BlogPodium: Blogs + Media

Yesterday morning I had the opportunity to sit in a room full of fabulous bloggers and listen to an excellent panel discuss the role of blogs and traditional media.

BlogPodium was created by two Toronto based bloggers – Jennifer Flores of Rambling Renovators and Lindsay Stevenson of Little House Blog, and it’s purpose is to bring together design bloggers and industry representatives from design magazines and television shows to share ideas about how blogs are influencing traditional design media (and vice-versa), and what blog writers should aim for when striving to make their blog successful. Yesterdays panel was the first of what will be a quarterly discussion about blogs, with the aim of educating and encouraging bloggers to create the best blogs possible.

This first discussion was held at the start of trade day at the Interior design show (which I explored after the talk), and there were excellent speakers on the panel:

  • Margot Austin – Senior Design Editor – House & Home magazine
  • Kimberley Seldon – Editor in Chief – Dabble magazine, and Design Editor – Chatelaine magazine
  • Kate Moore – Producer – CityLine
  • Jennifer Flores – Blogger and co-founder of BlogPodium
  • Moderated by: Leigh-Ann Allaire Perrault – CityLine Guest Expert

    The BlogPodium panel: from L to R: Lindsay Stevenson, Leigh-Ann Allaire Perrault, Jennifer Flores, Kimberley Seldon, Kate Moore, Margot Austin (my apologies for the fuzzy cellphone picture)

The discussions were incredibly interesting – here is some of what the panel had to say:

  • A good blog has an original voice,and original ideas.
  • Don’t just post pictures and say ‘wow – this space is awesome’ – explain why you think it’s a great space.
  • Don’t let your blog get too serious – blogging is about content and entertainment.
  • Make use of all forms of Social Media – you need exposure along with great ideas to grow your blog.
  • If you dream of being invited to do a guest spot on a design show include video on your blog so producers of shows can see the real you.
  • Set a good regular schedule for posting – 3 to 4 posts a week – once is not enough(eeps!)
  • Try to keep you posts to under 500 words (Double eeps!)
  • If pitching your idea – consider the vehicle – know the audience – if the magazine features mostly homes decorated by professional designers using high-end products they probably won’t be interested in your DIY projects.
  • Editing is key – stick to your core message.
  • If you use the work of others in your blog (photographers, designers, etc), always, always credit the source.

The panel made some excellent points, and I will try to work on some of them: posting 3-4 times a week and keep posts to about 500 words – both of which will be really hard.

BlogPodium’s next topic will be the Business of Blogging and will be presented in May. I’m sure it will be just as enlightening as yesterdays, and I’m planning on attending, and if you’re in or near Toronto I hope you will consider coming as well.

This afternoon I’m heading to Canadian Design bloggers meetup so I won’t be able to share today what great things I saw at the Interior Design show – hopefully I’ll be able to do that later this week.

PS – Word count: 529 :(