Last week I attended my first Design Bloggers Conference in Los Angeles and it was everything I expected and so much more. I only recently started my own blog to share inspiration from design shows and markets with my clients, as well as to document my design projects. This conference was perfect for me because it exposed me to so many new ideas, blogging techniques and incredible people who have paved the way.
One of the things I noticed right away was the camaraderie amongst the designers. Everyone was so friendly and welcoming to me and my daughter, Molly, who traveled along with me. I arrived at The Beverly Hilton the night before the conference kicked off, and I ran into several ladies I’ve either met in-person or through social media. After Molly and I grabbed a quick dinner at the on-site Circa 55, I sat in the hotel lounge with these ladies and got to know more about them and their successes.
Linda Holt is a fellow designer I met on a previous tour, and she introduced me to Leslie Carothers. Later, Liza Jones arrived and joined our little impromptu party. I knew Liza only from social media, so I was honored to have the opportunity to meet her in person. Designer Deborah von Donop was also with us, who was one of the conference’s presenters, as well as Peg Kusner from Peg Kusner Designs. Despite a full day of travel and going through a two-hour time change, I love getting to know each of these fabulous designers.
The next morning I was able to join Carla Aston, Linda Holt, and Kathleen DiPaolo for brunch beside the hotel pool. Kathleen had traveled the furthest to be at DBC – all the way from India! Needless to say, I learned a lot during these two social events before the conference even began!
The first afternoon of the conference was breakout sessions. I attended the first session with Adam Japko, the mastermind and organizer for the conference. His session, Design Blogging: A Foundation For Your Digital Marketing Strategy, gave this new blogger hope! He shared with us his ideas on where the future of blogging is going and how to best capitalize on the algorithms of social media as it changes almost daily.
The following speaker was Brittany Becher, CEO of Scoop Industries, who talked about amplifying your blog with email marketing strategies. What I took away from her presentation is that you need to hit every social media market you can to best cut through the noise and get noticed.
The following two days of the conference was information overload! We heard from incredible speakers from all over the US who shared valuable tips, insights and encouragement with all of the attendees. Famed designer Jamie Drake was interviewed by Mayer Rus, the West Coast Editor of Architectural Digest. We heard from Miles Redd, the former creative director of Oscar de la Renta Home who is based in New York City.
After two and a half days of information, I’m now back home in Arkansas gearing up to get to work on everything I learned. I’ve been rereading my notes and putting my game plan together to grow my online presence.
Yes, going to any conference can be expensive and time consuming. However, it can be a priceless experience when you up all the new contacts you make and the tools you can take back and put to work. Every interior designer who blogs or dreams of blogging should attend this conference. Next year we will be in Atlanta and I can’t wait to be back with hopefully a few success stories of my own!