Monday, September 3, 2012

Confessions of a Blogger Outreach Virgin

Hello Beach Dwellers.  
Today we are talking dealing with brands and how much fun that can be.  Last Friday, I was invited to my first bloggers outreach event, hosted by Howard's Storage World and Brand Meets Blog.  I went along with an open mind, curious as to what would happen.  The event coincided with the launch of their catalogue on 10 September.  We were invited to a High Tea at Vaucluse House Tea Rooms and then for a visit to the store in Bondi Junction.

Me, Life Love and Hiccups, My Mummy Daze, Tina Gray Dot Me

It was lovely to catch up with girls I had met at blogging conferences and other social events and also to meet some other bloggers.

The venue was gorgeous, we were offered champagne on arrival.  Given a chance to circulate and take a few shots of our gorgeous surrounds and Tweet and Instagram them if we chose to. If you are not following me on either yet, the buttons are at the top of my side bar.


Then it was down to business.  A beautiful spread of sandwiches, savoury treats and sweet happiness,  gorgeous tea and lovely company was on offer.

We were asked to describe any storage issues we had which needed solutions, for which Howard's Storage could offer advice.  It was time to fess up.  I am a power cleaner.  In the time it takes to boil the kettle and brew a good cuppa, I can unload the dishwasher, pump up the cushions and basically have the living areas of the Beach House looking how you know and seem to like them, on this blog.  But how do I do it?  Well, I am a self confessed 'cupboard shover'. And sorry mum if you are reading, but I think it's genetic. 

This is the inside of the Beach House Brat's wardrobe on a good day.  It usually has a pool of shoes in front of it as well, as my darling searches for the perfect shoe du jour.  If only she could see them better, perhaps that would end the need for me to be endlessly cupboard shoving back in here.  It is obvious dear reader.  I need shoe caddies, big time and Howard's Storage was only too happy to help, with a very generous gift voucher provided to each of the event attendees.  With the voucher burning a hole in my pocket, it was time for the in-store part of the event, in search of a shoe storage solution.  I admitted to our lovely hosts Jill and Cathy, that I had another confession.  I had never been inside Howards Storage World I knew the brand well, but had only ever walked past the entrance to the store.  As a self confessed cupboard shover, I had never seen the need for a visit.  

Actually when you think about it, I have a great need, as evidenced by this shot.

They don't just sell plastic boxes, they sell lovely quality products, which cater for all manner of storage dilemmas.

I was looking for things that I thought would look fantastic in the Beach House.  I loved this repro vintage style first aid box lots.  Dressing bleeding knees never looked so attractive.  If I had this gorgeous baby, I wouldn't be cupboard shoving her.

I loved these nautical stripe lined baskets.

And as we have a bird theme going on in the littlest Beach House Brat's room.  Remember this art work I made here?  These bird hooks appealed to me too.

I liked the scrunchy laundry dumpster as well.

Cute mirrors too.

And then I happened upon it.  The shoe storage section, and it was impressive dear reader, it really was.

Remember for this little problem

This piece was perfect for little girls shoes and I could get lots of them onto one of these, neatly stowed at the bottom of the cupboard.

But remember how I always say that first impressions are everything and you guys know I love a party.  Well as I entered the store there was something in the window display that I had to have.  It was reasonably priced at $69.95, it was the last one in store and any thoughts of shoe organisation went immediately out the window.  I had to have her. I can see the mound of ice and the the bottles strategically placed right now and if a girl's going to throw a party, she needs a nice bread board as well.  Wine storage never looked so good. To hell with shoe storage. As long as the guests don't open them, no one will see inside my cupboards anyway. Right????

 By the end of my visit, I was issuing invitations to my next party and with Summer on the horizon, beach dwellers, it's inevitable you will be seeing a little more of my new best friends around these parts.

So that was my first experience with a branded bloggers event and even though this kind of thing won't pay the mortgage, it's about relationships.   As with most things in blogging, who knows where it will take me or the brand.

If working with brands is the kind of thing you want to explore, I read a great post about making a pitch to a company here
Or contact the lovely Louisa or Heather at the Blogger outreach agency, Brand Meets Blog if you want to explore the possibilities.
And what do I put my invitation down to?  Well Twitter actually.  If you are not playing you should be.  It's a fab way for brands and agencies to notice what you are doing and see if your blog is a good fit with them.  Here's a post I wrote on Twitter for virgins, if you are one of them.

Have a great week peeps and thanks for stopping by.  Not sure how often I'll be back here this week.  It's Spring and I've clearly got issues with my cupboards and you know what that means.
And what about you, are you a cupboards shover like me?

Today I am linked up here


  1. My kids are great shovers and that leads me to often having to sort out cupboards just so they are clean enough for them to shove again- it is a never ending cycle! I try hard not to shove but it does happen particularly if they are already messy!

    1. I should have added, I am wondering about branding and have had a couple of offers from US based companies but I am really unsure about it, I think I would rather deal with Australian brands but living in the country is not going to get me to events like the one you went to!

    2. If they are a good fit for your blog I don't see why not. If you have readers in the US that may work. What I object to is when American brands offer giveaways open only to your American readers. I feel used and always decline as I do not want to exclude my other readers who are international but mainly from Australia and the US.

    3. I agree, I don't like give-aways for only US readers. I suppose the products weren't really me, both were for glasses and I don't even wear glasses. I am sure if it was something I liked or would use I may have jumped at it.

  2. I couldn't tell you what my kids rooms look like because I just can't face going in there ;o) I started on my own cupboards yesterday but was so traumatised I got drunk instead ;o)
    Very very drunk......
    Great looks like you girls had a great time. It's so nice to be spoiled like that. How lovely did the event look??? ;o)
    I haven't been to Howard's Storage World for ages but we have one 5 mins from me......
    Tania xx

    1. My room as a kid was a tip too. But the Virgo in me at least makes sure it is pretty tidy now in the parts of the house you can see. It's just inside the cupboards that I can't seem to get on top of.

  3. I was a virgin too Carolyn but what a lovely way to be introduced to the blogger meets brand world. You liked all the same things I did. I'm going back to the store on the 10th with my shopping list. The tea rooms look like a gorgeous spot. (BTW I've got cheap wire stackable baskets from the dollar store for all the shoes. My problem is getting the kids to put them in here. You can bet your bottom dollar one of my kids won't be able to find 1 shoe on school morning!) Have a great week!

    Anne xx

    1. Ann you've got my problem. I think that's why my little girl has so many shoes. There's always a plan be. The big beach house brat has 3 pairs of black shoes too. runners, boots and school shoes for the same reason.

  4. our cupboards look a bit like that!
    the tea rooms remind me of a wedding i went to there.

  5. I've never been to an outreach event. I'm curious of how that goes. I think I have a little glimpse to that through your photos. It looks like a lot fun.
    Speck pumps

  6. Love the coffee table vignette. Sounds like such a great party and so fun. Thanks for joining TTT. Hugs, Marty

  7. A brand morning tea, go girl!! Who said being a sahm ( sexy at home mum) was boring.
    Sounds like a fab day. I'm going to vaucluse house, next cyber meet up, for vivid sydney next year! Thanks for sharing, . Looks great!

  8. THis was enlightening and very helpful. I clicked through to the links you put up, and boy was that a source of inspiration and information. Thanks for sharing. Lovely the tea cups! Have a few questions for you re this, and still can't get my Nuffnang thing working!

  9. Uuuuummmmmm - I love the silver and the blue flowered plates! Found you on Coastal Charm.

  10. Thanks so much for joining in with this week's Say G'day Linky Party! This looks amazing-you are so lucky to have gone to this event!

    I'm sharing this on Google+ etc!

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz


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