A few weeks ago, I faced my fears of networking IRL, and attended the Ottawa Bloggers networking event and lunch. Organized by Josee, Instagrammer and founder of the Ottawa Bloggers Instagram account (that features content creators in the region), this meetup was simultaneously an opportunity to create content, to meet fellow creators in the area, and to discuss future networking opportunities. I decided to choose this event because I am a hobbyist Instagrammer and blogger in the Ottawa area, and wanted to meet other people who participate in the same hobby. I figured it would also be a good way to put my face and name to my account as an active user of the Ottawa Bloggers feature hashtag, and to put a name and face to others who use it (some attendees I realized were already mutual followers of me, though we had never interacted!).
At the event, I met Josee, host of the event and the woman behind the @lifeofamomboss Instagram account. Having amassed over 13 thousand followers, she is an expert in the industry of social media marketing and Instagram influencing. It was really interesting to hear her advice on growing a brand from the ground up, as well as getting into being a social media manager to brands (she manages 2 social media accounts for businesses as well as her own!). The advice from her and other creators was my main takeaway from the event. My main contribution ended up being several conversation starting questions related to these subjects, as well as my skills behind a camera. I was the only one to have brought a DSLR camera, so I ended up being the photographer for the ladies who were there for content creation in addition to networking. Thank goodness!
I walked away from this event with a lot of inspiration for my Instagram and blog, and the drive to actively pursue the goals I had arrived on during the networking event. It can be hard to find likeminded people who are also content creators, so to spend the afternoon with them was such a push to continue creating my own content. I also walked away with some content for my Instagram!
I was a little bit caught up in the event I was attending to grab a particular quote, but the sentiment that stuck out to me was the necessity for Ottawa to develop a networking event for female content creators, business owners, and brand representatives to meet and collaborate in regards specifically for social media. Nothing like this exists in the city, and it was decided upon that it was very much necessary!
I really want to attend more events like this in the future. The casual nature of the event made it so easy to talk to people who would otherwise be intimidating (like a 13k influencer). And, as I said, I walked away from this event so inspired for both my own platform and the growing network of local influencers I had met! I also strongly recommend events such as this to all small-platform creators who want inspiration!
Bonus below: a few “content creation” shots from the event!