The third annual Blog World Expo has come to a close and since I’ve been to every event so far, I thought it would be fitting to write up a short progress report on how the event continues to grow and mature over the years. If you are an affiliate, marketer or blogger… or even if you aren’t any of these, you should still take a look at BlogWorld, as it’s a great conference and like no other. Without any wasted time, let’s continue!
Blog World Expo 2010 – Progress Report
This year Blog World Expo passed the 5,000 attendee mark, which is pretty amazing for only being in it’s third year. Blog World doesn’t just focus on blogging, but everything from internet advertising, social networking, marketing experts, and also focuses on how well known name brands and celebrities using online branding and social media.
Sure, the event is in Las Vegas, so that is reason enough for many attendees to make the trip, but more importantly, this year’s Blog World Expo was located at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino. I think almost everyone who attended the event though that the move from the Las Vegas Convention Center to Mandalay Bay was one of the greatest changes of all. The Las Vegas Convention Center was cool, but you either had to get a taxi ride, pay for the tram or walk quite a ways to get to and from the event. Staying at Mandalay Bay is the best option for Blog World, and if you are a casino player, you can actually have your whole stay comp’d (like I did!), and there is also so much else do to in the casino. Even if you don’t find yourself Mandalay Bay, you still have the Luxor right next door, which is almost the same distance as the Hilton from the Las Vegas Convention Center (which was the previous walk for prior BWE events).
Eating at conferences is always a big deal and usually hit or miss. I already wrote about how Blog World Expo provided speakers and other attendees with $20 lunch vouchers. This was just an excellent idea, and allowed anyone with a voucher to get virtually any type of food they wanted. You weren’t limited to just fast food, but also had access to some nice restaurants and cafes. Sure, it’s only $20 a day… but a huge improvement over the regular conference lunches we see at other events.
For anyone in the blogging space, you have to be at Blog World Expo. Big names speakers that made the trip to Blog World Expo this year including myself are John Chow, Jeremy ShoeMoney, Darren Rowse, Daniel Scocco and Brian Clark just to name a few. What’s also great about the speakers that attend Blog World Expo, is that it’s such a vast crowd and it’s almost impossible not to learn anything new, or make some new contacts. Among the marketers and bloggers at the conference, you also get to meet up with a wide collection of government officials, speakers on every topic and celebrities like Adam Carolla, Penn Jillette (Penn & Teller) and Mark Burnette, who were all speakers at this years event.
Exhibit Hall & Sponsors
No matter what conference you go to, the exhibit hall is always ones of the biggest attractions, and Blog World Expo continues to bring in some of the biggest brand name sponsors every years. Big name companies on the sponsor list this year include Ford (letting you test drive their cars), Kodak (giving away free camera), SouthWest Airlines, Sony, Pepsi, Coors Light and YouTube. The exhibit hall continues to get bigger every year, and with more big name companies contributing every year, it’s always cool to see what’s being given out by these companies as well as making a few business contacts.
Ranging from $50 (exhibit hall only) to $1195 (full conference pass), Blog World Expo has ticket plans for everyone. Even though I continually have my full pass ticket covered since I speak at the event every year, I think it’s a fair price for a conference of this size and value. If the price is too far out of your price range, but you still have a high traffic blog, you can always contact the Blog World Expo team for a “Press Pass”, or search around for discount coupon codes and promotions for free passes.
Recommendations & Room for Improvement
Most of this report has been praise for Blog World Expo, as it truly is one of my favorite events, but we can always find room for improvement and here’s a few areas I noticed at this year’s Blog World.
- KEYNOTE SESSIONS –
The room layout and stage was excellent, however unless you were sitting in the first few rows, you could barely see any of the speakers while they were sitting in their chairs. The stage needs to be a foot or two higher for everyone to see to speakers.
- CONFERENCE SCHEDULE -
The BlogWorld.com web site has a schedule listed on the site that helps you manage how you want to plan your day, but it also makes it very hard to get a quick glance at who is speaking or what you really want to see. While at the event, there are also paper schedules available, but they don’t list the speakers. The Blog World Expo handbook has the best schedule and information. What I would really like to see is an iPhone/BlackBerry app available for next year’s conference schedule and an easy to read schedule available on the site.
This was a long and detailed post, but it’s worth it for anyone who was on the fence this year about going to Blog World Expo and didn’t get a chance to make it. Mark your calendars for October 2011 and definitely do what you can to make the event. Special thanks to BenSpark.com for the excellent photography used in this post!
If you made the trip to Blog World this year, or plan to next year. Be sure to leave a comment on what you look forward to seeing at Blog World Expo 2011 and any comments on this year’s event.