Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Submitted by mumunmumun on 23 October 2015 • Blog
I’ve been pondering on what and how to write this post. After hosting our very own travel blogging workshop with fellow travel bloggers, #TravelNBlog, and then switch places being participants attending TBEX Asia 2015, it became more obvious for me to think more before I write. Mainly because, I’ve learned that when you write, it better be something useful or relevant. Being on both sides of the spectrum in such a short period of time was an interesting and enlightening sensation.
Every convention, seminar, and conference I’ve attended has always been grey. There’s no black or white to what you did and didn’t learn, what you can or can’t gain. However, there are tons of things you can pick up at conventions, if only you know where to look. The #TBEXAsia is made for, I think, entry to mid level travel blogs. This means it’s for those that just started or those that have been around for a period of time but are looking to change or enhance along the way.
For Indohoy, although we have gone a long way considering how un-tech-savvy we are, we’re looking to excel more than what we’ve achieved so far. In terms of the amount of knowledge we learned, it was a fair bit. Vira had chosen one or two breakout sessions we, apparently, have heard of (wow! we sound like pros), which was a bit of a waste of her time, but she managed to pop in a few good ones and stood up to ask questions to then be recognised by a stranger in the room. Proud! I had a little more luck. I managed to make myself into some more useful sessions for myself, such as communications, brand relation with bloggers, technical sessions such as SEO and website management.
This #TBEXAsia gained popular opinion that there’s no reason to attend such gathering if you’re really into travel blogging. Debatable.
There’s no doubt that money became a vortex within the convention, which is fair. We wouldn’t be there if we didn’t think there was a chance to live off of travel blogging. I think everyone at the convention yearned some investment return, at least for the time and dollar they spent to get there. However, there were some splinters during the convention of people clearly wanting to monetize their blog a little more than others. Reason to be cynic confirmed. However, it wasn’t a deal-breaker to attend TBEX Asia 2015.
While many of the materials provided by the speakers can be learnt with time, experience, or a little more research, there’s no harm of learning it from a convention, right? It might be easier when explained more comprehensively.
I also exchanged notes to some of the experts on certain issues just to get more of the topic and apparently, some methods are outdated or a little too basic for a great blog, such as SEO techniques and a few bits about coding, which is good to know. At least I had some platform to start the conversation with these experts.
Traveling blogging is hard. I don’t recall any speaker nor participant that disagreed on this statement. But when you love something, then you’ll bleed for it anyways. It sounds like a gory statement but it’s true. During the process, you will come across dead ends and blunt circumstances. That’s when you need a little boost to continue the journey and being amongst your fellow gang. That’s exactly what you get in gathering such as these.
Travel blogging conventions are where people don’t question you because you don’t have a car, a fancy suit, or a home for that matter. It’s not where you are hated for taking pictures of your food before you eat. It’s a place where people understand how to say how many countries they’ve been to as a fact without coming across as arrogant. There wasn’t even one discussion about the definition between a tourist or traveler (‘cause it really doesn’t matter). It’s a convention of its kind, whatever that may be. It’s also the place where you see your niche a lot clearly, which can give you that extra boost of motivation.
The food! Delicious! The sushi buffet blew almost everyone’s mind away. On a more serious note, meeting with new people was awesome. Fellow travel bloggers and just talking is a lot of fun for me, especially to the funny ones. Add to that a sushi bar.
Because most of the speakers have a lot of press already, I thought I’d highlight some of the bloggers we met (some are the funny people) and pray will meet again. It might be some reading material for you too.
The committe were more enthusiastic than we were. Fun!
Depends. What do you want to get out from the convention? There’s always something to pick up at a convention. Whether you get it from a talk in a room, or from an approach to a speaker of fellow bloggers outside of forums, all is possible when you make an attempt.
By the way, it will be held in the Philippines. I smell an excuse to visit the country, don’t you?
On that note, I’m guessing we did the same for #TravelNBlog. Probably. I hope it gave the participants as much, if not more, benefit as TBEX gave us.
For more information on TBEX Asia 2015, please see the link here.
For me personally, it’s a great excuse to visit Bangkok, after only had the chance to roam only for about 3 hours the last time I was in town. Who says you can’t mix business and pleasure? But more on that another day. In the meantime, we’d like to thank Air Asia Indonesia for supporting our trip and making TBEX Asia 2015 happen for us. Their direct flight between Jakarta and Bangkok’s Don Mueang International Airport was smooth and on time, thank god. It’s always great to have support for the things you’re passionate to do.
Good night, Bangkok!