Blog World Expo NY 2011 – Wow!

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Blog World Expo NY 2011 – Wow!

I feel the need to do this massive recap post, but it’s probably more likely I’ll just spend my time gushing, so if that’s not what you’re looking for, I make no apologies anyway.

Blog World Expo: New York Style

First, I have to say that the Blog World team is and always has been fantastic to me. Deb Ng, Rick Calvert, Dave Cynkin, and all the staff are just great people in general, but the fact that they have faith in me as a speaker and guest is so much more.

Add to that the fact that I spent four days with some of the most brilliant people on the ‘net like David Risley, Jordan Cooper, Shane Ketterman, Robb Sutton, and my wonderful NYC roomie Lisa Barone and that I can sit here knowing deep in my heart that these people are friends of mine, makes any and every trip to BWE a valued one for me. Talk about COMMUNITY!

One might’ve expected that because we were hosted at the Jacob Javits Center, that there would’ve been thousands in attendance. Because we shared the space with Book Expo America, there was, in a way. I did see some crossover which was really nice. Afterall, publishing is publishing, and despite one version being paper and ink and the other being pixels and whitespace, I think the two events meshed well together. Despite BWE attendance being lower than in previous conferences held in Las Vegas (the next is in November in Los Angeles) there was still a great showing for being the first east coast show, probably around 1,500 or so. I’m secretly hoping we do keep up the momentum of the west coast shows past, and see the 4,000+ attendance level we’re used to come November. I know that the BWE team works countless hours and pours blood, sweat, and tears into what they do, so if you’re on the fence about it right now thinking that you’ve still got time, please don’t hesitate. It’s going to be great, I can guarantee that.

Building A Successful Online Community

On Wednesday at 1015am, I spoke on the topic of “Building a Successful Online Community”. Honestly, I didn’t expect that I’d have even a half-packed room, but people were standing against the walls, sitting on the floor, and even told they couldn’t come in because the room was too full! I have to admit that the fuller the room got, the more comfortable and excited the attendees seemed. I know I was, and it was a high no money could buy. From the absolute depths of my soul, I thank each and every person who attended (or at least tried to! hehe).

The session was great – we started off with some real basic stuff about the reasons you should have a community for your blog or business, and then a little deeper on the different types of communities available. Many thanks to The Lingerie Addict, Lockergnome, and Gevalia Coffee for being my examples of those doing Community Management the right way.

Listen, I’m not of the “fake it til ya make it” crowd. I want you (yes, you) to understand something right now: I’m so fired up about all of this that it’s going to be really difficult to keep up with me. I have BWE and my amazing friends to thank for this, and you should thank them to. The stuff you’re about to see coming is going to knock your socks off… I mean that.

I’m going to be putting my slides online, but please know that the conversation does not, and should not end there. In fact, the only reason I’m putting them up is because I said I would. Another lesson learned for me: Slides don’t make the session. The audience does. I know we didn’t have a whole lot of time to chat after, so if anyone who attended has any more questions or would like to talk some more, please don’t hesitate for a blink.

So that’s that. It was a great week, spent with great friends and meeting some really amazing new people (I’m watching you ALL). I’m off to enjoy this holiday weekend and will be back here on Tuesday with some fresh updates.

Thank you again to all who attended (I know I’m saying this too much, but it’s so true) and to all who supported me and continue to do so. I love MY community!



3 Responses

  1. virtualDavis says:

    Super presentation! Looking forward to the slides… :-)

  2. Sandra Tyler says:

    Lara, oh my gosh, you actually spoke at the Expo? My husband was trying to get me to go and I finally couldn’t bit the bullet on spending that much $$. But your talk definitely would have been one I would have attended! That’s really all I want, is an online community — I’m a writer, with published novels behind me, and I’lm looking to build a faithful audience. I’m not looking to make money, and while I began my site to try and sell my fiber work, reality is, I can’t sell on line; I do great at craft shows, but my stuff isn’t the stuff people google.
    Anyway, you really are a blogger pro! This site is lovely. I don’t know how you keep up with all the pages and info here, but very impressive. Thanks for all your tips on BLog Advertising!

    • Lara Kulpa says:

      Hi Sandra! I actually spoke at BWENY 2011, and then previously at BWELV (Vegas) in 2010. As a speaker and attendee, I highly recommend the show for anyone who’s serious about their blogging and online presence. Back then I didn’t know that I’d wind up working for such a fabulous production, but now I am, and I’m honored and loving every minute of it! (I say this so you understand that I was a huge, huge fan for years before I worked with them. My first one was in 2008 and while I’d miss other shows, BWE was one I refused to miss.)

      Regarding YOUR online presence, I don’t see why you couldn’t have a personal site that featured all your work. Writing, fiber art, whatever. You CAN sell online, but you have to have your stuff out there at shows and everything too. You get your first time buyer at a show, and then turn them into a lifetime buyer online. :) You can write and publish your novels online as well. Happens all the time.

      As for having a community, you pick a niche and go with it! I’m sure you have knowledge you can use to teach, and you can make money that way. :)

      Thanks for coming over here to visit, and I do hope you return! :)

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