The  Power Of Local Meetups

By nature, I am an extrovert.  I know it sounds crazy if you are an introvert, but being around people energizes me. I am naturally curious about other human beings and I have always thrived in social settings.

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However, the work I do requires a tremendous amount of solitude, focused and uninterrupted time on my computer.

Can you see the problem?  Introducing Meetup.com.

Haven’t heard of Meetup? Meetup.com’s mission is to revitalize local community and help people around the world self-organize.

No need to wait for some formal gathering with protocol requirements.  Anyone can start a Meetup group.  And they have. There are meetups for hikers, lovers, knitters, bikers, mommies, you name it, I am sure there’s a meetup for it.

Nevada County Online Business Strategies Group

Yes, there is a ton of online business networking taking place everyday on the internet with social networking platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.  However, no one can deny the power of face-to-face networking. Nothing comes close to leveraging an in-person connection.

That is why I want to invite you to our meetup group for a Holiday Networking Party if you find yourself in our neck of the woods on December 14th.

Nevada County Online Business Strategists Meetup is the only professional networking group in Nevada County that focuses exclusively on online marketing strategies.

A 10 Step-By-Step Action Plan On How I Organized My Meetup Group

Obviously, there are many ways to organize a meetup group, but I thought I’d share with you how I started Nevada County Online Business Strategies Group to give you a “behind-the-scenes” look at the steps I took to get it off the ground because I did not initially use Meetup.com to launch our group.

1. Last summer, my company, Hware sponsored a local business summit. The organizers did a fantastic job filling the seats and as a professional business speaker, I gave a short presentation on social media marketing.

2. A few days after the summit, the organizers sent a database of the attendees to all the sponsors and speakers so that we could send all attendees a “thanks for coming” e-mail.  In that e-mail I also included a survey inquiring about business obstacles and challenges.

3. Ever heard the phrase, “find a need and fill it?” The feedback I received from the survey was overwhelmingly focused on online marketing for their local business.

4. I then launched a Nevada County Online Business Strategies Group e-mail campaign for two weeks to the database from the business summit, which was about 150 people.

5. After two weeks of promoting the group via e-mail, approximately 50 people signed up to receive a weekly e-newsletter about online marketing tips and strategies.

6. At the same time, I also launched a Facebook group called Online Biz Strategies.

7. I then secured a sponsored venue location for our group to meet once a month.  I also invited members of the local business community to sponsor our monthly meetings. In addition, I extended a special invitation to online experts i.e, web design consulting, social media managers, public relation experts, etc., to play an active role in our group.

8. Today, we are nearing 100 online business strategists who receive the weekly e-newsletter.  Not bad for a rural small business community.

9.  I recently sent out a survey to all Nevada County Online Business Strategies members to take a pulse on how we are doing and the feedback was insightful.  I highly recommend you do the same for your group.

10. Our meetings are an hour and a half from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm on the fourth Tuesday of every month. The schedule looks like this:

11:00 to 11:15 am Sign in and Networking  (volunteer greeters at the door).

11:15 to 12:15 Presentation (this is usually an online expert speaker, or presentation with time for Q & A).

12:15 to 12:30 Announcements and Networking

I know this seems like a lot of work and well, it is! Nevada County Online Business Strategies Group is an all volunteer group. I could not run this group without their support and I am proud of what we have accomplished in such a short time period. How about you?  Have you launched a Meetup group in your local community?  If you did, I would love to hear about it.

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