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150 Bloggers Pack Melbourne Hotel for ProBlogger Training Day

One week ago today in Melbourne the first ever ProBlogger training day took place. What started as a spur of the moment idea less than 4 weeks before ballooned into a very worthwhile experience.

Originally I had thought it would just be a day for 10-15 bloggers gathering around a board room table talking about blogging – but it quickly turned into a sold out training day with 150 bloggers from around Australia (and one from New Zealand) packed into a hotel’s conference room to spend a full day learning about four aspects of blogging.

Speaking on the day were Chris Garrett, Yaro Starak, Collis Ta’eed, Pip Lincolne, Shayne Tilley from SitePoint and myself.

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We covered four main ‘pillars’ of blogger:

  1. Creating Killer Content
  2. Finding Readers
  3. Building Community and Reader Engagement
  4. Monetization

Here’s Yaro, Chris and myself – and no we didn’t coordinate our clothing for the day but we’re wondering if perhaps jeans and grey shirts are the new blogger uniform. Image by TheCreativePen.

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There was also a couple of panels and two case studies as well as a work-shopping session.

I wasn’t quite sure how we’d pull it all together in such a short time but considering there was only a few weeks lead time the event went swimmingly with loads of requests to do it again both in Melbourne and around the country (and overseas). I’m not quite sure when or how we’ll put on another one – but I do hope we can do something similar again.

A number of people kept great notes on the day so I’ve compiled the ones I’ve found below for those of you not able to be there. Some of them are blow by blow accounts so you’ll be able to pick up a lot of the tips touched on during the day. Also below is a video shot on the day by Lara from Social Rabbit asking attendees for tips on what they learned.

Summaries/Notes from the Day

PS: we did record the day and are trying to work out what to do with the 7 or so hours of content recorded. One option is to bundle it into a DVD – if you’re interested in buying a copy please let me know in comments below to give us an indication as to whether it’s feasible to do so.

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. This looks great Darren,

    I would have been there had I been in Australia, I would have loved to see the blogging king (you) live .

    I knew everything went great, keep up the good work,
    -Onibalusi

  2. Hi,

    Great work!

    It looked really exciting and useful. Wish I was there!

    How about some short clips that show some important parts, like your presentation and Yaro’s presentation?

    Kindest,
    Nabeel

  3. Okay, I don’t think you should ask anybody about whether it’s feasible to do so because I think you should know by far the best media for this type of training content should be pack into DVD, although digital media is fast, but I believe those who are serious blogger should kept it on his or her DVD rack as one of their blogging library so to say.

  4. Thanks for sharing the notes and resources Darren. The ProBlogger event was very enlightening for me, and opened up many new opportunities and insights that I hadn’t considered before. More so than anything else it was a great opportunity to network with other like-minded bloggers and to find out more about their online and offline marketing strategies.

    I would highly recommend the ProBlogger event to anyone serious about taking their blog to the next level.

  5. Hey Darren,

    Awesome work :). wish i was there.

    I would love to get that dvd.. Thanks !!

    ~Dev

  6. It sounds like a great event, something very worthwhile to go to. I’d definitely buy the DVD (depending if the price is too big); you guys know so much about blogging, and give really great tips. Seven hours of content from you would be amazing to have.

  7. Josh Garcia says:

    Hey Darren,

    Sounds like it was a blast! If I was in Australia, I would have been there. You should package it up in DVD format.

    Chat with you later…
    Josh

  8. This is the biggest blog that i read on a regular basis so i can only guess but i bet that training would be invaluable.

  9. jason says:

    From that picture, I would guess that this will become a regular event. Congrats!

  10. Hafiz Nasser says:

    Hi Darren,

    Congratulation cause manage to held the first ever ProBlogger training day.

    From 10-15 bloggers gathering change to 150 bloggers! Great work.
    Im sure it is a priceless experience to be there + education that we can get from training day.
    Btw, jeans and grey shirts seems nice as new blogger uniform

    Hafiz Nasser

  11. Maura says:

    Heck Yes make that DVD!!!

  12. Subodh says:

    If i had been there definitely i would have attended the training because i am a beginner for blogging.I live in India and here i never heard of such kind of events.

  13. Darren,
    You could indeed sell a DVD of the event. If a DVD is not available, a CD. Many people could listen to a CD while in transit.
    I am sure the ideas shared plus the audience questions would be excellent.
    Congratulations on the success. Although it is not surprising.
    David

  14. Very cool to see such a great turnout. Congrats and I’m sure the hard work will pay off!

  15. Thanks for the detailed report, Darren. The notes are very helpful.

    Would definitely buy a DVD if you get one done.

    Another option could be to put up the recordings in the cloud – not sure what the size is – but Drop.io, SmugMug, Vimeo could be some options.

    Would also pay to get “paid” access to the cloud recordings.

  16. I had NO idea you did this in less than 4 weeks. You really are the blog god. ;) I’m totally jealous, of course, that I couldn’t be there, but I think Kapil had a great idea to publish these on the web for paid access. I would totally pay for it. Much less work than dealing with DVD’s, too, I think.

    Good for you for stepping out of your comfort zone. You’re like a social butterfly now. And, WOW, you’re having a fantastic month! You’re definitely taking it to the next level. Even though bloggers live through our computers, we do like to see the light of day and connect face to face every once in awhile.

    Keep doing what you’re doing. You seem to have the magic touch. You’re an “Evolver of Great Things”. =)

  17. Bookbee says:

    I’d buy that for a dollar! Or, more specifically, I think the optimum specs might be a 90-minute DVD for … $29?? I’d buy that!

  18. Hey Darren,

    Once again, thanks for an awesome day! (best excuse for a day off from work yet!)

    The DVD would be great, and would be an amazing product for you to put out to your readers / subscribers and that of the other speakers. A lot of opportunity there.

    I wanted to thank you for this mini-recap and the list of notes. I wasn’t able to keep up on my iPad, so that list of notes is invaluable.

    Hope that you’ll be releasing the slides from the day soon (the visual cues they’ll provide me will be better than reading someone’s notes – i will remember the talks better if I had the actual slides to read and a number of other folks are asking for them too).

    Regards,
    Laneth Sffarlenn

  19. What a nice surprise to wake up and find my site’s been linked to by Problogger.net! Thanks so much Darren! Thoroughly enjoyed your training day and I look forward to the next one!

    For anyone who was on the fence about attending, I say: DO IT next time. It’s 100% worth it for the information and networking.

  20. peter mcc says:

    This was a nicely put together event, folks, and I especially liked Darren’s opening statement that this event would not be covering setting up a blog.

    It was straight down to the good stuff.

    I’m still working through a stack of ideas and techniques that I discovered on the day.

    There was even use of a FreeMind map from Chris which I find really helpful for laying things out logically.

    I suspect the next such event will sell out in a heart beat.

    Cheers

    PMc

  21. Awesome work! I just wish I was one of those 150 bloggers there.

  22. Didn’t we have a lovely time? I’m still on a high. I left with a list of things to do as long as an elephant’s trunk but ever more determined to do it.

    Many thanks for being a good sport and let me have my pic taken with you and for linking to my Would You Travel 1,846 Miles for this Man? blog post. It’s got a lot of comments and many people say they’d travel further than that for an event like this.

    For a blogger like me whose friends don’t even know what a blog is it’s an amazing opportunity to spend time with 150+ people who do get it.

  23. Jessica Mack says:

    Hi Darren, I have to say..this was the best training day I’ve been to (and not just in the blogging sphere). All of the speakers were engaging, interesting, and to the point. There is nothing worse than tuning out and taking a nap because a presentation is all fluff and no substance.

    Thank you again!

  24. Thanks for organising such an informative and fun day Darren! I learnt a lot that’s for sure!

    The networking opportunities were fantastic too. It was also interesting to see that the number of women that attended (by far) outweighed the number of men!

    Keep up the good work.

  25. Ann says:

    Thanks Darren, how do you get the DVD?

  26. I would totally be interested in a DVD of the talks! Also, perhaps you could offer a physical DVD, or a digital download for a lower price?

  27. Matthew Hall says:

    Darren this was an amazing event – the value was really exceptional and I’d recommend anyone within cooee of any potential future events to dive right in.

    For me it was a valuable shot of enthusiasm and motivation and tribal belonging all rolled into one.

    Bravo!

  28. I was there but would love to watch it all again! There was just so much quality content to take in. A DVD sounds great.

  29. Darren: just a quick note to say congratulations on what looks/sounds like an excellent event!! Quite a bit of work goes into pulling something like that together so kudos.

    Look forward to seeing some of the Problogger track in Las Vegas this October :-)

  30. Darren,I wanted to thank you for the detailed report,I would love to get that dvd.. Thanks !!

  31. melissa says:

    is it possible to order the dvd and have it shipped? hope you can provide the details. i would love to learn more about blogging aside from me making it as my online diary.

  32. Aqif says:

    Congratulations for those who atttending this event.

    About the DVD compilation, I really want that so bad. I believe that it is packed with a lot of useful information about blogging.

    Congratulations once again Darren, Yaro, Chris and others for making this event.

  33. David says:

    Download?????…:]

  34. Hi Darren,

    If you ever bring your seminar to the UK I’m in. You have a lot of fans here.

    I would definitely be interested in the DVD version of your Melbourne gig .

    Pete

  35. Sounds like people got a lot out of the blog session. I love the video with everyones’ comments.

  36. J.D. Meier says:

    I love it when a plan comes together.

    It seems like you somehow combined inspiration with results and pulled off your vision in a way that even surprised yourself and set a new bar.

  37. Great day alright, exhausting doing the round trip from Brisbane all in one day and we got stuck in the air and missed the start of Chris’ presentation, but once we arrived it was terrific.

    When they take the show on the road I recommend it to anyone who can make it.

  38. Darren you are looking so cute. I wish i could sit there.

  39. Sarah Arrow says:

    I would love to get a DVD, or the audio to listen to (am not really a video person, but would make the exception in this case ;) ).

    Is there any chance of bringing this concept to the UK? perhaps it will be smaller in number – 50 rather than 150, but I still think you would get a good response from us Brits

  40. Hey Darren,

    First of all congrats :) I wish I could be there to listen you. But I like your approach as you keep everything transparent and clear, so I am sure we can learn or at least can have some highlights of that training session there in terms of text content or even video.

    BTW even I am surprized to see grey shirts and jeans as a coincidence…lol…to be very frank it happned with me many times with my gf (now my wife). On almost every date we had the same color or style…I think that’s called telepathy.

  41. Lara Solomon says:

    Thanks for the shout out Darren :) I’m glad the video was such a hit, I suspect your professionally recorded one from the day will be slightly better!

    To reiterate for those who couldn’t make it, go next time!

  42. EQUIPnTRIP says:

    Hi Darren,

    Thanks for hosting the event.

    My son and I drove down from Canberra to attend the event and both of us came away greatly inspired.

    We haven’t engaged in person with bloggers before. Being in the presence of 150 bloggers, some at the top of the profession, struck us both that this is real. There are real and authentic people behind all the words, photos and videos we see on blogs.

    During our drive back to Canberra the day after the event we started chatting about blogging around about Albury. For the next four fours we talked about a great blog concept that my son may well take on. Our discussion covered many of the points from the event. None of the discussion would have taken place if we had not attended the event.

    The event also broke resistance I had about starting a website. Thanks to the inspiration from the presenters and attendees it is now well on the way.

    Thanks also to those who took notes and shared them via links to this post.

    Allan McDonald @
    EQUIPNTRIP

  43. Dino Dogan says:

    Im def interested in the DVD or better yet, online access to the content…pay per view kind of thing…

    Great post and thnx for providing additional links to detailed notes…should be fun checking those out.

  44. Julian says:

    it seems like gathering of legendary blogger from Australia :-)

  45. Kok Siong says:

    This first ever Problogger Training is a worthwhile training course. Most of the top bloggers have been there and delivering their talk. I hope that i can be one of the participant next time. I’m sure it will be a great experience there.

  46. Linda says:

    Hey Darren, How about bringing your training to the UK? We could all do with some hands on training here too!

  47. Dean Saliba says:

    What is with everyone wearing grey shirts? :P

    I wish we could have something like that here in the UK. :)

  48. Hello Darren ..We missed out it .Is it possible for you to put a webcast on similar topic? No problem if it is paid or not.

  49. Gemma Carr says:

    Wow, the video of attendees is brilliant. A great way to wrap up the day and see what different perspectives everyone had.
    Thanks Social Rabbit! :)

  50. Empart says:

    What a fantastic day, choc-a-bloc full of blogging information, networking and personal advice from the experts!