10 August 2015

How I achieved my goal after a blog conference (and a cute printable for you!).

This week is #PBEvent - the annual Problogger conference! I am so excited! Blog conferences are SO inspiring. Every session I’ve been to has taught me something, and more often than not, the speakers’ stories have given me the incentive to do more. Write more, develop a product, create an event, be a better person. I leave blog conferences so energised and full of creativity (and also a little exhausted due to said energy and creativity!)

Being surrounded by people who just *get* me and being driven to do more at the conference makes it hard for re-entry into the ‘real world’ – where some people think blogging and social media is frivolous, or at worse, dangerous. (I’ve seen a lot of posts from my American friends about how hard re-entry has been post BlogHer. Arnebya, who I met at BlogHer’12 said when she returns to work after BlogHer, the things that hit her the hardest are “the lack of lanyards, tiny desserts, and howling laughter that make her stomach muscles scream”.)

So it’s important to keep the momentum from the blog conference going long after it ends. You can keep that momentum going by setting a goal.

Your goal might be just to write more each day. Or create a content schedule. Or connect with a new exciting person on social media once a week. Or to keep in contact with some of the awesome people you met at the conference. Or if you are like me (overly ambitious), your goal might be elephant sized. Like creating a real-life meet. Or writing a book. Or developing a blog course. (I don’t want to brag but I’ve done two of those since PBEvent14!)

Australian Ichthyosis Meet photo - people in capes

I was inspired to create the Australian Ichthyosis Meet at last year’s conference. And so I did (with a lot of hard work and a few tears). Community and social good was a big theme of the 2014 Problogger Event.

Darren Rowse (Problogger) talked a lot about community at the event. I saw a video of Chantelle from Fat Mum Slim meeting with her blog readers and I wanted to do that. And Pat Flynn encouraged bloggers to create an opportunity for our community to meet with each other.

"Create opportunity for people in your community to meet with each other" - Pat Flynn,PBEvent 2014
These messages were what kept me going from September 2014 to May 2015.

I planned my goal from the day I got home (hurrah for an annual leave day!). And here’s how I did it. (This isn’t about how I planned the event – that post will be coming soon!)

I wrote down my goal.

That kept me accountable. I wrote it in a notebook and on the internet – I was publicly accountable.

I told someone the intricacies of my goal.

I learnt to only tell someone who would nurture my idea as much as I did. I didn’t need anyone telling me that I couldn’t or shouldn’t make this happen. (The people who didn’t nurture my goal suggested I should stop being proud of creating this event. Hence why I learnt only to tell people who would nurture my goals in future.)

I set a timeline.

I consulted with people who were interested in attending the Australian Ichthyosis Meet and gave them a few options of when and where it would be held. And when consensus was provided, I worked to that date. The meet took nine months planning. My baby. 

I connected with people who could help me.

  • I connected with brands at blogging events and via email and phone calls. It was so cool to work with Random House, Mad Man Entertainment, MooGoo, Olympus and more!
  • I asked people who know how to do things that I didn't. Adam made the chalk board! (And for this post, I got someone awesome to make my printable - Robyna May!) 
  • I asked some blogging friends to assist on the day – Nathalie from Easy Peasy Kids was the kids’ coordinator, and Nicole from Champagne and Chips helped with bag organisation and meeting and greeting guests.
  • While I could have written my media release, a friend wrote it for me as I didn’t have time. 
  • Years ago I met a lovely lady in the green room at No Limits. She and her partner were the event facilitators. 
  • I crowd funded the event. 
I broke my big goal down into little goals.

There are lots of steps in achieving a goal. These are all little goals. Working on them and achieving each of these makes a big goal more manageable. My main little goals were booking a venue, raising funds, collecting donations for giveaways, promoting the event so people would come, developing an agenda, briefing the medical team and putting together the goodie bags for the day. Phew!

Do you want to write a book? Make your first goal to create an ebook so you get into the practice of writing and have something to pitch. Then get a literary agent. Then write 1000 words a day. Then organise your book into chapters. Although - what do I know?! I haven't written a book yet - but I'd like to!

I knew my weaknesses.

I’m no good at arty and numerical stuff, so I get others to help me. I am getting better at graphics but I still ask for help.

Maybe you need help with events planning or coding. You can ask others to do these things (DELEGATE!) or you can skill yourself up in them (if you have time!). Take a short course (or check out free ones on MOOC) or ask someone in this field if you can intern with them to learn stuff. 

I played on my strengths and used my networks.

I am really lucky to have been working as an events planner and communicator for many years in my day job, so these skills helped me plan my event.

I also collaborated with some brands for my events – brands who I’d met through blogging. I wrote them email pitches (explaining my event, asking for products, telling them how I would promote them) and showcased their donations on social media. I went outside of my comfort zone, attending a parenting-bloggers’ event, because my new audience for this event was parents.

You build so many skills as a blogger. Writing, photography, marketing, social media… use them! And connect with the people you meet along the way!

I was prepared for hurdles.

Fortunately not much went wrong with achieving this goal. There were a few hiccups but nothing that I couldn’t handle. I had my Mum and Adam to vent to. I couldn’t adjust the timeframe, but I could scale down the event if needed. 

And then  event happened! I remember thinking, I can't believe it's here! I can't believe people came and believed in me! 

Whether you go to #PBEvent or another conference, I know you'll be inspired to do something awesome. Whether it's a big event for lots of people like I organised, or a smaller personal event, I wish you luck! I hope my tips help!

Here’s a cute printable for you to use when creating your goal after a blog conference (or after it comes to you anywhere really – my goal to write this post about goals came to me while I was in the loo!)

Have you got any tips for goal setting?


  1. People who support you are THE most important things. I hate telling people an idea and having a bunch of negativity back. I want people who go "Cool!!! How will we make this work!?"

  2. Fantastic achievement - events are hard work (also a former conference organiser), especially when you start from nothing. The next Australian Ichthyosis Meet you (or someone else) organises will be so much easier now you have a process in place and a fabulous set of contacts. Thrilled for you that it was such a huge success xx

  3. You did amazing things - I can't wait to see what this year's PB inspires you to do! I am looking forward to the whole event so much.

  4. you have done so much!! Fabulous tips thank you and see you soon! x

  5. It's all true. Tiny desserts should just be available to make folks' lives easier, say, at the DMV. I love how you've listed each thing with prep and even hurdles because you make your goals realistic and show others how to stay on track.

  6. Great advice and well done on achieving your goals especially something that really benefits others. I'm going to print this off and look back on it and write down all my small and big goals to help with my direction. Thank you for sharing. :) Maria x


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