Hello and welcome to 52 Meetups in 52 Weeks BLOG where every week I share lessons I’ve learned from attending another Meetup event or connecting with another Meetup Group Organizer.
I’ve been organizing and attending meetups for exactly 10 years now and have always been fascinated by how this social platform works and how many doors it can open.
I first was introduced to the idea by my French tutor and friend who had his Meetup Group back then and I helped him organize a few of his biggest and best attended events as I was a restaurant & bar manager back then and events were my specialty.
We had some fun parties with up to a 100 people of folks who wanted to practice their French speaking skills in a fun happy hour environment.
Fast forward in 2012 I attended my very 1st Marketing Class where the trainer taught us amazing “tricks” you can do with Meetup Groups: basically find our interest and industry oriented groups and go attend events and grow your network. I came to Real Estate Industry from Hospitality industry and knew absolutely noone in the industry. So this tip was a goldmine for me and being an A student at heart I took this task seriously.
In 2012 alone I’ve attended on average couple events per week and my network grew exponentially (nearly a 100 events in 1 year). Not only locally but nationally as well because it was the days of large symposiums and numerous real estate classes for me. Today I hear many friends saying “Olga just knows everyone” and it is funny to me because it’s all thanks to the events I made it to and conversations I’ve participated in.
Today I smile when I tell this story but it wasn’t funny to me just 6 years ago when I was so broke that I would take out another credit card to just go to another symposium across the county and attend another class. I didn’t tell anyone about this crazy decisions I’ve made because I didn’t know anyone who would say it was a smart thing to do. I knew that too, but wanted to go so badly and believed it will pay off so I went. And every time I made this “wrong” decision to go deeper in debt, life gave me a new amazing connection – someone that made a huge difference in my life. And some events brought a few great new relationships to my life that would then become clear why I had to be there.
Also in 2012 I started to Organize my first Meetups – Cashflow Games. I fell in love with Cashflow Games at the Rich Dad Education symposiums I’ve attended and wanted to host my own games locally. I even brought Rich Dad Mentors who hosted that game for the company to do it here for our meetup group members. Great time 🙂
Today we still host Meetups where we play Cashflow 101 Board Game but it has not been “just a game” for a long time for myself and my friend and co-organizer. We both have built quite a few deep relationships from those events. And I’ll share Broderick’s story and experience in the upcoming posts, but he has managed to monetize some of those relationships and find clients and partners.
Then life happened and I moved back to Russia for 2 years and got a little disconnected from my Meetup community because I couldn’t attend live events but continued to do virtual events and conference calls for some times. It was amazing – to be able to speak to people across the world and even find my first marketing consulting clients there.
Last year my old Cashflow Meetup partner and I decided to re-join our forces again as he kept hosting the games while I was gone and I got on their organizer’s team again. We have amazing plans for 2018 and looking forward to new connections and new relationships!
One of the plans this year is to grow our community by learning from other Meetup Organizers and sharing our experiences. So I invite you on my 52 Meetups in 52 Weeks journey where I will speak about at least 52 different meetup groups and what they do and how they do it in the next 12 month.
Why? The goal – is to build an amazing community of like minded Meetup Groups Organizers who are dedicated to their members and want to improve their events quality, grow engagement, provide more value and create more win-win solutions.
My team and I are also launching a Private Facebook Group that we expect to grow to at least 20,000 members in the next 6 month! So if you are a Meetup Group Organizer or want to start your group, come join us there. There will be a lot of awesome conversations: we’ll share our experiences on
- What works and what doesn’t in organizing a Meetup Event – to charge or not to charge for memberships and events, how often to host and how to keep the costs low to zero
- What tools and strategies can be used to improve attendance and grow the group.
- How to monetize and create win-win solutions
- How to capture the best moments and share it with the world to spread the word and attract new members, create engagement and build strong community
- These topics and much more cool great stuff is coming on this blog and in our Facebook Group and I cannot wait to see what it will grow into!
Cheers to a successful 2018 where dreams come true, friendships and relationships grow deeper and our desires match our expectations!