Friday, October 19, 2012 saw me head into downtown Toronto for what I can only describe as the most empowering, socially connected (digitally and IRL), fun two days of my life.
There was so much to do, so many people to meet in real life, so much to learn. It really was a fantastic experience. A great big THANK YOU goes out to the wonderful women at ShesConnected for inviting me to attend the 2012 ShesConnected conference.
Friday started with new friends, an awesome swag bag and a great keynote speech from Bridgett Richardson of @FordCanada about new technologies designed to keep us safe. Following the keynote speech, we newbies got to convene at a table to network and make more friends! And I got to meet Mara Shapiro (AKA @chickymara) who really is the most positive, energetic person I have ever met or followed (in the digital sense, not the stalker sense).
Then it was off to sessions to cram my mind with as much information as possible. By the time the first session ended, my head was spinning from the note taking, the tweeting, the socializing and the fantastic ideas that were being shared. So, I hit the @McD_Canada lounge for a hit of caffeine, some friendly, smiling faces (you can count on McDonald’s for that no matter where you are) and a bit of relaxation (they were giving massages and manicures!)
Then it was time to visit the exhibitors. Such a great bunch of sponsors. I don’t have room to list all of them here. (You can check out the ShesConnected sponsor page for a complete list.) A few that I connected with include in no particular order:
- @Almond_Fresh (You have got to try the chocolate almond milk. To.Die.For.)
- @BurnbraeFarms (Love the ladies at this booth. Had a really nice chat with them.)
- @CanadianBeef (Mmmm, beef. That’s all I have to say.)
- @RentfrockRepeat (Fantastic idea this is. Rent a designer dress to wear to your event. Look fantastic. Save money.)
- @MLFConnects (Mmmmm, bacon. Got my Baconista T-shirt!)
- @FordCanada (Had a great talk with the rep about the new Ford Explorer. Really need to get into one of these.)
- @McD_Canada (Coffee. Enough said.)
- @iogocanada (So delicious. And fun for kids, too. Can’t wait to pick some up for my family!)
- @toshibacanada (I need a new laptop. I got tons of info from Toshiba. Now all I have to do is buy one!)
- @HuffPostCanada (Love these ladies! Really nice chatting with them.)
I can’t express enough how much I enjoyed talking to the representatives from these companies. I would have loved to have gotten around to all of the exhibitors, but there just didn’t seem to be enough time. I know, it would seem that a two-day conference would give me plenty of time to attend the great information sessions and visit all of the sponsors, but everyone else was doing the same thing and the sponsors were so great and so helpful that it was hard to find a chance to see them all because there was always a crowd of people at every booth and every sponsor took time with each person who stopped by.
There is so much more to tell, but I’ll have to save it for another post. I need to take a few days and really absorb how fantastic this past weekend was, all the information I learned and all the wonderful new friends I made.
Thanks again ShesConnected!