Tuesday, July 31, 2007

BlogHer download

So, what was BlogHer like? It wasn't the exclusive gathering of hipper-than-thou bloggers I feared it might be. While there were a couple of celebrity mommybloggers on hand, most of the women I met were there for the same reasons I was: to meet the faces behind the writing on our favorite blogs and learn a little bit about how we can improve our game. And it was a lot more diverse than I anticipated. Instead of a bunch of hipsters with red hair and cute laptop bags, there were women from 16-65. Some were professional bloggers, some wrote crafting or cooking blogs. At least two blogged on behalf of nonprofits. Still others hadn't even started a blog yet!

I attended a few sessions on the Business of You and learned that while I'm probably not going to make a fortune from online advertising, I'm too ethically driven to head down the pay-per-post route.

But I learned about other professional opportunities available to bloggers. Some are freelancing as corporate bloggers, some are parlaying their expertise into speaking gigs, and others are expanding their blogs into books. I also heard again and again that the best bloggers--like the best brands--are micro-targeted, covering a particular subject or intersection of subjects in depth.

Which has me thinking. I started this blog as a reflection of myself: a marketer and a mommy. I didn't do it to advance my career, but it has given me insights I've been able to apply to my work and my clients. Do I continue in this line, flitting from product review to customer service rant to birth story, in spite of what I've learned at BlogHer? Do I start a more professional blog that focuses exclusively on marketing to moms and cultivate my reputation as an expert in the field?

Tough questions to wrestle with, huh? Good thing I've got great swag to distract me. Two enormous bags of swag, half from the conference and half from my connections at the Chicago Moms Blog. My favorite items? Chicago Moms Blog and VOX t-shirts (neither of which will likely fit until I quit breastfeeding), The BabyCenter Essential Guide to Your Baby's First Year, FLAVORit medicine flavoring kit, CleanWell natural hand sanitizer, Jif Extra Crunchy Peanut Butter, Innobaby's Packin Smart baby snack stacker, the BusyBodyBook calendar/organizer and a ScrapBlog onesie for A.