In The Netherlands we have had MUGs (local Magento User Groups) for a couple of years now. The first one was started in Amsterdam by Ray Bogman in May 2013 and many other cities accross the country have followed since.
most cases, it was a company or one or two Magento enthusiasts wanting
to get to know the local community, share knowledge and have some fun
together. And this worked out pretty well: over 750 people have signed up for at least one of these meetup groups and 57 meetups were organized!
What a great Magento community we have here in The Netherlands!
But of course, we won’t stop there ;)
there is not much coordination going on between the groups, it’s hard
to start for new groups (or at least could be much easier) and having
only 1 company organizing the group creates the risk of the group
falling silent if the company is no longer interested (or is too busy
with Magento 2 implementations to organize meetups).
So in order to coordinate this in a better way and guarantee continuity, Dutchento
(the national Magento community organization) will now start
coordinating this. Since today, all local meetup groups have transfered
the local groups to Dutchento so we are able to take on this task.
How big/small (geographically speaking)?
some of the groups aimed at a city and others aimed at provinces (we
have). And Dutchento itself usually operates at a national level. For
the meetup grousp, we decided to go for groups on a province level:
for a simple meetup, users don’t want to travel half the country (even
in tiny The Netherlands). Makes no sense to spam someone in the north
with meetups in the south and vice versa if they’re never oing to travel
there anyway.2) There are many many cities and within half an hour
you can reach many. So you’d have to subscribe to a dozen groups if we
would do this on a city level and this also means a lot of overhead
management and coordination overload
So province level it is :)
step was to visually align all groups with the same branding style we
have for Dutchento, but still have a local avatar for each group:
…and also the pages itself now all have the same recognizable look:
with the local organizers and our marketing team we have now started
working on our plan to grow these groups even more with help of our
existing nation-wide userbase. We’ve started gathering lists of people
who (want to) speak at local meetups to facilitate the sharing of topics
and speakers and also use the local meetups to build up towards our
main Meet Magento event in May.
How are you organizing you local community? Any thoughts on the above? Let me know in the comments!