2023 Tastemaker

Conference
  • Why Tastemaker Conference?

    Are you looking for a way to build and grow your network of like-minded food bloggers and creators? Do you want to make meaningful connections with hundreds of brands who are potential future partners who can contribute to the success of your blog and business?

    Then Tastemaker Conference 2023 is for you! We take pride in being the premier food blogger conference because you will make amazing connections, learn from experts in the industry, and have an enjoyable and memorable experience.
    We guarantee it.

  • When and where is it?

    Tastemaker Conference 2022 will be held on Thursday, March 2 to Friday, March 3, 2022 at the historic Revel Motor Row in downtown Chicago.

    In addition to our conference, you also get complimentary Media Registration to the world’s largest home and housewares trade show, The Inspired Home Show, which runs March 4-7, 2023.

  • What’s on the schedule? Who is speaking?

    Tastemaker Conference 2023 is full of incredibly educational sessions led by true experts in the food blogging and creator industry, who will help you grow your business. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned pro, there is something for everyone at Tastemaker.

    • There are 30+ classes, workshops, panels, and keynotes that focus on the topics of SEO + tech, revenue + business growth, content creation, and mindset + DEI.
    • The breakout sessions are categorized into tracks, and occur simultaneously. Don’t worry, we will have all sessions recorded and replays will be available for classes you aren’t able to attend live.
    • Sessions also have experience level categories so you can determine if the class is the right fit for you.
    • Once the conference concludes, relax and unwind on one of our foodie excursions, where together we explore Chicago’s history and its amazing food scene. Enjoy delicious food and even better company with your Tastemaker friends. (Separate registration is required for excursions, and tickets will be released in January 2023.)

    And don’t forget what is included in your General Admission registration!

    • Breakfast, lunch, amazing snacks, beverages, and happy hour.
    • $150+ full size swag bag from brand sponsors in our shoppable swag
    • When you register for a ticket, you also get a free media ticket to The Inspired Home Show, which takes place on March 4-7, 2023 at the neighboring McCormick Place—double the perks and access to thousands of brands and networking opportunities!

    Overall, this experience is over $5,000 in value for a fraction of the cost, with an incredible return on investment. Consider this the sign you’ve been waiting for!

Get your Ticket

Grab your 2023 ticket here!

TBA

2023 Tastemaker Conference

March 2-3, 2023

Schedule details will be announced soon. Check back in later!

Last Year's Schedule - Thursday, March 3, 2022

Opening + Welcome

7:00 - 8:00 AM

Registration Check-In + Breakfast

Get all settled and checked-in as soon as doors open at 7 am CT. Upon arrival, you will need to your ID and ticket, which is available through Attendify.

Pro tip: Download the event app via Attendify for a smooth and streamlined check-in, as well as digital access to the schedule, a map of the conference layout, and the giveaway game system.

You will check in at the registration station by the front doors, get your name badge, and shop for the swag that you would like in our popular shoppable swag. (Yes, all that amazing swag worth of $150 is included in your ticket! Amazing, right?)

After filling your swag bag, head over to the breakfast station for a delicious hot meal, your morning cup of coffee or tea, and make some new friends.

8:00 - 9:00 AM

Get ready to party and have the best two days of community, education, and experience! We kick-off in the main hall with a quick welcome by Tastemaker Conference founder, Abbey Rodriguez.

Then we turn it over to our resident Tastemaker Conference emcee, Charity Lighten. She will get us pumped up, review the daily schedule and housekeeping, and then introduce our amazing keynote speaker Vallery Lomas of Foodie in New York!

9:00 - 9:50 AM

Brand + Community Networking

Get your business cards ready! Because Tastemaker Conference is all about the connections you make and the concept of collaboration over competition, we will begin the first session of the day with brand and community networking.

The audience will be divided into two groups. Group A will head over to the Exhibitor Hall  and Tech Hall to network with the sponsors at their booths. We encourage you to spend 2 minutes with each brand, learning about their product and sharing your business card.

Group B will remain in the main hall and rotate through a series of speed ice breaker questions with different people. The goal here is to learn about someone new, and to get out of your comfort zone!

During Day 2 the groups will switch places so everyone gets a chance to network!

Day 1 | Morning Breakout Sessions

10:00 - 10:50 AM    /    SEO + Tech

How To Effectively Collect, Organize, Analyze Your Top Keywords

Level: General

In this session, we will cover how to strategically create a keyword data report to help us determine what keywords are actually worth our time. The overall goal is to increase our overall organic search traffic.

10:00 - 10:50 AM    /    Content Creation

Effectively Running a Food-Focused YouTube Channel

Level: General

You want to start a YouTube channel for all your amazing recipes, but you have no idea where to start. AND you’ve got so many questions that keep you up at night. How long does it take to build an audience? Is it even worth it with all the other YouTubers who are already established? How many videos should you post each week? How do you get subscribers? Believe me, I understand all of your concerns, questions and worries. Allow me to share my experience of more than 10 years on the platform and what I did to build my audience to 2.3M and growing (in two languages!) When you come to my session, I will speak to you about :

– How to start your Youtube Channel
– How to repurpose & leverage content you’ve already created to be efficient with your time
– The importance of an editorial calendar
– How to start building a subscribers base, beyond your mom and aunt!
– The 3 things I keep in mind every time I post on YouTube

If you haven’t yet checked out my YouTube channel, I recommend you do that. It will give you an opportunity to study what I’ve done and come prepared to learn & ask great questions. https://www.youtube.com/lasrecetasdelaura Looking forward to seeing you soon!

10:00 - 10:50 AM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

The 5 Secrets to Building Wealth

Level: Intermediate/Advanced

As your business starts growing and those profits accumulate, it’s time to start thinking about your own future and how to create wealth that is less dependent on your time. In this session, I will walk you through the 5 secrets that the top earners know that the average person may not. It’ll include my story of how I went from an embarrassingly low credit score to a multiple 7 figure net worth. I’ll take you through the top strategies that you need to know about and what your next steps are in order to start creating multiple streams of income and getting back some of your time.  

10:50 - 11:00 AM

10-Minute Break

Go take a bathroom break, grab a beverage and some snacks in our Snack Bar to fuel up for the next breakout sessions.

11:00 - 11:50 AM    /    SEO + Tech

A Non-Techie’s Guide To Passing Google’s Core Web Vitals

Level: General

Core Web Vitals: One more obscure request from Google? Or an important step in enhancing user experience + a measurable, tangible way to control a ranking factor? You can probably guess where Mediavine CEO and ad tech architect lands!
In this Tastemaker session, Eric Hochberger will walk you through the steps he used to get Mediavine site The Hollywood Gossip passing CWV — in plain English!
You’ll also learn about other options, including an ‘easy button’ for CWV.
Don’t miss it!

11:00 - 11:50 AM    /    Content Creation

Live Styling: Tips and Tricks for Flat lays

Level: General

In this session we will be styling 3 different flat lays; a yogurt bowl, muffins, and a produce shot. Sam will walk you through the techniques and tricks used to create powerful and beautiful images.

11:00 - 11:50 AM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

Scaling for Growth: Actionable Steps to Grow Your Business without Burning Out

Level: General/Advanced

You’re building a business that you’re proud of, but want to get to the next level without needing to work harder and longer hours. Knowing how to run your business like a CEO where you work on your business within your zone of genius rather than on trivial tasks inside of your business is what can make all the difference. You need a framework that allows you to level up with a clear system and path and that’s exactly what we will implement today.

Lunch Break + Networking + Panel

12:00 - 1:00 PM

Lunch Break + Networking

Time for a break! Shake out the brain exhaustion, and enjoy a delicious lunch and more networking with brands and fellow Tastemakers.

1:00 - 1:50 PM    /    Panel

POV: Brand Partnerships in 2022

Level: General

Successful brand partnerships involved multiple moving parts, and it’s helpful to understand all points of view. In this panel, hear from the content creators, brands, and agents who give their best tips and expertise, so that you can set yourself up for the best brand partnership experiences.

1:50 - 2:00 PM

10-Minute Break

Go take a bathroom break, grab a beverage and enjoy some quiet time to recharge in our Wifi Lounge space on the second floor until the next breakout session begins.

Day 1 | Afternoon Breakout Sessions

2:00 - 2:50 PM    /    SEO + Tech

Live Site Auditing with Casey Markee & Arsen Rabinovich

Level: Intermediate/Advanced

What’s an internal redirect? What if anything is topical dilution? What is Google looking for algorithmically when they crawl my site? For the love of God…what does Google want?!!!!!

If you want answers to these questions and more than this is the webinar for you! Watch as two of North America’s top SEO Experts in Casey Markee and Arsen Rabinovich audit the sites of live attendees and show in detail what bloggers are doing right and what they are doing wrong via easy visual examples they will have prepared in advance.

2:00 - 2:50    /    Content Creation

Insights to Drive Content Ideation

Level: General

Learn about the food trends standing out in 2022 from Dotdash Meredith Research/Insights leader, Esmee Williams and how these trends can help shape content.

2:00 - 2:50 PM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

Legal Trends and Hacks for Content Creators in the Food Industry

Level: General

Attorney for creators Brittany Ratelle will highlight some legal quick-wins that food creators can do to secure their business foundations and set themselves up for growth, including being ready for hiring, book deals, licensing, digital products, and other diversified revenue streams. Brittany will also give an overview of the latest legal decisions that affect food creators and share how proactive creators can protect their brand and content, keep boundaries (and profits) in place, and steer clear of legal hot water. Expect some legally blonde references and a whole lot of pink checklists — get in loser, it’s time to get legally legit.

2:50 - 3:00 PM

10-Minute Break

Take a quick rest before starting the next round of breakout sessions.

3:00 - 3:50 PM    /    SEO + Tech

25 things you're doing wrong on your WordPress site (and how to fix them)

Level: Intermediate/Advanced

This session will be an action-packed overview of many “little details” on your site that, when done right, really add up to contribute to your success. Covering a wide range of topics including site speed, security, plugins, SEO, and accessibility, we’ll go through a huge punch list of items so you can see what you’re already doing right (bravo!) and where you can improve. You’ll come away from this session with tons of improvements you can make to help take your site to the next level – no matter which level you’re currently on!

3:00 - 3:50 PM    /    Content Creation

The Future of Audio: Separate Yourself From the Pack

Level: General

The number of food blogs increases drastically every year. It is becoming more and more difficult to differentiate ourselves from one another. If you are looking for a way to authentically get your audience to know, like and trust you, this session will provide you with solutions!

I get it! The world of audio is different and scary and can seem overwhelming. When you join me in this session I will help to break down some barriers so it seems less intimidating and gets you excited about connecting with your audience in a new way.

We will talk about:
– The piece of the entrepreneurial puzzle that food bloggers typically get hung up on.
– Why audio is a great way to increase engagement.
– What audio to produce in the first place.
– How to create audio that is valuable to your people.
– Ways to monetize using audio.

I truly believe that the food bloggers who adopt audio as a way to engage with their audiences will be pioneers, paving the way for others who wish to connect, provide massive value and make money!

3:00 - 3:50 PM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

Taxes Demystified for Food Bloggers

Level: General

Intimidated and overwhelmed by taxes and accounting? You’re not alone! Join Keila Hill-Trawick, owner of Little Fish Accounting to gain a better understanding of how taxes work and why it’s important for you to manage your tax strategy year-round. You’ll leave with a concrete plan of action based on priorities by income level, and steps and deadlines to help you prepare for the 2022 tax season. Join us to ensure that you are prepared to manage your taxes and finances for the year!

Closing Remarks

4:00 - 4:10 PM

Day 1 Closing Remarks

  • Speaker: Charity Lighten - Emcee

4:10 - 5:00 PM

End of Day Networking

Time to unwind! Relax your brain and have a good time soaking in all that you learned on Day 1 while visiting with your new friends.

Day 2: Friday, March 4, 2022

Welcome + Breakfast

8:00 - 8:50 AM

Breakfast + Networking

8:50 - 9:00 AM

Welcome Day 2

  • Speaker: Charity Lighten - Emcee

9:00 - 9:50 AM

Brand + Community Networking

Get your business cards ready! Because Tastemaker Conference is all about the connections you make and the concept of collaboration over competition, we will begin the first session of the day with brand and community networking.

The groups that were divided yesterday will switch places with Group B to head over to the Exhibitor Hall and Techa Hall to network with the sponsors at their booths. We encourage you to spend 2 minutes with each brand, learning about their product and sharing your business card.

Group A will remain in the main hall and rotate through a series of speed ice breaker questions with different people. The goal here is to learn about someone new, and to get out of your comfort zone!

9:50 - 10:00 AM

10-Minute Break

Take a break and then make your way to the breakout sessions for Day 2 of Tastemaker Conference!

Day 2 | Morning Breakout Sessions

10:00 - 10:50 AM    /    Mindset + DEI

For the (Equity) Culture: Appreciation vs Appropriation

Level: General

Cultural Appropriation, Appreciation, and Everything in Between
In this current climate, becoming mindful and competent content creators in the spaces we occupy as the air we breathe. Cultural Competency is required to make distinctions between appropriation and appreciation. In the workshop, we will explore those nuances in tandem with concepts gatekeeping, seeking permission, and navigating new to you cultures respectfully.

10:00 - 10:50 AM    /    Content Creation

From Farm to Table - Publishing Your First Cookbook

Level: General/Advanced

Less than 1% of cookbook proposals are published. Learn the steps to build an audience, identify the type of book to create, pitch your story, and launch your first cookbook successfully. This panel discussion will feature published Authors Mary Cressler, Dianne Jacob, and Kathy Hester moderated by author Sean Martin and discuss the ways they approached their publishers to land their cookbook deals.

10:00 - 10:50 AM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

Level Up with Google's Web Tools

Level: General

What’s new in Google’s kit of tools to help creators succeed on the web, and why is a powerful web presence ever more important? Join Paul Bakaus, Head of Creator Relations at Google, on a tour of Google’s latest educational offerings, content formats and workflow tools to make you a more powerful creator.

10:50 - 11:00 AM

10-Minute Break

11:00 - 11:50 AM    /    Mindset

3 Mindset Shifts to Seven Figures and Beyond

Level: Intermediate/Advanced

Hiring expert and organizational strategist Emily Perron has worked with food content creators at all levels, from 0 to 7 figures.

Over the past few years, she’s picked up on what sets the seven-figure businesses apart from the rest.

And it all comes down to mindset. The most successful food content creators are intentional about shifting their mindset in three very specific areas of business — and life.

In this session, Emily will share her insights and specific strategies you can start implementing today to make the necessary mindset shifts to grow your business and live a fulfilling life (yes, it’s possible!).

11:00 - 11:50 AM    /    Content Creation

Mastering Video for TikTok + Reels Trends

Level: General

Short form videos have taken over social media the past couple of years with TikTok emerging as a dominant platform and Instagram introducing their own version in the form of Reels. As bloggers, this can feel like one more thing to have to worry about but these simple, short form videos are TRULY an amazing way to grow and connect with your audience. And no, that doesn’t mean that you have to get in front of the camera and do a goofy dance. Brita is going to show you how to create these short form videos in a timely manner, how to figure out what kind of videos work best with your audience, and even how to take some of your existing content and turn it into a short form video that will work as a Reel and TikTok.

11:00 - 11:50 AM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

How to Maximize Your Content Creation and Get Organized

Level: General

Discover how to plan your content ahead of time and develop a repeatable process for making valuable content for your audience all while grow your following! Learn why you can’t just repost the same video on all platforms, what the #1 rule for creating content is. Liz will also share her content creation schedule, and how to balance content creation with home life.

Lunch Break + Networking + Panel

12:00 - 1:00 PM

Lunch Break + Networking

Time for a break! Shake out the brain exhaustion, and enjoy a delicious lunch and more networking with brands and fellow Tastemakers.

1:00 - 1:50 PM    /    Panel

A Day in the Life of Seven-Figure Food Bloggers + Businesses

One of the breakout sessions before this will focus on the mindset and active shifts to get to this goal of revenue. To build upon that, we will hear from an amazing panel of food bloggers and creators who have done it and learn what tips, opportunities, and strategies helped them to get there.

1:50 - 2:00 PM

10-Minute Break

Day 2 | Afternoon Breakout Sessions

2:00 - 2:50 PM    /    Mindset

Shift Your Mindset from Scarcity + Fear to Abundance + Confidence

Level: General

Scarcity is a mindset of “not enough.” When it comes to growing a business, we often focus on what we lack, whether it’s time, money, opportunity, or followers—but what you lack isn’t what’s holding you back. In this workshop, executive life coach Rachel Gainer will help you prepare your mind and heart to take your business to the next level. You’ll learn what’s keeping you stuck in scarcity and practice tools that will move you from scarcity and fear to abundance and confidence. You’ll leave this workshop feeling emotionally empowered to implement the tools and inspiration you’ve accumulated throughout the conference. These tools will enhance both your professional and personal life, increasing overall life satisfaction and fulfillment.

2:00 - 2:50 PM    /    Content Creation

Content Deep Dive: How to Identify What to Do With Your Content

Level: General

You have tons of content published, but do you know which posts are serving you the best (and which ones are just sitting ducklings)? In this session, we will walk through the many steps of analyzing your content’s performance to determine what to do with your content. Whether you have posts that need to be updated, removed all together, or topics that should be reused as new content, this session will explore the best methods for making updates to your content.

This is a must-attend session if you want to learn:
-What metrics matter when it comes to content performance
-How to use Google Analytics and Google Search Console to identify metrics
-The safest methods for updating your content
-Unique ways to reuse your top performing topics
-How to store the many content to-do’s you’ll gain from this session
-And tons more!

2:00 - 2:50 PM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

Marketing 201: Brand Identity and Effective Communication

Level: Intermediate/Advanced

In this class, you’ll hear from former marketing director now full time food blogger Chelsea Cole about marketing beyond Instagram or Pinterest tactics. Learn why developing a solid brand identity is important, how to communicate effectively with your audience, common mistakes food bloggers make when marketing (and what to do instead!) and more. These marketing essentials will help you lay a solid foundation for your business as a blogger and beyond.

2:50 - 3:00 PM

10-Minute Break

3:00 - 3:50 PM    /    Mindset

Values + Goal Setting Workshop

Level: General

This session will help you leave the Tastemaker conference with the skills and know-how to set the right goals and define your action steps so that you can put into practice the things you’ve just learned.
You’ll leave with the tools & tips on how to define your values so your goal setting is always aligned with who you are and your values. You’ll learn about resources, such as personality tests, to help you define your motivations and values. You’ll also learn how to set goals the right way for success. You’ll also leave with printables and a digital planner for goal setting.

3:00 - 3:50 PM    /    Content Creation

Most Common Google Search Console Warnings and Errors

Level: General

Do you have a minor freakout every time you get one of those cryptic emails from Google Search Console? They may sound really scary at first, but once you know what to look for most things are actually pretty easy to fix. In this session, the NerdPress Search Console Team will explain the most common warnings and errors from Google Search Console, explain the differences among them, and — most importantly — how you can fix them!

3:00 - 3:50 PM    /    Revenue + Business Growth

How to Make More and Work Less with Cooking Classes

Level: General

Ready to work less and make more in your food business or blog? It’s time to start teaching cooking classes so you can let go of burnout, exhaustion and overwhelm. Chef Evelyn Williams has spent the last 12 years specializing in in-person & virtual cooking classes. In this session she will be sharing with you how to:

– Start implementing the 3 ingredients that create a successful cooking class business so that you can avoid the common costly mistakes most people make when offering cooking classes.
– Structure your classes in such a way that they yield repeat customers, students, and great reviews, so that you can generate consistent income month after month.
– Develop Your Own Secret Sauce that Makes Your Classes Stand Out and draw in your ideal clients for both in-person and online classes. So that you don’t have to spend all of your time “searching” for new clients.
Pinpoint the Best Types of Classes to Teach for YOUR Specific Business so that you can have more time to do the things you love and spend time with friends and family.

3:50 - 4:00 PM

10-Minute Break

Closing Keynote + Giveaways!

4:00 - 4:30

Closing Keynote

4:30 - 4:45 PM

Closing Remarks

  • Speaker: Abbey Rodriguez

  • Speaker: Chandice Probst

5:30 - 7:30 PM

The Inspired Home Show Bonus Brand Meet & Greet

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