This past weekend was the Canadian Personal Finance Conference 2013 (CPFC for short) and my brain is still buzzing from all the information that was hurled at me! It was two jam-packed days of speakers and panel discussions, and for the most part all of the presenters were well worth the $100 ticket price. Although I now conveniently live in Toronto where the conference was held, for any of you out-of-province personal finance bloggers considering signing up for next year, I absolutely recommend taking the trip out for it. Plus I’ll be going again and you can meet me!
Now, I’m not going to go through all of the sessions at the conference, but I do want to highlight some of the speakers that stood out to me the most. First off, one of my favourite speakers by far was Ellen Roseman from the Toronto Star.
Since I’m still new to the city I wasn’t fully familiar with her work, but after listening to her speak about helping consumers with their issues with big businesses and being a blogger herself, I’m definitely a full-on fan now.
Rob Carrick from The Globe and Mail was another amazing speaker with such a vast wealth of knowledge specific to the personal finance world that I have several pages of notes dedicated to his session alone. I’ve been reading his articles ever since I started this blog, so I will admit it was pretty darn cool to see him speak in the flesh. He shared some great tips on how to be a great writer and how to not think of yourself as just a blogger, but more as a journalist and an expert. He also gave some good suggestions on what topics us bloggers should think about tackling in the near future.
Since I do consider Mo’ Money Mo’ Houses more of a frugality and lifestyle blog, some of his topic suggestions like the after effects of the housing crisis and pensions were a bit too…how should I put it…finance-y for me? However, he did mention that housing affordability and generation Y are hot topics now so you can definitely expect some posts about those two subjects!
There are four other speakers I want to mention before I bore you to death about a conference you most likely didn’t go to. Albert Luk, a lawyer from Devry Smith Frank LLP, had some great information regarding…well…how not to get sued. I’ve had a lot of questions I wasn’t able to find the answers to these past two years to do with controversial content and advertising and he was able to answer pretty much everything I ever wanted to know in just an hour.
Bruce Sellery, founder of Moolala, was hands down the most energetic speaker at the conference, which would explain why he’s such a successful TV personality. He talked about all the dos and don’ts of being on TV, and seeing as I’ve been interviewed on TV before and I’ve watched hours and hours of morning news segments as an ex-teleprompter operator, I can confirm that every single thing he said was spot on!
Mark Goodfield from The Blunt Bean Counter was very enlightening when it came to talking about taxes and right offs for us bloggers. I definitely learned a thing or two, and need to remind myself to email him to get the slides from his presentation.
Last but not least, Dev Basu of Powered by Search was a great information source for everything SEO. Search engine optimizing is something I’ve never quite understood but have always wanted to have a better grasp on. He was great at explaining in layman’s terms what we as bloggers need to do to get our posts found by the search engines to attract more readers.
Most importantly he explained how in order for your blog to be successful it needs to be discoverable, desirable, and shareable. I always feel like I’m doing the right things with my blog, but I’m still not at the traffic level I’d like to be at considering I’m only a few months away from my 2 year blogiversary. I’m hoping that by putting some of his tips into practice, like writing better and more searchable post titles, I’ll start to see some results in the next little while.
Alright, that’s all I’ve got to say about the conference, but it was a great weekend and I can’t wait to go again next year. Maybe I’ll go to FinCon too. Here’s hoping it’s in a city close to Toronto so I can get a cheap flight (come on New York City!).