Alright gals, we promised we'd dish on Alt Summit so here it is! To be honest I've taken the past few days and still feel as if I am just beginning to digest it all...so bear with me:
First and foremost it was our first Alt Summit and as all the bloggers before us have said, it was an amazing and very educational experience. We met some wonderful bloggers and sponsors and all the speakers were top notch. From Grace (my blogging idol) and her words on Surviving Internet Trends, to Kathleen King's amazing and scary story of Tate's Bake Shop's ups and downs, to the advice on building a relationship with your audience from head of Warby Parker social media, Jennifer Rubio and John Jannuuzzi of Lucky Magazine, they all captivated the audience. And those are just a few of them!
As I'm looking back and trying to put it all together, I think the two most important things I learned from all the speeches were:
1) Build a community
Blogging is a very supportive and community driven industry. The friendships you build will become a safety net and a sounding board for you throughout your endeavors. Seek out people in your same space as well as those you admire or consider way out of your league. Everyone at some point has looked to someone for inspiration, and will probably be willing to lend a hand or send a quick email response. Why not ask that blogger you admire how they got to where they are? Don't be afraid of rejection. Remember, you won't get anywhere without sticking your foot out.
2) Build a relationship with your audience
We as bloggers are nothing without our readers. Find ways to be constantly reaching your readers - yes that means keeping up with technology. We're not saying jump on every tech wave that rolls in, but be conscious of outlets that will make an impact in your sphere like twitter, facebook, pinterest, instagram. Take your readers' input with a grain a salt. That means try and reach their demands but also remember you're human and can't be in 10 places at once.
Those two key points really sum it up for me, though I'm sure we will continue to reference the conference over and over as the summer goes on. We will probably also do another little write up Garance Dore's closing speech soon too, so you won't want to miss that!
Oh and how could I forget Martha! Yes, because the conference was held at Martha Stewart Living's HQ (which was an amazing warehouse space with a roof deck), Martha graced us with her presence. I think my heart stopped for a wee second.
To learn more about Alt and their upcoming events or classes (new!), check out their homepage.