What has these meetups meant to us? Knowledge sharing has been the priority but we also hoped that it will increase social media awareness and put Kolkata on the social media map. Often, we have seen a general lack of interest in people in attending these meetups and such laid back attitude is not only demoralizing but it also impedes our initiatives in more ways than one.
Social media meetups are of two types, one with an agenda and the other for general networking. We can understand that for people who hate small talk, the meetups without an agenda can be quite uncomfortable; but we do hope that you will put in an effort for the sake of social media cognizance. We have seen people who are only there to sell their own services. Others hate networking for the sake of it, without an actual and planned end result. We have also seen people feeling obliged to take part in meetup. There can also be some additional responsibilities put on you. These are pretty much everything that can go wrong with you attending a networking event.
Now let’s take a look at the good part!
You meet a group of like-minded individuals. A successful meetup will help you make new contacts, both 1-on-1 and as a team. It will help you focus on what you are looking to achieve, get new ideas, inspiration and motivation. You can be empowered and re-energized. You learn new things very quickly and without research. Also, imagine the amount of crowdsourcing can benefit a business idea, or help you solve a problem. You may also find support to take your project forward. There is a chance that you may find partners, who can support you either financially and emotionally or both. In a place like Kolkata, where social media is yet to find its place in the heart of the people, isn’t it a fair deal to ignore negatives and be a part of these meetups?
Members of SocialF5 have been active participants of the Kolkata chapter of SMBTS (Social Media Breakfast by TwitSnaps), one of a kind social media meetup hosted by Compare Infobase. Shilpa, currently Social Media Manager at MapsOfIndia, used to be the host of the meetup in Kolkata. She has always put in all her effort to make these meetups happen and we would like to congratulate her for all the hard work and patience. After SMBTS closed down in January 2012, SocialF5 took the initiative of organizing. That’s how SMACK happened. The first meetup happened on 21st January, 2012. Now we meet every Saturday evening to discuss various topic related to social media. We hope for your participation to make SMACK an even bigger success. We also hope that you will realize the need for social media meetups and in future will arrange a few on your own to spread awareness or just to have fun.