UK Blog Awards’ Managing Director, Gemma Pears, talks to TeckComesFirst about her inspiration into making an awards show, some insight into the colour scheme, challenges her and Becki both faced and more.
1) Can you introduce yourself and say what you exactly do at UK Blog Awards every day?
Hello, my name is Gemma Pears, Founder and MD of the UK Blog Awards Ltd.
What do I do at UKBA HQ everyday would be hard to say as my days are so varied! I can be managing social media and marketing to event planning and design. As well as working with other companies to manage their events and marketing platforms.
UK Blog Awards Logo (Image Credit: HollyGoesLightly)
2) What is/are your biggest accomplishments?
Workwise, I would have to say developing UK Blog Awards as a brand to help individual and company bloggers receive the recognition they deserve for their blogging achievements. Another good one is running #BlogHour via Twitter every Tuesday from 9-10pm. We receive great feedback from both platforms and it is good to see the brand helping others.
3) What was the inspiration behind starting UK Blog Awards and how did you make this concept a reality?
I actually thought of the idea nearly three years ago when I started working freelance, however as people say, timing is everything and three years ago it did not feel right. I could not answer why 2013 felt like the right time, but perhaps the number 13 is our lucky number!
The concept has been into a reality by a lot of hardwork and extensive lists, as well as joining forces with a previous employer of mine, Becki Cross from Events Northern
. Becki is now a collaborative partner of the awards.
Becki Cross, collaborative partner at UK Blog Awards.
4) What challenges did you and Becki face in creating this brand as well as organizing both the awards evening and the build up to it and how were these overcome?
Not knowing what was around the corner, the excitement and intrigue of how people would respond to the awards but not allowing any of this to hold us back. We had in our minds that the awards is a great hub for cross industries to come together and network, as well as being recognised for great content.
The biggest challenge would be managing over 100k visits to the website in one day and the website crashing on numerous occasions due to such a high volume of traffic!
5) How were the judging panel chosen from each different category?
I felt it was really important to have at least two judges with not only experience of blogging and social media but also the industry they were going to be judging. I also felt it was important to have brands that bloggers would instantly recognise. We should not forget about the public voting phase. This phase was an important platform to us as blogging is all about opinion, therefore the public vote provided the ‘people’s voice’ for their favourite UK industry Blog.
6) Orange is my favourite colour so I have to ask this, what made you have an orange/black theme on the site? – Purav
We love the colour too! It was between orange and blue as these two colours are used on popular platforms such as Blogger and WordPress.
7) How has #BlogHour helped to raise awareness of both UK Blog Awards and up and coming bloggers alike? Do you have any stats to share?
Yes of course, we think it has been a huge help for bloggers and brands to connect and learn about the bloggersphere. Only last week, we trended across the UK and we can provide the following statistics: There were 270 participants involved, With an audience reach of 427,439, Created 3,057,171 potential opportunities across the Twittersphere and Tweeters used the word #BlogHour
941 times. It is surprising how an hours networking across social media can lead to great connections that you may never create face to face.
UK Blog Awards – Proud To Be Shortlisted Badge (Image Credit: UK Blog Awards)
8) It was a great honour for Usman and I to be shortlisted as finalists in the Digital and Technology category for the UK Blog Awards and we’re both looking forward to the awards evening. What can bloggers and other industry professionals expect at the awards evening?
Great networking, as well as being present face to face we will not forget our virtual audience on the night, it will be a unique experience for all, sumptuous food and drink, live entertainment, fantastic goodie bags, being crowned the best UK blogger in your industry!
9) Any advice on event management or organizing an awards show from your experience so far?
Creativity, Experience, Organisation, Perseverance and Innovation
10) Are you planning a UK Blog Awards in 2015?
Yes of course, but shh! We can’t tell anyone about this until we announce full details on the evening
at The Grange Hotel, St Pauls, London on Friday 25th
April 2014. See you there!
Gemma Pears, Founder & Managing Director of UK Blog Awards.
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Editor’s Note: We realise this is the 3rd Tuesday of the month and we apologize for the one week delay with this interview, it was an issue with another company and so we had to ask Gemma last minute to participate and we appreciate her getting us the answers quickly. Normally, we always produce a new interview on the site every 2nd Tuesday of the month, this was just a one off delay!
Thanks to Gemma Newton for participating in this interview. Questions were chosen by both co-founders of TeckComesFirst; Purav and Usman.
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I’m a 23 year old Maths Graduate, who has a great passion for technology and in my spare time I make videos on YouTube to show my passion. I'm also co-admin here at TeckComesFirst and I joined this site back in January 2012.