Who are you?

FLBlogCon provides continuing education, networking, and community-building for bloggers and social media pros in the state of Florida. We hold a series of workshops, seminars, tweet ups, and tweet chats throughout the year culminating with our major event in September, the Florida Blogger and Social Media Conference, aka FLBlogCon. Now in its fourth year, FLBlogCon is one of the biggest conferences of its kind in the southeast.

Why Did you start your business?

I always wanted to attend one of those big blogging conferences like BlogHer but couldn't afford to take time off from work nor could I afford the ticket price. So, I figured it would be neat to have a local conference packed with excellent information. I also wanted it on a Saturday, since most bloggers have a day job during the week. So, I hit up the best local bloggers I knew (Florida is fortunate to have some really big names!) and they were more than willing to share their knowledge at the very first FLBlogCon in 2011. Apparently it was an idea that filled a void because we sell out early every year and we keep growing! In fact, we have now expanded to doing several events a year, because bloggers are hungry for continuing education and for new ways to connect with brands.

What makes your business unique?

We are hyper-local, which means we are entirely focused on the blogosphere in the state of Florida. The Sunshine State has amazing bloggers and social media pros who are eager to share their experiences with others, so we are local conference put on by locals for locals. We also feature sponsors who are either located in or focused on doing business in the state of Florida. And, to take it a step further, we also do an annual "FLBlogging for Good" where we unite our collective social media power to benefit a nonprofit that aids Floridians.

What's the biggest mistake you've made with your business and what did you learn from it??

Not following my dream earlier. For three years I tried to maintain my full-time teaching job as well as trying to grow FLBlogCon. I finally had to make the decision that I needed to dedicate my time to FLBlogCon 100% if it were going to grow the way I envisioned it could. I took the "leap of faith" this past year and now I ask myself, "Why didn't I do this earlier?"

what big goal do you have for your company and how do you plan to achieve it?

Not following my dream earlier. For three years I tried to maintain my full-time teaching job as well as trying to grow FLBlogCon. I finally had to make the decision that I needed to dedicate my time to FLBlogCon 100% if it were going to grow the way I envisioned it could. I took the "leap of faith" this past year and now I ask myself, "Why didn't I do this earlier?"

what advice or tips do you have for people wanting to start their own business or follow their dreams?

At my last blogger conference, I had several attendees that told me FLBlogCon quite literally changed their lives - that for the first time they saw they could actually provide some income for their families through blogging. This impressed upon me how vital continuing education is for people who may simply be trying to hang on to their homes or put food on the table. So, I want FLBlogCon to be the #1 resource for bloggers in the state of Florida. And perhaps even more importantly, I want it to feel like a community of friends and supporters, because together we are truly stronger! I also want to elevate the state of blogging, meaning allowing brands to see that bloggers truly are worth money, not just a free meal or sponsored product. To do this, I hope to leverage every platform available, from newsletters and podcasts to workshops and conferences delivering key information, but to also doing an online television show where we showcase bloggers who are doing great things. If we can raise the way people think about bloggers, then we can truly make it a viable option for brands to turn to when planning their marketing budget. Bloggers are worth it!

Check Out the other Page sponsors

You can read interviews from the other sponsors throughout the book by browsing through the fancy drop down list to the right.