This year the BlogWorld & New Media Expo was co-located with Book Expo America (BEA) so in between my jaunts last week to different BEA sessions and booths, I was happily able to learn more about upcoming trends and new products in the social media world as well.
The BlogWorld & New Media Expo usually takes place only on the West Coast, so there was quite a lot of buzz since it was the first year it's been held in New York.
The exhibition floor was just a fraction of the size of Book Expo America, but it was a lively, upbeat and somewhat intimate affair that allowed for a lot of networking. There is no way I could do justice in this post to all of the exhibitors that were present, so I picked a few to highlight. You can also click on the links and visit the websites for more information.
First up for me was the Yahoo! Contributor Network Booth as the color purple always catches my eye. After learning how to join their network which allows your work to be seen by a potential 600 million visitors a month on Yahoo! News, Yahoo! Sports, Yahoo! Finance, omg!, Shine, Associated Content, and other leading websites, I was given a cool swag bag which contained a journal, buttons, pens, a t-shirt and one of the coolest books!
The Yahoo! Style Guide: The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World
I will be using this book as a guide as I continue on with Lyric Fire and I suggest that anyone who has a blog or website should invest in it. It is filled with useful information on how to create and organize compelling content.
As I continued my stroll I happened upon an exhibit that made me do a double-take. Really? My blog Lyric Fire had a booth? Why didn't I know about this? Who on earth was manning this booth? As I got closer I realized that it wasn't Lyric Fire, but:
Cool name huh? Well, they also have a cool service. Livefyre is a social commenting platform that replaces your current comment section and allows readers on your blog or website to engage in real-time conversations, post videos, tweet and engage their Facebook friend's list right from your blog. A really neat feature of this service is "Friend Tagging," which gives your readers the power to bring their entire social network directly to your content. By simply typing the “@” symbol in a comment, users open a list of their entire Facebook and Twitter network, allowing them to mention and invite any of their friends to join in on the conversation right there on your blog.
Actually a big theme at BlogWorld this year involved rules of engagement on blogs and websites and it seems that platform creators want bloggers and web content creators to be able to have a more interactive audience. Similar to the Livefyre service is Vanilla Forums which serves to fuel and build your current community with different plug-ins and web-tools. Just like Livefyre, Vanilla works to carry the conversations that begin on your blog or site in the comments section to a larger audience, therefore growing your community.
To view examples of how users have utilized Vanilla Forums on their sites click here: Vanilla Forums Postings.
For those of us who write about products and services, I came across an interesting company called StuffBuff. Let's say you're writing a blog post about a new e-reader or computer that's coming out. If you have the Stuff It Button on your site, your readers can purchase the items right from your blog without being taken to another web page. Get this, you can also make money off of the sale!
So as you can see there are many ways to spice up and improve your blog/site content and you can even make a little money in the process. Let me know if you try any of these services and what your experiences are.
As for me, I look forward to attending BEA and BlogWorld next year. It's crucial for bloggers to stay on top of trends in the publishing and social media industries and I truly enjoy sharing what I've learned.