Submitted by Oklahoma Women Bloggers Admin Mari Farthing
When you get a group of bloggers together in real life (or, IRL, as the title of this post indicates), you can count on a few things.
- Everyone—all of them, in my experience—will discuss how they don’t feel legitimate. Though they might be incredibly talented and prolific writers, marketing experts promoting products or serving as brand ambassadors, skilled photographers—all of them feel as though they aren’t professional. Which is just crazy.
- A majority of those present will identify themselves as shy or introverted. Every other person will not believe them.
- They will talk numbers. Specifically, SEO and analytics. How many followers, what days to post for the best impact, how to get shares, what’s the magic number of words for an effective post, all the things about all the things relating to numbers.
- They will discuss social media. Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Instagram, Vine, Tumblr and all the other social media platforms that come and go. They will discuss how to use email notifications on posts. This conversational thread will cause both nods of assent and nose-wrinkles of dissent.
- They will have a heated debate over WordPress versus Blogger. This debate will be unresolved but someone will make the jump from Blogger to WordPress soon after the meet up (because going from WordPress to Blogger is simply not done).
- They will discuss hosting. Not party hosting, but rather blog hosting. Self-hosting. Owning domains vs. not owning your domain. Web design. Avoiding web design. Embracing web design. And occasionally you might hear a little HTML.
- They will identify themselves as a sub-group: mommy blogger, lifestyle blogger, fitness blogger, food blogger, fashion blogger, travel blogger, crafting blogger, photo blogger. They will realize that they love their niche or that their niche has become a rut and maybe it’s time to redefine their platform.
- They will discuss how great travel blogging is because of the travel.
- They will use words like “Widgets,” said unironically and with no laughing.
- They will all say “we need to exchange business cards!” which they all have but only one person—maybe two—has remembered to bring.
Most of all, they will all discuss how they need to do this more often, this meeting up in real life. How the community part of this community is one of the best parts. Because non-bloggers just don’t always get it and can’t relate when you talk about these things.
From left: Mari, Jen, Rose, Elizabeth, Shel and Mae. Thanks to Jen for hosting!
This is what I love about Oklahoma Women Bloggers; I have a tribe of women who do what I do, who love what I love, who thing about the things I think about. We’re all different and yet we all find common ground. So don’t worry if you’re introverted or shy or don’t feel legitimate. The next time you have a chance to meet IRL with other bloggers, take it. You’ll be among friends.
Mari Farthing is the administrator of the Oklahoma Women Bloggers along with being a military (retired) wife, mother of two preteens and a freelance writer and editor. She identifies as “introverted” which usually is met with chortles of laughter by those she knows. When she should be doing chores, you can find her online at her blog Mari, Quite Contrary, Twitter and Instagram.