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Tech Events are NOT as cool as you think (from an organizer perspective)

Keit Oliveira on September 13, 2023

Hello everyone! My name is Keit, aka @k8dev, I'm Brazilian and, besides being a programmer, I've been organizing technology events for 8 years. ...
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Mateus Guimarães

Most people — including myself — have no idea how challenging it is to organize events. Thanks for letting us a take a peek behind the scenes.
It's a shame getting sponsorships is so hard. Companies should see that there's value in supporting an event.

Agian, thanks for the post and for the work you do!

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Daniel Reis

I organized two events before and on both of them I lost some considerable amount of money for not know how TOUGH is to do something like that.

Of course it was not so much as you probably did, but well, still a loss.

Overall, I think that brings this topic is really good for the entire that wants to face some in-person events.

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Moov • Edited

It's a shame that companies today don't see the real value in supporting these events.
If you decide to open a crowdfunding to support the costs of the event, I'll certainly help for some money.

I really appreciate your work in organising FRONTIN Sampa. I haven't had the chance to attend yet, but I would love to one day 💜

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Adolfo Neto

I cannot write anything right now. We are in the process of organizing Elixir Fortaleza Maybe after the event I can comment. I know our event in much smaller than Frontin Sampa.

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Keit Oliveira

If you need some help, let me know how I can support your event 🤘

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Adolfo Neto

Well, it is my first time organizing such a type of event. I really don't know what kind of problem to expect.

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João Corrêa

Most people go to such events, enjoy their time, meet new people, but they have absolutely no idea of what happens behind the curtains.
Congrats for stepping forward and bringing up the challenges burdened by the organizers, and thank you very much for making it happen for the community!

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Renan Vidal Rodrigues

Excellent content Keit, I'm sorry that an event as incredible as the one you organize isn't properly appreciated. This year's FrontinSampa was my first Tech event and I had the honor of meeting you and seeing all your dedication to the event. Frontin itself was a unique learning and networking experience for me. I sincerely hope that you and your entire team get the recognition you deserve and that we have many more events of this caliber.

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Roberto Costa

Going to tech events and giving reviews is easy, now the hard work of organizing and providing a good experience is not taken into account by everyone.
Keit, congratulations on your great work, it's not easy but you are an inspiration to many people.

demenezes profile image

Three things.

First, congratulations on the post. I found it very interesting to know about these points, behind the scenes of the organization. I always imagined that this was something laborious and expensive.

Secondly, congratulations also on FRONTINSAMPA this year. I was in SP and the event was awesome, apart from @CodeintheDarkBR which is another job, in addition to the event and lectures.

Third, I will start organizing events here where I live, Porto Alegre/RS. Of course, the proportion is much smaller, but I already feel some problems, mainly with attracting people to the community, attracting people who want to speak, and with engagement. Our first event (online) is scheduled, but I'm already thinking about what it will be like in the future, and how to handle all the activities if one day the community here grows. I've barely started researching a possible in-person event and I've already seen that the responsibilities are many.

Thanks again for the article.

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Lucas Rosa

Congratulations on this great article!
Your efforts provided the best experience for this incredible event and I'm going to the event again in the next year, and perhaps as a volunteer again.

I want to organize some events in my country(Salvador BA), all of you talked about was really important for me. Thanks a lot!

Thanks for sharing your experiences! Its a really nice post and FRONTIN is the best event in Brazil!

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Felipe Magosso Poveda

Excellent article! People should know more about how challenging is to organize an event!

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Kevin Oliveira

Excellent article, k8. You are a great reference for all!

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Jean-Michel 🕵🏻‍♂️ Fayard

I have no solution but it's a very important topic indeed, thanks for writing about it.

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Lorena Mattos Machado

Congratulations on bringing up such an important topic for people who have no idea how much work it is to organize an event, especially because of the lack of value given to those who do it.

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Andrew Obrigewitsch

Events are never cool if you are the one having to put them on. I used to do fundraising events, all work and no play basically.

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Fernando Melo

I really wanted to participate on a dev event, and in fact I even wanted to organize one
But I know this can be challenging, and it's great to see an organizer perspective, tysm!

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Sergio Falconi

This was an awesome article. I didn't have a clue how challenging organizing events can be. Thanks for the work you do!

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Guilherme Vieira

Thank you @k8adev to share with us your perspective! That's really awesome!

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Clerivaldo Junior

Really hope companies finally understand how important is the community to them. Amazing and (unfortunatelly) necessary article.

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Alex T • Edited

mhm... I was in a consulting firm and had 1-2 events before. If not wrong, I heard from our PR that we always make considerably good profits from events. Maybe the tips and tricks below may be beneficial:
For meerchants/companies

  1. think ahead of what values/benefits of merchants/companies are thrilled AND fears/loss they are scared of most. eg, potential collaborating companies may attend or competitors to stay more prominent than them
  2. list down the values they may get like marketing exposure(past records of attendees credentials and values and sales revenues generated for participating companies over just one event)
  3. also nudge them that WHO will be attending or sponsoring too etc etc

For audience,

  1. printed the values they can get on the tickets, make them outweight way more than the price of tickets.
  2. group tickets for companies, a good way to motivate employees and make them grow. good Competitions among employees can inspire companies to grow .. ..

of course I have more suggestions. Should you really need more, you can email me.

Events are very challenging and fun but very tiring. pats on Keit's back on working so hard on it and you don't have to put all your money into such a huge event. Events is for the purpose to pocket all the marketing budgets from all the tech companies.


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Schuster Braun

I organized a tech conference and monthly meetup before. None of it is easy. But the metrics matter. In my case the goal of my events is to build a stronger local community. So I tried to have my event reflect the community's investment. However, I do agree that most likely you still may not come out in the black. I see the reason it's hard to invest in those events as the same reason it's hard for companies to invest in Developer Experience positions. Company return on investment is tough to measure as well. Lastly, I think that at least in America it has to be a non-profit running the event, cause you're going to need volunteers. My summary is be honest with yourself and what your go/no gos. Most communities aren't worth your health and safety.

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Chris Jarvis

People don't realize how much work goes into an event. It's hard to find an event location and date that doesn't conflict with a similar event. You have to find time and place that doesn't compete with the same audience.
I've seen people rant because an event was a certain date. I always give the organizer the benefit of the doubt that that was the best time they could get a locations.|
A recent art event I attended had to change date and location multiple times. The first date they wanted, same weekend as last year, the place had a conflict. so They change them date but same location.
Times passes and they are preparing for the event. They get a notice that there will be construction in the area that weekend. That sounds will mess up the shows. They were given the option of another date change or a second location on campus.
With many people already booked they kept the date and took a new location. Days before the event a storm damaged the second location and they had to move to a third location.
They did and had a great event. And that just one aspect of a show, No mention of the work of finding sponsors, food, and set up.

Thanks to everyone that puts on events.

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Jhon Borris

Keit, thank you for shedding light on the behind-the-scenes challenges of organizing tech events. It's evident that a lot of passion, dedication, and personal sacrifice goes into making events like FRONTIN Sampa a success.

As someone who benefits from attending such events, I genuinely appreciate the hard work and effort put in by organizers like you. It's essential for the tech community to recognize and support these endeavors, as they play a crucial role in fostering learning, networking, and growth.

Keep up the fantastic work, and I hope more sponsors and partners come forward to support and appreciate the value these events bring to the community.

Tech Founder
@Ottawa IT Services

yahaiii profile image

Thank you for sharing, Keit. Your insights have truly given me a fresh perspective and rekindled my appreciation for the dedicated individuals who make these incredible tech events possible. I'm grateful for your contributions to the community.

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Hila F

I'm a core organizer of DevOpsDays TLV. Securing sponsorship takes time for our event as well but we are always (knock on wood) able to make it because the tech community in Israel is strong. I'm pretty shocked to see how little sponsors pay in Brazil for the event, as making an event see light takes a lot of effort and money as you mentioned. Feel free to reach out (my twitter is @Hilafish1) and I'll try and help as much as I can.

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Artem Sapegin

I think nobody should work for free, and paying your own money to work is an entirely new level…

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Yeom suyun

I think if similar content to this article is included in event guidelines, the number of people who engage in rude or disrespectful behavior will decrease significantly at least.