Sunday, February 23, 2014

Learning MORE about blogging from the Perth Problogger Event 2014

I have lamented (often) that my lovely home city is the most isolated and oft-neglected city on the planet, but today, a megastar in my universe was here. Yes, "the" Problogger, Darren Rowse, came over to run a small Problogger Event (big shout out to Kelly Exeter for convincing him) and it was marvellous.

In all honesty, I was expecting to feel inspired by whatever Darren had to say, because he's an inspiring speaker, but knowing that it was just a 2-hour event for bloggers of all kinds and stages, I didn't expect to actually learn a lot. But I did! I have pages and pages of notes, and while most of it I "know" (and quite a lot of it I have even told my students and clients in the past), I don't actually always DO it. (Which is a point Darren himself made in his talk.) I think that my new emphasis on my own travel blog and my plans to monetise it probably had me sitting there with a completely different perspective to usual and I really did learn a bunch of things that I want to share - both as a reminder to me and for those poor pals of mine who couldn't make it today.

Darren Rowse aka Problogger speaking at the Perth Problogger Event
Darren shared a huge number of lessons and tips from his own blogging experience and I'm going to pick out the best - well, I'll admit, the ones that are most useful for me, and are sitting in my notebook with a big asterisk next to them:

  • Your blog won't become big overnight - it's about lots and lots (AND LOTS) of small, consistent actions over a long time. (A tweet here, a Facebook update there, a connection here, and of course, a post there ...)
  • Whatever your goal is for your blog (income generation, world domination, whatever), take it seriously and take the next step towards your goal (right now).
  • Take time to properly identify who your readers are. Darren suggested creating profiles/avatars of your typical readers and I can see how this would really shape the content you write and, well, pretty much everything you do with your blog. It made me realise (big whack in the head moment) that I actually have very little idea about the audience for Not A Ballerina and it's intensely obvious that I should figure this out.
  • Darren talked about how a blog post should either inform, inspire or encourage interaction. Some might do more than one but I can see the value of focusing on just one at a time. And your particular blog might have a bias towards one of these. But he spoke about how they do this on Digital Photography School and on Problogger - eg a post early in the week which is a "how to" about a topic, a mid-week post showcasing an inspirational version of that "how to" (an interview; some amazing photos; whatever) and then a late-week post encouraging the readers to get involved - setting them a challenge, encouraging a discussion or debate, or something.
  • As usual Darren talked about what I call the soft side of blogging - the human side, perhaps - stuff like figuring out what really gives you energy about your blog and doing more of that. So important, I think.
  • And finally, another point about the readers - focus on the readers you already have, aim to have a big impact on them, and (basically) getting new readers will arise from a lot of those efforts anyway. A lot of bloggers are focused simply on getting more readers. Don't be. Excellent advice.
Bloggy friends at PBevent
So, those are the big tips I got from this afternoon's talk - but of course the talk wasn't the only important part of the event. We all carried on to the sundowner part of the event and I got to talk to many of the almost a hundred bloggers who'd showed up. There was a big bunch of my former students (I confess, when I arrived I got slightly nervous that I had basically bullied about 20 or so people into coming to the event, I really hoped they liked it - thankfully, they did, of course), a bunch of people I knew from Twitter, and even a famous-to-me travel blogger who's just moved to Perth (hello Chris!) yet I hadn't caught up on that news! I think only fellow bloggers will really understand that there's nothing quite like being in a room full of people who actually know what a blog is. I enjoy myself thoroughly every time.


And so - a huge thank you to Darren Rowse for making the trek over here - as Kelly mentioned in her introduction, we are so lucky (and proud) that one of the biggest bloggers on the world stage is just a normal Aussie bloke from Melbourne. She also made the point that she thinks it's because of Darren that the blogging community in Australia is so friendly and cooperative, and I agree. Here's to many more years of blogging and Problogger events!





25 comments:

  1. Hi Amanda, great summary of the event; almost as good as being there! Like you, I need to do more work on knowing who is reading my blog, who my audience is etc. I know many people who read it because they are friends and acquaintances but there are a lot of other people who read it about whom I know very little. Understanding them better would help with focussing my blog posts and generating ideas about content that they would find useful.. So that's part of my new plan for the year!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, absolutely. That was definitely the biggest thing for me - I realised I could barely describe my audience at all for my travel blog. This one is easy; the travel blog, not. I have to do some serious thinking and surveying and investigating - because it is clearly important and I can see all the benefits.

      Delete
  2. Loved your wrap up. Insightful and really useful. As you said so many tips, many of which we should know, but conveniently forget over time!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Jo - yes, it is very easy to *know* stuff and not so easy to *do* stuff ... but I figure every time we get to "learn" it again, we are one step closer to doing it!

      Delete
  3. Sounds like a fab event. Congrats to Kelly for making it happen and thanks for the wrap up, Amanda. Some days I so wish I lived in Perth!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, Kelly was fabulous for getting it all together. I must say it's not often people wish they lived in Perth for the events! - I did feel we are finally getting a bit more attention from those east coasters :-)

      Delete
  4. Amanda, what a way to wrap up the Perth PBevent. Reading this takes me back to the event :)
    Along with what you have already mentioned, would like to add another tip Darren mentioned
    "Spend 90% of your time DOING and 10% LEARNING".
    This tip really hit me and made me realize that I was focusing too much on learning and very little on doing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh absolutely Jenish!! Yes, that is another super-important one, and something I'm guilty of breaking quite often. He has so many gems that it's hard to figure out the best!
      Also, I didn't get to chat to you afterwards, but you introduced yourself to me as we sat down in the front row - you were sitting next to my friend Rae.

      Delete
    2. I remember now, you were deep into a fun conversation so didn't want to interrupt. hehe
      lets catch up for a coffee or so. sending you details through your contact form.

      Also some of your readers might want to check out http://jenishpandya.com/darren-rowse-7-quick-blogging-tips/ for some of the quick blogging tips he mentioned at the end of the main presentation.

      Delete
  5. Great summary Amanda. Is was so cool to meet you via other bloggers in the room and really connect! Totally get what you mean about being in another room full of people who 'get it'. I had to pinch myself that I was actually getting to meet in person some of my idols from the net! The blogosphere and twitter really are amazing things.

    For me the biggest take-away, like Jenish, was the 90% doing, 10% learning. With that, I'm going to follow your lead and write my Problogger mini-event wrap up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, wonderful to meet you too, Kylah! Those events just give me such a buzz.

      And I look forward to reading your wrap up, too!

      Delete
  6. I came here on a Sunday after a football game, got contained to upstairs. Service was prompt and food was awesome. It has become my favorite bar over the last year.

    ReplyDelete
  7. kinder uggs sale Shen Shoutui a uggs sale nederland cheap bit cursed, but he wondered why cheap one did not move. kinder uggs sale sale, Oh, sale, he was a child, naive, you do not tell his general knowledge. uggs sale online The kinder uggs sale father hastily went to the front on the sale Dagongzuoyi talking about the good kinder uggs sale things. Go to your right, the blue Shengde, money ready, I come uggs outlet online and collect the money, but a few days.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...