Yvonne DiVita wrote a post yesterday on the Lip-sticking Blog about BlogPaws
2010 "A community of storytellers get together" that was a
great way to sum up the event. All I keep telling people is that it was
amazing and that I had a blast. No I just have to take a moment here to
share some of my own thoughts and reflections on the weekend.
I had the honor of being part of the VIP committee, as
well as a speaker, that helped to pull this first-time event together
for pet bloggers and pet-lovers. Those of us on the committee got
together over another conference call last night where we each took
turns giving our assessment of the event while it was still fresh in our
I was one of the last ones to speak so I listened on as
everyone stated what a highly-organized event it was, not only for a
first-time conference, but it was one of the best conferences some had
ever attended. Some shared suggestions on little details that could be
improved upon, such as the panel sessions went too long and there wasn't
enough time for Q&A's. Well I'm sure many of us have had that
I was trying to think of something to say that
hadn't been said yet. So when it got to my five-minute turn to speak I
started out stay that I thought BlogPaws had a great mix of
inspirational, keynote speakers, combined with the nuts & bolts of
the panel sessions on top of all the great networking and socializing
time. But what was really unique, was the people. Everyone was really
having a great time, soaking up all the information and trying to meet
as many people as possible.
When you're planning an event such as this you mostly have control of
selecting the speakers, topics, venue, food, entertainment, but you
can't really plan on who is going to show up. Everyone showed up and
more! The numbers aren't final, but a close estimate is 250 or so people
were there, along with the 20 or something dogs and cats. Plus there
were many people that wanted to, but couldn't attend, and who followed
the event through the live tweets and now viewing the photos and
comments on the BlogPaws website and Facebook page. I think in time it
will be remembered as the "Woodstock" of pet lovers!
I'm not sure
if everyone there understood how impressive the line up of speakers
were. Many speakers said they came not only because they are pet lovers
and they would be contributing to animal shelters, but also because they
personally know Yvonne and Tom or Caroline Golin, the founders. Just in my panel alone we had Jenny Cisney, Kodak's Chief Blogger, who flew
in to Columbus from a city she was speaking at and was then off to
California for another event. Jenny wrote this BlogPaws
2010 Recap post on the Kodak Thousand Words Blog where she's got
lots of great photos. Hollis Thomases was my other fellow
panelist who I've seen speak before at the Search Engine Strategies
Conference in NYC, who is a columnist for ClickZ
that I follow and who just published a book titled "Twitter Marketing".
great speaker was my roommate for the weekend, Susan GetGood, who was bursting with excitement because she
had just been interviewed that Friday morning on the Today Show. The
funny story is on Friday morning I was in my bedroom packing to leave
and happened to turn on the Today Show. Ann Curry was talking to a woman
about negativity in the parenting blogoshpere. So I gave it more
attention and there appeared Susan live on TV with Isabel Kallman. Susan runs
her own company, GetGood Strategic Marketing and
about a year ago founded "Blog with Integrity" along with a few other woman
bloggers. I display the badge on here on my blog and it's also on the Lipsticking blog.
You can watch the video clip
and read comments about it on Susan's blog Snapshot Chronicles.
Susan did a great job and all weekend long she was getting emails and
tweets from people she knew, and people she hadn't heard from in years,
who had seen it. Susan said to me "If I had a bucket list, and I don't,
being on the Today Show would be on it! Congrats again Susan. I was glad
to share the experience with you.
Back to BlogPaws 2010, each
keynote speaker was great, Andrea Arden, Trainer on Animal
Planet's Underdog to Wonderdog, Dr. Larry McDaniel, PurinaCare blogger, and Elisa Camahort
page, Co-Founder of BlogHer. As Yvonne said in her post
they all told stories so they connected with us in an emotional way.
This is something that I'm trying to learn how to do better in my public
Now we can't forget the four-legged friends that joined
us, such as Rex the Great Dane featured here. As soon as I arrived I walked
into the lobby of the Westin Hotel that was filled with people that had
arrived for BlogPaws along with some dogs and a few cats. Something
about having the pets there provided us with an even greater connection
between us all, plus they just make you smile. I remember saying quite a
few times, OHHHH how cute! I came back really missing my pets and also a
promise that I was going to stop overfeeding my cocker spaniel, Izzie,
who has put on quite a bit of weight since we got her last May. Izzie
it's for your own good dear.
The event raised close to $10,000 in
cash and gifts that are being donated to designated animal shelters
chosen by the attendees. Thank you to the brands that participated, who
became part of the experience and donated prizes and money to help make
this all happen. They will definitely be remembered.
I am very
proud to have part of this team and it's a story that I'm going
to use in my own public speaking now as I talk about the power of social
media. Stayed tuned to hear what BlogPaws will be doing for an encore!