#RootsTech presents a veritable gold mine of content for bloggers, vloggers, microbloggers, and podcasters. To get the most out of the whirlwind days, it’s best to have a plan. Here’s out 2020 Salt Lake City edition of our GeneaBloggers Guide to #RootsTech
Know Before You Go
With so much to experience, you’ll want to do some research up-front so you have more time to absorb the events around you. Download the RootsTech app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store, read up on the keynote speakers, and examine vendor information.
#RootsTech 2020 Hashtags
Because it’s the 10th anniversary of the conference, you can use #RootsTech10years in addition to #RootsTech and #Notatrootstech.
#Rootstech Official Logo
Once again, FamilySearch and RootsTech has confirmed that GeneaBloggers have permission to use the official RootsTech logo (the ruby tree above) in their coverage of #RootsTech.
You can right-click and copy the image here or download it from the FILES section of the GeneaBloggers Facebook group.
Official GeneaBloggers Website Badge
If you’re on the GeneaBloggers membership roll, please display a GeneaBloggers badge. Remember, as of this time last year, we reverted to the original Geneablogger logo, without the “TRIBE.” You can find instructions at http://geneabloggerstribe.com/get-your-geneabloggers-badge/.
Reach out to other GeneaBloggers
Pack your Blogging Beads
Wear your blogging beads from any previous #RootsTech so we can identify each other on sight.
Pat Richley-Erikson (aka DearMYRTLE) has a few blogging beads for new bloggers (or first time at RootsTech bloggers). Just drop by the FamilyTreeMaker booth in the expo hall (Booth 717) and introduce yourself to her or Cousin Russ.
Here’s what we look like:
Connect in Person and Online
Request to join the Genealogy Bloggers at RootsTech Facebook group, administrated by Heather Wilkinson Rojo. Heather has some easy-to-follow instructions for membership pinned to the top of the group page. Like the GeneaBloggers Facebook group, you’ll have to answer a couple of questions. Watch the group’s feed for announcements of informal meetups.
If you get to Salt Lake City early, you’ll find a lot of your fellow GeneaBloggers in the Family History Library, particularly on Monday, Feb. 24. Dear Myrtle will do her annual RootsTech edition of Mondays with Myrt broadcast from the third floor.
On Tuesday, Feb. 25th at 1 pm, join other bloggers at the Blue Lemon in City Creek for lunch. . It’s a fun time to get to know one another and relax before RootsTech starts.
During the conference, don’t miss the GeneaBloggers photo op scheduled for Friday at 5:40 pm, by the Media Center in the Exhibit Hall. This will give everyone time to get there after their 4:30 pm session. There will also be a special presentation made at that time.
Content Creation and Curation
If you’re still mulling over what to write (or vlog or podcast) about during RootsTech, Randy Seaver’s RootsTech 2019 Blog Compendium lists all the #RootsTech and #NotatRootsTech posts that went out last year. The range of topics include:
- Industry announcements
- Personal impressions
- Summaries and analyses of keynote speeches
- Interviews with speakers, other attendees, exhibitors, or industry representatives
- Highlights of technology impacting the family history and related industries
- Spotlights on family history issues or initiatives
- Innovative techniques to promote genealogy to children
In addition to letting Randy know of your RootsTech posts, tag them with #geneabloggers. This allows your fellow bloggers to share and amplify your reach.
Drink in the Inspiration: RootsTech presents a unique opportunity to collect ideas for content you want to share later in the year. You don’t have to post it all during the conference.
Stay energized, or at least conscious, by drinking a lot of water. Salt Lake City sits at 4,226 feet (1,288 meters). The dry, winter air causes those of us from lower elevations to dehydrate much more quickly than we would at home.
With concerns about influenza, arm yourself with a personal bottle of hand-sanitizer. Though not a substitute for hand washing, it is handy after shaking lots of hands or handling money.
Know your limits. As Jennie Fairs rightly points out “you cannot physically do everything!” Prioritize what you’ll take in and stay sane. Be sure to get regular meals, a good night’ sleep, and when you can, use the hotel gym.
Sensory overload becomes an understatement after a day or two at #RootsTech. Take an occasional break and find a quiet place for a cup of tea, phone call home, or walk in the fresh air to take in the beautiful Wasatch mountains surrounding the city.
Wait, there’s more… (Advice, that is)
- Take copious notes. You won’t remember as much as you think you will. Bluetooth keyboards that sync with your phone or tablet are great for typing in your lap.
- Make friends with your neighbors during sessions and exchange business cards.
- Last year, Emily Kowalski Schroeder compiled a great list well worth reading: 31 Tips for Attending RootsTech
- Check out RootsTech’s own Survival Guide for information about wheelchair rentals, local eateries, and what to wear.
- Saturday, Family Discovery Day, the exhibit hall is packed. If you’re looking to interview exhibitors, try to catch up with them on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday.
- If you’re planning to broadcast from the Salt Palace’s Exhibit Hall, keep in mind that ambient noise is a dull roar Wednesday through Friday (Saturday is worse) as you decide what equipment to pack.
#NotAtRootsTech: Covering #RootsTech from the Comfort of Your Home
Not everyone can get to Salt Lake City every year. Just because you’re not able to go this year doesn’t mean you’re totally sidelined. Reporting on the live-streamed events can keep your followers up to date. You can join in #notatrootstech conversations with other family historians who aren’t making the trip this year.
Got more advice?
Use the comments below to share your insight with fellow Geneabloggers.
Contributed by Laura Hedgecock.
© GeneaBloggers 2020