I went to the East Midlands Blogger Meetup on Saturday in Leicester and had the best time. I met so many lovely bloggers and left feeling more inspired to write than ever! The event was held at Manhattan 34, not too far from the train station and it was a perfect fit for the event. The whole theme and decor of it was perfect for a blogger meet up (everything was so nice to photograph) and fit all 40 bloggers inside without being too crowded!
Before going to the event, I met up with some bloggers at Leicester train station and we all walked to Bru together for a pre-meetup! After living in Leicester for a year, I have always walked past Bru and thought I really must go there.
I decided to go for an iced latte and a caramel slice, so good! The staff were all so bubbly and happy to be there too! There is also something amazing called a ‘bronkie’, which is basically a dreamy combination of brownie and cookie. Bliss.
We then went to Manhattan 34 for the East Midlands Blogger Meetup and got given a fact for an ice breaker activity. I was ridiculously nervous about the icebreaker but it was actually pretty fun! We had to find the blogger who originally wrote the fact prior to the event which pushed us to talk to other bloggers. I couldn’t think of anything to write for my fact and opted for something about Monopoly. I’m cool.
The fact I got given was about auditions for Great British Bake Off?! I definitely felt like my Monopoly fact was lame haha!
Cool As Leicester PR
Gabby, from Cool as Leicester PR, delivered an insightful talk about how to engage with PR companies, what to do and what not to do with your blog. I live Tweeted a few of these on my Twitter with the hashtag #EastMidsMeetup (which was trending!), but if you missed it:
Keep your blog up to date
If you contact a brand and they want to work with you, then find out you last posted eight months ago, it doesn’t look the best!
Know your statistics
As much as we hate to admit it, statistics matter. Sign up for Google Analytics and be on top of your views and audience reach. Or maybe create a media pack! At the moment I’m rebuilding my statistics because I had a lot of issues with GA when I moved to self-hosted so my stats don’t represent my whole blog. Sometimes brands will ask for your statistics and that’s okay, just be ready! I really need to make a media pack for my blog so let me know if you have any tips, too!
Don’t take freebies from events and not feature the brand
This is self-explanatory. The event organisors and brands involved put a lot into getting amazing goodies for bloggers, the least you can do is share photos and your thanks across social media. Feature them in your blog posts and contact brands directly, it could also start a fab relationship with a brand!
PR Companies want to work with you – contact them!
This is something I really need to get better at. A couple of months ago I contacted some brands and never heard back so I was a little thrown off – but I don’t think I was contacting the right ones! PR companies are there to work with you, don’t be afraid and go for it!
The lovely editors from Blogosphere Magazine were at the East Midlands Blogger Meetup to tell us about the magazine written by bloggers, for bloggers! Each issue has so many sections including beauty, parenting, lifestyle and food so there’s something in there for everyone. They have cover issue reveal events for each issue, and also hold a number of workshops for bloggers too, who may not be comfortable going to a big event.
On their website, it details exactly how you can get involved with the magazine which I think is amazing. From the event I picked up issue 8 for £5.
Bru were also at the event which I was so happy about because I loved it before the event. They had a table set out with chocolate goodies and made me want to eat everything.
The whole event was in aid of Rainbows Hospice and Bowel Cancer UK which are both amazing charities and over £200 was made. HUGE thanks to Carpe Diem Emmie and Behind The Scent for organising such an enjoyable and rememberable event. I actually managed to win a prize on the raffle, lots of green tea from TG Tea!
The goodie bags from the event were unreal. So many brands got involved which is amazing! There was some lovely brushes from LAB2, a Collection palette, some lovely homeware from Matalan and so much more! I’m so happy about the homeware because I’m moving in with my boyfriend next week and we need some little things to make it feel homely. There was also a sample of Coconut Oil, a pencil from BusyBee, and another bottle of iced tea from TG Tea! Some of the brands included aren’t cruelty-free so I’ll be passing those products onto my friends and family to enjoy.
I also just want to mention some of the lovely bloggers that I met and can’t wait to see again soon! Sophie from Sophie’s Notebook, Rebecca from LibFemBlog, Lora from Loraday and Becky from Geek Gets Glam, who all made me feel welcome and made me forget how nervous I was for the event.