HOWTO Host an Event at i3detroit
SEE ALSO Event_Expert
So you want to host a class or event? Great! Here are some instructions to help your event go flawlessly.
- 1 Get some help
- 2 Schedule the event
- 3 Publicize your event
- 4 On the day of the event
Get some help
Get expert help
Planning even a small event can be easier with someone to share ideas and has experience with the process of setting up and running events.
Find a assistant
An assistant or two can help a class or event run smooth. An assistant can greet your guests, take tickets, and point out the bathrooms. As a bonus, if your assistant is an i3 member you can now host a class larger than 10 people.
Schedule the event
Look on our google calendar: http://www.google.com/calendar/render?cid=i3detroit%40gmail.com and pick an appropriate time and day. There's nothing wrong with two events going simultaneously, but try to avoid conflicts. If there are questions or conflicts, please contact VP of Classes and Activities (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Make sure to add your class to the calendar. This will update the calendar on the i3detroit web page and to let people know what space you want to use. To do this:
- Add the event to your personal Google calendar. If you don't have a Google account then ask someone who has one to do this. Or just sign up for a new account. They are free.
- Add email@example.com to the guest list. This will automatically send an email invitation to the i3detroit calendar once the event is saved to your calendar. The i3detroit calendar will automatically accept it and the event will appear on the website.
- Be careful when adding the i3detroit guest. If you are on the i3detroit mailing list Google may attempt to replace the firstname.lastname@example.org address with email@example.com. If you use the latter it will spam the entire mailing list with invitations. Please use the i3detroit@gmail address instead.
- Please enter as much pertinent information as you can in the description field.
- Please also enter the space that you intend to use in the 'Where' field (i.e. classroom, common area, lazer zone...etc.)
- Make sure that visibility is set to public.
- Click the 'Save' button to add the event.
Publicize your event
Create it on Eventbrite
Eventbrite.com is a commercial website used to advertise events and classes. Eventbrite helps promote events to the general public and can reach more people than the mailing list and blog. Eventbrite will also handle payments and donations. Have an Eventbrite created for your event, please contact VP of Classes and Activities. Eventbrite gives us a way to make sure that people show up to your class!
Fees charged by Eventbrite
Eventbrite has three ticket types: paid, free, and donation, each with it's own fee structure.
- Free: No fee is charged.
- Donation: The fee is only charged by the credit card processor. (3.0% for US dollars)
- Paid: As a non-profit we pay a reduced fee of $0.99 + 2% (capped at $7.95) to Eventbrite and 3% for credit card processing.
Who pays the fees?
From the authors observations people are much happier if you choose to absorb the fees. For example, the fees on a $35 ticket will be $2.74. Even if you have to bump up the ticket price you will receive less complaints than if you choose to pass them on.
Please keep in mind that it's good form to put a part of the fee toward supporting the space.
Create a Blog Post
Our blog is one of the first things people see when they look i3 up online. It also provides a nice location for us to store all of our classes. For a good example of a blog post see this test post Follow the steps:
- Write the meat of your post. This should include important details such as what, where and when. As an example:
YOUR TITLE GOES HERE
When: Date/Time (take a look at the calendar)
Where: 1481A Wordsworth Street, Ferndale, MI 48220
Max Class Size: X
Cost: See note†
Class Description: Don't be afraid to act a little salesmanly! Write up 50 to 100 words on what this class is about and why people should come to it.
- Add at least one picture!
- Insert an Eventbrite widget. The Eventbrite widget allows people to see how many tickets are left and such right from our site.
- Attach multimedia. Pictures or video can be added to entice people to come! You can post pictures of previous events or just related images.
Get even more people to attend your event
- Post it to the Mailing list
- Ask for us to advertise your event on the google. (We have many mediums-send an email to contact@ to set this up)
- Tweet about it to @i3Detroit. We will give you a retweet and we have a lot of random followers who are happy to share and participate.
- Ask a Facebook admin to post about it on the Facebook page, or make it a facebook event.
- Post it on Yelp (Click "Add event"). This can draw a lot of interest.
- Announce it to specific local groups whose members might not all be specifically following us. Try the Penguicon-general mailing list, and the All Hands Active mailing list, for instance.
- The day before the event (if it's been a while since the initial announcement), repeat these steps.
On the day of the event
Set out the donation jar
If you have not set a ticket price for your event consider asking for donations during it. Donations help to fund everything from the heat to super awesome tools and supplies. Midway through your class is usually a good time to take a break, talk a little bit about i3Detroit, set out the donation jar, mention the fridge, and head for the fridge. By the time you return with your drink, the jar will probably contain evidence of how well the class is going. If you're using a tool with a cost-recovery system in place, explain that at the same time.
Enlist the help of attendees or other members, if possible, but it is your responsibility to leave the shop clean at the end of the night.
Schedule a followup
If this is the first time you've taught a particular class, there may be some empty seats. However, if it's a good class, the attendees may want to take it again and they may tell their friends. The next time you do a class, you'll likely have more guests. You can even announce the followup at the end of class to make sure people know about it.