Over the weekend I attended the BritMums Live blogging event in London. It’s a measure of how far blogging has come that this event, focussed mainly on parent bloggers, attracted over 500 participants to hear speakers as diverse as Ruby Wax, Sarah Brown, Cherry Healey and Judy Murray.
For me, it was an opportunity to learn more about different aspects of blogging and social media generally, as well as getting meet a few new people. One of the highlights for me was an excellent speech by Sarah Brown on finding your own voice and using social media for the greater good. Sarah has been able to use her profile to support various charities and was very open and honest about how difficult she found public speaking in the early days of her “public” life. Showing that little bit of vulnerability meant that the whole room warmed to her, and she got a really good reception.
Ruby Wax was another keynote speaker. She spoke movingly about her own mental health issues and how she has tried to create an online community to support others who suffer from mental illness. Cherry Healey spoke about her use of social media as a mum and TV presenter.Judy Murray gave a demonstration of her programme to support adults in playing games with their young children. It’s based on games that she played with her sons when they were little and she showed how you could play kitchen table tennis or create shark infested waters in the garden. I spoke to her at the end of the session and she was very friendly and approachable. The scheme is sponsored by RBS and you can find out more at set4sport.
As well as the main speeches there were a number of parallel sessions running on all matters blogging. As ever we these, you sit in a session wondering if you are missing something even better in another room. The most useful of these breakout sessions for me was given by Julie Hall of Springmedia on Advanced WordPress. There was a blizzard of ideas and tips to incorporate into the blog.
All in all, it was a fun but exhausting two days as I tried to cram as much into my brain as I could, and I would definitely recommend it. I might have next year off to recover though!