The Digital Voice

The Digital Voice is a B2B PR company for adtech and martech companies. We are the voice for clients including ​Impact, Adnami, Cavai, White Bullet Solutions, tmwi, Audience Store, Adverty, Brand Metrics, Inskin Media, Admixer, and Covatic.

Kings Hill West Malling, United Kingdom
Founded: 2012
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The Digital Voice meets Bloom and talks BloomFest, Booth of Truth and why it's the must attend event!

by Mary Sheikh

October 21, 2021

The Digital Voice meets Lucy Cutter, President of Bloom, a professional network for Women in communications. Their flagship event, BloomFEST is coming up next month and we wanted to find out how it differs from other events, what to expect and why it is the must attend event of Q4.

Who is Bloom and Why BloomFEST?

Bloom is a professional network for Women in communications. It’s our mission to ensure that all women have equal opportunity in our industry by harnessing the power of their real voices, future-proofing women’s careers and spearheading industry change as well as paying it forward.

BloomFEST is our annual flagship event, in which we strive to drive change through the exploration of topics relating to the challenges that women face in our industry. All profits raised are donated to Women’s Aid.

Why is BloomFest different from other events?

It’s attended by hundreds of comms professionals. The topics are provocative, they encourage us to talk openly about uncomfortable barriers that we face in the industry. You’ll hear about the genuine experiences of our panellists and most importantly you’ll hear the actions that are needed to make the industry a better place - from bigger cultural movements to smaller, everyday actions that we can all implement. It’s also a day of upskilling with workshops to equip us with the skills for success and it’s about connection – having fun and letting go a bit!

What is it about the content that makes it stand out – both this year and in other years?

In the aftermath of 2020, so far 2021 has failed to offer the reset that we hoped for. It’s been a year punctuated by pivotal moments in the fight for equality, including the awful murders of Sarah Everard and Sabina Nessa drawing attention to the lengths women go to keep themselves safe and normalisation of sexual harassment as highlighted by Zoe Scaman’s blog to name just a few. Sadly the issues raised were not so new.

As with every BloomFEST, together our collective voices must be louder to talk about the issues which are holding us back. Together we must go beyond the talking and the words to drive action and we must come together to smash the glass ceiling. Together we must lift each other up as great things happen when we work as one.

And we do it all through the lens of Bloom’s positivity and fun. Which is why this year’s theme for BloomFEST is Raise the Roof.

What are the key themes coming out of this year’s BloomFest?

We have a selection of panels and workshops. Across the panels expect to see themes covered such as ‘The Queen Bee’ where we will be lifting the lid on experience of working with difficult women, ‘The Class Divide’ where we will unearth solutions to make the industry a place where we all thrive. We will also be exploring how feminism needs to work for all women, how not to hate networking, and how to ask for the pay we deserve. From an allyship perspective look out for a conversation around age and supporting neurodiversity in the workplace. There is much much more !

For the audience, what can they expect to see on the day? What will they walk away with?

Our aim is for everyone to leave feeling empowered and lifted - believing they can achieve anything they want to achieve. We want to motivate and encourage everyone to take everyday actions to make not only their worlds a better place, but the wider industry as well.

What are the three key messages that you expect to be heard, resonating throughout this year’s event?

Feminism needs to work for everyone - intersectionality cannot be an afterthought.

Active allyship is pivotal for driving change.

Confidence is a muscle that we can all develop and flex.

Who are the key speakers taking to the stage?

Jess Phillips, MP, will be our Keynote speaker inspiring us to have the courage to speak our minds, even if others don’t like it.

We also have Michelle Griffith Robinson OLY whole be talking adversity and navigating the most trying of times to come out on top.

Joeli Bearley will also join our parenting panel where they are set to discuss how managers and peers can better support parents in the workplace.

We have loads more exciting speakers - from within and outside the industry - planned which will be dropped soon on our website so watch this space.

How can the audience become part of the conversation? Will there be a lot of interactivity?

There will be plenty of opportunity for interactivity and engagement. Whether this is getting involved in some of the fun we have planned (think comedy and dance!) or through the workshops. There will be chat functions and the ability to ask questions and network. We are a chatty bunch!

Can you talk us through the anonymous Booth of Truth – will it be running again this year and has it delivered change and evolution the past by allowing voices to be heard?

Yes! The legendary Booth of Truth will be making a comeback at BloomFEST this year. The Booth of Truth was founded in 2017 and is a place where women and men can anonymously share their stories of barriers to their success in the industry. The sometimes shocking stories become a central theme of our events to open the dialogue on what is happening on the ground, and for us at Bloom to create some everyday actions. The evolution from an inflatable confession booth to an anonymous online portal has allowed us to open up at more events. The most recent one being on sexual harassment where, working alongside our co-mentoring programme, The Exchange, we were able to create a playbook on how individuals, companies and the industry can help tackle sexual harassment in our industry.

This past year – or more - has been tough for many; are there positives that you expect to see that will also be highlighted and discussed?

Our entire focus will be on the positive lessons we can take from individual scenarios - what has worked, what can work, and what we can all do to inspire others. Everyone has the power to drive change - everyday actions are sometimes the most important. And we’ll also be showing the impact of the collective - that good things happen when women and allies come together.

http://bloomfest.cventevents.com/.

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