7 Things I Learned at the IACP Annual Conference

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Four days of networking, learning and fun in New York at hotels, offices and cooking schools. (Photo by Damian Brandon)

I’m back from a packed schedule of classes, meetings, cooking demos, expos and parties at the International Association of Culinary Professionals annual conference, held in New York.

I taught at a class beforehand, zoomed around the city, saw friends and colleagues, met new people, learned about our industry, ate too much, and laughed with my roomies. Here are my seven takeaways:

1. Yes, you can make money as a food blogger. While the panelists refused to say how much, public relations people and marketing folks said they hire food bloggers and cookbook writers as brand ambassadors, recipe developers, event planners — and to write sponsored posts, hold focus groups, and star in videos.

2. It helps to have a plan. You know how writers are. We aren’t always good at this stuff. Attendees raved about Ari Weinzwig‘s session on visioning. Figure out where you want to be in 10 years, write it down, and start behaving like it’s going to happen, he said.

Duck wings at the awards night after-party.

3. Getting a story published in Saveur is hard — and could be painful. During a tour of the magazine’s offices, Food Editor Todd Coleman revealed that the staff writes 70 percent of each issue and plans stories for a year, which constantly shift. If your piece is accepted, it might not run for a few years, and then the editors might tweak it more before paying upon publication.

4. Radio and television appearances drive book sales. According to Kirsty Melville, president and publisher of Andrews McMeel Publishing, broadcast media trumps retail promotion and social media for book sales. If you’re working on your book proposal or your book’s coming out soon, review your plan for these two mediums.

5. The tide might finally be turning to metrics in recipes. That’s the word from Tina Ujlaki, food editor of Food & Wine.

Ruth Reichl and me at Katz's deli on the Lower East Side. (Photo by Akasha Richmond)

6. Ruth Reichl rocks in real life too. I took a tour hosted by Reichl mostly because I wanted to get closer to a writer and editor whose work I’ve admired for years. When we visited a Lower East Side deli, Russ & Daughters, she spoke about going there as a little girl, and about her relatives leaving Germany who sold their gold fillings to meet ends meet during WWII. She was approachable and let us all take photos with her.

7. Networking is still king. Yes, we’re all virtual now, but meeting in person is still a pleasure and can lead to all kinds of surprises. Several food writers told me they were meeting with magazine editors, marketers at companies, and book publishers. Plus there’s the serendipity of finding someone famous in the hallway or sitting next to someone who might want to hire you, has a similar passion, or becomes a new friend.

There are several levels of membership at IACP, so see if any are right for you. Next year the conference is in San Francisco — that’s my backyard. Each year IACP features lots of classes for food writers, whether on recipe writing, photography, blogging, social media, freelance writing, cookbook trends, or cooking classes.

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    • diannejacob says

      It was! And next year it will be an easy hop for you to come to SF, Lori, so I hope you will make it.

  1. says

    I agree with Lori above me…San Fran, I am 100% there. The timing will be perfect, the locale, perfect. Can’t wait.

    Thanks for sharing your tidbits…I was thinking about you today, thinking, well, Dianne is back and due for a post any day and I hope she posts about the conference. And voila, you did.

    Metrics in cookbooks. I have noticed that some newer books list both the measurements in grams and cups/teaspoons which is nice for people who want to use metric and those who don’t.

    Making money as a food blogger…dare I say that some bloggers probably make more money from their blogging than if they were to write a book based on all the things you mentioned: brand ambassadors, recipe developers, event planners ’97 and to write sponsored posts, etc. One has to sell a lot of books compared to what can be offered for one sponsored post. My two cents only, of course, but I have pondered this math, many times :)

    • diannejacob says

      Very good. I will see you there, Averie.

      That is sweet that you noticed. I am a day late. I got in yesterday afternoon, my brain was fried yesterday and I just couldn’t pound out a post. But I forgave myself and spent several hours on this one today.

      Yes indeed, there is money to be made. I’d venture to say that many people make most of their money on advertising, but yes, there’s plenty to be made here if you have the right package for a product, and if you figure out how to make it work. A book is different. I think it’s more like a trophy for many food bloggers, a sign that they are legitimate. It’s rarely about the money.

  2. says

    Wonderful list Dianne, and it was great to see you again! I couldn’t agree more about the networking. In addition to new friends, I made many key connections, which made the conference worth every cent. Now, time for follow-up! I’m already looking forward to next year.

    • diannejacob says

      Great to see you too, Julie. Yes, following up is vital — you’ve got to keep those connections going. I have a big pile of business cards on my desk and I’m sure you do as well.

  3. says

    This sounded like an absolute thrilling conference. Last weekend I tempted to stay in PJ’s all day and follow the #IACPNYC hashtag on Twitter.

    Thanks for a fabulous takeaway. I may have squealed a little when I saw the photo of you and Ruth!

    • diannejacob says

      It was fun! I checked into the hashtag feed and found it’s not like the food blogging conferences I’ve been to. There’s not nearly the same level of participation, snark and reporting.

      Yep, access to Ruth for a few hours was pretty cool. Jacques Pepin was roaming around as well. He usually comes to IACP.

  4. says

    Lovely write-up Dianne! I like that you start with the money aspect, because coming back from New York, I wasn’t so sure whether the future was positive or grim. On the one hand, I heard in most of the sessions I attended how low the pay is (if there is a pay) on websites, blogs, magazines and newspapers. I even heard writers whom I consider successful say they don’t earn a living with their books! And the visit at Saveur was a bit of a shock for me: I can hardly think of another magazine that’s as highly regarded as they are, so I was very surprised to see that such a small team pulls the whole magazine together (including recipe testing, which many cannot afford anymore!)

    On the other hand, listening, talking and hanging out with the passionate bunch that are food writers gave me a jolt of motivation and inspiration. I guess one has to learn where to look to find success (and monetary reward). The market is going through such fundamental changes with regards to the platforms we use, nothing won’t even be the same 5 years from now. As I said to old and new friends on Twitter today, we just have to hang on, keep going and believe. If we have something going for us, it’s passion, and that’s what I witnessed in New York. That’s my take away from IACP.

    Thank you Dianne for the chats we had, I really appreciate that you always seem to have time for each and everyone that crosses your way. I consider myself lucky to be one of them.

    P.S. RE: Metric measurements: Melissa Clark also confirmed in the recipe writing sessions that the NY Times had switched to metric! (I didn’t know they had.) As they’re pretty influential, I thought this would probably change things, and you are confirming this. Isn’t it handy that we Canadians were born into it? :)

    • diannejacob says

      Thanks for this thoughtful reply, Marie. I’d say the future is both positive and grim. That’s just how it works when you’re self-employed as a food writer. The people at the top make the big bucks, but I have watched many people come up in the ranks over the years, so I know it’s possible. We just have to figure out how to move forward and make it work, as you say. Maybe we should give Ari’s visioning program a try.

      It’s always a pleasure to see you. It’s especially gratifying to me to meet people who read and comment on my blog, so thanks again for that.

      I remember when metric was introduced in Canada. It was a difficult transition, and not everyone has gone over to the dark side, even today. But I agree, it’s time the US got with the rest of the world.

  5. says

    Thank you for another thoughtful post Dianne. I’m sorry our paths didn’t cross at IACP as I would have enjoyed seeing you again and having a few minutes to talk.

    I went to Ari’s seminar on a whim, after listening to my friend Amy (McCoy) rave about how excited she was to listen to him and I have to say, it was one of the best seminars I went to during the conference. His visioning approach is very interesting and definitely worth the personal exploration exercise, especially as a new food writer like myself, trying to figure my own path in this business.

    • diannejacob says

      Sorry to have missed you, Karen. He’s such an impressive guy. I looked at a lot of online links before selecting the one about his visioning process. I think people can get a lot out of it online. Good to have your endorsement.

  6. says

    As someone who writes recipes in both metric and imperial, it’s alot easier to divide 1000 grams into 10 parts vs. dividing 35.2 ounces!! Also, for accuracy, many serious baking recipes are already written in metric. I often have to change the whole recipe to ensure round numbers on all sides and I don’t end up with suggesting someone use 2 3/8 ounces of something!!

    Good thing most scales I’ve seen in the US have both grams and ounces (brought one with me when I moved to Austria) – though I see a digital scale sale up-tick on the horizon!!!



    • diannejacob says

      Yes apparently other people have confirmed this trend with me on Facebook too. I am going to have to get up to speed.

      • says


        You’re not late on the up-take we always count on you to target an issue that needs more discussion or clarification!

        Since I live in the “Old World” I’m seeing a change creeping into metric recipes- where precision is not key– the use of cups vs. ml!

        I think the switch to metric in “the new world” and the growing adaptation of cups in “the old world” is all part of an overall-trend to make cooking easier for everyone.



        • diannejacob says

          Oh that’s funny, Laura, that you’re seeing it go in the opposite direction. I’m not sure it will be easier for people in the US, but the change to metric is happening at a glacial pace, giving people lots of time to adapt.

  7. says

    Great information, Dianne. I love vicariously following along on your adventures via your blog! This is another fascinating and informative post.

    I’m wondering if there is a place for someone like me at IACP (in the membership categories). Rather than a culinary expert, nutrition is my field. My recipe writing and blogging focus is on nutrient density, rather than simply on taste. Do you see a fit at these conferences or in the organization for nutrition/exercise people?

    Thank you! Another great addition from “Will Write for Food.”

    • diannejacob says

      Thanks Melissa. You are also an upcoming book author, a recipe writer, and a blogger, so you could definitely fit in. And hey, your recipes do have to taste good, after all.

  8. says

    Thanks for the interesting insight into the american food blogger scene. I wish it would be as active in Europe. I recently started my own blog and hope that some day I’m going to be good enough in writing and photographing to make some money of it…

    I’m looking forward to the paradigma change in measurements. It’s sure going to make my baking much easier and more accurate, without converting into metrics. On the other hand for some baking styles such as muffins I do appreciate cups and spoons.

    Cheers, Verena

    • diannejacob says

      You’re welcome. The conference is for bloggers, but also cookbook authors, freelance writers, recipe developers, cooking school teachers, publishers, editors, food photographers,and food marketers. It’s a pretty wide range with something for everyone.

  9. says

    Thanks for this great write up, Dianne. It was a pleasure saying “Hi” to you at the Sat. panel sessions, both the morning (“How To Transform Your Freelance Work..”) & the afternoon (“Bloggers & Marketers”) ! I have admired you & your work from afar. I feel bad I missed your class before the IACP, but certainly look forward to connecting with you soon. All the best to you!

    • diannejacob says

      Hello Elizabeth, yes I remember you, not only because we met but because you stood up and asked questions in sessions I attended. Sometimes that takes bravery. I look forward to seeing you again.

    • diannejacob says

      Hi Lynda, at least it will be a short commute for you. I heard it’s at the Hyatt Embarcadero. You could even take the ferry.

  10. says

    So nice to see you at IACP Diane — -as I said in person, and will reiterate here, your blog posts are one of only a small handful I read as they never fail to give some insight that helps me in my career. I’m sure I speak for everyone who follows your writing when I say thank you! (Oh, and what did you think about ma peche?)

    • diannejacob says

      Hi Becky, thank you. I was so happy to see you at IACP so I could tell you how much I enjoy your writing. I sat next to Sally Ekus at the awards and we were talking about your sense of humor and how much fun it was to discover it in your book. Also I just saw Rosemary Mark and she said she met you. Small world, eh?

      Ma Peche was awesome, except for the broth for the ramen, which was super salty. Did you have it? Those spring rolls — that is what I keep thinking about. Someone at IACP told me they took the ramen class and the teacher said that in general, you should leave the broth behind.

  11. says

    Wonderful recap, Dianne. I don’t think that we met at the conference, but I would echo your above statements. I heard the same thing about building your own “platform” through televsion, social media, radio, etc. so that you are somewhat well-known and thus more appealing to a publisher. Your tour with Ruth Reichl sounds amazing. I opted for the pastry tour of Soho that day because it was more applicable to my current job, but I was very torn when making the decision! Hope to meet you at IACP in the future.

    • diannejacob says

      Hi Beth, I don’t think we did either, or else I’m just brain dead and I can’t remember.

      I spent a lot of time on platform building when I coach, and it’s the subject of many posts on my blog.

      There were too many choices of good tours to take that day, but for me it was a no brainer because of Ruth. I’m a groupie! There, I said it.

  12. says

    Networking is definitely king! And queen and everything else! I was so amazed at how absolutely accessible everyone was, even to the point of expecting to be approached, introduced, pitched to… I met so many authors I have admired from afar and I am one of the lucky ones who had the chance to talk face to face with the movers and shakers in the publishing world and solidified some connections started via email and created other connections just over a coffee really kickstarting my projects. The sessions I attended were outstanding and I walked away with so much valuable information which in itself is a motivator. And I left IACP with so many friendships both new and further solidified. This conference was above and beyond my expectations as a professional writer. And I had a blast with my friends, as well! I will try my hardest to attend next year’s conference. So so thrilled I could spend so much time with you Dianne and let’s see if we can’t keep meeting up every 6 months or so! (and yay for metric!)

    • diannejacob says

      Hi Jamie. Good summation of the benefits of the conference. There is also the benefit of hanging with someone who has been going for a while, I guess — not that you couldn’t approach them yourself — but I introduced you to several people at the awards after-party, including Amanda Hesser (Food52) and Bill LeBlond (editorial director of Chronicle cookbooks). That is part of the job, to introduce new people into the mix. And I got to meet Frances Lam from Gilt and cookbook author Jessica Harris that night, which thrilled me no end.

      • says

        Totally agree, Dianne, and I thank you again for all the introductions which were great! I will extend what I said to include your point: it was a conference where approaching almost anyone, introducing one’s self and talking “business” was so easy and even expected, and as a first timer I was also so impressed by how many people wanted to introduce people to each other and help those connections. Amazing! I left IACP a changed person in so many ways, not only so much more motivated, inspired and encouraged but this was truly my step up into the professional world. Thanks again, Diane!

        • diannejacob says

          You are most welcome, Jamie. It’s a normal part of IACP to introduce people around, and to be receptive when people want to approach you, no matter what your position is.

  13. says

    Greatly enjoyed reading your summation of what was for me the best IACP conference ever. Its being in New York City meant a headstart, since I love that place and would have a grand time there no matter what. Your distillations of VIP’s (Very Important Points) resonate for me. Amen to praise for Ari’s session on visioning. I knew him and Zingerman’s from Southern Foodways Alliance, and his presentation got my mind whirring and applies to my life, not merely my food writing biz. IACP would do well to sign him up now for multiple sessions for #IACPSF; and we can buy his latest book to learn from his ideas. Loved your notes on Saveur and especially the taste of your tour with Ruth Reichl; and I enjoyed seeing you at breakfast and in the on-going festival of coming and going and listening and visiting. It was costly, and I feel lucky that I was able to attend. Not everybody can. The irony is that in attending, one can find or create ways to make money. Ari’s visioning method could be applied to attending IACP this time next year in the beautiful city of San Franciso. I hope to see you and lots of our fellow travellers there then. Thanks for an excellent recounting and distilling of the feast.

    • diannejacob says

      Thanks Nancy. It was terrific to see you a few times. Somehow we never got to have an extended conversation. We will have to schedule that in advance next year.

      Yes, now I’m so sorry I missed Ari’s session. I was busy taking all the stuff I thought I should take, about proposals, recipes, blogging, publishing, etc. There’s always this push-and-pull between what you desire and what you “should” take. I did get in a few cooking demos just for fun, with Grace oung and a Turkish restaurateur from Istanbul. Both were spectacular.

      Yes, it is costly to attend, but I have found it worthwhile the investment. I have made friendships at IACP that are ongoing and deep — and I definitely found new clients and opportunities as well. I’m usually excited about the city they choose, so that’s a good excuse to go too. New York is always a pleasure. A little challenging too.

    • says

      Nancie, you make a great point! Yes, I know how lucky I was to be able to attend but this really is worth every penny because I, for one, created contacts that will lead to money-making jobs. As the old saying goes, sometimes one must spend money to make money. I knew that this was my one shot at meeting those who could help me professionally face to face and there wouldn’t be another occasion like it for me this year. Something definitely to take into consideration when deciding whether or not to attend.

      And loved seeing you, Miss N!

  14. says

    As a newcomer on the food blog scene, it is hard to know where to “invest” as it pertains to conferences and memberships. I’m in this for the long haul (best laid plans of mice and men and all), but have to be strategic about where to wade-in and be most beneficial as I plan for and take next steps. Do you have any suggestions as to how to prioritize, first and second step kind of advice?

  15. says

    Great summation. Ari’s session on visioning was both down-to-earth do-able and an invitation to dream big. There were many diverse and truly helpful sessions. The only problem was not being able to attend them all. And the food was fantastic!

  16. says

    Thanks, Dianne, for the incisive re-cap. You have good sources! (I was in a couple of the sessions you mentioned and know you weren’t there personally.) It was also great fun to say “hello” in person.
    To all those above who are so buzzed from the conference, and those who wish they could have been there, here’s an idea. Now that IACP is member-managed, it’s more important than ever to volunteer time and talent to your peers. If you do, conferences like the one we just experienced in NYC will continue to thrive.

  17. says

    Thanks for sharing such wonderful information, especially the bit about radio and television appearances driving book sales. While television appearances are not surprising, the radio is, given the various ways audiences can customize and tune out (Pandora, iTunes, etc.). I wouldn’t think that radio is seen as a viable channel for reaching readers any longer. Is this geared toward local stations, or NPR, or talk radio? Just curious, is all.

  18. says

    Thanks for the recap — hope to make it to next year’s meeting. Hope to meet you one day as well! (Loved your book. Wish I had read it BEFORE starting my blog.)

    • diannejacob says

      Hi Sue, thank you. There’s lots you can change after starting your blog as well. Hope to meet you at IACP next year.

  19. says

    Great pr’e9cis of the event, Dianne- and wonderful advice. I agree that there truly isn’t anything like meeting in person- but thankfully, we can still rely on ‘meeting’ over the internet- till the next conference! x shayma

    • diannejacob says

      Thanks Shayma. I had to go look up the word in the dictionary, so I learned something today. Yes, there’s always the Internet, although I am traveling a lot these days. Next weeek, Chicago for the Nourished conference.

  20. says

    Yikes – I never got an email announcing this post. Thank goodness for twitter! Dianne, I am so excited to anticipate next April in San Francisco. Your post was loaded with terrific anecdotes and info. Thank you.

    • diannejacob says

      Seriously? Do you usually get my RSS feed? That is very strange. I know at least one other person got it because she replied.

      And otherwise, .

  21. says

    Glad to see you’re finally catching up on the metric thingo, over there!
    It makes life so much easier. I suppose I’ll still have to try to remember exactly what a stick of butter weighs, though. 😉
    Sound like you had a very busy, but fun, time.

    • diannejacob says

      Yes it does seem like it might happen!

      Very busy, you are exactly right. Co-taught a class Tuesday, met clients Wednesday, went on the tour Thursday, conference Friday – Monday night, home Tuesday. Not to mention taking a bus to New Jersey to see a cousin and the subway to Brooklyn to see an aunt and uncle, and spent an hour at a museum. Whew.

  22. says

    Hi Dianne,

    It was great running into you at the Greenbrier meet-up! Metrics…I had to provide them for my book (coming out in December). At times I would have liked to slit my wrists (metaphorically, of course). Thank God (yes, I’m using the G-word), for my assistant.


    • diannejacob says

      Hi Michelle, I do remember our short talk. Loved the video of you on the red carpet.

      I’d say thank God that you HAVE an assistant in the first place. I haven’t reached that level of greatness yet. But yes, it will require re-education.

  23. says

    I got such a little pang when I read your article Dianne – it can be very isolating writing from inside China, but you’ve inspired me to save my pennies and get to next year’s conference, meet lots of people and have a wonderful time eating my way through San Francisco!

    • diannejacob says

      True. It’s the yin and yang of a fascinating experience abroad, eh? You’ll love eating your way through SF. We have a great Chinatown too. 😉

  24. says

    Great to see you at the conference Dianne. Wish we could have spent more time together.

    Conference is always such a rush! Rushing from session to session, rushing to take notes as fast as you can, rushing in to soak it all in quickly, rushing to meet friends, old and new. It was a great rush!

    I took page after page of notes. It will take awhile to unpack it all, prioritize the top to-do’s, and begin to implement all that I learned. There were so many classes I wanted to take that overlapped. It’s hard to choose your agenda. Some great classes pertaining to bloggers this year.

    To your point 7, the networking is fantastic. I met Sara Moulton, Jaques Pepin and many other legendary food folks. I had breakfast next to Shirley Corriher. They were all so down to earth, very friendly and approachable. And the serendipity? A made a wonderful new friend who I ended up spending a lot of time with during the conference. I just happened to sit next to her at a restaurant one day at lunch. We got to talking and totally hit it off. We had so much in common it was a riot. Meeting her was the icing on the cake.

    We are still in NY and fly home tomorrow. Looking forward to SFO in 2013. I’ll be there, ready to learn and grow. Hope I see you before then!

    • diannejacob says

      How lucky to spend a few extra days there with Kent, Sally. Now you have time for all that New York offers — museums, shopping, plays, great walks, gorgeous parks, insanely good people watching.

      You have described the conference whirlwind perfectly. I know I will go over my notes many times more, and I still haven’t touched my card stack.

      Re celebrities, one of my first times at the conference, I went out for an optional dinner and sat next to Shirley and her husband. They couldn’t be nicer and I’m not sure I even knew who they were!

      I’m sure I’ll see you before next year here in the Bay Area.

  25. says

    Thanks for the Coles notes, Diane! I was so bummed to miss this year’s conference – last year in Austin was such a blast, and so informative. (And one of the highlights was meeting you – if briefly!)

    I would have loved to have heard Ari’s talk on visioning – the advice “Figure out where you want to be in 10 years, write it down, and start behaving like it’s going to happen” is great. Where I struggle though is trying to navigate such a constantly evolving food/media scene, with publications like Gourmet going under, publishing companies struggling and new platforms coming and going – plus the potential for so much online content, from blogs to podcasts and embedded video… Ten plus years ago my goal was to be a cookbook author, and I’ve achieved that – but a decade ago book publishing was a very different industry, and food blogging was in its infancy. I wouldn’t have known to set my sights there, but wish I had the vision at the time! New opportunities are coming along while old-school writing gigs become harder to get… it’s tough to know where to focus my energies these days!

    • diannejacob says

      Check out the link to his visioning plan, Julie. I’m not sure you have to know where the industry is going to come up with a vision for yourself. It’s more about what YOU want to achieve in broad strokes.

      I’m impressed that you had a goal 10 years ago and achieved it. I just seem to go along with whatever happens, but I do have broader goals that are hard to achieve and I make incremental progress on them.

      Maybe we’ll meet again next year at IACP.

  26. says

    Thanks for the takeaways Diane! It was a bad timing for me so I didn’t attend, and I was sad that I couldn’t. Through happenstance, I wasn’t online for most of the last weekend so I missed all the tweets, which was good and bad I guess. Glad to read your takeaways and looking forward to next year, when IACP is here in SF!

    • diannejacob says

      You’re welcome, Irvin. Hey, nothing wrong with getting unplugged for most of a weekend. I think it’s good! Re the tweets, you weren’t missing much. It’s not like a blogging conference where the tweets are going fast and furious the whole time. If you look at #IACP2012 you’ll see what I mean.

  27. says

    Great to finally meet you, Dianne. The IACP was quite an expansive conference. I’m impressed by how well you manage to summarize the key points. The only thing I would add — only because it came up so often in various forms — is that bloggers must be authentic, not just copy a successful model. But isn’t that true of all things?

    Thanks for the recap. I’m already saving my pennies for San Francisco in 2013.

    • diannejacob says

      Great to meet you, Charmian, at last. I didn’t know it was you that I was talking with until I saw your badge. I should have figured that the two Canadians would sit together.

      Re authenticity, it’s normal to learn from other bloggers and copy them at first. But after a while, your own persona emerges and you get comfortable with it.

  28. says


    I’ve been blogging for years but only recently realized that food blogging/writing is my true calling in life. I bought your book and cannot put it down – I’ve practically finished it in two days! Your advice is stellar, and I’m devouring your every word. Just wanted to say thanks for the inspiration!


    • diannejacob says

      Wow! Thank you so much, Marissa. I appreciate your taking the time to tell me. I hope to hear from you again on my blog.

  29. says

    Thank you for the recap – I plan to go next year. #7 is the big one for me – thanks to IACP one of my blogging contacts happened to be passing through town due to her travel connections so we were able to meet and talk shop. Fantastic experience that led to great conversations about making points 1 & 2 happen! Networking is what I miss most from my former career.

    • diannejacob says

      I’m glad you got to meet. These days a lot of networking is online, but somehow, it’s not the same, is it, even when you’re meeting with just one person.

  30. says

    Hey Diane,

    Thanks for the recap! I totally agree with you on #1 Making money and #7 Networking. I will be in San Fran for next year’s conference. I look forward to talking with you again very soon.

    Cheers, Megan

    • diannejacob says

      YOu are welcome, Megan. I hope you have some good opportunities with your blog, and look forward to seeing you in SF.

  31. says

    Thank you so much for sharing your key takeaways from the IACP Conference! I’m eager to read Inc’s 8 steps to great vision. You so right about networking, too. I have had great opportunities appear after meeting with bloggers in real life and I can’t even imagine all the good things that could come from attending a conference. Saveur invited me to their Food Blog Award party in NYC; I’ve always wanted to visit New York and I don’t think I should pass up the opportunity. Thank you for that extra little push in that direction. :)

  32. Sheila Thomas says

    Hi Dianne, it was great meeting you at IACP and thank you for sharing your take away points. I look forward to seeing you in SFO next year, if our paths don’t cross before then.

    Cheers! Sheila

  33. says


    Great post! Very informative and encouragement for food writers – I agree that the mediums are changing and that we have to be mulit-taskers and build our platforms in many different ways – not just on a blog, but through writing books, TV and Radio, videos, etc.

    I believe that food bloggers definitely have opportunities working with PR firms and food brands – those companies not only have money to PAY bloggers and writers to be advocates for their brands but also the understanding that we are a valuable marketing resource and medium that reaches their consumers in a much more personal and engaging way.

    It was a pleasure seeing you at the conference this year – sorry we didn’t have a chance to chat more in person but hope to see you at some more events and the IACP conference in SF next year!


    • diannejacob says

      Yes, that’s true. It’s best to approach a variety of mediums and see what works well for you. I suppose no one can be an expert in them all.

      Re opportunities, there are benefits and liabilities to working with PR Firms and food brands. You have to be okay with the idea and believe your readers can benefit, and you have to be honest and transparent. There’s a huge education process about this new field. I’ll have a post on that coming up.

      Great to see you too, Kristen, and I look forward to meeting up again.

  34. says

    I’m kicking myself for not making more of an effort to go! Thanks for all the info! I should have gone this year when it was an hour away rather than next year in California, across the country.

    • diannejacob says

      Oh well, Lisa, there’s always next year. Start saving and planning — sometimes that’s half the fun.


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