The coolest part about working online is that we can work from anywhere we want to. You don’t have to leave your loved ones to go to a specific country or city to get a job. We find that one of the best perks about professional blogging as a career. Even though we can work from wherever we want, its always nice to meet other like minded super-smart bloggers every once in a while. Meeting such folks is not only a humbling experience, but it allows us to learn from them. If you notice on the WPBeginner blog, we attend quite a few conferences, and we are truly grateful that we can do that. Attending conferences are expensive and inconvenient for a lot of folks. When starting out, one of the things we found restricting was the traveling cost. We were able to put together just enough money to pay for the conference tickets, but it was almost impossible to cover traveling and lodging costs.
If you missed it, we were giving away tickets to BlogWorld Expo LA. We received a lot of emails and tweets from people saying they couldn’t attend because of traveling costs. Others said it was conflicting with their schedule. What if we can tell you that YES, you can attend BlogWorld for literally one-tenth of the original price? Sounds amazing huh? Add traveling and lodging and you could be talking 1/20th of the price…
Let us introduce you to BlogWorld Virtual. Well in the past year or two, one of the things that is growing is Virtual Attendance. But how do you do virtually attend and take full advantage of it? In this article, we will show you how to attend an event when you cannot attend it while making the most out of it.
We first attended BlogWorld in 2010, it was in Vegas. Since then, we haven’t missed this event. We attended it this May (BlogWorld Expo NY), and we will be attending again this November in LA. This can mean one thing and one thing only. This conference is THE PLACE TO BE if you want to expand your blogging business. Everytime we attend this event, we learn about so many ways we can grow our business, so many tools that can make us more productive, and so many tips of fixing the problems we run into. Also from the past 3 events, we have met at least one client from BlogWorld Expo which in itself pays for the conference.
But wait a minute, you are probably wondering we physically attended the event which allowed us to interact with other bloggers there. This is the type of resposne we get from folks that are skeptical of virtual events. While it’s true that you cannot replace those handshakes, hugs, or having dinner with industry experts, but you can still make the most out of it.
It all depends on how you approach this. We will tell you how you can make genuine connections from BlogWorld (or any other virtual event) while not being there in person.
When you have large events (3000 people+), people communicate with each other using TWITTER! It is humanly impossible to track down what the person is going to do at the event without twitter. So check out the irony of the situation. We GEEKS are all at the event sitting next to each other “TWEETING” about how we are sitting next to each other. Or we are tweeting with other people who are in the same convention center as we are. We find it quite funny, but it is the truth. And to be frank, that is the only way that makes sense. We can’t possibly talk to all 3000+ people that are there. How do we know which one of these 3000+ people share similar interests as us. So getting a virtual ticket is not just about getting recording of live sessions. It is much more than that. You can benefit so much more if you do this right.
You can have meaningful conversations with the people at the event by simply following the twitter hashtag #bwela. As you are watching the sessions, you can ask questions to the SPEAKERS! Heck if you are good/lucky, you can find someone who is attending the session you wanted to attend, then you can even get them to ask a Question for you. We have seen this happen at so many conferences.
One of the ways we gain people’s (future clients) trust at these events is by helping them out. A lot of people have questions that we have already covered on WPBeginner. We simply point the people there. Or if it is unrelated to WordPress, but we know the answer, we point them to the right source. Trust us, its impossible to sit down with every person you meet, so how the heck do we do that? Using twitter! People are asking questions on twitter left and right. There are a lot of beginners there. If you are looking for clients, then answer questions in the hashtag stream (earn their trust). You CAN get clients from BlogWorld without being there in person.
So what exactly are we saying? We are saying that you should get a Virtual Pass to BlogWorld Expo and engage with people as much as you can.
So what exactly does this virtual pass get you?
- Live recording of sessions and extracirricular events
- Exclusive interviews and backstage access that even live attendees don’t have access to
- Q/A videos with some of the industry experts
- Other social media goodies
- Can’t watch some sessions due to schedule conflict? Don’t worry, you will have the videos for a whole year to watch it at your convenience.
Will it be as good as being there in person? Probably not. But when your resources are limited, you have to make the best out of what you can. We can tell you that this is the second best option. If you can’t attend BlogWorld in person, then this is what we recommend you to do. You have to work hard and hustle your way up.
We hope to see you there “Virtually”. Regardless of whether you buy the Virtual pass or not, don’t hold back on questions for Syed Balkhi. He will be presenting a session that will cover “The Art of Social Baiting” which will allow you to boost your blog’s growth, engagement, and revenue. We will do the best to answer any questions directed to us via our twitter @wpbeginner after his presentation. If you get the Virtual Pass, you can watch him speak and then ask more relevant questions