Last weekend, I attended my first bloggers event with the Black British Bloggers network. Black British Bloggers is an online space and community that allows for black bloggers based in the UK to connect and to collaborate with businesses. What started off as a Facebook group has now become a large community of creatives and last Saturday, we were all able to meet, socialise and network with each other at the inaugural Black British Bloggers Social.
The event consisted of six speakers and exhibitors from Black Owned Businesses. The likes of Jamii, a discount card for African and Caribbean businesses in the UK were in attendance, as well as Mashooq and Afrocenchix, both natural hair brands. Hue Boxx, a brand of curated gift boxes to celebrate women of colour, were also at the social showcasing their lovely.The speakers comprised of photographer, Tatenda Nyamande, Jay from Curlture, Ronke Lawal from Ariatu PR, Ade Akins from Adzvice, Yvette Henry from On the Low podcast and Nicola Millington from FP Comms.
Despite the slight nerves beforehand due to me never having been to one of these types of events, I left feeling motivated, inspired and all round really happy with how I had spent my day. On top of the great advice and lessons I gained from the speakers and exhibitors, I also was able to meet an array of black British bloggers like myself who are all doing amazing things. A few of them have shared their experiences of the days so check them out in the links below, but before that, here are some of the things I learnt from the BBB Social.
Invest in yourself
Whether it be investing in camera equipment and editing software to make sure all your blog photos are looking on point, or buying a ticket to a bloggers networking event, it’s all worth it in terms of the progression of your blog, platform or brand.
Consistency is key
How often are you going to post? What impact are your posts going to have? I must say there was a collective gasp around the room when Ronke Lawal stated that posting a blog post once a week was not enough, seeing as that was what many of us were even striving to do. But this was the sort of message I needed to get me more active and motivated. At the end of the day those that invest their time into your platform – readers, collaborators, brands – they want to see activity!
Interact and engage on social media
PR companies are looking for social media influence. So they don’t just want to see you uploading your posts, but want to see some level of engagement with your posts. This means readers commenting and sharing your posts. This level of micro-engagement from comments and responding to your own comments is more impactful.
When it comes to blogging and creating content online, many are thinking of that about how to monetise their platforms. Well, you have to be strategic. Think about how are you using your platform? What is its impact? It’s essential that you are using your platforms to write and share what means a lot to you. Capitalise on your influence and contact PR platforms, brands or companies to work with on issues you care about. Make sure that you align yourself with that particular brand’s vision.
Ade Akins reiterated the importance of surrounding yourself with people who have a shared goal. Utilise your social network and social media to your advantage and make sure that your twitter bio reflects who you are. Follow people who influence you and find like minded people and connect with them.
Photo courtesy of ubuntugraphy
Collaborate and build community
When collaborating with other creatives or brands, you must ensure that there is a mutual benefit to the partnership. Make sure they are a nice fit to you and your brand and definitely do your research on them! Nicola Millington advised us all to work with people who add value to us. How about connecting with your local press to showcase an issue you have been discussing? Or working with other bloggers who have accounts with larger platforms out there, such as Huffington Post or Forbes Inc? It’s important you value your platform.
Utilise don’t use
Make sure you are always identifying people’s talents. Utilise other people’s skills and expertise.
Take your time
Take the time and nurture your platform. After all it’s a journey and there is no need to rush. Whose deadline is it anyway? Own your deadline! Don’t end up being a slave to something that you’ve created and do not be afraid to start again. Don’t fear change.
Get to know the heart of who you are and be you! Understand your purpose, your why, and be patient, progressive and professional. Serve the followers and supporters that you have as well as focusing on your core. Serve your audience and eventually your tribe will grow.
Remember….you are influential in your own right!
Photo courtesy of ubuntugraphy
Other coverage of the BBB Social: