My #BlogHer14 Life and all that Jazz!

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This past weekend I attended my 5th BlogHer conference in San Jose.  Overall, I had a great experience as always.  Sure, things have changed over the years- but I live in the moment and not in the memory of the last one.  My system to being successful during BlogHer is Outreach, Networking, and Research.  In in no way do I depend upon BlogHer to provide me my experience.  They create the environment and provide us with the tools for greatness, but the conference can’t be everything to everyone. Despite not being able to be everything it is still the #1 conference for bloggers.  So instead of complaining, I choose to be an agent of change and positivity.

 

College Reunion

My favorite aspect was reconnecting with my sisters and brothers in blogging.  I am an only child, and aside from my church have never been a part of any groups or organizations.  So with that being said, I try and make the most out of engaging with the other bloggers.  I genuinely enjoy the experience and like summer camp, feel sad when it is time to leave.

 

Brands

Now here is where the road to positivity gets rocky:  I am not a swag whore!  When I attend conferences with expo halls I go to each vendor in attempts to learn about their brand and tell them a little about me.  I think this is where BlogHer organizers slightly miss the mark since most bloggers want to see brands that are open to working with them through their blog.   On the expo floor it should be three types of vendors:

1. Blogger Tools:  Vendors talking about items pertinent to the business of blogging such as hosting, cameras, smartphones, computers, tablets, video equipment (lighting kids, lenses, etc), clothing brands, GoPro,  coffee, travel services/ destinations, food brands, prescription eye wear to protect from monitor strain, office furniture, ergonomically chairs, spill proof wine glasses, etc.  Things that relate to bloggers, you understand?

2. Blogger Headhunters:  So if you go onto LinkedIn there are tons of brands looking to work with Social Media experts.  Not every brand is looking for a Brand Ambassador, but there are brands looking to hire Social Influencers and run their company blog.  Social Media Job Fair?!

3. Blogger Partnerships:  Brands looking to work with brands.

I understand that conferences are a business, but blogging is also a business.  I don’t understand why period products, or washers and dryers had a place on the conference floor unless they are targeting health and wellness or interior design bloggers and looking to bring on Brand Ambassadors.  There should be a reminder to brands that this is a Blogging Conference and not a sales/trade show.

There was the good and the bad.  Let’s start with the great…

 

The Good

 

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Host Gator:  I feel as if I had the best conversation with them.  Not only did they have people in the booth that actually work at HOST GATOR, they were both friendly and knowledgeable.  I hope that everyone had the same experience as me.  I walked up and started telling them about my server horror stories, lolll.  Guess What?  They gave me blogging tips (wayyyy more valuable than swag), and I gave them tips on engaging with bloggers.  I felt like it was a really cool experience, and it was actually my best interaction on the floor as it applied to being a blogger.

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Scrub Bubbles: Best preconference experience.  Their Social Media Team was really on it!  Also, I talked the PR rep into making a video, lolll.  Check out the video below.  Ok this wasn’t really fair as our family is a huge fan of Scrubbing Bubbles and we use it a minimum of three times per week. I enjoyed my interaction with the entire SC Johnson booth.

Sonic:  Loved the enthusiasm from the reps in their booth.  They accommodated my request for a “suicide”, and the fact that they knew what it was, was super cool.  If they decide to make another BlogHer appearance, they should come up with props and special lighting for the food bloggers to take pictures for Social Media amplification.  That would be the best free advertising, EVER!

Chucky Cheese: Kudos to them for actually being in attendance to speak with bloggers regarding possible collaborations.  Even though the brand doesn’t fall under my niche, the fact that they are blogger friendly prompts me to take my little cousins there for fun time.

San Jose Tourism: I believe this was the first time that I’ve seen a tourism board have a booth during BlogHer, and I think that was fantastic –Especially for the travel bloggers!  I hope that BlogHer reaches out to all of the tourism boards moving forward.

WordPress: I felt so bad for them when they were over shadowed by the line to see Khloe Kardashian blocked people from entering in their booth.  WordPress, the rock star of the blogging community, was there offering help to those having issues with their platform.  I think this was so cool of them, and I hope that they come back to BlogHer as a speaker.

 

The Bad

Hairfinity: YIKES!  I will save my comments for the post conference BlogHer feedback form.

The Awkward

The Period Cup- Ummmm this would have been a better fit at a health and fitness conference.  It is so weird discussing periods in a non-medical setting.  However, the reps were friendly.

Yoplait- was that like a mini focus group?  I like Yoplait plain yogurt, but it was awkward when I chose the Chobani Greek yogurt. Reps were also friendly, and good social media follow up!

Next Issue- Hmmm we are at a blogging conference and they were promoting magazines?!  Doesn’t matter if they were downloadable… not sure this was a fit.

For the brands that didn’t make my Good, Bad, Awkward list… it’s not a bad thing, they just didn’t make an impression on me.

 

 

The Parties

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Well… I think that if BlogHer is going to have a cash board during the conference parties they could allow brands to come in and sponsor the parties, or reach out for liquor sponsors.  This way attendees can get a non-hotel room space.  Security kept complaining about the noise, but the room was so hot the door needed to be opened to let air in.  I did enjoy the interactions.  My group ended up going downstairs and buying drinks from the bar.

The McDonald’s party was amazing.  Open sangria bar and Rev Run… who can beat that?  I am so glad to see McDs back this year, and I hope that they continue to sponsor.  McD is the BEST when it comes to blogger engagement, and they can teach a thing or two to other brands.

 

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Eppa Sangria hosted an event on the first day which set the tone for the rest of the weekend.  A lot of the mentors and newbies were able to meet for the first time, and break the ice.  I really enjoyed my time here, all of the reps were friendly.

 

U.S. Cellular hosted a luncheon which led to some great blogger engagement during the event.  I had a great time, and the food was excellent…. actually the best during the entire conference!  The only thing that would have made it better was winning a tablet, lolll

 

Suggestions

I think BlogHer should have a professional track for businesses.  They can learn how to work with bloggers, incorporate social media into their marketing strategy, and strengthening their existing channels.  VidCon uses this model, and I believe it could mean more revenue for the BlogHer brand.

 

Conclusion

#BlogHer14 is awesome!  Nothing was so off that it would stop me from attending next year.

 

 

Black Blogger Experience at #BlogHer14

Black Blogger Experience at #BlogHer14

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BlogHer isn’t defined by race, but by profession—mainly parenting bloggers.  Sure there are parties like the multiculti, or queerisphere events, but nothing specific for groups separated by race.  As a black blogger, I attend BlogHer because my site is about diversity, which the BlogHer brand represents.  There is nothing on my blog specifically that identifies me by race aside from my pictures.  Everyone can read my blog post and they will either love it or hate, but they won’t feel excluded.  Yet, I think this was part of the reason why there was a need for black bloggers to get together because despite inclusion, we still feel left out of the conversation.

I am considered a BlogHer veteran at this point because I have attended about 5 BlogHer conferences, and I look forward to them each year.

However, during past conferences, I never connected with other black bloggers to discuss our presence in the blogosphere, media, and with brands. My work ethic is to work hard, pitch myself, break down doors, and brand myself.  If someone says no, I either keep trying or reroute.

 

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…And Then My View Changed

1. FeministaJones is a respected force in the blogging world- “Oh My Gawd”… those are the 3 words that describe her.  She is the most awesome person and writer, EVER! As I stated on Twitter, she is my “TheBloggess.”  Her article on BlogHer regarding the recent disc jockey going-in on a black woman rant was so good that it promoted me to reach out to her prior to the conference and threaten her, lol.  Not like a hard threat, but more like a, “If you don’t give me 15 minutes of your time, I will show up at your front door . . . hashtag that!”  lmaoooo.  What she represents to me is living your truth, writing about it, and appealing to all races.  She is a strong woman with an opinion and fearless attitude.  Ms. Jones is someone I can look up to as a writer, and feel encouraged to channel my voice through my pen to become a force.

2. I absolutely cannot stand the way Black Women are portrayed in the media.  Although there are a few black actresses with roles on TV shows, the overall tone is HOT MESS Reality TV Stars.  Now one would think to ignore and continue to be an example.  However, where we get into problems is that legitimate brands will not work with those of us who have a good moral compass, education, and a strong work ethic.  They are either looking for the hot mess to exploit, or they are not looking for us at all.

3.  Although I am fortunate in my media career, this is not the norm for most black bloggers.  For years I’ve heard talk of racism in the business, but I never witnessed it first hand to provide examples.  My eyes were opened during Essence Festival in New Orleans earlier this month.  There were several national brands sponsoring this event.  For those of you who are just starting out, and/or not familiar with brands and sponsorships for events, when there is a huge event such as the sporting events, conferences, launches, etc. large brands invite bloggers to attend by sponsoring them and ask them to both represent their brand and cover the event.  Sponsorship usually includes per diem for expenses, airfare, hotel, and meals.  In exchange the bloggers can be asked for a number of things such as daily blog post, twitter parties, social media amplification, or appearances; this process is STANDARD!  During the Essence Festival, a lot of major brands (not all), offered bloggers the opportunity to attend and represent the brand, but in exchange DID NOT sponsor them as well with the normal perks.  Essence Festival is held during July 4th weekend, so bloggers were given the opportunity to attend the concerts, but they had to pay for their airfare, hotel, and meals.  Now this is no fault on Essence Festival, as I am told this is not the only event that this happens at. It is just the first time I witnessed it firsthand.

I am left asking myself, why does it appear, when it relates to the black demographic, there is no budget… but as it applies to everyone else (White, Asian, Hispanic), the standard for sponsorship is given without question.

4. White Female Bloggers to the Rescue: black bloggers have a new ally, white women.  Soooo yeah, I totally didn’t see that one coming.  There is a movement within the white blogging community where they are starting to speak up on our behalf.  They are writing blog post, and stepping up to the mic at conferences to talk about what they have noticed.  One writer stated that she has attended events where the white bloggers secretly got gift bags while the black bloggers were left empty handed and still expected to cover the event.

My question to those reading this post, are we allowed to speak up and share our stories?  Is it racism or is it that brands don’t consider black bloggers as influencers in media?  Whatever you classify it as, I am letting you know that we feel left out, and it is a lonely feeling.  As a result, this year during BlogHer, there was a huge need for us to get together and support each other.  We must continue to have campaigns like “My Black is Beautiful” because the media makes us feel as if we aren’t.  We still live in a society where dark skin is associated with bad, and white is considered pure and clean.  Anyone who doesn’t agree with that statement, it’s fine.  For those of us that see it, and/or experience it, most of us aren’t dwelling on it.  However, some days are tougher than others.

 

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What Goes On in a Black Blogger Meet Up at BlogHer?

We talk about expensive shoes, hair, boys, the new Nordstrom being built in Manhattan, how to find a good nanny . . . stuff like that, you know?  Despite popular belief, it is not a “kill whitey” movement, lol.  Honestly, some of my non-black friends were mad that they were not invited.  Frankly, anyone can come, but the black bloggers will not mince their words in regards to sharing their experiences, and offering support.  This Meet Up is a place where those of us who are tired, hurt, lost can come and be embraced and find strength in this business.

Side Note: Black bloggers are not the only ones that feel this way… Asian bloggers feel left out of the conversation as well.  This is a small start to a much larger conversation.  No one should feel left out.

Thank You to FeministaJones for being forward thinking, and getting this group of bloggers together and offer support.  Stay tuned, because my next article is going to be a recap of the overall experience.

 

P.S. Please check out the Blogalicious Conference and use discount code: b6sister

Tickets are almost sold out!

 

Social Media: 4 Types of Bloggers

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I feel the need to explain the 4 Types of Bloggers/ online influencers. Essentially we [Bloggers] all cross pollinate, but each of us have our strengths and/or areas that we excel at more than others. You can work with bloggers that can easily transition, but in most cases bloggers will always have one or two platforms that they’re more dominate in than others and that is the platform you will want to hire said bloggers to promote your brand or service on.  Please keep in mind that no two bloggers are the same!  Since Bloggers are a force, I use the United States military as a metaphor to describe the different types (branches) of bloggers.

4 Types of Bloggers

1. Traditional Bloggers (Navy): We all for the most part started out as a traditional blogger which consist of writing blog post and producing written post weekly/ daily.

2. Micro Bloggers (Army): These are the Kings and Queens of Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram, etc.  With their authentic following, they can sway their audience within 140 characters, 24 hours a day.  Side Note: Photo bloggers are also considered Mirco Bloggers, as they either have a blog that is exclusively dedicated to posting pictures and captions (anything under 300 words), or services like Instagram to showcase their work.

2A. Black Twitter and White Twitter (Navy Seals): Yes, they are considered Social Influencers.  No one really knows who controls these two organizations but what we do know is that Beyonce sold her soul to them for protection, lolll. We also know that they take down celebrities and high ranking public figures online. They predict and alter the future, produce memes out of thin air, ockings, and hack into Social Media accounts (hello Burger King). They run surveillance, and pull Social Media transcripts from the beginning of your Social Media existence (which include your deleted updates). Do not piss them off! Lastly, Black & White Twitter operate separately, but in extreme cases come together like a nightmare turned reality. An example of this instance was the recent #myNYPD Public Relations Campaign that crashed and burned before it even took off due to everyone who had ever been arrested in the history of New York City decided to log on and take down the NYPD. White Twitter took this extra personal and stayed awake for 96 hours straight, posting pictures of times they had been arrested for various misdemeanor crimes, loll.

3. Podcastors (Airforce): They control the online airwaves by creating downloadable content. They fly in stealth mode. Not much is known about them except they are effective when it comes to reaching out to people who are not into Social Media, and generally don’t have/ or rarely use Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram. The podcast are live during initial taping, and also allow for people can call in like a radio show.

4. vBloggers (Marines): The face of the operation. In most cases, when media calls upon Bloggers to use them in commercials, print, TV, etc. they reach out to vBloggers. vBloggers bka video bloggers create video content that mostly consist of Tutorials, Tips, Tricks, Interviews, etc.  Of course they can do more, but these are the things that stand out.

So if you are a PR firm or brand looking to launch an upcoming campaign, your first order of business is to get rid of the notion that all bloggers are the same.  As I mentioned earlier, the 4 Types of Bloggers cross pollinate, and can do all things but you really should target specific skill sets for various aspects of your campaign. You can use Traditional Bloggers to plant the seed by sending them information, items and/or access to your service for them to try out and speak intelligently about on their blogs. You can then reach out to the Mircro Bloggers to generate instant buzz around your product or service. Micro bloggers are also excellent at attending live events and posting real time updates.  You can reach out to vBloggers, who will create a video showing consumers how to use your product or service.  vBloggers will also promote your product or service to the consumers that are visually stimulated and less likely to read blogs.  Podcasters also do reviews, but more specifically can do interviews with Brand Ambassadors and get more in depth information about your product, service, and non-profit. Something to keep in mind: Podcasters also are largely followed by industry leaders, CEOs, insiders, etc. as they can download podcast and listen while traveling.

I hope this helps :)

Fashion Week Critics Need Reality Check! #fashion #bloggers

Fashion Week Critics Need Reality Check

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I have been reading the articles and comments surrounding IMG deciding to decrease the number of invites allotted to Bloggers during Mercedez-Benz Fashion Week.  In my opinion, the Fashion Week Critics Need A Reality Check! There is a war on the blogging community based on jealousy and ignorance as to who we are, and what we do.  Insiders are complaining about bloggers taking seats during MBFW… but the people being associated as Bloggers are in fact NOT BLOGGERS!  Insiders ASSume anyone that is not a magazine editor or buyer is a Blogger… not true.  The people standing out in front “people watching”, are not bloggers either!  As a matter of fact, I wish that insiders would stop using the term “Fashion Blogger” as a catch all for anyone they don’t want to be associated with.

No one complains about the countless amount of “stylist” with no real clientele who get to attend MBFW with no questions asked.  Is anyone talking about how designers were struggling to fill seats during the last few seasons? Right before the start of shows, I would see PR run out into the halls and pluck people to fill in the gaps.  These people asked to be seat fillers are the same people often seen drinking up the free champagne during the now defunct Fashion Night Out… but of course Bloggers were blamed for that too.  The seat fillers plucked from obscurity were anybody who just so happened to be standing in the vicinity of the media check-in desk.   Can I also make mention of the insiders who bring their children, assistants, nannies, friends, and family to attend shows?!  So IMG you would rather see PS156 fill their seats instead of a Blogger with an established following who can give designers additional buzz?!

Lets defunct another myth…. most Bloggers DO NOT receive free clothing!  If Fashion Bloggers sole reason for attending Fashion Week is to receive clothing, then I need to be pissed off for missing out on my swag.  Aside from the occasional gift bag left randomly at my seat, I have never been offered, promised, or received free clothing for covering shows. In all honesty, I would much rather visit a showroom and have the opportunity to ask questions directly than attend Fashion Week.  However in light of that, you can’t visit 30 showrooms all at once, in the same area…. this is where MBFW becomes a convenience.

Lastly, Bloggers are the ones assisting with keeping the lights on paying that $100 fee for press credentials because the insiders are too good to pay it.  The real bloggers take very seriously the opportunity to attend.  I am both grateful and respectful for all Mercedez-Benz Fashion Week invitations received. While attending, I try to not obstruct anyone’s view, and when invited back stage I make it a point to stay out of everyone’s way.  Even when I keep to myself, there are “insiders” who are resentful of my presence.  My process is taking photos, then finding a quiet corner to live blog to talk about the overall atmosphere and of course clothing.  That same process deems me as a nuisance because that quiet corner could have reserved for someone’s child to be looked after.

Regardless if you like Bloggers or not, we are the new voice in media.  Restricting us from attending events will only hurt you in the long run because we will find a way to maneuver around you, or just exclude you from the conversation completely. During Black Friday, at 2am the Fashion Bloggers you loathe were the ones online buzzing about their favorite brands and/ or retailers while pushing sales.  The insiders demanding seats were not apart of the conversation; they were deep in Turkey coma.

New York Event: Bloggers and Best Buy SoHo

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This past Friday, I co-hosted an event alongside Angela Chambliss, Best Buy Director of Business Initiatives, and General Manager, Amy Adoniz. Forty bloggers from the #iBlogNYC MeetUp group came together to network and discuss all things blogging within the confines of the Best Buy store in SoHo.  Angela, was on hand to discuss the Best Buy Blogging Network, and talk about the benefits of joining. To give a little background.. I have been apart of the Best Buy Blogging Network for over a year now as one of eight Brand Ambassadors.  I have had the best experiences working with Best Buy, and highly encourage any blogger who talks about technology on their blog to consider joining the network as it brings great benefits. Also in attendance was another Brand Ambassador, Alison Wright of BeingAlison.com. Alison traveled from upstate New York just for the event to share her experiences as well and create a spark with a bubbly personality.

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Best Buy not only provided the space, they also had the event catered.  Bloggers dinned on sandwiches, crudité, gourmet meats and cheeses, and soft drinks.  We also had the pleasure of DJ Reckless, he served up one of his mixes to keep the environment festive and to help guest break the ice.  At one point I started moon walking when Michael Jackson came on, lolll.

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For those of you interested in joining the Best Buy Blogging Network, please apply here.  Or check them out on Twitter at Twitter.com/BestBuyWOLF.

Best Buy

For all your technology needs be sure to check out BestBuy.com or when in the city please be sure to stop by the Best Buy store in SoHo:

Best Buy SoHo

New York, NY 10012 ?

Twitter: @BestBuy

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Lastly if you are a blogger and interested in joining  a monthly Blogger’s Networking Group, check us out here on MeetUp at #iBlogNYC.

 

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I Blog Because… -Kitty Bradshaw

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New York Blogger: I Blog Because…

I Blog Because this is my purpose driven destiny. I love to write. I am not the best writer; I make mistakes. The industry dictates that those who are not strong writers, should not have a voice in journalism or commentary. Despite the opposition, I have continued on pursuing what I love to do.  Blogging gives opportunities that mere mortals such as myself wouldn’t ordinarily have. My Blog is my voice, and I am true to it. I have been Blogging for 16 years…. before it was a term. In the beginning, I moderated groups, chat rooms, personal journals, message boards…. basically anywhere people were willing to read what I had to say. My readers identified with my stories.  I spent the first 10 years learning how to keep people engaged. I quickly learned that people wanted something different, something that was the opposite of politically correct…. someone who had the courage to voice their quiet thoughts. This is where Blogging was conceived. 

Back when I first started, my grammar was HORRIBLE! I am sure while reading this essay, you will come across a typo or two. Over the years I have gotten a lot better and am still a work in progress. My loyal readers have been with me from the beginning, and have grown with me.  They treat my successes as their own.  I refer to my readers as family and/ or my House Cats.  They truly believe in me, and I would never want to let them down.

Cynics often volunteer their unwarranted advice and state that I should tone done, or not reveal so much about my life. One thing I have learned through Blogging that I can apply to every day life is… every time I changed myself to please someone else, I FAILED. Every instance of someone dismissing me as a Blogger was a green light for SUCCESS. Every time someone presented a roadblock, they got LEFT BEHIND. I was born to Blog…. it’s as simple as that.  Either get with it, or get out of the way.

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When I first started out, I had no clue that my hobby would take me as far as it did. Growing up, I was often stifled by the person who was supposed to encourage me the most. I had someone who was very verbally abusive; discouraging me from following my dreams. Thank God… he presented people in my life who lead a life that inspired me to rise out of the crab barrel. I was so unhappy growing up… extremely depressed.  Looking back, I now know that not only was I depressed, I didn’t know I was depressed which is way worse. Writing, as bad as I was at it…. saved me. I used to write poems, short stories, and create greeting cards. Writing was my escape. I spent a great deal of my life being depressed and would sleep a lot. When I slept, I would dream in words and would wake up and write them down. I know what it is to cry while typing.  I know what it is to be frustrated, depressed, hoarding, and miserable… without a lifeline.  This is where Blogging was conceived. I am a rose that grew from concrete.  I am not good enough to work for the New York Times, but I am a writer no less. Every word that I put out into the universe has emotion, it tells a very genuine story.  I don’t have to get permission from an editor to publish my work. Where others dismissed me, Blogging embraced me.

So I had been Blogging for a while when I started to see people purchasing their own websites.  I was slow to jump on board… it took me about 2-3 years to fully embrace Blogging independently.  I belong to an online secret society (yes, when you have been online as long as me you tend to know the skull and bone types loll), and some of the members wrote a tutorial on how to make money through Blogging.  I read it and took a leap of faith.  Early on, I credit Necole Bitchie for being a mentor or “Fairy Blog Mom”.  She ran this site called, “The Urban Blogger” that gave newbies like me a forum to get started in Blogging.  She gave us tips, and taught us how to play it forward.  Playing it Forward is one of the best lessons that Necole Bitchie could have ever taught us; it would go on to be one of the important keys to my success.

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I launched my website soon after I moved to New York.  I didn’t know it at the time, but New York is the Blogging capitol of the world.  It is extremely competitive here.  If you can mange to get recognized and make a name for yourself in NYC, you have arrived…. doors open up for you everywhere.  My Blog started out being a personal journal filled with random thoughts and stories of me navigating around New York.  I am very business minded, so prior to me launching my website I created a business plan to guide my steps.  I moved to New York not knowing many people.  Two weeks after I moved here, I fell in love with a man.  This man shared my love of the internet and both fueled and encouraged my blog.  Although, originally I didn’t speak about him on my Blog… I used Twitter as a place to chart our ups and downs.  He was my very first “Social-novella” that kept my House Cats engaged.  Over the years, I have given very honest accounts of my life.  Additionally, I have given the supporting characters nicknames.  Whenever I get the opportunity to meet one of my House Cats… they often ask about their favorite characters.  For example I once had a summer fling with this man, a thug who had 6 kids…. his nickname was, “Thug Love”.  He is probably the most asked about person that I have talked about online.  For some reason everyone identifies with dating a thug or bad boy type, lolll.  Since the name of the site is Kitty Bradshaw, I mostly talk about me…. it takes a really “unique” person to warrant a Blog post or tweet.  Those unique individuals go on to be online celebrities in my world, lolll.

After a year of solid Blogging, I signed a one year contract with the GAP.  This was back in 2009, when not many companies were signing Bloggers.  The GAP was one of the first brands to fully embrace Social Media and Blogger engagement.  They appreciated my feisty spirit and saw me as the new “Girl Next Door”, loll.  My contract ended up lasting for 2 years, and I am so appreciative of them.  I did this without the help of “Media Networks and Collectives”.  The GAP really put me on the map in the New York social media scene.  They made me visible to a larger audience which led me to working with brands like Johnson & Johnson, TJ Maxx, and McDonalds to name a few.

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As time went on I began to get more and more contracts.  Not only was I being contracted by brands, I was being approached to host events.  My original business plan didn’t list contacts, Brand Ambassadorships, or event hosting.  When I started the Blog, my goal was just to get into a few events and make a little chump change.  I guess I wasn’t dreaming big enough.  Five years later this site has taken on a life of it’s own; I currently have a contract with Best Buy.

From the beginning, I have always been clear on my motives with this site.  Kitty Bradshaw is a brand, and KittyBradshaw.com is a business.  Everything that I do for the site is a calculated move to generate income.  There is a thin line between commercial and personal blogging and I ride it well. I write about brands that I love, and in turn they approach me to work with them on a larger scale.  The main objective for my site is to report on New York Lifestyle.  Any brand that I work with, or product that I endorse has to be able to fit into my website’s overall theme.  I haven’t always stuck to that… all Bloggers at some point stray from their format.  I have since learned that when we allow ourselves to stray, we lose passion in the process.  I never want to look at Blogging as a job.  I need to feel passionate about this website in order to continue on.

Kitty bradshaw Fashion Week Fall 2010

In my opinion, mainstream media no longer represents the voice of the people.  Most photographers are so fat from success, they no longer capture art.  Art is supposed to challenge people.  When you challenge people, they will get to thinking.  Thinking is what keeps people engaged.  Mainstream media no longer challenges.  Mainstream media no longer pushes the envelope to get people thinking.  I guess there are too many people and advertisers to report to.  The more printed publications lose subscriptions, and popular news shows lose ratings… the more those advertisers will reach out to Bloggers.  We give unfiltered commentary and get people thinking.  It doesn’t matter if our photos are slightly blurry, or if we have a Masters in English Literature.  The only thing a Blogger needs to do is present a clear thought and support it with an engaging story.  I can cover fashion shows, and talk about the trends that I saw on the runway.  I can mention the colors, textures, and inspiration behind the collection.  At the end of the  day my readers want to know if I liked the clothes…. yes or no.  They want me to give it to them straight without all of the fluff.  I challenge them by breaking down the information and giving them the opportunity to decide if it is something they like or is this something someone told them to like.  Most people don’t like neon colors or animal prints!!!! lollll

I Blog because this is a career field that encourages me to be true to myself.  The more original, the more honest, the more human (flaws and all) I am…. the further I advance.

 

Kitty Bradshaw Headed to the “Get Radical Conference”

Get Radical Conference

I am excited to announce that Best Buy is sponsoring me to attend the Get Radical Conference in DC next month.  Best Buy is the premier sponsor for the conference, and you can follow the action at  #getradical2013, #bbyspringforward, and @BestBuyWOLF and me and the other Brand Ambassadors maneuver our way through the interactive sessions.  The conference is being held during the course of 3 days, and will be sure to make an impact on all those who attend.

The Get Radical Conference is about promoting and developing personal and professional growth.  If you are you a woman seeking a powerful, transformational and educational experience, all in one value-packed event…then this event if for you! The Get Radical Conference offers a unique mix of learning from inspirational keynote and breakout speakers, mingling with other like-minded leaders, and participating in exclusive VIP opportunities only available at this conference, once a year.

Best Buy’s own Liz Haesler will also be a main stage guest as she shares powerful leadership qualities needed to excel in today’s business world. Another person that I will be excited to see is Judy Smith, America’s number one crisis management expert.  Show is so awesome, they made a show based on her life, “SCANDAL”.  I hope that I get the chance to introduce myself to her and talk about my crazy love life!!!!! lollll *shrugs* If she can handle political crisis, she can certainly handle my love life.

JudySmith

During the month of March, I will be offering exclusive offers during Women’s History Month that will come in handy for you and your family in Spring.  In addition, I will be tweeting and live blogging during the conference so please be sure to follow my Blog, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. I will keep you posted on all of the key events an activities leading up to the conference such as the RADICAL Woman Awards and the RADICAL Makeover contest. Also on the day of the Get Radical Conference I will be there to give you all of the behind the scenes action from the media and press room. Additionally, I’ll be sharing with you key messages and take-a-ways from all of the expert speakers and content providers over the weekend.

 

#ToyotaWomen: California Dreams Pt 2

Previous article: #ToyotaWomen: Charting my Journey

 

On Sunday, September 30th, Twenty-Four women descended upon Santa Monica, California to meet one last time for a Toyota “Glamping Trip” at El Capitan Lodge 20 miles outside of Santa Barbara.  The first leg of our trip started off in Santa Monica at the Lowes Hotel, where we checked in, freshened up, and set off for dinner at the posh Penthouse Restaurant in the Huntley Hotel.  Members from Team Toyota and Clever Girls dinned with us, and gave clues as to what lied ahead for our “Glamping Adventures”.  There, with the harvest moon as our backdrop… we dined on brochette, shrimp cocktail, salmon, steak, chicken, and some sort of chocolate confection.  My cocktail for the evening was a “Blueberry Lemonade”.

Later we were shuttled back to the Loews where we enjoyed a view of the poolside and ocean waves from our hotel suite.  I was so exhausted from my travels, I forgot to take pictures of the room.  The interior of the room reminded me of old Hollywood.  It’s retro interior design could have been a scene straight from the movie “Key Largo”, with Bogart and Becall staying in the room right next to mine.  After research, I learned that the hotel was built in 1989, and boast 342 rooms.  The hotel was recently remodeled in the last few years, and as a guest I can honestly say I enjoyed the best night’s sleep ever!!!

Upon our return from our Glamping Trip, we were shuttled directly back to the Loews, then dispatched out to LAX as our individual planes arrived.  While waiting, Team Toyota treated us to lunch at the Ocean & Vine Restaurant located inside of the Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel.  The food there was pretty damn tasty!  I had the Scallop Salad, Fish Tacos, and Peaches n’ Crème Brulee.  My drink of choice was a glass of Clifford Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2011 w/ a screw top, loll.  I learned from one of the Bloggers that most wines from Australia have a screw tops?!  In any event, I rather enjoyed this wine and will look into acquiring a case of it.

Below are pictures from my experience at the Lowes… I hope that you all enjoy :)

 

#ToyotaWomen: Charting my Journey

Hey House Cats-

As you all know I was one of 50 women selected to become a Brand Ambassador for ToyotaToyota gave me the unique opportunity to go up under the proverbial hood, and get an exclusive view at how the engine runs.   During the course of 6 months, I have had the opportunity to test drive vehicles, attend exclusive learning sessions, take part in brand sponsored events, and contribute in charitable endeavors that helped the greater good of mankind and the environment.  I learned about Toyota’s “5 Main Principles”, commitment to reducing omissions in the environment, and a balanced work/life ethic for their employees.

  • Always be faithful to your duties, thereby contributing to the company and to the overall good.
  • Always be studious and creative, striving to stay ahead of the times.
  • Always be practical and avoid frivolousness.
  • Always strive to build a homelike atmosphere at work that is warm and friendly.
  • Always have respect for spiritual matters, and remember to be grateful at all times.

 

I know this may sound repetitive from earlier Toyota articles… but I truly have a better understanding and appreciation for Toyota.  During my 6 months with the car brand, I got to meet with various key players from the Toyota team which included everyone from financing and PR on up to the VP.  With every new person that I met, they each were able to express why they are faithful in their roles, and how they in turn contributed to the overall good of the company.  Everyone that I met had been with Toyota for at least 10 years.  Each person was able to plainly explain what they do, why they enjoyed doing it, and what makes them unique in their individual roles.  There was not one time where I felt like any member of Team Toyota was assigned the task of “putting on airs” for the Bloggers.  It was the most natural setting I have ever been a part of.

I honestly decided to write this post out of appreciation for Toyota hand picking me.  I was one of 50 Bloggers selected to participate in this program, and I am so very thankful for having the opportunity.  I am not required to write about Toyota, but I am going to do so anyway.  I take my role as Brand Ambassador very seriously, and I don’t sign on to represent brands that I don’t feel passionate about.  To conclude my role as Brand Ambassador, I will write a series of post covering my travels with Toyota which will include “A Call with Nature” and “A Ride to NASCAR”.  I will talk about the 10 Awesome Bloggers that I met, the food I ate, the Hotels that I stayed at, and the Toyota Vehicles that I rode in.

I hope that you all follow along as I post about my Toyota Journey…

 

SPONSORED POST: Hawaiian Tropic Things We Love Cruise


 
 
 

Yesterday in New York, several of the Glam Network Bloggers and myself went on a day cruise sponsored by Hawaiian Tropic.  We sailed the Hudson on the Atlantica from Chelsea Piers.  Guest sipped on cocktails and ate a light lunch as reps from the Glam Network and Hawaiian Tropic walked around and mingled with guest.  The Atlantica sailed past tourist hotpots Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

 

Upon boarding the ship, guest were treated to cocktails, and an assortment of crackers, cheeses, fruits and vegetables. During the cruise (between mingling with familiar Bloggers), we also got to meet with the representatives from Hawaiian Tropic and try out their Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration™ lotion sunscreen.  The lotion/ sunscreen can be used on an everyday basis without clogging your pores with heavy residues.  I had the opportunity to try it out, and I can honestly say my hands felt extremely soft and supple.  Most of the time when I apply sunscreen, it feels thick and heavy.  By the time your day is over, you end up feeling sticky and gross.  I didn’t have that feeling at all with Hawaiian Tropic.  I liked the Silk Hydration product so much that I took home a few extra bottles, lolll.

 

  • New Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration™ lotion sunscreen is the only sun protection with extra luxurious hydrating ribbons to pamper your skin with 12 hour moisturization.
  • With hydrating ribbons infused with luxurious silk protein and rich shea butter, Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration™ sunscreen pampers and protects skin.
  • Available in SPF 12, 30 and 50, Hawaiian Tropic Silk Hydration™ lotion sunscreen provides safe and effective broad spectrum UVA and UVB protection that won’t break down in the sun, along with nourishing antioxidants, exotic island botanicals, a warm tropical fragrance and a lightweight, non-greasy feel.

 

 

On top of being able to attend this wonderful boat ride, guest were able to take home these amazing ‘Things we Love’ gift bags filled with the greatest summer style, beauty & travel products, including Hawaiian Tropic’s newest products.

 

List provided by Tineey.com

After lunch was over Bloggers were trated tot hese wonderful ice cream sandwiches provided by Cool Haus.  Cool Haus is a California based company that recently expanded to New York.  I tried the Red Velvet and Sugar Cookie ice cream sandwich which was soooo tasty!

 

Below are the rest of the photos provided by Glam Media.

 

 

 

 

Disclosure of compensation:

Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Hawaiian Tropic® Sun Care via Glam Media.  The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Hawaiian Tropic.


Hawaiian Tropic is a trademark of Tanning Research Laboratories, LLC.