Saturday, 22 November 2014

#SparkSessions 2014: My First Time at a Blogger Conference

Ello tea mates!  Today is the day - the day where I write about Spark Sessions 2014!

Carly from Beauty and the Blog, myself, and Laura from Lipstick and Laura, getting our pose on, in front of the stop and repeat.

As I mentioned in my sneak peek post, Spark Sessions is a conference for beauty and fashion bloggers, and while this was my first time attending the conference, it was the second year that it was running.  I had decided to attend on the recommendation of some fellow beauty bloggers who raved about how much they had learned during the first year it was running.  So needless to say, I was really excited to order my ticket right when they went on sale, in July (a.k.a. the "super early bird" ticket).


The morning of day 1, everyone getting ready to listen to the keynote speaker, Vanessa Craft from Elle Canada, and Andrew Sardone from GloberStyle .
The conference had about 250 attendees, and it offered presentations such as "How to Turn Blogging Into a Full Time Job", taught by blogger extraordinaire Lena Almeida of ListentoLena, and "The A to Z of Media Kits" taught by Maxine McDonald of Langton Communications.  The conference also offered opportunities to speak with PR companies, & cosmetics brands, during the "Speed Networking" portion, as well as during any free time used to peruse around the conference and check out the sponsors' tables.  I got the opportunity to speak with brands such as Pure & Simple, Nicole by O.P.I., So...? fragrances, Benefit cosmetics, and many more.






Rema, the digital marketing coordinator of Benefit Cosmetics, speaking about the brand.  It was such a thrill to get some one-on-one time with her.








The phone charging station, which was quite popular.

Taking a quick lip gloss break, to re-apply "Buttercup" by Gerard Cosmetics, featuring a light up applicator - how fun!




Jenn from A Beautiful Zen and myself.


CBB picture - Jenn (A Beautiful Zen), Natalie (Natalie Ivory), Julie (Swatch and Review), and Megan (Megan Joy).




Me and Laura putting our thinking caps on during the "Ad Networks: What You Need to Know BEFORE Signing on the Dotted Line" presentation, delivered by Kat Peterson of eLUXE & Aurelie Sauthier of Made in Blog.

Closing keynote speaker, Cheryl Hickey from Entertainment Tonight Canada.

A bunch of Canadian Beauty Bloggers (CBB members) squishing in for a selfie.  Cameos include Jenn (A Beautiful Zen), Laura (Lipstick and Laura), Carly, (Beauty and the Blog), Jasmine (Life is My Movie), Julie (Swatch and Review), and yours truly.
Top 3 blogging tips I learned at Spark Sessions:

1)  Don't be afraid to reach out to brands and introduce yourself.
2)  The only way to find your voice is by using it.
3)  Figure out what makes you stand out, and magnify it.

Big thank you goes out to the staff who organized the conference, the sponsors, the speakers, the brands who took the time to speak with me, and all the other bloggers who were so friendly and extremely welcoming.  I'm already excited for next year!

Until next time. - Shawna

7 comments:

  1. Loved the overview! Glad that you were able to connect with some great brands! :) Maybe once my blog grows a bit I can join in on these fun events. :D

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    1. It was an amazing learning experience, and it was great because it had presentations for both experienced, and new bloggers.

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  2. Fun post, Shawna- you got some great shots! Sounds like there were some really informative sessions and lots of goodies to play with! And always nice to have an excuse to hang out with the CBB ladies :) Definitely considering attending next year!

    Nice to see you yesterday :)

    -Jen

    www.vibrantbeautyblog.com

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    1. It was nice seeing you too, Jen. I can't wait for next year, crossing my fingers you'll be there :)

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  3. Looks like a fantastic conference with lots of great networking opportunities!

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  4. I love this post! Also, that CBB photo is amazing - thank you so much for sharing it!

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    1. Thanks for being such a great model :P

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