The Byte of Texas Full Agenda is Here!

By September 12, 2014Events

Our Byte of Texas conference is just two weeks away, and we can’t wait to share everything we’ve been working on with you. We’ve got amazing door prizes, stuffed swag bags, and of course, plenty of learning to give out! Grab a ticket and check out our full conference agenda!

Saturday, September 27

8:30 AM – Registration opens. Get your name tag, swag bag, and grab a Chameleon Cold-Brew or Zhi Tea, plus a pastry from Easy Tiger Bake Shop to start your day!

9:00 AM – Welcome Remarks (Austin Room)

9:15 AM to 10:30 AM – Photography Keynote (Austin Room): Photographer Melissa Skorpil will share practical tips on food photography relevant for food bloggers, photography enthusiasts and intermediate level photographers alike.  She’ll go over planning for a successful food shoot, working with specific challenging lighting situations, using cheap and easy tools for success that you may already have around the house, food and prop styling.

10:45 AM to 11:45 AM

  • Finding Your Voice (Classroom 1)
    • With hundreds of bloggers in Austin, alone, all making noise about the same places, events, and trendy recipes, it can be difficult to be heard above the din. Finding, owning, and keeping your voice as a blogger is imperative to standing out in the talented crowd. Learn how successful bloggers found their blog’s niche and stay on top of the trends, all while keeping their blog uniquely their own. With Maggie Perkins, Kristin Sheppard, Michael Barnes, and Mike Sutter.
  • Publishing Your Book (Classroom 2)
    • Learn the ins and outs of getting your book in print, whether you want to get an agent, go on your own, or do an e-book. With Addie Broyles, Adam Salomone, Mary Helen Leonard, and Hilah Johnson.

11:00 AM to 3 PM – Byte of Texas Book Fair on the Second Floor Lobby. Purchase cookbooks and books on local food culture by local authors. Select authors will be on hand through the day to sign copies.

Noon to 1:00 PM – Local Producer Lunch, sponsored by Whole Foods Market Austin

1:00 PM to 1:50 PM

  • Earn Money Online without Selling Out: Social Media Ethics (Austin Room)
    • You’re working with brands on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, and more. Learn which disclosures you need to follow the law, and to keep the trust of your readers in this panel with industry experts. You’ll get practical tips for your blog, and plenty of time for audience Q&A. With Kathryn Hutchison, Andy Sernovitz, Natanya Anderson, and Spike Jones.
  • The Business of Blogging (Classroom 2)
    • Now that you’ve got your blog up & running it feels more like a small business, but you’re still managing it like a blog/website.  The Business of Blogging session will give you the skills to manage your blog as a small business, equipping you business know-how on taxes, incorporation, trademark  consideration, brand partnerships & more. Each attendee will leave with the confidence they can re-frame the way they manage the business of  blogging! With Rachelle King.

2:00 PM to 2:50 PM

  • SEO, Syndication, and You: Feeding the Google Panda (Austin Room)
    • With Amber Bracegirdle and Eric Hochberger
  • Beyond Manual Mode (Classroom 2)
    • Don’t be an accidental accidental photographer! This in depth photography class will break down the exposure triangle and how it contributes to the final image you take. Learn how to control camera in full manual mode to get that perfect shot every time. With Chris Perez.

3:00 PM to 4:00 PM

  • A Conversation with Lisa Fain, moderated by Addie Broyles (Texas Spirit Theater)

4:30 PM to 6:30 PM

  • Dinner at Salty Sow


Sunday, September 28

Please take the time to visit the exhibits of our venue, the Bullock Texas State History Museum.

9:30 AM – Doors open

10:00 AM – Breakfast Taco Brunch (Austin Room)

  • Enjoy tacos prepared by Chef Carlos Crusco. Meat, vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options will be available. Sponsored by the Texas Beef Council.
  • Sip on Chameleon Cold Brew, tea-tails from Zhi Tea, or mimosas with fresh-pressed juices and organic bubbles from Greenling.

10:15 AM – State of the AFBA (Austin Room)

10:30 AM to 11:15 AM – Branding through Photography (Austin Room)

  • Learn about building your brand through photography and design with Jeanine Donofrio of Love and Lemons. Jeanine Donofrio’s gorgeous photography and design aesthetic has catapulted her food blog into one of the top in the nation while building her brand. Each photo has an unmistakable Love and Lemons ambiance that brings her readers back for more. This discussion will get to the depths of her photography style and design sense and how it launched Love and Lemons into a business while winning Saveur Magazine’s 2014 Reader’s Choice Best Food Blog Awards. Moderated by Elizabeth Van Huffel.

11:30 AM to 12:45 PM – Blogging Texas Food Culture (Austin Room)

  • Tempted to add cultural or historical background on your blog? Amy Evans, Toni Tipton-Martin, and Rachel Laudan offer a mix of inspiration about ways you can include it, what your readers like, and how you will benefit, along with nuts-and-bolts tips about who and how to interview, where to find on-line and hard copy resources, how to separate fact and fiction, and (most important) ways of interpreting and presenting what you have learned.

11:30 AM to 2:00 PM – Blogging Sprint (Classroom 1)

  • Catch up on your blogging, tweak your layout, or talk shop with fellow bloggers in this open session.

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM

  • Brands and Bloggers: BFFs or Frenemies? (Austin Room)
    • Working with brands is often a blogger’s goal, but navigating that relationship can be tough. Learn how to make the most of those pitches you get, and how to create your own pitches, from both sides of the aisle. With Corrin Foster, Lindsay Robison, Rachel Chou, and Megan Myers.
  • Mousetrap: Pairing Texas Beers with Cheese and Preserves (Classroom 2)
    • Learn about Texas beers, local jams, and small batch cheeses in this guided tasting led by American Cheese Society Certified Cheese Professionals Michele Haram and Tiffany Cunningham, with jams by Stephanie McClenny of the award-winning Confituras. You must be 21+ to attend this special session.

2:00 PM to 2:15 PM

  • Cupcake Snack Break, sponsored by Skull & Cakebones

2:15 PM to 3:00 PM

  • Writing for Other Publications (Austin Room)
    • Many food bloggers consider writing for other media outlets as another means to earn income and generate more traffic to their websites. Internet writing is, of course, the natural place to start for those who have only blogging experience. The panel will discuss the difference between writing for the web and for print, using your blog as a writing sample, the basics of pitching publications and getting writing gigs, and how to distinguish yourself in the competitive world of food writing. With Meredith Bethune, Veronica Meewes, Chris Perez, and Meghan McCarron
  • Essential WordPress Plugins (Classroom 1)
    • Does your blog need a tune-up? What are the best plugins for making the most out of your blog? Learn all about the essential food blog plugins. With Margaret Dornbusch.

2:30 PM to 3:30 PM

  • Shepherd to Chef: Lamb 101 (Classroom 2)
    • Lamb is as popular as ever. Learn about the nuances of sheep ranching, basic lamb cuts, and how to bring lamb to your dinner table from local lamb producer Alice Strunk and chef Jesse Griffiths of Dai Due. This session will include snacks and special giveaways, sponsored by the American Lamb Board.

3:15 PM to 4:00 PM

  • The Delicious Art of Google+ Hangouts On Air (Classroom 1)
    • Learn from veteran HoA host and producer, Michelle Stinson Ross, what it takes to set up, record, and leverage Google+ Hangouts on Air. In this session you will learn:
      • How to participate as a guest on a Hangout
      • How to schedule and promote a Hangout on Air for your personal profile or brand page
      • How to host a Hangout on Air
      • A few insider tips about lighting, sound, and presentation of the room you are recording from
      • How to leverage the video content after the live event


Please note that sessions, speakers, and room assignments are subject to change as needed.

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