I often think that I’m too lazy to be a “real” blogger.
I know what you’re probably thinking. “Erin, what do you mean a “real” blogger? You have a blog. You write on it. Doesn’t that make you a “real” blogger? And do you have to keep using those quotation marks?”
It’s this insecurity that comes out when I’m around a bunch of talented women (and a few men) who have been able to create careers out of their blogs. They talk about brands and reviews and partnerships and sponsorships and compensation and I feel left out because that’s not why I blog or even what I really want to do yet I feel like if I’m going to be a Blogger (is using a capital better than quotation marks?) then that’s what I should be doing.
Does that make sense?
And also, running that type of blog – at least if you’re going to do it successfully – takes a lot of
At least five times a day I have ideas for blog post. Some of them I even write down. And then life happens and I’m at work or at soccer practice or watching Netflix and I realize that it is late and I should really go to bed. My blog can wait until tomorrow, and it often does.
A lot of the bloggers I know can’t do that. They have to get their post published because they have a deadline from a sponsor and if they don’t meet it they won’t get paid. And they have other posts from other sponsors scheduled for later in the week and things need to be spread out a bit. They need time to review the product and take proper pictures of it and write a post about the whole experience that engages their readers. It takes a lot of time, and they often don’t get paid enough for the amount of work they put into it.
So when I’m around all of these people that work really hard on their blogs I feel like a bit of an imposter. How can I call myself a blogger when I barely spend any time here? At least, that’s how it’s felt lately.
A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending BlissDom, an annual conference for bloggers and social media influencers (“400 of the top social media influencers in the country” reads the publicity material. And me.) It was fantastic. I really wanted to meet with people from across the country to talk about MomsVote and BlissDom was the perfect venue for those kinds of conversations.
This was the first time I had gone to a conference with a real purpose in mind, or at least a more focused purpose. Of course I wanted to learn skills that would help with my blog and make new friends, but I also wanted to introduce people to MomsVote and see if any of them would be interested in helping me spread the word and/or contribute to its success.
Although I am a reasonably confident person I still felt a bit awkward because neither of my websites really fit into the traditional blogger mold. A lot of the sessions are geared toward people who have built their blog into a business and THAT IS GREAT! It’s just not for me. When I saw the program after I registered I was a bit concerned that maybe it wouldn’t be as beneficial for me as I’d hoped.
Not to mention that the mere idea of going out and promoting anything is so incredibly uncomfortable to me, let alone having to do it so far away from my main support system and with the subject matter being so close to my heart. But I suppose that if there was any place where I could feel safe with that discomfort – I mean, other than in my own home – BlissDom would be it.
So I got over all that and met new people and told as many as I could about MomsVote. I went to a workshop with Scott Stratten and Alison Kramer (Unmarketing) where I learned that one of the most important tips about doing social media “right” is to Be There and Engage. Talk to people. Kind of sounds like a good tip for succeeding at “real” life too, doesn’t it?
The keynote panel the next morning was too short. Seriously. I could have listened to the Women in Media panel all day, or at least longer than the hour that was allotted for a fascinating discussion about how women are portrayed in the media, sexism, embracing aging, and how to balance motherhood with a demanding career. When Jane Taber talked about the importance of having more women in politics, I felt a twinge of validation for the work I’m doing. I went to meet her afterwards and told her about MomsVote. I’m going to follow up with her.
Then I heard Robert Egger.
While there were many things I expected to find at BlissDom, there were just as many things that caught me by surprise. I was moved to tears more than once while hearing Mr. Egger speak because what he said about his journey starting a non-profit in Washington DC resonated so deeply within me. Maybe that sounds ridiculous, but I think we spend so much time trying to cover up those moments that really touch our soul that eventually we forget we have a soul at all.
There were so many other sessions and discussions and insights, far too many to put down on one page.
|The Women in Media Panel. (Trust me.)|
It was a hidden talent.
I realized that it doesn’t matter if I’m too lazy to be a “real” blogger because I’m going to keep doing it, on my schedule - as erratic as that might be. And I know I'm not really lazy either; I work incredibly hard when it comes to things I'm passionate about. That's why I’m going to keep spreading the word about MomsVote and build it into something spectacular.
Because in the end, finding where you fit and figuring out the path that’s going to get you where you want to be is what BlissDom is all about.
I’ll see you there again next year.