Monday, July 14, 2014

Best Weekend EVER! (#TPTVegas2014!)

I just got back from the first (of many, I hope!) TPT Conference in Las Vegas, and I honestly can't even put into words how great it was! I learned so much, that I typed up 13 pages of notes on the plane on my way home. Seriously, if you were on the fence this year, or thought it was too expensive, start saving now! I guarantee the amazing things I learned will earn back every penny the trip cost me!

Today, I wanted to share my top takeaways from the conference. Many of these are things that were mentioned by multiple top sellers, so I'm thinking they're important! FYI - I went to sessions by Jen Jones from Hello Literacy, Nikki Casassa from Melonheadz, Rachel Lynette from Minds in Bloom, & Erin Cobb from I'm Lovin' Lit. They were all fabulous! Thank you, ladies, for sharing your expertise with us!

*If you aren't a TPT seller, I'm sorry... There's some good stuff in here for you too, but most of it is directed at other sellers. Scroll to the end and check out my Vegas pics!

Here goes...

This really resonated with me. I think something similar was said by both Deanna Jump during her keynote and by Erin in her session. Sometimes it's easy to get discouraged if we aren't selling as much as we want or if our newest product doesn't seem to be taking off. It is true though, every single sale is someone who believes in us & thinks our product is worthy of their hard-earned money. Every sale is a classroom that will see our work and learn from it. (If that doesn't make you feel good about what you sell...)

The theme all day, from Paul & Deanna in the keynote to all of the individual sessions, was that this is a family. When one of us is successful, it brings attention to the site, and helps us all. When we are nice and play fair, everyone wins. When one of us is...not so nice or fair... it hurts our reputation as a whole. Lesson learned: Help each other, be nice, and always play fair! Remember that you represent not only yourself, but thousands of other teacher-authors and TPT as a whole.

I'll admit, I haven't been in the sellers forum very  much at all. Apparently, there's a lot going on in there, because this was mentioned in at least 3 of my 4 sessions. Lots to learn from TPT staff & other successful sellers, updates on new stuff and special opportunities. I'm heading to check it out when I finish up this post!

Again...not something I've done well with. Sellers who have had something in the newsletter have seen immediate increases in store traffic & sales. I hereby promise to submit to the newsletter on a regular basis from here on out! Scout's honor!

Raise your hand if you've seen boards that are full of products, and not much else... Now raise your hand if you've unfollowed those boards... I thought so! No one wants to follow boards that are only full of product pins! Pin stuff people can use without making a purchase. Keep your boards clean and organized. Get out of collaborative boards that are too product-focused unless you know for sure they are bringing you lots of traffic.

Seriously, y' one wants to be bombarded with advertisements for our products constantly! The 80/20 ratio means that 80% of  what you post should be real, relevant, and valuable on its own, no purchase required. The other 20% can be direct marketing of your work.

Don't post something as a freebie simply because you think it isn't sellable. Aside from those things that *have* to be free for copyright reasons, like Daily 5/Cafe, 7 Habits, etc., if you're posting it as a freebie, it should be something worthy of selling as a paid item. That also means to include everything you would normally include in a paid product (see more below on that).

TPT offers you four places to convince shoppers to buy your product. Use all of them! Every time! They are: product name, thumbnail images, product preview, & product description. Every product needs to include a few things...don't skip out on these, even on freebies. Here's the list: an eye-catching cover page, copyright info on every page, and a credits page for clip art & fonts used.

Get to know other bloggers/sellers. How? Visit their blogs & social media. Leave comments on their posts. Buy their stuff, when it works for you, and ALWAYS leave specific, positive, meaningful feedback. Why? See #2 above. We are a family. We need each other! We learn from each other and improve through our interactions.

Deanna said that someone told her this before her store took off. It is so true! For most of us, if not all, success isn't just going to happen! We have to work for it! Find what sells for you, promote it, build relationships, go out there and work for your success!

Here are a couple of fun pics that you may have already seen on Facebook or Instagram, but since I like them, I'm sharing again! This was such a fun & inspiring time, I am already planning for next year! #tptvegas2015, y'all!


Head over to Deirdre's What happens in Vegas linky at A Burst of First to see more fun stuff & learning from the conference! 


  1. Thanks so much for sharing!! I'm definitely in full on savings mode for next year!! Especially as I want to come from New Zealand!

    Learning to be awesome

  2. Thanks for sharing! I've started with TpT earlier this year. This summer I've started blogging and connecting. Like you, I haven't done much with #3 and #4, but I'll add that to my list:)

  3. Great post. Thanks for keeping those of us who didn't fly out informed.
    Mrs. Brown Loves Bookworms

  4. We were at almost all of the same sessions! LOL! Great notes. It was such a great experience and I also hope it is the first of many!

  5. Great post! It was so good to meet you and become friends!

    Krazy Town

  6. This post was PHENOMENAL! Thank you so much for sharing. I have always been appreciative for every purchase, but #1 really hit home. Wow, there are actually kids around the world who will be learning using product "I" created. How cool is that? I am definitely going to look into the TPT sellers forum. Since I am fairly new at this I was not even aware that there was one. Thanks again for all the great information. I will definitely be bookmarking this post and referring back to it. {Sorry for such a loooong comment}

  7. YES, YES, YES to all! I can't wait to hear more tips! You are so very good about connecting with everyone and sharing your experiences and ideas! THANK YOU!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  8. These are great tips! I have a store with a few items for free, but I'm looking forward to creating products to sell. Thanks for these tips; I need the help I can get. : )

    Teaching Powered by Caffeine

  9. Thanks Kristen! It was so great to get to meet you and chat for a while! :) Erin

  10. Great post, Kristen! It was great to meet you!!

    Lucky to Be in First

  11. Loved reading your post! Thanks so much for sharing all the information. I couldn't afford the conference this year, but am definitely saving for next year!! Hope to meet you then :)
    Differentiation Station Creations

  12. Thank- you so much for sharing! This is just the inspiration I needed :)

  13. Thank you for the great advice. I left the conference on Thursday. Next year I will stay to the end. I am your newest follower!

    Sherry Andrighetto
    Kindergarten Milestones

  14. Great tips! We look very weird in the blue light! I'm glad we got a picture together. :)

  15. I just found you via the hop and I just wanted to let you know; 1) you have a new follower 2) Thank you for sharing these amazing tips! 3) I'm going to start saving now for the next conference! I look forward to learning more from you in the future!

  16. Thanks so much for sharing your tips from the TpT conference. I was at the I Teach K conference but couldn't stay through Friday because of a wedding. I genuinely appreciate you sharing with us!

    Gluesticks 'N Giggles

  17. Fabulous post! Thanks for sharing your top ten for those of us who couldn't be there! I'm saving my pennies now for next year! Your tips have definitely given me something to think about and improve my own store!
    A Tall Drink of Water

  18. Wonderful tips and advice! Thank you so much for sharing!

  19. Thanks for the great take-aways. I couldn't make it to the conference this year, and am solo hoping there will be videos for purchase soon. Thank you for sharing these tips.
    susan berkowitz - slpsdca

  20. #1 really hits home with me. I often get boggled down with numbers - followers, likes, pins, etc... When the truth is that 1 person who bought your item liked you enough to buy it! Even people who download and use my free fonts make my day when they send me a cover page that they used my font on or leave a comment that they love my fonts. It was free and they didn't give me any extra income, but they made my day!

    Deniece, This Little Piggy Reads

  21. Kristen, thank you for taking the time to write this post ! Great reminders! And those frames are so cute!

    Peggy Means - Primary Flourish


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