My Top Takeaways From Blogtacular

I’m mainly writing this post for selfish reasons. So that I can re-live the couple of days I spent with super-inspiring creatives and to act as a reminder of all of the things I learned at Blogtacular, not only from the speakers but also about myself.

Blogtacular is the conference for makers, designers, bloggers and lots of other types of creative souls, organised by, the genius that is Kat Molesworth. But it’s really not a ‘conference’. For me the word conference conjures up visions of carpet tiles, florescent lighting, air con, suits and wanky linkedIn requests. No, Blogtacular is nothing like that.

Blogtacular is a burst of colour, energy, creativity and good vibes.

There’s something magic that happens when like minded people come together, there’s a feeling of camaraderie a feeling that rising tides really does lift all boats and we can help each other grow our businesses through our mutual support.

My top takeaways from Blogtacular | What I learned at Blogtacular, Blogtacular 2018, Conference for makers and designers and bloggers Image credit: Blogtacular 2018 © Will Ireland| Josephine Brooks.

In addition to the benefits of meeting people IRL workshops that ran throughout the day really got me thinking about all areas of my business. I’ve summarised my biggest takeaways to share with you here in this post.

1) Push outside of your comfort zone -  good things will happen

I’m hugely introverted and terrible at starting conversations with people I don't know, so I was a little nervous at the idea of spending a full day of talking to people I’d never met before.

But, everyone was in the same boat so I needn't have worried. Everyone was super-approachable and eager to get to know one another.

And on the day, something strange happened - when you're surrounded by people with the same interests as you, you feel totally at home, you can easily get into a conversation about the ins and outs of Not on the Highstreet vs. Etsy or which platform your website is hosted on. When this happens, you know you're with your people.

If I'm honest, I even felt a little drunk on the energy of the day and found myself walking confidently around the room seeking out people to talk to - very unlike me! 

I now understand why Elinor Roosevelt said you should do one thing every day that scares you – because the feeling that comes from doing that scary thing is incredible.

2) Don’t hustle and burn out – find ease in your work

Tiffany Han was opening speaker and she opened with 10 really important subjects. I felt myself nodding along to every single one; such wisdom! But, this particular point really resonated with me.

After all we're all working on growing a business so that we can create a lifestyle we love - right? And we want to be creative and love what we do? So doesn't it make sense to find ease in our work and avoid burnout? It's a no-brainer

In June I'd set a plan to work on my podcast, create 22 new pieces of blog content and design all of the worksheets for my 1:1 mentoring - those were my three areas of focus. I then causally decided on a whim that I'd redesign and relaunch my whole website in a couple of weeks - because it would be super quick and easy right!? - wrong! 

Spending all of my free hours relaunching a website (which by the way still isn’t finished, there's still work to be done) completely burned me out and I lost all feelings of creativity. It's taken a few weeks of purposely taking breaks and  looking after myself better to get my creativity back.

Finding ease in your work basically means working in flow, and I need those breaks to feel creatively charged and have any hope of working in flow. As Tiffany put it: 

You're the instrument in your business and self-care is super important for stoking your creative fire.

Kat Molesworth Introducing Blogtacular 2018 - a day of colour, energy, creativity and good vibes Image credit:Blogtacular 2018 © Will Ireland

3) Keep your content to the shortest amount of words

This was a timely reminder to keep things simple and digestible.

Xomisse’s advice on content was to keep it as valuable as possible but edit down the length and make sure you're using keywords. This is relevant to any content you're putting out online - product descriptions, blog posts, emails and even Instagram captions. In a world where attention spans seem to get shorter and shorter I thought this was great advice

4) Find your secret sauce

In Natalie Lue's talk on selling digital products she talked a lot about finding your secret sauce. Is it a process, a method, your take on something, your creative style? I’m always banging on about finding out what your 'magic' is.  This was a good reminder to go back to that secret sauce and make sure that I was remaining focused on just organisation and planning rather than drifting into other areas. 

I’ve since interviewed Natalie for Episode 29 of my podcast, How to Get started with Selling Digital Products where she talks about finding your special sauce in lots of detail.  

5) Talk about what your working on before it’s ready

Talk about it everywhere, share sneak peeks everywhere! Imriel Morgan and Tiffany Han did a talk on podcasting which was super helpful as I'd already started work on my podcast - On The Make. But their advice on promoting a podcast applied to any product or content you might be working on. 

Talk about it before it's ready

Have you got a product you're working on or a new design you're tweaking? Talk about it across your social media channels, email and blog. Share pictures of your work in progress, be vulnerable and talk about the set backs, talk about the successes, share your progress EVERYWHERE! Because once it's ready to launch, when the product page is live your audience will already be aware of it and some will already be hankering to buy it.

Delegates taking notes, finding inspiration and learning lots at Blogtacular 2018 Image credit: Blogtacular 2018 © Will Ireland

6) Explore that nagging idea that won't leave you alone

This is another theme that kept coming up throughout the day. If you've got an idea that keeps coming up in your mind - explore that idea. Don't just push it away because you're scared of doing it or because it doesn't fit with the other stuff you do in your business. Get out a notebook and develop that idea, work out how you could make that idea a reality. 

7) Invest in learning and making personal connections

My ticket to Blogtacular cost £190 plus my travel to and from London, so for me it was a considered decision to buy that ticket. I wasn't sure if it was 'right' for me, if I'd get much from the talks and if I'd be brave enough to speak to people. But guess what, it was worth every penny.

I got so much out of the day from the speakers and learned loads about myself as well. It also gave me new-found confidence when it comes to making connections with other creatives.

It was so good to meet people in person and make real connections, I met lots of people I ‘knew’ from the online world and now feel like I've genuinely met them and can chat with them honestly about growing a business. When your friends and family don’t get it – it’s good to have friends who get you and understand the ups and downs that your going through. 

My top takeaways from going to Blogtacular 2018, what I learned at Blogtacular