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Elite Retreat

I was a little dubious when I first heard of the Elite Retreat but as I’ve been pondering it for the last 24 hours I’m convinced it is a good idea.

What is it? Well in short – it’s an opportunity to spend a couple of days with a group of experienced web masters. Only 30 people are going to be there so it’s a small group environment (with a 1:6 ratio of leaders to attendees).

The people involved will be familiar to most ProBlogger readers – Dave Taylor (from numerous blogs), Jeremy Schoemaker (from Shoemoney), Aaron Wall (from SEO book) and Lee Dodd (from earners forum). Each are experienced webmasters making a good living online from a variety of web mediums.

The cost of the Elite Retreat ($4850) will exclude most people (intentionally) and even if you can afford it you are not guaranteed a spot and need to apply. The cost includes the two days, one on one coaching afterwards, an iPod Nano with all the content on it etc.

I can just hear the critiques of Elite Retreat already. Price, name, exclusivity etc… but there’s something about the idea of spending such an intense one on one time with experienced webmasters that makes sense and I’m quite jealous of all who will be there.

As I said to Lee this morning when we chatted about it via IM – while I wasn’t thinking of something quite this expensive – I have been toying with the idea of a similar concept for 2007 with a few key bloggers. Funnily enough – some of those involved were on my target list.

I don’t expect the majority of ProBlogger readers to run off to sign up for this one – but I thought it was worth including as I know it will interest a few of you both as something to consider attending and because it is an example of bloggers leveraging their expertise and profile to indirectly make money from their blogging.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. brem says:

    The problem with retreats or conferences is that they are crammed with information, with little time to assimilate them. All in all, I’m not convinced this is the right way to learn about something. However, I can see how a one-on-one interview can be beneficial. I’m just not sure to what extent.

  2. Lee Dodd says:

    The difference here is that we won’t have hundreds of attendees. You won’t be crammed with information that doesn’t really apply as this is about you and your business. You will have amazing networking opportunities with the leaders and other attendees. This is up close and personal, a huge value!

  3. Leonard says:

    Another person who will be attending is Jeremy Schoemaker’s sister, Andrea Schoemaker. She’s currently the project manager for Elite Retreat.

  4. Jon says:

    I have no problem with the idea of the retreat, I’m sure there is good value in personal contact with those successful people.
    To call it the “Elite” retreat, puts me on edge a bit. Being an elite or wanting to be in contact with anyone who thinks they are the elite, is not very appealling to me.

  5. Well, if you’re spending the $4,850 on the retreat .. you may as well spend the extra $500 for dinner .. :p (even though the hotel and liquor is extra)

    I think I’m with Jon on this one. The site claims “The purpose of this event is to take your business to another level.Bring your business plan or current site objectives with you and we will help you optimize your business structure” yet, I suspect the end result will be that we will see text-links of other probloggers like yourself and other SEO experts and self-claimed “A-Listers” in their sidebar – all whose businesses are probably doing just fine before the conference.

    But I guess it’s all relative. If you think $300 per hour consulting is worth it .. 20 hours of consulting for any business venture is not something that unusual out there in the “real world”. Most would gladly want to just pay someone to help take their business to the next level .. here it’s like learning it for free on the internet now. They might be able to teach you how to do things better – but the onus is still put back on you to be able to succeed. I can pay for all the best advice in the world – but if I don’t follow it – it’s just another waste of my money. (i.m.o.)

  6. Stuart says:

    Sad to see so much negativity here.

    Most of the people on that list are not just legends in their own lunchbox – they’re people with the skills that so many other’s wish they had and the fee they’re asking in return for their time and expertise is quite reasonable.

  7. Brian Clark says:

    The really sad thing is that many bloggers refuse to spend *any* money to gain an advantage for themselves, and yet continually wonder why they fail.

  8. Lindalee says:

    It would be quite an experience, that’s for sure, and what an opportunity to learn from those folks.

    For me, I am still learning in dribs and drabs, and having fun learning as I go. I am so new, I am going to hire someone to teach me some simple things. I don’t mind paying to learn things, I guess it’s all relative to what we can afford and where we are at in our blogging adventure.

  9. Chris says:

    I think most importantly “Good command of English”.

  10. andrew wee says:

    I’ve been helping Andrea with some of the publicity on this, and maybe I might have a little more insight.

    whether you’re running an offline or online business, you’ll see success coming if you work at it. and at some point you might hit a ‘glass ceiling’ whether it’s environmental or possibly a little psychological in nature.
    the key benefit i’m seeing from Elite Retreat is that when you hit this brick wall, you can look at how some of the groundbreakers have broken through this barrier.

    Whether you’re choosing to look, analyze and apply the strategies of Darren, Shoemoney’s, Dave’s or Lee’s is dependent on your personality and business approach. the event’s not just about talking one-on-one or going for $500 dinners, I know it’s more than that, but it’s something intangible and difficulty to express in words. i think if you’ve reached the level i’m talking about, you’d know what i’m talking about.

    if you’re a pure blogging newbie, you might want to rack up about six months of blogging under your belt, have one or two monetization strategies down pat, then Elite Retreat will pay back handsomely for you.

    If you’re already pulling in $5,000-$10,000 per month consistently from your online efforts, then I would see the event as providing tangible benefits for you. the event would be a catalyst to bring you to the next level.

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