I unfortunately haven't been able to make any of these meet ups as I moved up to the Thomaston area (but will be moving back soon!), but another one of my groups faced similar challenges and so, I thought I would try and offer some insight.
One of my groups decided that we were tired of paying the fees and so, closed our meetup account and created a facebook group. However, because of this, we had no growth afterwards and so, it was just the same few people going to all our meetups. As time went on, members moved or got new jobs and became too busy. Now, the group is on life support and we're lucky if we even have three of us at an event.
Because of that, I think it might be best to stick with an idea like Neil's and just do small donations or a cover charge. The advertisement space of being on Meetup is probably worth the 12 dollars a month to keep the group healthy. And really, even just a dollar per person per meetup should be able to quickly cover that cost.
On Tue, Jun 19, 2012 at 12:35 PM, Neil <[address removed]>
Hi Steve (and all),
The way my other meetup groups manage it is to periodically collect small voluntary donations. I think the advantage doing this would have over switching to other sites is that other people already on meetup can find the group more easily. I've honestly never heard of the other sites you mention, so I'm concerned new interested players wouldn't be able to find the group. I haven't found facebook to be as good or reliable in terms of sending announcements and reminders about events as meetup is. Just my two cents.
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On Tue, Jun 19, 2012 at 11:25 AM, Alan Shaw <[address removed]>
Since I don't make it to allot of meetups with group, I am not a representative sample. However I am not a Facebook user so that would not attract me to the group. I organize a couple of groups on Meetup so I know the costs can be high for relatively little benefit. However it is nice to have all my groups in one place.
I have never heard of BigTent, but if it is less well known than meetup, will it be good for attracting new members? I have found Meetup groups simply by seeing groups that others are in when they join groups I am in. This is only really important if there are allot of active new members.
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