Women in Digital : Community connection that helped for better conference experience

I attended Content Marketing World #CMWorld and to say that I was nervous about attending alone was an understatement. I prepped with business cards, my elevator pitch for myself but also for the questions around, “What is Pacejet? Did you say PAY JETS?” While creating an elevator pitch for your everyday work life is easy, coming up with topics to have on the ready when attending an opening event for a conference that has 4,000 people registered, NOT SO EASY! Queue in anxiety and mild panic!

I’ve been a founding member of Women In Digital in Columbus, Ohio for over 2 years and I’ll never forget the first meet up I attended at The Vue in Columbus. I was inspired by the creativity in the room and the way that women were all standing up to say that equal pay was important, promotions are possible, and that women who are strong in their business acumen aren’t always bitches. This organization is something I can totally stand behind but let’s get to the point of my ramblings.

Attending Content Marketing World as a individual Content Manager from a software company was scary enough. Conferences are so much more fun with your friends but I wanted/needed to go to this conference. I’ve been in content strategy/social/digital for 4 years now and design/content for 6 but I had no LinkedIn friends going, no ex-co workers going so naturally, I took to my community within Women In Digital.

 

cmw

I asked my favorite channel, #content-marketing, if anyone was going. Trying to not be too desperate, I reached out and got a great response. A woman I connected with last year at the Women In Digital Annual Conference in Columbus is now on the board of the Cleveland chapter and she worked to get a happy hour scheduled that would connect us all together on the first night. After a few back and forth posts, we decided to meet at Nuevo, right next to the opening night networking/party event. 

Women in Digital made it possible for me to connect with 3 other ladies attending the conference and because of that connection, I formed new friends, enjoyed the parties and events, didn’t eat dinner alone, and wasn’t forced to insert myself every second of the conference. As a extrovert, normally this isn’t an issue. Networking is something I enjoy but being able to turn that off and have casual conversations with people who had not only my industry in common but also were apart of the same organization, made it seamless to be myself, to learn, to enjoy, and to grow at Content Marketing World.

I will forever be an advocate of women bringing other women up in the workplace and in the industry. I live for moments where the two of those connect! 

I’m in Women In Digital for the community and meeting up with some of them through the Cleveland chapter’s efforts made it even easier for me to tap into this national community. Find your community, people. It makes things way more enjoyable! 

 

Party on. Ambushed.

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