The first annual Financial Blogger Conference was held in Chicago last weekend. It was an overwhelming success. Conference organizer, Phil Taylor of PT Money, cultivated a supportive, learning environment with a definite emphasis on community, networking, and fun.
Keynote speaker, Ramit Sethi of I Will Teach You To Be Rich warmed up the audience with this fun piece.
Here are my ten takeaways from the conference:
10. Email is Powerful
With the popular rush to newer social media marketing tools, Daily Worth demonstrated that email is a strong revenue generator. If you just clicked that link you will see their landing page is also the email subscriber form. This strategy has given them 150,000 subscribers, and growing rapidly.
9. Think Beyond The Blog
Blogs are important, but they can leverage and complement other activities. Consider the blog as a launching pad for books, media activities, speaking tours, podcasting, developing training programs, or just positioning yourself as an accessible expert.
8. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is Strategic
The highly successful Wise Bread team shared many insights into how they attract 1 million visitors per month. They systematically sift data to identify search trends. These forecasts are used to generate targeted articles that will rank well among reader searches for information. They make it look so easy!
7. No Media Kit, No Publicity
Kelly Whalen of The Centsible Life highlighted the critical importance of a media kit. Make it easy for journalists, they are busy people. Share your brand, your story, and always be ready with your elevator pitch. Develop media relationships respectfully and the publicity could be priceless.
6. Write Like A Pro
Donna Freedman of Surviving and Thriving declared war on tautology, wordiness, dated material, buried points, needlessly long posts with little context, all hurled at readers with no thought to ask what they think. Please, read it out loud before you publish, and edit ruthlessly.
5. Tell Truthful Stories, lower-case t optional
Make sure personal finance is personal. Bring it alive with real stories in the context of life that we can all relate to. Protect the innocent by utilizing the lower-case t when being truthful. This has the added benefit of taking the awkwardness out of thanksgiving. Thanks J.D. Roth!
4. Keep Your Goals Alive
Alive, as opposed to fixed and rigid. Chase epic and bold dreams, but understand that everything else is changing. The world is dynamic, as are our interests. It’s important to change focus and keep chasing exciting and relevant goals. Thanks Kelly Whalen and Pat Flynn.
3. Meeting Bloggers Face To Face Is Priceless
Collaboration is so much easier online when you have a personal connection. Gathering for just 1% of the year, as we did in Chicago, then partnering online for the remaining 99% is super-efficient. This community is a model for the future of business.
2. Ask Readers What They Want, and Listen
Survey relentlessly, read user comments, analyze qualitative and quantitative responses, and understand your audience.
1. Focus On The Readers
Give readers what they want, in your style.
Being there was a privilege for me, and I want to thank Savings.com again for the ticket and friendly hospitality. Blogging can be an independent platform, but it can be part of a much bigger future for you, and there are limitless ways to make this a reality. Blog On!