The Greatness of Alt Winter 2016

It feels pretty strange to me that just one week ago, I was in Salt Lake City for Alt Summit, so I thought it only fitting to do a recap today.

When I first purchased a ticket to Alt last fall, I wasn't entirely sure about what I was getting into. I had heard about Alt a few years prior and had learned that if you were a blogger, this was THE conference to go to. So, I bit the bullet and decided to give it a try. For the record, I'm an introvert plus a creature of habit when it comes to doing things, so signing up for a conference alone felt slightly out of character. It obviously was not enough to keep me from going, but I'll be completely honest and admit that I even thought I'd consider backing out when the event got closer. I'm obviously very grateful that I didn't, otherwise, I wouldn't have anything to write about! ;P Haha. Jk.

THE PLACE

I'll start off with Salt Lake City in general. Just stunning...

When I arrived, I was in awe of the view. I mean, to be able to look at the horizon and see buildings AND snow-capped mountains?! It was ridiculous! Seriously, Salt Lake residents, how is that your view every day?!

The Grand America Hotel lived up to its name. It was quite grand. 

Both the exterior and interior were beautiful. Filled with so much grandeur. Unfortunately, I didn't get many pictures of the hotel, but I did get this beautiful shot of one of the ballrooms that we had our Starry, Starry Night Dinner Party at. 

Hopefully this gives you enough of a visual to imagine what the rest of the hotel looked like, but probably not... 

THE CONFERENCE

Again, I learned SO MUCH.

I learned tips and tricks, how to market and monetize my blog, how to work with brands, etc.

I got to be a part of a thriving, supportive community that I've otherwise felt was lacking (not specifically in my life, but in general). I was blessed to have the opportunity to create bonds with other bloggers, most of whom have been in the industry for longer than I have and were able to give me tips and encouragement here and there. That was really special for me.

Which leads me to my next point...

THE PEOPLE

I don't even know where to start...

Women (and the occasional man) supporting women. Lifting each other up. Providing guidance, support, and encouragement. Oh, and giving an extra push (ahem... Kat) when I was being shy.

I am so incredibly grateful that a Facebook group was started beforehand so we had a chance to start getting to know each other prior to the conference. (Thanks again, Eden!) I found it so beneficial to connect with some of the bloggers early because it helped me let down my introverted shell and start putting myself out there... in small, bite-sized pieces of course. ;)

I had a great time getting to know new people and connecting with those I had met through the group, and it was always fun handing out my business cards and having people say, "Oh! I remember seeing this on Facebook!"

Other than that, there were so many fun opportunities between sessions, lunches, dinners, and parties to spend time connecting with other bloggers.

The SWAG

Um... Coolest swag ever.

So cool that I started using the stuff before I got a photo of it... hence the lack of pictures in this section...

I've been to 2 other conferences besides this one, and they were all about tacky name-branding on beer bottle cozies and pens. Things that you probably wouldn't end up using anyway.

At Alt Summit, you could tell it was different off the get-go. I found myself surrounded by brands who cared about mutually beneficial relationships with bloggers, not just companies that wanted to sell you something. 

Anyway, I got some new notebooks, new pieces of jewelry, snacks, ribbon, books, etc. It was like Christmas all over again.

All in all, Alt Summit was a fantastic experience. I left Salt Lake City, a changed woman. One nervous about taking the next steps, but so determined to move forward.

I'll leave you with this before I go.

Have the courage to try new things. To explore your interests. To get out of your comfort zone. You never know what will come from it. :)

Live on the Bright and Brave Side,