[hackerspaces] Hackerspace crisis plan

David Francos me at davidfrancos.net
Wed Jan 23 09:49:30 CET 2013

2013/1/22 Nathaniel Bezanson <myself at telcodata.us>

> Thomas R. Koll  wrote:
> > Easy to win. Just ask them: "How did you get here?" Unless they founded
> it,
> > they came here thanks to marketing. Even word-to-mouth is marketing.
> > Bigger mouth, shout louder and you have more success :)
> Shouting makes people cover their ears. Whispering makes them curious.
> Choose wisely.
> But yes, this is the fundamental truth: You are surrounded in your city by
> thousands of potential members, who don't know you exist. Fix that.
> Marketing is the act of fixing that.
> Make a simple flyer, not too many words. Lots of whitespace. Just a few
> concepts, a few "teaser" questions, and a URL to learn more. But don't even
> say "learn more". They'll figure it out. But, consider including a note at
> the bottom: "Save paper - take a photo of this flyer instead". Many people
> will, and the action of taking the photo will give you a foothold in their
> mind, which you wouldn't get if they simply shoved the paper in their
> pocket.

Trying social networks too =)
I'm following your advices and we've already managed to get two places (a
social center and a university) to let us do presentation talks, and I'm
managing another university and a professional education school.

Then, go do something else.

for instance: Do you enjoy geocaching? Go to a CITO event or cachers'
> meetup. Slip a few copies of the flyer to a few cool people. Don't just
> shove them into everyone's hand -- let people get curious and come ask,
> instead. But make sure you're there primarily to help with the task at
> hand, and answering questions about your other hobby is just incidental.

Actually, I've ended up involved at some point/related/foobar in almost all
the tech-related events in the city, so, that's a good idea. Bad thing is
I've had no time for it! ;-)

Basically, look at all the hobbies enjoyed by your current members, and
> assume that there might be more people who do those things, who would also
> enjoy a hackerspace.

I'm the lastest tech-related active member who has time to go...

> That should bring some people through the door. Keeping the interesting
> ones is a separate question, and it largely hinges on whether people feel
> useful. But that's for you to work out. :)

Thanks for all the comments,  I really appreciate it.
I was very demotivated by the current situation, about to stop fighting for
it, but you guys have cheerd me up.

BTW, I also followed the advices about the text in the page, is much more
welcoming now, and we're not going to be that strict with the money, tho we
need it, we'll try to adapt in some special cases, and we're doing
promotions for groups and so.

Oh, if you want to have a look at the space itself, I've uploaded here some
photos (till I got time to update the wiki page in hackerspaces)
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