The first blog is believed to have been created by Justin Hall when he was a student at Swarthmore College in America in 1994. He didn’t call it a blog: he just referred to it as his personal homepage. It wasn’t until 1997 that the term weblog was coined.

These days everybody’s got one and blogging is now at a record high. Globally, 250 million blogs influence consumers and businesses on a daily basis. Blogs are 63% more likely to influence purchase decisions than magazines. According to 78% of chief marketing officers, custom content will be the champion of marketing tactics in the future. And blog posts that are shared on Twitter and Facebook get 149% more inbound links than those not shared on social media at all.

Now  Manchester’s top bloggers, digital influencers and some of the city’s coolest brands are coming together to generate a lively discussion about the Business of Blogging at a free event at Old Granada Studios.

Hosted by Byron Evans, the event will explore how bloggers or digital influencers can make a business from their presence in the online world, how brands build and maintain a relationship with bloggers and how brands and bloggers can mark their mark in a competitive and growing online community.

It will end with an open mic where businesses and bloggers will pitch their ideas in 60 seconds and get feedback from the panel.

“With the way that technology has changed the world, blogging, in my eyes, has become a much-accelerated word-of-mouth,” says Matthew Farnworth, Yelp’s community manager in Manchester. “No longer does someone’s opinion travel to just their close friends. Blogging gives ordinary, local people the opportunity to be seen and heard and appreciated on a mass scale – on anything from cocktails to current affairs and pizza to politics.”

This event is being held by OGS Works at Old Granada Studios on 29 September from 6pm-8pm and it’s free. Register here. To take part in the open mic session contact chloe@toastpr.co.uk

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