Blogging Gems from the #EmpowerHer17 Conference
Let me tell y'all about how I almost blocked my blessings this weekend? When I first saw the ad on social media about the #EmpowerHer17 Conference hosted by @blavity and @21ninety I created all these reasons in my head about why I wasn't good enough to attend. Like:
The conference is for influencers, entrepreneurs, designers and makers. I just write a blog, I ain't all of that.
I JUST started my blog, I haven’t done enough to go to a conference like this.
I don't like networking and I’m going to have to talk to people. What if people don't talk to me?
I’ll be attending by myself so really, who am I going to talk to???
I don't have $300 to spare. Who’s going to pay for this?
There’s always next year. Yeah, I'll just make sure I go next year.
I’m sure this sounds like some of you too. We’re so quick to come up with all of the reasons “why we can't” do something instead of asking ourselves "why not me". Luckily for me, there were two voices in my head that had me just three rows away from some talented women in Chicago this weekend. First, my amazing partner who encouraged me to attend and consistently inspires me to be my best self. So special shout out to Good Mayweather Consulting for paying for my ticket, travel, hotel accommodations, and per diem. Keep #doingthegoodwork honey. Second, I could hear my incredible therapist’s voice asking me “so what has fear ever done for you before?”, when self doubt tried to creep in. Did I mention she is also #blackgirlmagic?
Well let me tell you, the conference was EVERYTHING that I needed. I mean it is Monday morning and I am still riding high from an incredible sea of 500+ black women in one room, each with their own unique ideas and businesses, ready to listen and learn from other black women. All with different skin tones, hair styles, fly clothing, accents, and personalities. It was just an amazing feeling to be among them and then on top of that hear from some absolutely inspiring women. Women that I didn't know existed! For example, I will be transparent and admit that I didn't know that the creators of Blavity and Travel Noire were black women. Be honest, half of y'all didn't know either! However, now because of this expereicne these are women that I won't ever be able to forget.
I could go on and on, but let me give you what you came here for, the blogging gems I brought back home with me! FYI, all of these things easily relate to business, not just blogging. Below are just a few of the things that I heard this past weekend that had me like Yaaaaas!
Incorporate your business and get insurance. - Bari Williams
So this one was an eye opener. Yes, I bought the domain name and I created my free logo, but did I take the necessary steps to protect myself? Nope. Learning the difference between trademarks, copyrights, and patents is so necessary. Also, if you're going to talk to someone about a new idea, make sure you have them sign an NDA or non disclosure agreement. Yes ladies, these are not just for superstars. I'm about to go drop my papers and check off in the mail right now. I refuse to let the Kardashians steal my ideas too!
Trust your audience to not abandon you. - Luuvie Ajaye
I am always so nervous that if I talk about something that is not specifically sex or relationships people will think "what the hell is she doing" and jump ship. This weekend I learned that loyal followers will love all of your shit! So I'm going to be unapologetically me, and appreciate the people who choose to leave and the people who stay.
The key to keeping really great people is to be a great person. - Zim Ugochukwu
This quotable is so simple yet so profound. It can refer to your staff, team, or tribe. If you want to keep good people around you, you have to do the work to be a good person worth being around!
Want to go viral? Go be Creative! There is no how-to manual -Lena Waithe
This one is pretty self explanatory. MAKE THAT SHIT HAPPEN! Lena also made another great point: "I tell people, if what you’re doing is so dope then why haven't I heard of it before". This is a great reminder to keep grinding. If you are as dope as you think you are people WILL find out about you, especially in the digital world that we are living in today.
Fail fast! - Alex Wolf
Basically get failure out of the way as soon as possible. It is simply a part of being an entrepreneur. Everything that you put your hands on won't succeed. Fail so that you can get to the wins. The process is worth it!
Alex also dropped another amazing gem about social media and waiting for followers. She made it clear that you don't need thousands of followers to sell a product. Followers do not equal customers! You have at least one customer in your midst already. You just have to find them, figure out why they need you, and keep selling to them. So now I am working on the book that I've always wanted to write and can't wait to share it with world. Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interested in my book.
Publicly announce what you’re going to do online and set a deadline. - Danielle Leslie
This was a great tip regarding accountability. It is so easy to get distracted in this business and not follow through. So to make sure that you actually complete a project, announce it online to your followers and set a date for when it will happen. Now you either do it or look like a liar. I could definitely use this technique! Danielle also talked about her T.A.S.T.Y method that works for any project. Ask yourself does your blog: Teach you something, give Action Steps, Solve an urgent pain, Transform, and address the "WHY"? If so, you've probably got a banging ass post.
Look yall, there were so many other gems dropped and so many more amazing people there. Girl, when women like Necole Kane of xonecole and Robin Thedde stepped on the stage I fanned out quietly in my seat!!! If you're interested in knowing who else was there visit empowerherconference.com. This weekend I sat in the presence of greatness and you deserve to, too. Are you an influencer, entrepreneur, designer, or maker? Even if you’re not, do you want to be??? Do yourself a favor and follow @blavity @21ninety and the Founder of both, @morgandebaun, so that you don't miss out next time. Also make sure that you invest in yourself and support other black women. You can start by clicking on your favorite form of social media below and SHARING this post ;-)