On Wednesday, I’ll board a plane for the first time since my son’s birth in April 2008 to attend the BlogHer conference in Chicago. I would like to thank Medela for sponsoring my trip to BlogHer and WebmasterRadio.fm for their support.
I am excited to meet fellow bloggers in person, but I’m also still in shock that I’m attending this event. Candace and I never planned to become “mommy bloggers.” When Candace’s daughter was born with a congenital heart defect, we wanted to raise money for heart charities. I suggested combining Candace’s passion for writing with my experience in online marketing, and Mamanista was born in early 2007.
Our goals were modest. Since Candace and I were both bargain shoppers who researched our purchases extensively, we started writing reviews about our favorite products for moms and babies. We hoped to raise some money through the Amazon Associates Program and affiliate programs on www.cj.com, www.linkshare.com, www.performics.com and www.shareasale.com. With no marketing budget, Mamanista grew slowly but steadily as a result of search engine optimization and referrals from other bloggers. As our traffic increased, PR reps and companies started sending product samples and sponsoring giveaways.
Along with running some great contests for our readers, we were able to donate thousands of dollars to charity. And our blogging enabled us to make connections with amazing companies and to help our communities. Last Christmas, I donated several carloads of toys to local charities. And on Friday, I had the privilege of donating many LeapFrog Tag and Tag Jr Readers to local libraries and public schools. We hope to increase our charitable efforts and to work with fellow bloggers to make a bigger impact. Making those connections with other bloggers is my main goal at BlogHer.
So I really want to thank Medela for making it possible for me to attend the BlogHer Conference. As a working mother, I’m proud to be sponsored by a company that makes it possible for women to breastfeed even while working outside the home. When I was pregnant, I purchased the Pump In Style Advanced Breast Pump based on the recommendations of other moms. As a new mother, I found this product indispensible. When Candace’s son was born, she received the newest hands-free Medela Breastpump — The Freestyle Breastpump. (Click here for her review.)
I’ll be reporting for WebmasterRadio.fm from the BlogHer conference and tweeting from @buzzmommy. We’ll be posting links to my interviews with bloggers and BlogHer sponsors on Mamanista in the coming weeks.