The short answer is, there is no short answer. We launched BlogTour during London Design Festival in 2011 simply because we felt it would be nice to bring some of the best bloggers we know to London and show them why we love the festival so much. We’ve asked some of our favorite brands to pitch in and help us fund the tour and we were off. None of us expected BlogTour to take on a life of it’s own and grow to the size that it has.
Looking back I think a lot of things happened on that first tour. Bloggers were excited to be able to travel to London and discover tons of new material to write and blog about or to help inspire their next design or styling project but many of them also saw that, because there was such a captive audience, they had ended up with more followers on their social media platforms, with more site traffic and in some cases even made contacts that allowed them to start monetizing their blogs.
The brands that so generously decided to pitch in made valuable connections with the team and saw increases in their social media following, site traffic, overall visibility of their brands and..something else. They told us that we had done exactly what they’d been missing about social media – that we created all that online buzz (for metrics freaks that’s over 40 million impressions that reach an audience of 1 million plus, per tour) and then brought our audiences with us into the showrooms and trade shows we visited.
The audiences like that BlogTour is not a press tour with focus on a brand or two. We leave plenty of time and space for bloggers to find the things that inspire them and the end result is several months of blog posts and thousands of tweets about an endless array of design, travel and lifestyle topics. Like a magazine really and exactly why we’ve actually created a digital magazine, Best of BlogTour or BoB Mag, which publishes a month or so after each tour.
For us at Modenus it allowed a shift in business model – from being strictly an online resource to engaging with our social media friends, acquaintances and media partners through real life events whenever possible – and you know what? We love it. In the end it’s still about people engaging with people and if we can contribute to that then our mission has been successful.
You’ve read this far have you? In hopes I’d tell you about BlogTour London and our plans for 2013?
Fine, but before I do that, please allow me one big huge thank you to our US based sponsors who support BlogTour even when they’re not part of the actual tour – they believe in what we do and they happen to be great brands. I think a round of virtual applause is in order.
Here’s where we’re headed in 2013 so far, there are more discussions under way but I can’t share those with you yet:
Cologne – January 12-17, 2013 for IMM Cologne and Living Kitchen
New York City – March 2013 for Architectural Digest Home Design Show
London – September 2013 for London Design Festival
We try to always bring new bloggers into BlogTour but may also select one of our alumnae if we think the tour requires their specific tone of voice, style or social media super power. If you’d like to join a tour please leave us a comment below, telling us why you think you’d be a great fit.
We include airfare, accommodations, most meals and a prohibitive amount of cocktails and you bring your willingness to blog, tweet, pin and Facebook (is that a verb yet ?) about sponsors, events and, of course, all the inspiration you can find.
So here’s your chance to jump in and let us know what makes you a perfect BlogTour blogger.
Starting Wednesday September 19, we’ll be welcoming a new group of bloggers to London for our second tour to this great city.
Below is a taste of what we’ll see during the tour.
Five nights in newly launched Citizen M hotel Bankside, kicked off by a round a drinks at the hotel bar and afterwards a casual dinner….upriver
A morning tour of 100% Design, the UK’s largest interior design show with a focus on modern interior design and architecture
A visit to BlogTour sponsor Amtico Flooring’s booth at 100% to learn more about their brand new Signature Collection
Brunch at Bill’s London with our sponsors Mr.Steam who have flown in just to hang out with the BlogTour London team
Followed by a walk to Design Junction which this year is located in the Sorting Office near Oxford Street
And finally, Friday night, a lot of exercise, architecture and a great cause. BlogTour London’s charity partner is Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres, an inspired concept around the UK that allows cancer care patients and their family and friends to seek out beautifully designed centres that allow them to relax, connect with people in similar situations and talk to Councillors.
Every year, Maggie’s host a number of fundraiser walks and hikes around the country and during London Design Festival there is a night hike – a tour of some of the city’s most inspired pieces of architecture. Modenus’ editorial team and most of the BlogTour bloggers will participate and your financial support of our 10-20 mile endeavor is greatly appreciated. All funds raised will benefit Maggie’s. For more about the tour and a map of stops click here.
Modenus My City tour hosted by Katie Tregidden
This is a concept we’re very proud of. As BlogTour travels to various international destinations we would never presume to know a city better than its local bloggers – so we’ve created MyCity tours which allow locals to share their favorite hidden design treasures. What those will be in London, we have no idea – we only know it’ll be in the East End where Katie’s tour will end at:
Tent London and Super Brands where local artisans and smaller manufacturers mingle with a selection of iconic brands – all in the quirky setting of the Truman Brewery on London’s Brick Lane.
The evening that day is free, giving Modenus a chance to head to the BlogTour NYC reunion party that is being organized by BlogTour NYC ringmaster Andrew Dunning. That’s what we love about BlogTour, it’s a community not a tour.
Brunch with our sponsors Victoria & Albert Baths to experience their Cabrits tub and with Samuel Heath for a first hand look (and feel) of the amazing Style Moderne collection at Design Centre Chelsea Harbour – followed by:
High style, high design and more at Decorex at Royal Chelsea Hospital. The team will be able to tour the show, have tea with Christopher Guy and more champagne with our friends at Beaton Fabrics who are hosting the show’s official Tweetup.
And for the tour’s final night?
Oh nothing, just a big fat cocktail party for BlogTour LDN and an Elite list of London bloggers hosted by the Architectural Digest Home Design Show in New York and MODENUS.
So….you get the idea, yes? Lots of design, lots of styles, never a dull moment and enough space for our bloggers to find their own. We hope to see some of you on BlogTour in 2013.