Later this week I’ll be traveling to Georgia for the Aiming Low Non Conference organized by the well-known blogger Anissa Mayhew. One of the greatest perks of my job is getting to go to all of these blogger conferences. This year I’ve been to Blissdom, BlogHer, WordCamp and Arkansas Women Bloggers Unplugged plus countless blogger meetups. Bloggers are kindred spirits to me. Each is unique and fabulous in her (or rarely, his) own way.
If you’re trying to pick just one conference to attend in the coming year let me tell you what I’ve learned so far.
In my opinion bigger is not better. I had fun at BlogHer and learned so much, but I had more fun and made stronger connections at the Arkansas Women Bloggers Unplugged conference where there were 70 attendees as opposed to the 4,000+ at BlogHer.
Smaller blog conferences:
- Stronger bonds
- Deeper conversation
Bigger blog conferences:
- Blissdom had amazing speakers (the CEO of BlogFrog, Jon Acuff and many more)
- BlogHer had meaty sessions from “affiliate marketing” to “vlogging”
What is a Non Conference?
Even better than being smaller is Anissa’s concept of a Non Conference.
The Aiming Low Non-Conference is an event meant to get back to the core values of blogging. It will be a weekend full of question and answers and information-sharing. There will be NO PANELS, just a learning environment where you are welcomed to ask about the personal, technical, seeking and slightly embarrassing questions you might have and get honest, genuine answers from our noteworthy Roundtable Leaders as well as your peers.
If you’re in the Georgia area you should know this conference is free to attend. If you can’t get there follow along on Twitter using #NonCon
Oh, and worth mentioning… The Aiming Low NonCon is being held at Callaway Gardens, which I’m told is must-see resort.
Vegetable Garden at Callaway Gardens (where “Victory Garden” on PBS is filmed)
Who is Anissa Mayhew?
The name sounds familiar, right? Well Anissa is a veteran blogger who has appeared on Oprah and who later had several live-altering strokes.
Image of Anissa stolen shamelessly from her Facebook page
This post post from 2009 tells it better than I could.
In the spirit of saving the best for last… the keynote speaker at this inaugural Aiming Low Non Conference will be the adorable and delightful Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman and she is sponsored by… CountryOutfitter.com! Yep, that’s right. That really awesome group of people I work with love The Pioneer Woman as much as I do. Cannot wait!
Ree may not remember, but she’s already besties with Amy James. They met is a book-signing line at BlogHer and in those 15 seconds formed a lifelong bond (in Amy’s mind). Click this image to read all about it.
Fellow Arkansas bloggers Amy James of Our Everyday Dinners and Stephanie Buckley of The Park Wife be going to Aiming Low, too. These are some of my favorite bloggers in the world, and I can guarantee 13-year-old-girl style giggles and ridiculous misadventures to come.
IDK why I look so skeptical or why Stephanie B. looks so pensive, but I promise the goofiness was just seconds away from this moment at AWBU.
What I didn’t expect…
I’m currently desperately medicating myself so that I can be well before the conference. I don’t know who exactly to blame for this Strep Throat, but I will win!
Don’t worry y’all. I’ve been on antibiotics for nearly 24 hours now, which means I’m not contagious. I promise I would not bring germs to the masses.
Evolved Mommy is about tech and gadgets as the relate to family life. We talk about Apple products like iPads, iPhones and pretty cases for iPads and iPhones. We talk about gadgets for the home like Nest thermostats and Roombas. We talk about nonsense and life in Northwest Arkansas. Whatever.