Saturday, 21 June 2014

The diary of a blogger not at Britmums Live

I am well aware I will loose followers and could well alienate myself from companies but I am a blogger who is not at #BritmumsLive

There I said it..... eek a parent and blogger who has not gone to Britmums .... am I for real?  Have I actually got a fully functioning brain?  Don't I know anyone who is anyone is at Britmums?  How on earth can I be expected to grow my blog if I don't make this yearly pilgrimage?

Now don't get me wrong I really wanted to go to Britmums, more then anything I wanted to be sat at that table in that sparkly tiara listening to some inspirational speeches.......I wanted to be sat in the hotel bar getting drunk with the best of them......I wanted to come away with a fantastic goody bag of great brands to try and review and publicise............ But the number 1 reason for me not being there .... I simply can't afford it!!!!

I know the point is to beg a brand to sponsor you to go, but before it can get to that stage you need to make the initial outlay ... and if you don't get sponsorship then what ....

For those who don't know Britmums Live is "the UK’s biggest, two-day social media conference and blogger event, where lifestyle bloggers and social influences gather to meet and socialise, network with brands, improve their skills, and fire their creativity."   Around 5,000 parent bloggers who are influential (their word not mine) gather to discuss all things blog related with 'famous' bloggers and celebrities.

The current 'Early Bird' ticket price (for 2015) is £65 (with £2.28 booking fee).  This rockets up after the first 5 weeks of sale - £95 (+ booking fee) was this years ticket price.

Not forgetting this is in central London.  Depending on when you book your train ticket (and for me that would be the only option) you are looking at around £70 for a return.

Then you have the cost of staying in central London.  This can be anything from £40 a night (including breakfast, if you are very lucky to manage a budget hotel cheap room) to top side of £60+ a night.  And you will probably need 2 nights as it starts on Friday and doesn't finish until 7pm on Saturday.

So what does that make us up to.... minimum of £200.... without the cost of buying lunch and tea on both days.

And once you have your ticket you are locked in, even though BritMums sells out every year they won't buy back your ticket if you can't go, however they do allow you to re-sell it yourself.

To get this in perspective I can book 3 nights away for me and my family for October Half Term with Haven for £125 (caravan only price, before travel, food etc).  This is a holiday we are currently trying to work out if we can afford, I couldn't go away on a Britmums Live conference and tell my boys that they are not getting a holiday this year because mummy is going away for 2 nights.

Not to mention the fact my husband has to work every weekend to allow our childcare situation to be cost effective.  He cannot book his holidays until April of next year, I therefore would not know until 3 months before the event whether he is able to have his own children so I could go away.  And our families are not close enough for babysitting duties.    This would mean I would be unable to take advantage of budget rooms as they would all be sold out way before the event (especially with 5,000 bloggers I'd be lucky to even book a room that close).

A touch of jealously......

Of course I have a touch of jealously, wouldn't you...... if your news feed was (for 2 days) full of bloggers having the best time at #britmumslive this and that.  Speaking to this and that, getting the opportunity to meet these amazing companies and introduce themselves.
  The hype leading up to and the come down from and you are sat thinking "woop, got up.... did washing, cleaned childs bum, oh I even managed to squeeze in an hour to write a blog post".

All the great blogging opportunities and chances to work with some brilliant brands, will be snapped up by those fortunate enough to go to these events, that's the power of networking after all.  For a brand if you are fortunate to get one of these Britmums on board you are guaranteed amazing coverage so after all why wouldn't you want them for your reviews and advertising.

.....that turns to anger......

Companies who think EVERYONE is at Brtimums and if you aren't then they try to alienate you.
I was fuming today to wake up to THIS!

A competition ONLY for those who are at Britmums.  Of course I stated that not everyone was at Britmums and this was pretty unfair to be told I could still enter if I "drew her in crayon!".   You know what, sarcasm will get you unfollowed!  They then asked what I wanted them to do .... ermmm not alienate those NOT at one event?? what next.....

I think with boys of 3 and 5 my time as a parent blogger is coming to an end.  I love the lifestyle element of my blog and am soo lucky and grateful to all the wonderful companies who have let me represent them.  But the time has come to hang up the #britmums and #netmums badges I think and look at the other opportunities out there.

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