My First Blogging Conference – BritMums Live. 

This weekend saw the biggest blogging conference in the blogging calendar, BritMums Live (or #BML16 if you’re partial to the occasional hashtag).

Sponsored by Cheeky Wipes, I took myself off to London for the day to meet fellow bloggers, network with brands, and learn a few things about blogging and social media. In black and white that all sounded pretty simple, however once I got there it was actually quite a challenge.

According to other bloggers, this year was the first year that BritMums was a one day event. Previously, it was a two day event, and I could see why. As well as several breakout sessions to pick from throughout the day; ranging from ‘The Dark Net’ to Instagram, you also had the option to network with brands, as well as the mammoth task of meeting other bloggers.

None of this is mandatory, of course, but why wouldn’t you want to try and experience everything or chat with the people you’ve been chatting to for months, if not years?

Starting my day with a 6:30 train to Farringdon, I was lucky to meet up with a few Brighton bloggers on the way – this definitely made walking into an already busy forecourt a lot easier.

The location was great. I’ve been lucky enough to visit The Brewery before with S as part of Christmas Do’s so thankfully I knew my way around.

Before the conference even began I was already recognising a few faces. This was my first challenge of the day; go up to them and say hi, or wait and save myself from looking like a fan-girl. I decided to wait, register myself, and go get (a few) pastries. This is where I met the lovely Emma and John.

After the opening talk I made my way to the “networking” room. I actually found this room to be quite overwhelming, and the majority of the brands didn’t really suit our blog, so I decided to say hello to some bloggers! This is where I met Tom, Tim, Martyn, Dave, Tony, (honestly, I didn’t just aim for the dads), Leanne, and Hannah.

In no time, the first session was about to begin so I took myself off to learn/discuss creative writing. This is where I met Lucy, which was the only plus side to the session. Maybe it was me misinterpreting the session description, but I did leave this particular breakout session feeling quite deflated. With this, I decided to miss the second breakout as I wanted to catch up with the lovely ladies from the BlogBumpClub. Chelle, Hannah, Hannah (I know, a lot of Hannah’s) and Katy were there and I had a blast chatting about (and sniffing) babies. It was hard not to become incredibly broody!

Lunch was suddenly upon us and after much deliberation I enjoyed a lamb curry with a side of nachos. I also managed to find room for some pudding.

The third breakout session was the most enjoyable as it was based around the Sketchbook Club. I’ve never done anything like this before despite always enjoying colouring-in and doodling, so it was no surprise that this session was really enjoyable. If anything, it completely took the pressure off making the conference solely about blogging! I already have a few ideas about how I can integrate sketching into the blog/Instagram.

The fourth session I attended was about Instagram and unfortunately, again, I didn’t come away feeling like I’d learnt much, which was good; without sounding arrogant, as it made me feel that I was actually doing something right!

Apart from meeting fellow bloggers, my favourite part of the day was, by far, the keynote speeches. The highlights for me were Tim and his x-factor worthy parody of ‘Pretty in Pink’ and Al’s ‘Job interview to become a Stay-at-home-dad’.

After the keynotes, the BiB (Brilliance in Blogging) awards commenced. Sadly, quite a few of my favourite blogs didn’t get the award they deserved, but I was still proud as punch to see their names up there as finalists!

The evening finished with cake, wine, and more socialising. Here I was finally able to meet a few more of my favourites; Donna and Stephanie (aka Clarke Kent!).

As you can tell, it was quite the Saturday. I still have a few reservations and criticisms of the event and, as other people have mentioned, I’d be reluctant to go again based purely on the breakout sessions – but maybe that was just me. I was, on the other hand, impressed with the variety of sessions available. 

The socialising aspect, however, was totally worth the journey and I’d like to hope I’ve made some friends this weekend.

Even if you’re new to blogging, I would recommend giving at least one conference a go. It’s a great way to find like-minded bloggers, and the gift bags are pretty sweet.

The environment is lovely, albeit busy, and the bloggers I’ve met this weekend are some of the nicest people I’ve met. I just wish I’d found time to meet more people! I’m sorry if I didn’t get round to saying hi!

Did you go to BML16? What did you enjoy/not enjoy? Any tips?


10 thoughts on “My First Blogging Conference – BritMums Live. 

  1. Hannah Budding Smiles says:

    It was utterly wonderful to meet you and Martha was more than happy to be sniffed! I’m actually pretty glad I only went to one session because many just focus so much on seo and making money that it doesn’t suit my blog. Socialising wad the name of the game!xx

  2. Plutonium Sox says:

    I’m so envious of you all. It’s just not practical for me this year, but I’m definitely coming next year all being well. I hope you go again too, would be lovely to meet you.

    • Kate Everall says:

      Definitely! I’d love to say hi. Perhaps I’ll see you at another blogger meet up?

  3. The DADventurer (Dave) says:

    Nice to eventually meet you and hang out, even if you did think I was avoiding you :p Pleased you had fun, but a shame you didn’t get much from the sessions. This was my 3rd conference, and to be honest, I’ve never really learnt much and don’t speak to the brands, so it’s all about catching up with friends for me. Hopefully see you at another in the not too distant future 🙂

  4. occupation:(m)other says:

    Yes I agree about the breakout sessions, definitely weren’t as useful as I had hoped. By far the best part of the event was meeting so many wonderful people – for that reason I think they should definitely bring back the two day format….we needed more time! So pleased I met you, albeit SO briefly. You’ve taken some brilliant photos. I took 3, 2 of which are dreadful… xxx

    • Kate Everall says:

      I hope they put it back to two days as well – the one day just flew, I felt like I didn’t get time to seek everyone out to say hi.

      It was an absolute pleasure meeting you, hopefully meet you again soon. X

  5. Joanne Mallon says:

    I didn’t go, but it’s interesting to hear about it from people who did. It seems like the people who had the best time are those who went purely for the socialising and not so much for the sessions or with expectations of learning anything. Maybe future events shouldn’t bother with this and just make it one big party?

    That said, I do think that there’s a value in being reminded that you know more than you thought you did, and perhaps you are further along in your blogging journey than you realised. That’s got to be a good confidence boost, surely?

    • Kate Everall says:

      You’re totally right. It did feel good, although I’m not sure if want to pay the ticket price for that pleasure.

      I definitely think the social aspect was the main contributor to the fun, and maybe the cake! If I took anything away from BML16 it’s that im not alone and that we were all at the same stage once.

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