What To Do the Day After a Blogging Conference
The first few days after a conference can leave your head absolutely spinning. You've just been hit with all of this KNOWLEDGE - all about styling Instagram photos, beefing up your Pinterest game, adding value to your social media... You've met SO MANY NEW PEOPLE and you want to be BFFs with all of them! I mean - bloggers just get each other. You have so much inspiration and motivation - it is more than enough to completely overwhelm you. So I though I'd share some ways to start really processing all of this information so that you can use it to benefit you and your business.
FIRST COMES YOU
The number one, most important thing to do after a conference is to take a day, or two, off to kind of acclimate yourself to your surroundings. You've been in this bubble all weekend and reentering the real world can be a shock to your system. You've been pampered for the last day or two and all of the sudden it is back to the grind of mom + wife + business owner so give yourself a couple of days of grace to get back in the swing of things.
Take a deep breath and then start tackling this list.
START WITH THE PEOPLE
Once you're out of "conference mode" and back in to "regular life" mode, so to speak, the first thing you want to do is go through all those business cards. The connections you made with the people at the conference will be the most important thing you've gained from the entire weekend. Whether you were hanging out with your group of gals all weekend or you came solo (which I 100% applaud for your bravery!) you most likely connected with one person that you really wanted to meet or made a friend over coffee or lunch that you'd like to stay connected to. The added bonus of attending something like Thrive, which is local, is that the reality of getting together with this new found friend is much higher than if you traveled across the country to meet them.
Go through all of your business cards and write down something on each card that you immediately recall about this person. "She had amazing curly red hair" or "that necklace she wore to the party was gorgeous" or "We talked about how hard it is to find a good babysitter" or "she had gorgeous eyelashes!" (Which, by the way - what is your secret ladies? Everyone at this conference had amazing eyelashes! SPILL!) That will help you connect a face with that business card and remember who they are!
Take 20 minutes to send out a quick (and I mean 2-3 sentences) email or Facebook message that just says "Hey it was so awesome connecting with you at Thrive Conference last weekend! I would love to get together soon / invite you to this thing / talk about this project!" Catching people in that first week after the conference is when you are going to be fresh on their mind and it will help forge that connection in both your brains.
NEXT IS BRANDS
If you connected with any brands at the conference that you really want to work with, now is the time to connect with them too. Be sure to reintroduce yourself, remind them where they met you, and give them a quick summary of your blog to give them a frame or reference. Then issue a mini call to action, and include your media kit if you have it put together.
"Hey! I'm Skye and we met over the weekend at Thrive! It was so great connecting with you at the conference last weekend! Thank you so much for being a part of making it happen! My blog is Pure and Simple and I blog about getting out of debt and share business tips for fellow creative business owners. I would love to work together and share some styling tips featuring your desserts and how to plan a party on a budget! I think Sweet Marie's Bakery is a great addition to the party and I would love to talk about collaborating on a few ideas. Looking forward to hearing from you! Thanks for your time!"
Following up with the people you met is the absolute most important thing you'll get from a conference so put these two things at the top of your to do list!
NOW LET'S IMPLEMENT
You just got to sit in on some amazing sessions to hear from some really inspiring women and business owners and now you are full of motivation to really perfect all of your strategies and grow your social media and learn everything you can about google analytics and style amazing photos and start a YouTube channel and learn Periscope and Snapchat and...
WHOA JUST STOP RIGHT THERE HOMIE.
If you don't take this one small step at a time, you'll just get discouraged that you can't get it all going at once and then boom - you find yourself in front of your computer, crying, sipping coffee, and trying to figure out what happened. Well okay - it may not be THAT dramatic but it will overwhelm you to the point of just quitting it all.
The easiest way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time.
Bust out your notes. No doubt you were frantically trying to write down everything the speakers said and after a while you'll look back and wonder what the heck you were trying to write down. While it is still pretty fresh in your mind, rewrite them out in to legible handwriting if necessary and reorganize it in to an order that makes sense to you. It will help you recall the session and sort of revisit in your mind and get it all in to a format that you can use. Be sure to also write down any little "aha moments" while you're doing this!
Figure out what is best for you and your brand. Nobody says you have to implement every single thing you learn at a conference - and in the same line of thought nobody is telling you that you can't either. But what I am saying is that you almost definitely can't do it all, immediately, and at the same time. So prioritize what you've learned by what you think is best for your blog right now and start there.
Give yourself a timeline of all the practices you want to implement and set yourself a couple of goals to help get them done. If you want to start with Pinterest, bust out those notes, make yourself a to do list, and say "In 30 days, I want to have this list finished and then spend the next three months really implementing these tips" Take a quick look at your stats where you start so you can measure your progress and write those on your list too. Tack that to-do list up on your desk and set yourself a daily calendar reminder to check it and make sure you're doing something on that list.
Move on to the next thing after those three months. Rome wasn't built in a day, darlin!
If you haven't already - be sure to take the time to thank the directors of the conference for all of their hard work. Or, even better, if you already have, thank them again! I can't imagine the work that goes in to one of these events and pulling it off successfully is no easy feat. They deserve a week long vacation and an hour long massage after these things are over! If you can send them a card in the mail or a follow up email after the conference I have a feeling it will be much appreciated! Same goes with the speakers - if someone had a profound impact on how you look at things - make sure to let them know!
Then, as the ultimate thanks - buy your ticket for next year if you can! ;)
What are your tips for recovering from that conference hangover?