Frugality, Saving, Investing, Blogging and More, #CPFC13 Recap

Last weekend, a collection of personal finance bloggers, financial media and industry experts gathered in Toronto for the Canadian Personal Finance Conference (CPFC).  It was a great event organized by Preet Banerjee and Krystal Yee who organized last year’s event as well.  The conference was well worth the trip to Toronto in my opinion.  Here are some highlights from this year’s conference.

Day 1 Highlights

  • Som Seif, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Purpose Investments Inc., and regular co-host on The Lang & O’Leary Exchange, discussed the impact personal finance bloggers are having on the financial industry.  Som mentioned this during his presentation:  “I think what you’re doing is great…” (referring to bloggers playing a key role to improve financial literacy).  On a side note, it was great to have dinner with Som this past week in Ottawa.
  • Tom Hamza, President, Investor Education Fund which is a leading not-for-profit authority in financial literacy, education and research with a mandate to help Canadians make better financial decisions – shared some eye-opening data debt loads and savings rates.  This data was not very favourable for Canadian households.
  • Rob Carrick, Personal Finance Columnist at The Globe and Mail shared his perspective on the personal finance blogosphere, discussing the symbiosis between mainstream media and content on my site among others.
  • Albert Luk, a Toronto lawyer with expertise in legal issues facing online companies, shared some tips for small-business owners like bloggers who wish to (or are) monetizing their sites.  After scaring the heck out of everyone in the room on this topic, Albert answered a bunch of questions from the audience.
  • There was an insightful Q&A session with Jonathan Chevreau during which Jon plugged subscriptions to MoneySense Magazine as often as he could. (Disclaimer:  I already subscribe).
  • Bruce Sellery, Personal Finance Columnist and author of Moolala delivered a high-energy presentation about being a great TV guest.
  • Andrew Zimakis, Chief Marketing Officer, ING Direct Canada (and Sponsor of CFPC13), discussed branding strategy and execution.  I want to thank Andrew and his ING Direct team for their sponsored social event at the ING Direct Cafe on Saturday night.

Day 2 Highlights

  • Mark Goodfield from The Blunt Bean Counter offered some excellent small business and corporate tax tips.  One of the best presentations of the conference in my opinion because Mark’s tips were relevant to everyone in the room.
  • Financial Uproar gave his personal take on blogging.
  • Ellen Roseman, Toronto Star Personal Finance Columnist shared an impressive set of consumer advocacy stories and encouraged everyone, when justified, to Fight Back against corporate trickery.  Read more about fighting back here.
  • Dan Bortolotti, Michael James on Money and Jason Heath, Managing Director at Objective Financial Partners, discussed saving, investing, debt and more during a panel discussion moderated by Big Cajun Man.  Here was a tweet I shared from the discussion:

CPFC13 Tweet of the week

  • Dev Basu, Founder and CEO of Powered by Search gave an informative presentation about Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  Dev is a highly sought after professional in this subject.
  • Kerry Taylor, owner of Squawkfox, closed out the conference delivering her best tips how not to kill your blog.  Kerry should know.  Her site is one of the most recognized brands on frugality in Canada.

This conference reinforced the work I’m currently doing to kill my mortgage debt, save more and invest my money wisely.  I also learned some other things I should be doing, but for the most part, I’m on the right track.  I also learned some new tricks for the blog which hopefully over time will improve my interactions with you, the loyal reader.

It was great to see old faces and meet new ones at #CPFC13.  Thanks again to Preet and Krystal, and all the sponsors for an enjoyable weekend.

Got any specific questions for me about this conference?  Did you attend the conference and want to share a story?  I look forward to your comments.

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My name is Mark Seed - the founder, editor and owner of My Own Advisor. As my own DIY financial advisor, I'm looking to start semi-retirement soon, sooner than most. Find out how, what I did, and what you can learn to tailor your own financial independence path. Join the newsletter read by thousands each day, always FREE.

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