GO WILD! : A First Timers Experience & Guide of the Event
It’s been almost 2 weeks since Go Wild SoCal happened and while it was a BLAST, I can definitely say, I’m still recovering from it (probably because I’m an introvert). If you don’t know what Go Wild is, it’s a huge Planner Party (yes, you heard that right!) that gathers everyone that loves planners, stickers and stationery in general. Welcome to our crazy club!
I’ve always wanted to attend one but never had anyone to go with me and they were all in other states. I also would think about how expensive that would be: tickets + flights + hotel and everything else. Tickets cost close to $500, which is a little pricey in my opinion, but between all the speakers, events and goodies it was worth it to purchase when it came to my neck of the woods. So I had no excuse and decided to jump right in. It was now or never, right?! Or so I thought….
The party was first scheduled for 2020 and as we all know, covid knocked it off course. After being rescheduled, we finally got to get our planner party on! I’ve gotta say, wow… it was THE PARTY!!! I will admit, it was a bit much for my introverted self, but there were so many highlights. I loved meeting so many customers and people from the planner community that I hadn’t been able to connect with in real life. I even got to meet THE Alicia Silverstone (Cher from the movie Clueless) ☺ my all time idol since I was a kid!
This is where I give you all the ins and outs of this event, so grab a drink or snack and let’s talk about all things GO WILD! I’ll start with the beginning of the event weekend, the Shop Summit.
The Shop Summit is a full day of workshops about business, sales, marketing and a lot of inspirational talks that help to light that fire in you and your business! This year, we had Stephanie Fleming from Happy Planner with the best motivational, “you can do anything” talk! Followed by Lameka Alston from Capitol Chic Designs. She spoke about her journey, which included how she got started and how she got her line at Michaels. Her talk gave us some really great insights, especially in regards to the “behind the scenes” of the industry and included a lot of information that people don't typically freely give out.
Then, we had Brooke from BBBrooke sharing her licensing story with Disney. For me, this was the most inspirational talk because I always thought that in order to license a big brand like Disney, you had to be a big company, and that wasn’t her case back then. It solidified that when you really want something and give it your all, you will always find a way to make it happen! As well as, there is opportunity for everyone, you just need to know where and how to find it. One of my biggest takeaways was the meaning of FAIL. “First Attempt In Learning”. That blew my mind! Sometimes we want to give up when something doesn’t go our way and we think we failed, but really that was just the first attempt.
After lunch we had a networking session where we asked our table mates about their businesses, goals, and such. This was then followed by a not so sexy session about Small Business Law. That’s the part of business we never want to deal with but in the end we have to. It consisted of talking about why businesses need an LLC and other requirements.
To finish the day, we had a workshop with Lauryn Wang from the Go Wild team about digital marketing tools and, in my opinion, it was my favorite session of the day. Although I already knew most of the tools she presented for social media management, she gave us so much information in such an easy way to understand. It definitely was the session I took the most notes on. All in all, the Shop Summit left me with so much information. Now onto the GO WILD experience!
THE GO WILD EXPERIENCE
The event started on Thursday with a welcome party sponsored by Krissyane Designs. My favorite part was the karaoke! My least favorite parts were the lines to get a drink and the fact that it was SO COLD (the party was held outside, likely due to COVID). But alas, we got through those drink lines and they helped warm us up and get our dance party on! They also had the cutest cupcakes!
The sessions started super early at 8am on Friday. I was so happy to be sponsoring a table at the event which meant I could get into the ballroom before the storm of guests and allowed me to find a fun table to sit at. I overheard that people were lining up at 2am in order to get in first and sit at a nice table. Once I got my sneak peak, I understood the excitement.
THE FABULOUS PLANNER SPONSORED TABLE
Trust me when I say this, some of these tables were TO DIE FOR!!! I’d like to think my table was one of those lol I heard great comments from everyone that sat in my sponsored table. My theme for the table was Barbie and all things PINK! Very on brand, don’t you think? Part of my reasoning for this theme was it originally was going to align with the subscription box for that month, but due to COVID the box came out prior to the event being held. So, the million dollar question, what was in the box?! Let me tell you, SO MANY THINGS! It included nearly everything in pink that I stock, with highlights such as our 2022 planner, notepads, a Go Wild pouch, and STICKERS, STICKERS, STICKERS…did I mention there were some stickers? The list goes on and on but that is just some of the highlights of what I was able to offer for my table.
Now you might ask what table I sat at? I got to be at the table sponsored by Zebra Markers and Highlighters and OMG!!! I have never seen so many pens! I got the full set up and I’m so happy about it! I even ended up gifting some of it to a friend. I definitely feel like I hit the jackpot with my table choice.
Here are some other sponsored tables that I saw!
After all the excitement of the picks at the table, it was time for the party to start! We had so many good speakers on stage, while I hadn’t heard of everyone, by the end of the talks I had some new people to look up to! My favorite speaker from Friday’s session was Cindy Baldo. She spoke a lot about how to find joy in the little things in life and that spoke to me on so many levels. I absolutely hate doing house chores but she made me see that differently. She gave examples on how to find joy and reward yourself while doing the chores. It was great! The sessions went on until about 1:30pm and then we had the afternoon off.
Friday night we had the Wild Crop, which I think it’s a new thing for Go Wild. The Fabulous Planner also had a sponsored table for this portion of the event. We had all sorts of freebies ranging from stickers, washi tapes, journals, pens and even notepads. The Wild Crop was actually WILD! It was a little chaotic, but I think anytime you have such a huge crowd (about 1600 people) it’s really hard to keep it organized.
Then, on Saturday it was a half day of sessions again, closing with the keynote conversation with Alicia Silverstone. She spoke about her vegan life and how important it is to have good nutrition and a balanced life. While all the sessions on Saturday were amazing, I was just SO excited to see Alicia! When she got off the stage, I ran to her and asked for a picture. I also gave her one of our planners and a handwritten note. I was on cloud 9; it was a childhood dream coming true! Unfortunately, I had to leave right after that so I wasn’t able to go to Planjama but I heard it was a blast too!!
IT’S A WRAP
My final remarks are that while it was a bit of an overwhelming event for me (re: due to being an introvert), it was such a great way of connecting with our great community! I do think that I would have preferred for the workshop to be one entire day, rather than be split into two half-day sessions. Or move the sessions to the afternoon because it was pretty brutal to be hanging out so late and then getting up at 7am the next day. That’s just my opinion and I will admit, I’m not much of a morning person. I do think the event needed a bit more structure because there were a few hiccups here and there, but overall, it was a super fun experience.
The best part of Go Wild, is that no matter how shy or introverted you are, you will make tons of friends! Everyone is super friendly and in the best mood possible. It was a great event to network and make new friends, so make sure to bring tons of contact cards. They also had so many fun attractions like a photo booth and vendor booths.
From a business perspective, I’m really happy I paid for the licensing and sponsored a table. The exposure you get as a business is insane and I got to meet so many people that had no idea that The Fabulous Planner existed! Also, every time I released a Go Wild collection it sold out very quickly. Totally worth it!
It was a great event overall, I really enjoyed meeting so many people that also enjoy all the things that I do! I’m almost positive I would go again (it would depend on the location). Let me know on Instagram (check out the Go Wild highlights on our page) or on the Facebook group if you’ve been to one of the Go Wild parties and what you thought about it?