Well here it is, the end of the Beer Bloggers Conference 2014 coverage. If you’ve been following along through parts 1 and 2, you have my thanks. Covering an event of this magnitude is difficult as there is often too much information to include. With that being said, Day 3 was on the lighter side and included a bit more self reflection.
Day 3 – Cooperative Blogging and Closing Ceremonies
The last day of the conference was light and easy. Early morning call time provided listeners (and zombies) with Five-Minute presentations from several notable bloggers – think TED Talk. This was followed by the panel I was on concerning Cooperative Blogging. With Allan Wright (@beerbloggers / @zephyradventure) as moderator, Jessica Miller (@heybrewtiful), Tom Aguero (@queencitydrinks), and myself got to talking about how to make the blogging world a better place.
Miller is doing some absolutely fantastic stuff in Georgia on HeyBrewtiful. Not only is her site beautifully creative, but her message is sharp and clear. Her IPA Day piece titled 6 Women + 12 Beers = IPA Day Celebration is an excellent example of how to successfully bring in outside voices. This is a classic list type post artfully redefined. Miller collected the opinions from six Georgian beer loving women and compiled their thoughts/opinions about their favorite IPAs. Not only does this type of post look great, but it’s also very valuable in terms of community outreach.
By including those outside of your blog, you expand your reach, and generate unique content.
— heybrewtiful (@heybrewtiful) August 24, 2014
Queen City Drinks collaborates in the Cincinnati area, and his approach is somewhat different. Aguero utilizes and open door policy letting people write whatever they want. He actually inherited the site from a friend he used to write with so he’s an advocate of sharing this freedom with others that are interested in writing. He also openly trades post content on other blogs in return for someone writing for his.
These approaches help Queen City Drinks diversify content.
— Queen City Drinks (@QueenCityDrinks) August 23, 2014
I spoke a bit about my involvement in the LA Beer Bloggers group and how influential it has been in my life. Mainly giving me, and others for that matter, the opportunity to meet such fantastic people in the industry outside of the computer lab. I’m a firm believer in collaboration and building relationships, which is consequently, what this entire conference is about.
Homeward Bound, but First – Craft Beer
The ride home with Greg Nagel landed us a detour at Societe Brewing Co where we met up with Brandon Hernandez and Mike Sardina. Make sure you put Societe on your beer destination map if you are in the San Diego area. The beers are well crafted and very noteworthy. If you are a fan of single hopped beers, try the Bachelor. The version we had on tap that weekend was made with Sorachi Ace, which is a truly magical fruity/coconuty/tropical hop.
Sardina took us on a tour of the facility, something I had not done since my book tour. Societe has been doing great and they are prepped for expansive. Unlike other breweries in San Diego that see tremendous success, Societe has opted to expand slowly. Their demand is incredibly high and they are creating top quality product, but they want to ensure they can continue to do this. It’s good to see this responsible approach to expansion that doesn’t focus on complete market saturation. In this case, the beer, and the people speak for themselves – and what they are saying, is something you should definitely listen to. Oh, and it sounds like there may be some bottled sour releases in the near future. I can only imagine how hard they will be to procure…but worth it.
5 Valuable Memories from BBC14 Day 3
This weekend, this convention, is worth serious reflection. This isn’t something that is possible overnight. I’ll be digesting my experiences for quite some time. I’m incredibly thankful for Craft Beer in So Cal and I’m thankful that there are so many talented bloggers in the world. I’m extremely happy that I got to meet some new people and spend time with familiar friends. I’ve already registered for the 2015 Beer Bloggers Conference (#bbc15) in Asheville, NC – if you’re a beer writer, I hope to see you there. Also, if you are on the fence about it, trust me when I say it’s well worth the price tag.
What is my call to action? What should I bring back to Los Angeles with me and how should I talk about the conference to those that didn’t attend?
1. There is a strong desire to collaborate, but not everyone is comfortable taking the first step. Reach out to your fellow bloggers and find out how you can work together. The result with be a valuable learning experience and something interesting to share.
2. Georgian craft beer bloggers are inspirational! Well, one in particular is. Jessica Miller (@heybrewtiful) is incredibly tallented and highly worth your follow. Regardless of wether you live inside or outside Georgia, make sure you go to www.heybrewtiful.com, check out her site, and find out how she seamlessly blends art, beer, and the women of craft.
3. Learn SEO…and then teach me.
4. Greg Nagel – OC Beer Blog is great. If you’re looking for honest feedback on beer, blogging, and/or general life, he’s a great sounding board. Check out his new podcast Four Brewers if you like beer radio. Grab an Egg Bagel with Greg Nagel.
5. The Beer Bloggers Conference, and conventions like these are invaluable. I didn’t expect to love it as much as I did and I left with memories and new friends. I’m incredibly excited to see Sierra Nevada at the 2015 conference in Asheville North, Carolina. I can already tell it’s going to be a great conference, hopefully we can get some more LA representation at the next one. It’s worth the flight and hotel price everyone! Call to action —–> Register Today! See you there!
Cheers everyone and thanks for coming along for the adventure.