I Really Want to Speak At BlogPaws

BlogPaws is THE biggest conference for bloggers in the pet industry. I applied to speak last year about social media analytics. I didn’t get chosen but I am applying again this year with a different spin.

I think I have the experience I need to give this talk. I have been a pet blogger for almost 3 years. I completed the 9-month University of Washington Social Media Technologies and Implementation Certificate.

After I found out I didn’t get chosen last year, I asked a friend who DID get chosen to show me her proposal. I concluded that 1) my presentation wasn’t thought out well enough and 2) it wasn’t presented very well.

After hearing Matt McGarrity speak on Saturday, I wonder if main problem wasn’t something bigger.

Matt said, “presentations should be about what the audience should take away from the presentation”.

I think that my first presentation proposal focused on what I wanted to tell the audience. I focused on showing them that I knew what I was talking about and trying to persuade them that paying attention to the numbers associated with their efforts was important.

I am still writing the speaking proposal this year. I think I need to go back and look at my presentation idea, pull out what it is that I want the audience to walk away with and structure the presentation outline with that in mind. I also may need to reduce the number of goals that I have and simplify the message.

Matt gave me some really good things to think about that I hope will increase my chances of getting invited to speak  at BlogPaws this year. I still have a lot to learn about speaking proposals though.

I am curious if any of you, my fellow students, have successfully submitted a speaker proposal. Do you have any tips or pointers?


What Am I Doing Here?

Taken from my letter of Intent submitted to the University of Washington Communications Leadership, Masters of Digital Communications program:

There is no going back for me now

In the article titled The Anatomy of an MCDM Foundation Course, Shay Colson wrote “…MCDM students find new and exciting ways to see their world, tell the stories they find compelling, and build and grow the communities that will make a difference for us all.” This exactly how I envision the future me – being a catalyst for change and making a difference through creative storytelling and meaningful relationship building.

Now that I have seen this future, anything but moving forward feels stifling.

The world is moving and changing so quickly today. We live in exciting times. I feel that there has been no other time in my life when the saying “innovate or die” has not been more true. The “rules” are disappearing and making way for “anything is possible.” The key to surviving and thriving in this new world is being able to see what is coming and develop a game plan of how you will adapt to the new environments. I want to embrace innovation and change.

At first, I wanted to save the world

In my early 20s, while working on a wetland restoration project, I drew a connection back to one of my defining childhood experiences. It was at that moment that I found my calling in environmental conservation and restoration. I headed off to college to earn my Bachelor’s degree in Geology and onto a successful career in the environmental field.

I had a very successful career but was unhappy and restless and I didn’t know how to fix it. It was after I had reached a level of expertise in my career that I found myself crafting environmental education messages that it became clear. I have a talent and passion for connecting with people and bringing people together for a common cause, goal, or idea to make a difference. I realized what I was capable of and wanted to have an impact on the world that was greater than what I could do in my little corner.

Now, I want to CHANGE the world

I see digital media as a way to capture the innovative products, genius ideas, and passions of other people and then amplify them through the use of the internet. I see myself “changing the world” by helping to reach the right people with those messages and inspiring them to take action.