[hackerspaces] Promotion Ideas Help?

Mitch Altman maltman23 at hotmail.com
Mon May 9 00:09:01 CEST 2011

Sounds like you're doing all the right things as far as getting your word out there!  Get every email list:  Dorkbot, other nearby hackerspaces (if any), any other local geeky email lists, local arts/crafts orgs (including schools), etc.  It's also good to send out emails 2 weeks before an event, to give people an opportunity to plan.  Then a 1-week reminder, and then a day-of-event reminder (to catch people on a last-minute whim).
So, what is your word?  To be most effective, someone who is potentially interested needs to be able to see/hear/read at a glance what's up.  
For instance -- I haven't seen your posters, so I don't know if this applies, but if a poster is too "busy" looking, then people can't see at a glance what the class is about (or even that there is a class).  The poster should be very simple-looking, with plenty of white-space, showing some catchy graphic that will attract your target audience, and give a bold heading that a person can see at a glance that this is a class for Subject X.  Then just enough info so that people can learn a bit more (once they've been attracted by the graphic, and seen the heading to know they might be interested).  You can even print this somewhere on the poster (in smaller print):
     What:  Cool, informative class on Subject X!
     Where:  TX/RX Labs (Houston Hackerspace), nnn XX St., Houston, TX  zzzzz
     When:  Monday, 16-May, 8pm-??
     Who:  You!  Anyone who would like to learn.  All ages.  All skill levels [or whatever is your target audience]
     Cost:  Free instruction.  Materials cost is $xx if you want to blahblah.  [or whatever is your cost for materials and instruction]
    more info:  http://www.xxxx.com/moreinfo
Similar for other media (including emails).
I recently gave a workshop at Xinchejian, the hackerspace in Shanghai, and they created this poster, which worked well:
We have so much noise in our lives.  And we tend to filter out much of what comes our way.  So, make all messages inviting, and very easy to absorb.
And, do as you are doing -- put the word out there so that anyone who might be interested can find out that you're offering the cool class/event/workshop.  Keep doing that!


Date: Sun, 8 May 2011 16:43:35 -0500
From: rtavk3 at gmail.com
To: discuss at lists.hackerspaces.org
Subject: [hackerspaces] Promotion Ideas Help?

Howdy, checking in from TX/RX Labs the Houston hackerspace.
We have started a series of classes at the space for May,June and sadly the response we got hasnt been great, we still have time to promote but were hoping some of the more experienced people here would have advice on how to get to reach people seeing as I have noticed many classes at the other hackerspaces have done quite well.

We have ~13 classes and they are all very reasonably priced, we have experienced people teaching and have put up ~1000 flyers and done twitter/facebook/forums/meetup posts not to mention hit ur email list etc.

Tried to get press attention and did get a stpry in the local free press magazine and some time on the tech show on our local npr affiliate.

Any other ways to get the word out you experienced people know of?

Thanks in advance!


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