I'm looking for people who would like to help us host a Sketchfab meetup in their city. Running a meetup is easy and fun, and a great opportunity to do some networking in your own local community!
This page contains notes about how we tend to run our own Sketchfab meetups. They are not instructions or blueprints for all meetups (you can do it any way you like - it's YOUR meetup, after all), but you might find them helpful.
If you have any questions or suggestions, please comment and I'll work them into this document.
Okay, sounds cool! How do I get started?
If after reading this post you feel like hosting a Sketchfab meetup, please leave a message here. I can help find out how many Sketchfab users there are in your area, and you might find collaborators here to help host the event. Once things start rolling I will support you with communications and advice.
How much time will this take?
In my experience, it takes 1-2 hours to prepare a meetup and one evening for the event itself. I'd be happy to take some of the preparation work off your hands if that would help!
The meetup itself
Meetups are social events: it's a great chance to meet like-minded people in your area and to exchange ideas. For this reason we don't plan most of the program: just provide a place to meet, some drinks and you're good to go.
All the same, we also found that people appreciate us (the Sketchfab crew) to talk about upcoming things so we usually start our meetups with a short(!) presentation and demonstrations of things that are in development (we can send you a super secret video with upcoming things to share). We also like to extend the opportunity to one or two community members to get on the soapbox and talk about their own work. Again, these presentations should be short, I usually aim for 5 minutes (which means they'll turn into ten).
Take a few pictures during the event and send us a quick report! I'd love to feature your story on our blog.
What to bring
I'll typically bring some goodies like stickers, Sketchfab Cardboard viewers etc. We'll be happy to send you some stuff too.
Oh, and we'll also get you a Sketchfab t-shirt so it's easy for everyone to recognize you
The meetup venue
When in Paris or NYC, we like to host meetups at our offices. In other places, I just try to find a bar or hotel lobby that has plenty of space and that's not too loud. Call ahead to see if your group will fit in, or visit the place to check it out beforehand. Most bars are happy to make a reservation for your group with no obligations to you as the host.
Announcing the meetup
I can help you reach the Sketchfab community:
- We post your meetup on our official Meetup page.
- I'll announce the event on our blog and social media channels.
- We can send a message to all members in your area.
I also recommend you think about how to tell your local arts and Maker communities: you can contact associations, leave messages at the library etc. Start announcing 3-4 weeks in advance. In my experience people don't plan ahead much longer. Any less than 3 weeks may make it hard for people to attend as their calendars are starting to fill up.
Some lessons learned / making the most of your event
Here are some observations/ideas that @abbyec and I discussed after our most recent meetups:
- Double-check if your location is easy to find. In my case, the entire area was under construction and many roads were blocked. This isn't a very common problem, but I'll be sure to contact my venues from now on and ask if there are any special instructions to find the place.
- Think about how people can find your group when they arrive at the venue. In my case, the building was closed and I left a note on the door with a Sketchfab sticker and my phone number. Abby was in a rather large bar and some people might not have been able to find her. I'll print out a poster next time with a Sketchfab message and my phone number (note to self: we should design something for you guys to use).
- There are always no-shows, and especially for smaller meetup groups this can be disappointing. I typically send everyone a message on the day before to ask them to confim if they're still interested, and to remove their RSVP if they can't come. Meetup.com has a mail tool available for this. Contact me if you need help.
- Ask people for a short introduction before the event, like @andylewis did on the forum. This creates more of a bond and you'll 'be missed' if you don't show up.
- Another cool idea: have a raffle and give away something. I'd be happy to provide some things for that to see if this works
If you have any other ideas, please share!
Sounds good? Let's go!
Do you think you could host a meetup for us? Leave a message or start a new topic in the Lounge forum and let's see what we can do together!