2015 #MNBlogCon Recap Roundup

2015 #MNBlogCon Recap Roundup

The 2015 MN Blogger Conference has passed, and it’s time to put into action what we all learned from this year’s event.

As organizers, we’ll be asking for feedback from attendees, speakers, and sponsors in the coming weeks so we can continue to learn and improve for next year’s conference.

We also want to highlight posts attendees have written about their experience:

One Girl, Two CitiesMinnesota Blogger Conference 2015

Simply SaveMinnesota Blogger Conference 2015

Radiate Digital – MN BlogCon 2015 Recap and Blogging Trends on the Rise

A New Frame of Reference – An Over the Top Giddy Review of the MN Bloggers Conference

Four Season Fit – Event Review: Minnesota Blogger Conference 2015

A Square of Chocolate – Wizards Revealed Behind The Minnesota Blog Con Curtain

Stacie Sayz SoWhy I’m Glad I Didn’t Stay Home From MNBlogCon

RunEatSnap – MN Blogger Conference 2015: What I Learned at my First Blogging Conference

Communications Conversations7 trends impacting every blogger at #mnblogcon

TopRank Online Marketing BlogHow to Create Content that Abides, Dude: Content Marketing Lessons from the Big Lebowski at #MNBlogCon

The Beth Next DoorMinnesota Blogger Conference 2015

KatieLookingForwardStrangers to Friends: MNBlogCon 2015 Recap

Participation Medal WifeGettin’ Bloggy with It at #MNBlogCon 2015

The Positive Black WomanBlogging Calendar

Recreational GardenerMinnesota Blogger Conference #MNBlogCon

CYBERsprout – 2015 MN Bloggers Conference Recap

Star Gazers, Dream and Create – Minnesota Blogger Conference Recap

Social MeteorBlogger Meets Brand: What Agencies Don’t Want Bloggers to Know

Lady Sky Writer – Terrific Day at Minnesota Blogger Conference Nov. 14

80 schmeighty –  There were a few of us there… need to add more of “us” next year!

The Pink PaperdollMinnesota Blogger Conference Recap

Keep ‘Em Coming!

Have a post you’d like us to add to the list? Let us know. We’ll continue to update this roundup as links are provided.

Want more? You can also check out recaps from last year’s conference here: 2014 MN Blogger Conference Recap

Image Credit: Studio McCutch on Tumblr

Speaker Slides from #MNBlogCon 2015

Speaker Slides from #MNBlogCon 2015

As requested, we’re rounding up the speaker slides for MN Blogger Conference 2015.

We will continue to update this list as presentations are made available.

Dan R. Morris & Rachel Martin – Webmaster Tools, Adsense, & Analytics

Arik Hanson – 7 Trends That Impact Every Blogger In This Room

Gianna Kordatzky – Blog or Website: Where’s My Success?

Adam Dince – How to Build Social Communities That Drive Meaningful Traffic to Your Blog

Amanda Nagy – Why Your Blog Needs an Editorial Calendar (And How You Can Build One)

Jessica Flannigan – Become a Pro at Responding to Brands

Davis Senseman – What’s the Risk? Legal Issues of Note for Bloggers

Jenna Redfield – YouTube Basics for Bloggers

James Svoboda – From Keywords to Content: A Data-Driven Approach to Blog Ideation & Strategy

Tony Perez – Exploring the Online Threats Bloggers Face

Alice Seuffert – Beef Up Your Food Photography

Erica Hanna – How to Look & Feel Your Best On Camera

Ashley Zeckman – Lessons in Creative Content Marketing From the Big Lebowski

Patrick Rhone – The End: A Postmortem on Knowing When It’s Time to Kill Your Blog

Image Credit: Snaps from Studio McCutch on Tumblr

2015 #MNBlogCon Thank Yous

2015 #MNBlogCon Thank Yous

This past weekend, over 300 local bloggers joined us for the 6th annual MN Blogger Conference. We couldn’t have asked for better weather, with unseasonably awesome temps rising into the 60s and plenty of sunshine.

Thanks to our amazing sponsors and volunteers, we were able to put together a conference focused on education, networking, and community building. Special thanks are in order for St. Catherine University’s School of Business & Professional Studies for hosting us on their beautiful campus. We’d also like to thank the fine folks that run Sucuri for flying out to participate as a conference sponsor, with extra thanks to Tony for taking the stage as a speaker and sharing valuable information on website security.

We’d be remiss if we didn’t thank our other sponsors, too. Verizon, MN Beef Council, & MN Blogger Bash all had tables at MNBlogCon. If you didn’t get the chance to stop by and say hi to them, feel free to reach out & introduce yourself via social media.

Speaking of social media, we have a handy Twitter list to help you stay connected with all of our speakers & sponsors. On that list, you’ll also find the sponsors that didn’t have a table at the event, including Deluxe, AreaVoices, Minneapolis Northwest Tourism, Clockwork, Studio McCutch (our official event photographer), ASAP, and other in-kind sponsors & event partners listed on our Sponsor Page.

We want to give a special shoutout to Sara Fleetham, our kick-ass volunteer coordinator, along with our entire volunteer staff that kept the conference running smoothly all day.

Thank you to our speakers, and thank you to our attendees. Your energy fuels this event and makes our community stronger through shared knowledge & ideas.

We’ll be posting more information soon, including links to speaker slide decks and recap posts written by attendees. Until then, you can check out the article Julio Ojeda-Zapata published about the event for the Pioneer Press.

The Impact of MNBlogCon: Alice Seuffert

The Impact of MNBlogCon: Alice Seuffert

Wondering how to turn your experience at the MN Blogger Conference into real actions that impact your blog throughout the year? Alice shares her experience last year and how MNBlogCon represented a turning point for her blog.

Alice Seuffert Minnesota Blogger Conference

How MNBlogCon Impacted Me

Before I attended the Minnesota Blogger Conference, I felt a bit lost, frankly. I had been blogging for several years, really just dropping my recipes into posts and sometimes I’d take a camera phone photo, but often times not. I started blogging because I was always being asked to share my recipes and I grew tired of always emailing them out so I thought I’d create a space where if someone wanted a recipe I could say, “It’s on the blog.” My blogging increased when I became a regular on Twin Cities Live and then in 2014 I started learning more about SEO, food photography and social media. And honestly, that’s when I started feeling lost. I felt like a hamster on a wheel, spinning endlessly, feeling unrewarded and unsure of where to put my best effort.

I didn’t know what the Minnesota Blogger Conference would be like. I really didn’t want to go by myself, but I took a chance to make an investment in myself and in my blog. I had passion and that was the first step.

I remember driving home from the conference full of inspiration. The organizers gave out a notebook and I filled it with all the wisdom the speakers shared. I lined pages with questions for myself and started a new page filled just with post ideas. My passion was inspired. “Let’s do this,” I remember telling myself in the car. And that’s how blogging after the conference started for me.

Oh, but it’s easy to get lost isn’t it? Returning home with a notebook full of ideas I could’ve easily gotten back on the hamster wheel and started to get lost again. There were so many things I needed to be doing. But I focused on three things. These are the three messages that impacted me from the Minnesota Blogger Conference: create good content, own your expertise and connect with your audience in your genuine voice.

Create Good Content

During the conference, the message about creating good content was delivered over and over. It resonated with me, but I could feel the desire to try and do everything start creeping up and I began to feel overwhelmed. I attended a session with Kristen Brown from Happy Hour Effect on pitching yourself and she said to ask yourself, “Why should they want you? Hook them with what is special.” I believe that translates perfectly to creating good content and giving your readers what they want. After the conference, I signed up for Kristen’s strategy sessions which helped me focus on who I was and connect that to creating good content and engaging in activities that worked towards achievable goals.  I love this quote from Kristen, “When you know who you are and what you have to offer, the right people and right opportunities will appear.” Defining who I was and what content I wanted to share, then positioned me to know the steps I needed to take to improve, which now has lead to media opportunities like being on Good Morning America and the Rachael Ray Show.

Own Your Expertise

In the blogging world, it is easy to compare yourself to other bloggers and the activities and opportunities they have. Dan Morris from Blogging Concentrated challenged conference attendees to see themselves differently, “You are an island from beginning to end. Don’t compare.” I stayed after Dan’s session and had an opportunity to chat with him and he asked me about my blog and my expertise, “Do that,” he said simply. So I did. I started focusing on comfort food recipes, motherhood and Minnesota. I wrote my first ebook this past year, Freezer Meals for Moms because I’ve prepared and eaten almost 400 freezer meals. I owned my expertise. (Dan will be speaking again this year – you can check out his session here.)

Connect with Your Audience in Your Genuine Voice

“Do you know your audience and where they are at?” Rachel from Finding Joy guided conference attendees on how they could use their voice with purpose to have genuine conversations and become a trusted leader of their online community. Rachel’s discussion inspired me to change how I was having conversations on my blog. For me, I became vulnerable and opened up about my feelings of motherhood, sharing personal reflections both challenging and joy-filled. My readers stood by me, cheering me on in victories and holding me up when I needed support. It gave me the confidence I needed to use my genuine voice in my posts about motherhood and go beyond my blog and contribute my writing on national web pages like Scary MommyBonbon Break and Mamalode. Readers resonated with my posts and said, “Me too.” The connection was genuine.

Attending the Minnesota Blogger Conference in 2014 had a tremendous impact on me and my blog. This year, I was honored when the Minnesota Beef Council asked if I would present their session, Beef Up Your Food Photography. Join us for food photography fundamentals and a Baked Roast Beef Sandwich photography contest!

Connect with Alice on FacebookTwitterInstagram and Pinterest.

Get Your Best Headshot Ever at #MNBlogCon

Get Your Best Headshot Ever at #MNBlogCon

Update 11/17: Headshots taken at the event will be available in early December. You’ll get an email from Mandy at that time. Thanks!

We’re excited to announce that photographer Mandy Dwyer of Glimpses of Soul Photography will be back at this year’s MN Blogger Conference to provide discounted headshots for our attendees.


How Does It Work?

Mandy has very generously donated her time & her talent for our event.  She will have her professional equipment on site to provide natural-light headshots of our attendees between sessions throughout the day.

Instead of collecting a standard fee,  you can take advantage of a special discounted price of $20 in advance ($25 the day of the conference).

Book your session, get more information and tips to prepare

About Glimpses of Soul

Glimpses of Soul Photography provides modern and casual portraiture for children, families, and professionals in the Twin Cities, as well as candid, unique school portraits for preschools and daycare centers. Photographer Mandy Dwyer specializes in putting people of all ages at ease, capturing natural expressions, and making photo shoots just a little bit more fun.

mandyAbout Mandy

Originally a Technical Writer, Mandy Dwyer left her job in Corporate America over six years ago to pursue photography full-time and hasn’t looked back.

She’s a recovering Diet Cherry Pepsi addict, a local music fan, an avid flip-flop wearer, and has leanings towards Crazy Cat Lady.

Header image credit: Mandy Dwyer, Glimpses of Soul Photography