How to Survive Your First BlogHer Conference

Last month I finally got to attend BlogHer 2014, my first ‘mega’ conference with more than two thousand attendees.

I got a rare opportunity to meet new friends, connect with brands, had fun and above all., learned quite a few tips that I would love to share with fellow bloggers.
Ready? So, here goes:

Tips on How to Survive Your First BlogHer Conference bloggers

 

Lodging

Unless it is exorbitantly expensive; you are better off staying at the hotel the conference is held at.That way you can sleep in longer in the morning, quickly unload all those freebies you amass during the day and have a drink with new friends without worrying about driving alone late at night.
If you do stay at the hotel holding the conference and are a light sleeper makes sure you ask for a room away from conference rooms and hospitality suites where they hold the evening parties.

Packing

Bring shoes that are comfortable (not brand new) since you’ll have to stand on your feet and walk around quite a bit.Also, bring a pair of foldable shoes or flip-flops in case your feet swell.

Don’t forget to take a shawl or jacket for those rooms where the A/C is cranked up and keeps the room too cold.

Long skirts and pants are the best conference attire!
They transition well from morning to evening, and you can sit comfortably on the floor if there are no extra chairs to be found  (Yes, it can happen with popular presenters.)

Places to power up your phone in conference rooms are scarce so bring your extension cord in case you find a spot that’s far from where you are sitting.

Write your name with a Sharpie on all your electronics for easy identification.If you have colorful stickers with the name of your site, use them, since that will promote name recognition of your blog.

Tape a colorful strip of duct tape on your chargers and cords so others won’t confuse their belongings with yours.

Bring a power bank to power your phone up, as you will be continuously tweeting and Instagramming during the day.

Networking

Order business cards with your social media contacts and picture to make it easier for people to remember you and get in touch with you.

Print a sentence on the back of a business card that people can fill -“We met at…”

Check who else is attending and join FB or Twitter groups so you can make new connections with people who interest you.

Create a2-3 sentence  ‘elevator’ pitch to use as an introduction.

If you haven’t done it yet, learn to use hashtags on Twitter and Instagram.

Want company representatives to remember you? Wear a t -shirt printed with your blog name on it so you can stick out from the rest!

Sort nightly through the business cards you collect, photograph them and make files on your laptop for easy access.

Meals are the best time to meet fellow bloggers so make sure you attend all meals.
Water is the first thing you should grab at the buffets and meals since there always seems to be a water bottle shortage towards the end.

And ‘my tip’ for the road:

Make sure you drink responsibly and are on your best behavior at all times unless you want to appear as a total goofball on someone’s Twitter or FB feed.

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