I was one of the lucky bloggers who had been invited to the recently concluded Bloggers Fest event held at the Thunderbird Resorts in Binangonan, Rizal last April 16, 2011.
OK. We were sent there and back home conveniently via buses. And aside from being stuffed with the best of the Thunderbirds kitchen from morning 'till afternoon, we also took home lotsa freebies and created new connections with fellow bloggers and representatives from the corporate partners who sponsored the event.
I personally thank the amazing spearhead of this event, Mr. Azrael Coladilla, along with his team and the rest of the corporate partners who worked together in putting up such as wonderful event for bloggers! Clap! Clap!
Except that I didn't take home any raffle prize and I didn't get a photo from the awesome members of Young Photographers Philippines who were there to cover the event and to pick individuals for a photo shoot for a contest as part of the program.
Bitter? Haha. Just kidding. But anyhoo, I am happy to present to you some of the good stuffs that I bagged home with me. Ain't no tangible things nor instant gratifications but rather golden nuggets of learning and 1 Million Peso worth of inspiration for becoming the best blogger that I aspire to be. See 'em all here. I've written only about 7 from among the many I have received from the one-day event.
Again, thanks to the organizing team and to all the corporate partners. Hope you can all sponsor or help me put up my own event for bloggers too. Soon! Hahaha! For now, have a good read.
Lesson 1: Blog about stuffs popular media can't cover.
At first, I thought to myself, is there really anything that the popular media (otherwise known as TV, Radio and Print / Above-The-Line Media / ATL) can't cover?
Of course they can cover anything. But would they cover just anything and everything? Is it all worth it?
This lead to me to realizing the power of blogging. Successful bloggers like Azrael Coladilla had made a name for himself for blogging about stuffs that people actually search about that popular media can't publish immediately because their works need to undergo editing, proofreading, reworks and etc. Whereas, bloggers enjoy the privilege of being the reporter, editor and publisher of their own works and they can publish their works anytime they want with just a single click of their mouses.
So for popular topics that people search about and need immediate information about, blogs had become sources of information leaving popular media tagging along. Their power is their speed.
So blog about stuffs popular media can't cover. Or can't cover yet. Leverage on your speed with responsibility. And be a reliable source of information and opinion. Be an empowered blogger that empowers others.
Lesson 2: Think like a storyteller.
A blog is a portal of a person's personal experiences. I hardly saw a blog that is purely unbiased and relates stories from a neutral ground.
I think this is another strength of blogs. They are biased. They have a stand. They have opinions. They influence. So people follow them or disagree with them.
People need other people's firsthand accounts of their experiences in restaurants, hotels, tourist spots and etc. Gone are the days where people rely on advertisements in getting what they need and want. They rely on the opinion of others. Of their friends and family members. And in the case of people who rely heavily on the internet, search engines take them to blogs. And from there they get firsthand experiences, personal stories and real opinions from real people.
So think like a storyteller. And reach out to others through your stories.
Lesson 3: Look for the "it" word. Use it as the title.
Good stories need good titles. When creating your title, use words that people search about or words that interest people they click on them.
As the saying goes, "A good title is half the battle."
Lesson 4: Replace long words with a great photo.
A great photo can express ideas that normally need a huge amount of words in order to be communicated. Skip this long step by using photos that can finish your sentence for you. Invest on a good camera and learn some basic photography and editing skills.
Lesson 5: Don't wait for an inspiration just to begin to write.
Take it from a Creative Writing major from De La Salle University. Arvin Ello.
Sometimes people believe that they need the "muse", the "spark" and other so-called "inspiration to write" in order to just, uhm, write.
According to Mr. Roy Dela Cruz during his talk last iBlog 7, "The only way to conquer Writer's Block is to just write."
So write. That's all you need to do to get everything started.
Lesson 6: Use facts, figures and examples to create authority.
And make sure that you use only the accurate ones. Verification is the key. Sometimes relying on a single source of information is not enough. So if you need people to believe in what you said or at least be influenced by your opinions, don't use opinions to prove your opinions.
Use facts, figures and examples. And make sure to use the accurate ones.
Lesson 7: Be on a lookout for things that has the potential to become big in the future.
While popular media continue to mob on already famous personalities, places, restaurants, gadgets and etc., write about topics that people don't know yet but has the potential to make it big in the future.
Yes. Be a vigilant scout. An avant-garde. Be the first to write and believe on some uprising bands that you actually listen to. And pray that these people make it big soon and drive as many readers as possible to your blog who are searching about reviews on their music or maybe how they started.
You know the saying about the early birds.
There you have 'em all. 7 Great Lessons I Bagged Home from Bloggers Fest 2011.
I'm still bitter I didn't get any raffle prize from the event.
Hahaha! Just kidding.