I’ve declared 2017 the “Year Of The Conference”.
I am a huge believer in professional development. Since my entire professional life is now squarely in the digital space I need to learn, develop skills and meet as many new people as I can to add to my network. Plus it is super helpful that I don’t have to ask for days off in order to travel (unless you include asking my kids 🙂 ).
I will be attending a total of seven conferences this year. I’m even speaking at a major one! Since I really didn’t do any professional development conferences last year, let’s just say I’m making up for lost time. I signed up for IdeaFEST on a whim–and I am SO happy I did. Here’s why:
9 reasons why I loved the IzeaFest 2017 Conference
1) It wasn’t a bloggers conference: I knew this when I signed up–however it was still a bit jarring to see since I’ve only attended blogger conferences for the past 5 years. It was actually better than that, it was a conference that was designed for creators, brands and those that manage brands. Somehow I fall into all three with my startup so the conference was more perfect for me than I ever expected.
2) It was holistic: what I absolutely adored about IZEAFEST was the depth of each presentation. It wasn’t about getting your follower count up or going viral. It was about creating a solid fan base that you can deliver the absolute best content to.
3) A diverse mix of presenters: There were so many people from all types of roles in the digital space. From Marketing executives from Chipotle, Yahoo and Vera Bradley to YouTube stars with millions of subscribers. It was really amazing to hear from those who manage ginormous brands and their approach to those who grind it out daily for themselves with their own startups and small businesses.
4) Location: The Gaylord Palms Hotel is easily the most stunning hotel I’ve seen in Florida. It was breathtaking. The hotel was spotless, the decor was incredible and the vibe was so relaxing.
5) Giveaways: I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that I won a Lenovo Laptop! At first they were doing raffle entries then at the end of the day they decided to get in the floor and pick random people. I was all the way in the back (read last row) so I didn’t think I had a chance. I stood up anyway because who doesn’t love some good giveaway hysteria??
2 out of the 3 laptops were given to people in the front. For the third laptop she announced they’d be coming to the back. I never once thought that I’d be the one but OMG she came directly to me and put it in my arms. It was kismet. I was so happy! I squealed so loud and so many attendees came by to congratulate me. So dope.
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Omg!! I just won this @lenovo #yogabook at #izeafest!! Such an incredible first day of fun, I'm so excited because it is exactly what I needed! (And yes I totally squealed as if it was an episode of price is right!) #comeondown #winnerwinnerchickendinner #lenovo @izea #florida #workconference #justwhatineeded #fun #orlando #omg
6) Daymond John: I love me some Shark Tank. I don’t always agree with the decisions of the sharks but nevertheless I am always enthralled with the show. Daymond John sat with the founder of Izea for a candid interview on how he came into his own success. He dropped so many good gems but mainly he said that he stays on top of everything new in the industry so he doesn’t get stale. Yes.
7) The combination of heart and hustle: There were a ton of times I was touched by the presentations. I was close to tears many times because a lot of what was said was resonating so strongly with me. For other presentations I was writing furiously, combining notes for myself and my business. Ideas were sparked, barriers were broken. The combination of the feels and the urge to run out and implement all the things was just so inspiring.
8) The TED presentation style: usually at blogger conferences there are so many different sessions happening. At Izeafest you stayed in your seat and everybody saw the same presentation. It was easy to get comfortable and enjoy presentations vs. wondering what you were missing in the next room.
9 Reasons Why I LOVED the @IzeaFest 2017 Conference! @IZEA #IzeaFEST #socialmedia
9) Everyone Brought Something New: Somehow each presenter brought something brand new to the table and they all made me think of the digital space in new ways. The reason why I attend conferences is for the “lightbulb” moments and I had countless in my experience at IzeaFEST 2017.
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Such a great time at #izeafest this weekend!! Be sure to check my snap (bklynactivemama) and my #Instastories for all of the behind the scenes fun and learning!! #biztravel #florida #entrepreneur #startups #digitalmarketing #contentcreator #creator #learning #conference #smallbiz #smallbizowner #bloggerlife