A HIPPO Internet Marketing Training blog by Corey Creed

The Jungle Map, your guide through internet marketing

The Hippo Internet Marketing Meetup – R.I.P.

May 2nd, 2012

About a year and a half ago, I started the HIPPO Internet Marketing Meetup.

I may be killing it soon.  Before I do, I’d like your thoughts.

First, here’s the history of the meetup…

The first one was the 2011 Internet Marketing Forecast with Brandon Uttley on January 20, 2011.  Since then, we’ve had some really good ones, including the 2012 forecast, an interview with weatherman Brad Panovich, and most recently, a great report on Google Plus by Mark Traphagan.  I even got the smartest black hat marketer I’ve ever heard of to come speak to us!

As of today, we have 318 members and most of them are from the Charlotte area, especially the Lake Norman area.  Our events typically have between 25 and 75 attending.  Much of that depends on how well I promote each particular event.

Why I’m planning to kill it

From the beginning, I promised myself (and my wife) that I would not keep doing these meet-ups unless it was worth it financially.  No offense.  I appreciate everyone who came and I do really enjoy helping anyone.  But my time is limited and I need to stay focused on things that produce results.

My original plan was to get sponsors.  In fact, I did get a couple early on.  But I also wanted to record and/or live-stream the events to reach a large audience.  For some reason, I have not been able to get my act together well enough to live-stream and/or edit the video to turn it into a podcast.  I have talked to a few “video guys” that offered to help.  But honestly, they never came through.  Because of that, the sponsors either fizzled or I stopped charging them.

I would love to keep doing these events.  I have plenty of friends and connections that would continue to support it.  Plus, I have plenty of topics I could teach.  The ballroom at my office is a great location, holds about 100 and is free for me to use.  I also have a few friends that help with the logistics at a very reasonable price.

What can save us?
(Not baby seals, the meetup – focus!)

At this point, I’m probably going to close it up.  In order to keep it alive, I would need at least one of each of the below…

1. A sponsor or two.  If they spent a little money per event, I would feature them prominently to those that attend and watch the video live or the recording online.

2. A video guy or two.  They would need to assist with the live streaming and editing the recordings.  We could post them.  But we would need some minor edits.  We could offer them a free sponsorship in return.

Got any ideas?

Want to help?  Got any other ideas?  Know anyone else that could help?

Please spread the word and/or leave a comment below.  I’d love to hear your ideas.

What I won’t do

One last thought.  Some have already asked about taking over the meetup from me.  Others have wanted to turn it into something else.

I’m sorry.  But I won’t do that.

No offense, but the members of this group have joined MY meetup.  Many of them know me personally or have gotten to know me personally.  I am not willing to hand them and the ability to email them over to another person, brand, or meetup.  If you have a good idea for a meetup or want to start a new one, I may be willing to let my members know.  But that’s about it.

Sorry.  You need to grown your own community.

What do you think?

Should the HIPPO Meetup die a natural death or do you want to keep it alive somehow?  Your ideas?

Leave a comment (or a eulogy) below, please.


  • not sure if you know this but Meetup.com wont let you close the meetup. You can step down as the organizer, but Meetup.com will keep the meetup active for 30days for someone else to take over.

    • Thanks Robert. I was planning to just keep it open and not add any new meetups. I wonder what would happen if you just stop paying. Will they then close it or offer it up to other organizers. Do you know?

      • if you stop paying, you’ll get dropped as an organizer. Then they will notify everyone in the meetup to say you stepped down, and that the meetup is eligible for a new organizer

        • Ok.  Thanks for letting me know that.  Good to know.

          • Here comes the hostile takeover by Robert E. 🙂

  • Tamela Rich

    I regret not being able to make these. I have a consistent Thursday obligation that I have to honor. Ironically, the Thursday has moved back to Tuesday, just in time for the shutdown.

    Thanks, Corey.  

  • ericvoagent

    I would gladly pay $10.00 to attend these meetups. Even though they are worth much more, I think if you charged $10.00 per person it wouldn’t affect your attendance much. My wife runs a voice over meetup and we charge to attend and  we normally have a good group!.  

    • I’ve thought about this.  But we currently get an average of about 30 people attending. If I charge anything, that will go down.  So I’ll probably get about 15-20 people at $5 and that ends up being about $75 to $100.  Plus, I’d feel obligated to give at least some to any presenters.  So I’m down to about $50.  That does not even cover the one or two people I have assisting me.

      I hope this does not sound greedy, but it’s just not worth it.  I own two businesses, have a few clients, and work heavily with a third business.  My time is probably better spent on those other things, as much as I enjoy the meetups.

  • I totally understand where you are coming from Corey.  I appreciate that you had these meetups and was fortunate to be able to attend a few of them. There was some valuable information shared and it was a great gesture on your part. Sorry I don’t have any solutions here to keep the meetup alive.

  • Jeff Campbell

    Nominal fee of $5 for attendance…that would cover the costs, right?

    • It may just barely cover the physical costs.  But it certainly would not cover my time.  I know that sounds a little selfish. But the truth is that there’s other things I should be doing with my time.  I’m sure you understand.

  • Michael Hartman

    Sorry to hear that this very informative group will stop meeting.
    Although it’s probably too little too late, I would be willing to help with any of the video editing if there are any future meetings.  I am not a ‘video guy’ and don’t have experience doing it but I’d be more than willing to learn how and give my time to do so.

    Just my two cents.

  • It will be a shame to see it go.  I love attending these meetups.  That said, I completely understand your situation and indeed discontinued my own meetup group several years back for the same reasons.  I wanted a fun group where I could attend.  Actually running the group is much less attractive to me than attending from time to time and not having to worry about it otherwise.

  • Nate Kennedy

    I would be interested in sponsoring the meetup and possibly handling the
    recordings of meetings.  If you are interested in chatting more about
    it let me know. I would be happy to buy you lunch to figure out if it
    makes sense.

    • Let’s talk.  I just sent you an email.