog Zone” (I love the hashtag – #pubz LOL). My hope is that this will be the first of many, and that they will “pop up” around south east Qld every few months … of course it all depends on how this first one goes! It’s a big leap of faith, but people keep asking me about it so thought it was high time I did something about it.

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