A few lessons from this program
Here are some of the steps he took. (Download the interview for more.)
Create a board of advisers
Haven’t you heard this before in my interviews about getting funding? The smartest entrepreneurs tell me they did the same thing that Kurt did: they gather a board of advisers. The board of advisers isn’t so much about giving you advice as it is about giving you access to their contacts and reputation.
Build a site
There seems to be something magical about a web site. You and I know that it only takes a couple of hours to put together a decent site. But once your idea has a site, it becomes real to the people you share your idea with. Kurt told me that building a site for his event helped galvanize support for it.
Unite other groups
Kurt didn’t know enough people to fill the Skirball Cultural Center. So he made his event about uniting other groups. He asked each of the local tech groups to invite their members and turn his party into their party.
To help others promote his event, Kurt provided them with HTML emails, web badges and other tools. Most people copied what he gave them into their email newsletters or web sites.
He managed to put together a long list of potential event sponsors. (Listen to the interview to hear how he did it.) But few of his sponsors came from that list. Almost all of them were people who knew and trusted him or his co-organizers and advisers.
Do you have any other tips for putting together a big event? Tell me by email or in the comments.