If you’ve never been to a professional conference, allow me to give you a couple of great reasons why you should go, especially if you’re a blogger. I just returned from the Haven Conference in Atlanta which is basically paradise for home bloggers. Not only did I get to connect with other super creative bloggers, meet face-to-face with longtime bloggy friends but I also got to connect with some fantastic brands and…wait for it…Clint Harp from the show Fixer Upper.
If you remember, I went to the Haven Conference 2 years ago as a newbie and learned so much about blogging, partnering with brands, DIY projects, tools, paint, everything. It was almost sensory overload. I had no idea what I was doing or what I wanted to learn. It was A LOT. But I walked away with a lot of great information and some wonderful new friends, but very overwhelmed.
This year was totally different. First of all, we had mentors! Mine was Anita from Cedar Hill Farmhouse who is not only a great resource but also a published author. Being able to debrief with her and a great group of bloggers was so helpful. What also made Haven so great this year is that I was eager to learn and I had a much better idea of what brands and products I wanted to learn about. I also got to get my hands on things. Which, if you’re a hands-on person like me, is everything.
You know who the most impressive booth was? HomeRight. They knew they were dealing with a hands-on group of people and gave us the opportunity to try their product, ask questions, you name it. I was so impressed by how real, relatable and transparent they were that I sent them an email to work with them some more. As a blogger, when someone understands what you bring to the table, respects you, and lets you try their product, explaining every detail of how to use it and maintain it, that’s a company you want to work with. Stay tuned.
There were so many great companies at Haven. DecorArt, Ryobi, Schlage, Plaid, Liberty Hardware, Aspect, Moen, Behr…basically a DIY paradise. One of the prettiest booths with some of the kindest people happened to be Crates and Pallet. Not only were they genuinely nice but look at those shelf brackets! I loved visiting with them and talking to them.
The coolest thing–being included in the Home Depot DIY Hall of Fame. Home Depot is so blogger friendly–it’s an honor to be associated with them. I’m so glad that they believe in bloggers like me and set up ways for us to partner with them.
All in all, it was a great conference, a much needed boost of professional energy that I needed to reboot after having Luke…I’m so glad that I took the time to go. Conferences are never a bad idea because there is ALWAYS something to learn. In class, from a brand, from a person sitting next to you…I can’t wait for the Haven conference in Charleston next year!