What I Learned at Alt Summit

What I learned at Alt Summit

At the end of last month I attended Alt Summit in the beautiful Palm Springs, California. I’ve always made it a point to continue learning, even if I feel like I’m already knowledgable about blogging. The landscape of blogging and social media is continually evolving and there is always new information to absorb. I feel strongly that in order to stay relevant and at the forefront of your craft, you need to continue learning in your field. Today I’m sharing some of my takeaways from Alt Summit in Palm Springs.

Make the Old New Again
Alexandra EvjenJaime DerringerKelly Beall

In this session I was already a little familiar with promoting old content, as many of my older packing lists are still some of my post popular posts. I know that if you want content to be evergreen, it should be resourceful.

  • 80% of your traffic will come from 20% of your content.
  • Keep your most popular posts up to date, links should be available for purchase, photography should be up to date.
  • Evergreen content can be sustainable (yearly) or timeless (year-round).
  • Promote content 2-6 weeks prior to the time it will be useful.
  • Useful content can be seasonal fashion, holidays, packing, wanderlust, etc.
  • True Anthem Social and PubExchange are useful tools.
  • Q&A, Interviews are becoming more popular as content types.
  • Sell unused images from blog posts to stock sites for extra $$$.
  • Use unused images on sites you contribute to.
  • Create an e-book or course for passive income.
  • Re-share old (but still relevant) content in your newsletter, “Popular this week/month/etc.”.
  • Use WordPress Related Posts Plugin
  • Do a 2.0 followup on successful posts.

Monetizing Facts & Figures – All the Numbers You’ve Been Dying To Hear
Bruno Bornsztein, Jordan Ferney

I’ve worked with sponsors on my blog for quite some time now, but I was really interested to hear what sites larger than mine had to say. I’m a big fan of both Curbly and Oh Happy Day, so I was happy to sit in.

  • Display ads are in decline.
  • Measure your numbers/reach across all platforms, including social media.
  • Sponsorships are mostly achieved through networking.
  • Build Facebook ad promotion into your sponsorship rates.

Social Media Strength on Pinterest & Instagram
Tori TaitNanette Wong

Pinterest and Instagram are my happy internet places, so I was really excited to learn more about each of them.

  • Look at your analytics, invest in sources with longer visit times.
  • Use a planning mindset when pinning, plan 3 months out.
  • Tailwind is a great tool to use (I currently use and love it!) for pin scheduling.
  • With the algorithm, it doesn’t matter what order you pin in, as the pins will show to users out of order.
  • Good tools for Instagram: PicsArt, Planoly, Later, Priime, iconosquare, polarr, peoplemap.
  • If you plan to monetize Instagram, knowing your conversion number is good.
  • Leave thoughtful comments on Instagram accounts similar to yours.
  • Write engaging Instgram captions, ask a question, use emojis, use a strong call to action like asking for them to tag friends, etc.
  • Look for spikes in your analytics and figure out why that photo performed well. Repeat.

Sponsored Campaigns – How to Find, Pitch, and Follow Up with Brands and PR Agencies
Jyl Johnson PatteeJenny Komenda

I have to admit that nearly all of the sponsored posts you see here are ones where a brand has reached out to me. I have not yet started pitching to brands beyond a few hotel stays and I’d really love to. I think it would broaden my reach as far as working with companies that more closely align with Hej Doll and my values.

  • Use a notebook or Google Doc where you can keep track of your interactions.
  • Joining agencies can help increase your sponsored opportunities.
  • “About” and “work with me” pages are very important.
  • Keep a wishlist of brands that you feel your blog aligns with.
  • Find out what brands you want to work with are working on, and see where your needs meet up.
  • Contact brands on their most active platform.
  • Pitch in August for the following year.
  • Most sponsorships are gained through relationships, so maintain them and touch basis at least 3-4x yearly.

Crafting a Superior About Page
Diana Keller

This was a round-table session that I caught the tail end of so I didn’t get to take many notes, but I did learn that my about page needs improvement, ha. It should provide basic information about your location, your interests, and not too much information that is geared toward sponsors.

Closing Keynote
Todd Oldham, interviewed by Jodi Levine

I don’t have a lot of notes about this, since it was a closing keynote, but I’ve always been a big fan of Todd Oldham, especially in parenthood. My little ones love his Kid Made Modern book and art supplies.

Palm Springs in the Winter What I Wore to Palm Springs - 5 Days of Outfits

Overall I feel like I had a wonderful experience at Alt Summit. I mingled with some current friends, met a few new ones, and learned some new things that I’m currently making a blog to-do list for.

Did you attend Alt Summit in Palm Springs? What were your favorite takeaways?

7 thoughts on “What I Learned at Alt Summit

  1. From a blog reader’s (rather than blogger’s) perspective this post was fascinating. We all accept that advertising and sponsorship are necessary for blog survival – so it’s good to know that you think about how advertising aligns with your message and therefore to your readers. To sum up – I’m happy to see adverts for things that I might want and I have followed links to, and bought from, your promotions.

  2. Nice roundup Jessica! I’m glad you were taking notes … I’m going to share this with the Curbly team so we can try to implement some of the great ideas you captured here.

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