Digital Rebel

Freelance Camp 2012.

I attended an amazing event this past weekend where there was a gathering of the freelancing minds. This is annual event where proceeds go to a charity. The premise of this event is to network, speak and learn. Speakers from all over Vancouver showed up and had to present a 90 second pitch and the audience got to choose what topic was of interest. They call this event the Freelance Camp!

The speakers were then assigned to specific rooms based on the audience popularity. I thought I give this even a shot and put my speaking skills to the test. It was an early morning and I had arranged to meet a few friends going to the event. As we all got in line to present out pitches I recognized a familiar face, a blogger who I just happened to guest blog for. Owen from Byzblog just happened to be standing in line and we both had decided to do a talk on blogging. We both read each other’s mind and decided to tag team the event and combine our knowledge and experience. We decided to call each other the blogging twins even though I am slightly more tanned than Owen.

We nailed our pitch simply by using our wit and some online humour. I believe my opening line was a quote from the famous Avinash Kaushik but a little modified. “Internet Marketing and Social media is like teenage sex, everyone wants to do it, a few really know how!” Lets just say it got everyone’s attention and Owen went on to deliver the strong benefits of attending our presentation. The audiences were awesome, engaging and showed enthusiasm to see what we were all about. Some would say there was a certain electricity in the air. We were given the afternoon session and so we spent the morning scoping out other speakers, planning our power point and even had time to get some breakfast. As the day progressed we had put a game plan together and even decided to do a fun activity after our presentation to promote the audience to start creating blog posts. That was the main intention for our talk and we hoped to motivate a few freelancers.

Owen and I have this Android, Iphone battle going on. We both seemed to be on our phones taking business calls during the day and like true marketers were planning the rest of the month out. We were in great spirits as we both found out we were going to be included in some major events during Social Media week. After a long line up to lunch we were all ready to go. What happened next surprised all of us. The room was crowded with the majority of the attendees at our event. Twitter started to explode with people starting to show excitement and anticipation for our keynote. This was all the motivation we needed and both Owen and I unleashed the content smack down. After a 30 minute presentation we decided to get into activity mode and engage the crowd to help them create their own content. Our intent was simply to motivate our attendee’s to take action.

My take away lessons for the attendees were

  • Show up! Your competitors will if you do not!
  • Create a blogging editorial calendar
  • Write for tomorrow and blog for content and not dollars
  • I went over the Google Penguin Update

Owens take away lessons for attendees were

  • Content is king
  • Focus on the user experience, fresh content and engagement
  • Blogging can be great for getting traffic
  • Showed the audience how to create content and blog posts

We tried to keep the audience engaged in the process and even had a few chuckles along the way. We finally ended the presentation with a ton of positive feedback, votes of confidence and a ton of engagement on our social platforms. My favourite re tweet moment was when my earlier comments on the best place to hide a dead body is on page 2 of Google was shared across the twitter verse. This morning I was still responding to amazing amount of follows up and shout outs from an awesome crowd. As promised there was going to be a blog report on this amazing event put on by the network hub.

Finally to all the audience members that attended below is a power point presentation I had put together on blogging 101 and tips on how to manage the blog. Enjoy!

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