I’m still smiling. I attended the annual Arkansas Women Bloggers University Conference (AWBU) earlier this month; and I’m still smiling! We took over the Embassy Suites in Rogers early Friday afternoon and wrapped things up late Sunday morning. Who knew that this conference would be life-changing? I was afforded the opportunity to be part of the opening session. During this time I introduced myself and my blog. I also told the crowd what being a member of the Arkansas Women Bloggers group means to me. As I held back the tears, I thanked the women in the room for their resources, support and abundance of information. Arkansas Women Bloggers know a lot of stuff!
It felt really awesome to meet great women (and a few men, too) who have a passion for writing, branding and being social (online and off). This was my first Arkansas Women Bloggers conference. To say I was nervous is an understatement. I arrived at the conference at a crossroads. Having just re-launched my blog, I was looking for knowledge, inspiration and connections. I wanted to learn how to be a better writer, blogger and professional.
Top Five Things I Learned at #AWBU
- I’m a blogger, and that’s okay. It was great to be in a room full of other women who understand my passion for writing and my yearn to connect people. It validated my feelings, and I felt welcome in their midst. Acknowledging that writing is a part of me was easy with this group. The atmosphere was fun and energetic. In a simple word, these women were awesome!
- Story Living for Story Telling is a Practice not a Protocol. I was very excited to attend this session. I had heard a lot about Allison Chino and couldn’t wait to meet her. She provided very helpful tips on living a life worth writing about. I learned of her walk across Scotland. She shared her passion for story living, living a life that embraces the whimsey and celebrates the miracles on a daily basis. She challenged us to slow down…and notice life. These stories make the best content. Share your memories, thoughts, pains and passion with the world!
- Google Analytics may not be working as you thought it was! The Google Analytics (GA) session with Elizabeth Michael was very informative. She provided top-level information on using the tool. She was even kind enough to sit with me afterwards and help me re-install GA on my blog. I thought it was operating properly on my blog (I knew I wasn’t seeing traffic, but thought I needed to tweak my content not my configuration). I can confirm that it’s now working and providing insights on a lot of interesting things.
- I need to visit Rogers more! Although, I live in Rogers; I rarely make it to the downtown area. The Rogers Little Theater was fun and I enjoyed the improv group. I am excited to attend more events at this venue. It was great to see Allyson Dyer of the Rogers Convention and Visitors Bureau. I plan to be more present in my current city. Rogers, AR has a lot to offer!
- I’ve got work to do. My blog is finally up and running again, and I feel like I’m behind. I learned at the conference that there are so many other things that I could be doing to make my blog better. I have a checklist…in Evernote! I plan to seek advice from those that I met and continue to evolve my site. I’m excited for what’s to come.
The best blogs tell the best stories.Allison Chino
Look Through the Right LensThe keynote speaker, Alli Worthington, was awesome. She filled the room with an energy that was inspiring and heartfelt. Her helpful tips were provided at the right time. Her tip to “focus on the right things” spoke to my spirit. In the end, I learned valuable information and meet tons of new women. I feel better about my writing and knowledgeable about blogging.
Thanks to the conference sponsors and the planning team for making this event happen. I look forward to participating in the Arkansas Women Bloggers University Conference again next year.
Did you attend AWBU? What was your favorite memory?
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