The Organizer Guide

Go ahead — bring people together

  • Priya Parker, author of "The Art of Gathering"

    Most hosts make this mistake
  • Congratulations! You’re bringing people together.

    1_oIW-0UFznCZKgIESmlCuHQ.jpeg

    Powerful things happen when people show up for each other, and we’re here to guide you to your goals.

    Our Help Center is available every day to help you learn to use our tools, but the Organizer Guide will provide you with the guidance and inspiration you need to be successful at any stage of your Meetup journey.

    Just made your Meetup group (or still considering it)?

    Made your group and ready to hit the ground running?

    Looking for inspirational ways to connect with your people?

    If you’ve already had some great events, we’d love it if you’d tag us on social media with @Meetup! You can also join a local organizer Meetup group to share the wisdom you’ve gained and learn from other organizers in your area.

    The Meetup Organizer Tour
  • Every community starts with hello

    1_aaJeXyftbQdKET58EeNdXQ.jpeg

    At your Meetup event

    • Make time to say “hi.” Be warm and welcoming — look them in the eye, smile, and introduce yourself as soon as you can.
    • Set expectations. Remind everyone what this event’s agenda is. Clarifying the day’s activities gives members something to do right away when they get to the event.
    • Open things up with interesting group questionsPrepare a question or two that members can use to get to know each other. It should be specific, fun, and related to the theme of the group.

    Between Meetup events

    Meetup has communication tools to keep conversations going.

    Reach out using the Mailing List.

    • Send a message to attendees the day before an event to remind them. Shout out that newbies will be there, mention you’re looking forward to seeing everyone, and remind them of anything they’ll need to bring.
    • Follow up with attendees the day after an event to thank everyone, continue a conversation, and give a hint to what might come next.
    • Value your members’ time—limit yourself to 1 or 2 messages per event.

    Connect through comments.

    • Reply to members with timely, conversational, informative comments. Member can’t make it? Make sure they know when the next event will be and welcome them to it.
    • Tell members how to find you (i.e. the woman with the pink hair at the back table) and encourage them to reach out if they’ll be late. Assure them they’ll be welcome even if they’re not on time!

    Brainstorm what’s next in Discussions.

    • Suggest ideas for new events and respond to member ideas in this short-form discussion tool.
    • Keep conversations going between events and cultivate an atmosphere where members feel empowered to connect and share ideas.
    How do I make everyone feel welcome?
  • Whether you’re communicating with a member for the first time online, or talking to a regular in real life, there are things all members expect from a Meetup organizer

    1_Lma6ihL5C5wdBgmjopaQ7g.jpeg

    Trust

    Be real.

    Meeting up with a group of people you haven’t met before can take some getting used to. Great organizers make members feel welcome before, during, and after they arrive to a Meetup event.

    1. Set an example. Greet everyone when they arrive at your events. Make time to introduce new people to everyone else. If being welcoming is your priority, other members will follow your lead.
    2. Communicate. Answer questions and comments on your event in a timely fashion. Showing a member you’re there to help and welcome them builds trust even if you’ve never met.

    Authenticity

    Be yourself.

    Clarify your expectations for every member. Hold each other accountable through honest communication and empathy. Show your members that you’re warm and approachable, and they will be too.

    1. Empower everyone. Instilling trust in your members will encourage them to trust you, too. Build a leadership team and coach your organizers to uphold your values.
    2. Collaborate. You’re not in this alone. Ask for event ideas, venue recommendations, and feedback. Implement change wherever it makes sense.
    3. Stay active. Always make sure your members know what’s up next. Keep scheduling events!

    Respect

    Be cool.

    Part of being friendly and welcoming is respecting your members. They want to be a part of your community, so make it easy for them.

    1. Stay on topic. Schedule events that focus on your community’s goals. Avoid scheduling too many events that don’t align with your mission.
    2. Balance your onsite communication. There’s a difference between keeping people informed and overloading them with emails. Be respectful and condense your messages. Highlight what’s most important, and make sure the information only goes to those who need it.
     
    What do members expect from an organizer?
  • Are you ready for your event? Here’s five things to check off before you meet.

    1_hygc3eR1X-TlUYGDbbg5Yw.png

    1. Create an agenda

    • Set a clear schedule in your group description. If the group has set activities, note when members need to arrive. If it’s more of an open social hour, let people know.

    2. Secure a venue

    • Find some venue options. Contact management with your questions, and check if your members need specific accommodations.

    3. Send an message to those who said they’re coming.

    • Rely on your regulars — don’t be shy about asking them to help out.
    • Reach out personally to newcomers — developing a rapport encourages them to show up.

    4. Gather your supplies

    • Make signs, prepare name tags, and ensure you have everything else you need for your event to be successful.

    5. Welcome everyone

    • Get there early and greet people as they arrive. Introduce them to each other, and ask them thoughtful questions.

    You’re ready! Let’s do this.

    Checklist: Before your Meetup event
  • You’re in. It’s time to make IRL plans.

    What are you loving right now? What do you want to do? Your first Meetup event is where you make it happen.

    The steps to scheduling an event are easy, so keep your momentum going and get something on the calendar. Find inspiration from your surroundings, other Meetup groups, or ask your new members if they have any cool ideas. Getting them involved from the beginning creates trust, and they’ll be more likely show up when the time comes.

    1_f6DiAxHFJoVgG0apvTWflQ.jpeg

    First events don’t need to be hiking Mt. Everest. It’s fine to keep it low-key while you’re still getting to know each other.

    • Select Create event from your Meetup group’s homepage
    • Name your event (be clear and concise!)
    • Select when the event will start
    • Pick where you’ll be — you can choose from your fav venues or look up a different one
    • Upload a photo (choose something that captures the spirit of your group!)
    • Let your members know what will happen, what to bring, how they’ll find you, etc.
    • Decide who will be hosting
    • Select Publish
    • Select Announce — your members will receive an email encouraging them to attend!
    Scheduling your first event
  • Asking the right profile questions can help the organizers of a Meetup group learn more about new members and set clear expectations for membership from the start. Profile questions not only help organizers learn about potential members, but they also help members learn more about the group. It’s a win-win for everyone. 

    We’ve compiled examples of great questions asked by some of our most successful groups. While these questions are group-specific, they give a great idea of what kinds of questions have worked well for other organizers. 

    • What are the top 3 things you'd like to get out of this group?
    • When did you first learn to knit?
    • Anything we should know about your running preferences/history/fortitude?
    • Do you have any food allergies?
    • Has your work been published anywhere? If you’re willing to share, we’d love to know where!
    • How old is your corgi?

    To create or edit profile questions: 

    Desktop Web

    1. From your group’s homepage, select Manage Group
    2. Select Edit Group settings from the drop-down menu
    3. On the Group Settings page, click Your members
    4. Under Profile questions, edit or add profile questions
    5. Click Save to confirm your updates

    Mobile Web

    1. From your group’s homepage, select Manage Group
    2. Select Edit Group settings from the drop-down menu
    3. On your Group Settings page, tap Members
    4. Under Profile questions, edit or add profile questions
    5. Tap Save to confirm your updates 

    Android & iOS App

    1. From your group’s homepage, select the three dots icon
    2. Tap Group settings (this will open your web browser)
    3. Tap Members and scroll down to Profile questions
    4. Type in new questions or tap the X to delete a question
    5. Tap Save
    Writing good profile questions
Meetup Organization Network logo

Want to learn more in person. Join the orgaizer network and see if there is a real life Meetup happening around you. There be people who have done this before, ready to help and you can be part of something special.

Join the org network