Friday 11th December 2020
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‘STRANGER MEETUP’: How to start a meetup group for strangers

“Don't talk to strangers” is the advice we all got from our parents when we were children. 

Right now, in our adulthood ‘Stranger meetup’ is the new trend picking up in today’s virtual world were catching up to strangers is just like an unknown encounter.

However, these days encounters with strangers help us in finding new friends that we haven’t met. 

Stranger meetup also serves as an opportunity to meet people outside our network, where everybody can share their knowledge and experience and also meet like-minded people. 

The Covid 19 pandemic has impacted the event industry and forced all meetup groups to go virtual. Everyone is now going online to socialise, network and connect with new people.

This has also shown that people are always looking towards meetup opportunities with new people i.e. strangers. 

In this article, you will find all the information you need to start a safe meetup group for strangers.

5 Benefits of starting a group for strangers

People vector created by pikisuperstar from freepik

 

When you might be feeling alone in the real world and there is no one to understand and you are feeling down, creating a group and meeting strangers will have a lot of benefits, such as:

1. Social equality among shy people:

Equality amongst shy people

 

Creating a group specifically for shy people will make them feel they aren’t alone. Shy people often find it difficult to make friends easily because they find conversations extremely overwhelming.

Meeting people who face the same challenges will help them overcome feelings of being left-out among extroverts.

2. Enhanced Public Speaking Skills: 

Public speaking

 

You can create a strangers group for shy people who find introduction conversations extremely challenging. They often feel uncomfortable starting conversations. 

Organising meetups will provide them a platform where they can raise their voice independently and everybody will have the equality to speak. 

Conversation with like-minded strangers will boost their confidence and enable them to speak at any public events.

3. Improved health: 

Healthy life

 

Having friends can have a positive impact on your mind which will also help to improve your health. 

In today's world loneliness is leading to serious health problems like depression, so people can prevent this by having a social life through these kinds of groups. 

Where you can connect and share your day to day activities, find a person whom you can be with when you feel alone.

4. Learning opportunity: 

Learning

 

In this world of rapid growth you need to keep on learning new things, so meeting strangers will help you learn a lot from other people's experience. 

You can share your experiences as well with like minded people. Who knows? You even find a good listener to your stories. 

Meeting and interacting with different kinds of people will always give 

an opportunity to learn from them.

5. Connections across the globe:

Connecting people across globe

 

While creating a meetup group for strangers you will come across people of all ages, genders, and people from all over the globe. Imagine finding a business prospect or meeting your dream soulmate. The possibilities are endless.

What exactly is involved in running a Strangers Meetup? 

As a meetup organizer, you can create a group and schedule periodic meetings. Although regular meetup events attract a lot of new members, there are certain challenges that event organisers face often. 

For example, people signing up online but not showing up for meetups. Another challenge is to keep members engaged as there are always members in groups who aren’t active. 

Here are some things to keep in mind to run a successful meetup group for strangers.


  • Planning:


According to the famous French Writer Antoine de Saint-Exupéry “A goal without a plan is just a wish” . 

The secret to running successful groups is involving people in the planning process and forming admin teams. 

This boosts engagement and community spirit where all the decisions can be discussed and the responsibility can be shared among one another. 

You can also use this planning team to promote your meetup like asking them to do referrals or promoting on their social media handles. 

  • Audience:


While planning a big meetup event you should always know your target audience and what those audiences want from your event. You must exactly know if your event is focussed on a particular interest. 

For example, if everyone in the group is looking to make new friends, or if the people are here for a singles meetup. 

In case, you are planning a business-oriented meetup then you have to attract serious business-oriented people. Mixing different types of audience will create chaos amongst the group members.

  • Costs:



It is more costly to run big meetup events in comparison to small gatherings.  

So, here you can charge a decent amount of attendance fee. This will also encourage people, not to opt-out of the event, so this tends to increase the number of attendees. 

You can also get money for the event by getting sponsorships which will make you earn some profit which will help you cut attendance fees for your guests and still cover operational costs.

  • Venue:


Choosing a venue that can accommodate the total number of members and everyone in the guest list is crucial. 

To avoid drowned situations, you can choose places like bars and restaurants for small gatherings and event halls for big events. Always expect two-third of people to show up to meet up and plan accordingly. 

The Centre of the city will be the best location for a meetup as it allows easy commute for guests and attendees. Another plus is providing snacks and cold drinks to members.

Virtual meetup platforms:

Virtual event platforms are the most important aspect of meetups during this era of covid. 

The software and applications you can use to host online meetups and events are Google Meet, Zoom, Spotme, and google hangouts. These platforms only require a face camera and audio. 

So, You won't have to spend on booking expensive physical locations for venues. Since the internet is much cheaper than popcorn in many countries.

  • Broadcast Channel: 


Messaging the same message to everyone personally is a tedious task which is also boring. Therefore it is important to introduce a broadcasting channel to your group.

A Place where you can create custom lists by sorting them into categories and send messages accordingly. In this way, you can market your events to specific people quickly.

  • Safety and Security



Meetups and social events have been undoubtedly affected due to covid-19. 

But now as people are slowly coming back to events you need to make safety arrangements like you should determine the event capacity so there is the more social distance among the people.

Limit the attendees to moderate numbers and sanitize the venue. 

In terms of security, get your members to provide gov. IDs for verification and match those with the information on your database. 

Have a security camera in place to monitor all activities and ensure the safety of guests. 

Also, screen all the members to ensure full safety and security with temperature checks and. 

Following these steps will help your meetup grow much bigger than before. You should keep on organizing events and be consistent so you don't lose members.

How to host Meetups during the Covid-19 Pandemic

Designed by Freepik

 

In normal times meetups were done in bars, cafes and places and physical locations where people could hang out socially. 

Basically, anywhere you want. But post covid you need to be more creative to arrange a meetup like hosting an event virtually, where you can have an event for a movie night or a storytelling night with a beer in a hand. There has been a lot of increase in online meetups. 

The social distancing is keeping us apart but these online events again bring all of us closer. But to continue with an online event you need to have some spiced-up meeting each time.

By looking at this we get to know people will always need connection with other people whether it is online or offline, So don't wait to create your group. Start your group on Blyde for just £12 per annum.

Where can you start a stranger meetup group?

Just in case you haven’t heard of it, Bylde is an online platform where you can create and organize groups very easily. 

Starting your Strangers meetup is a great way not only to meet but also to organize any kind of event.

On Blyde, you can also join existing groups and look for events that are happening near you. 

So why Blyde? 

There are many group organizers that charge heavy subscription fees for managing groups. Bylde not only allows you to create groups and build communities online but it also lets you host events and sell tickets at affordable rates with no hidden charges and hefty commissions.

For more information, check out this video.

6 Tips for Starting a Stranger Meetup Group on Bylde

Designed by Freepik

 
  • Tip #1: Target your Niche


While creating a group on Bylde, you will encounter settings where you are asked to select interests,  you can fill up to 15 topics. 

So here, you must be specific while choosing the topics and choose as many topics as you can related to your interests. This will help you grow the members as per their interests

  • Tip #2: Put your target keyword in the name of your Group 


When it comes to naming your group, keep it simple so that it will be easy for the users to search. 

Also, putting the exact search term in the name will enable your group to show up in several search engine results. 

The group name should also be catchy and relatable that will resonate with the interests of your target audience and leave an impression.

  • Tip #3: Detailed Description Section


The description section is where you can pitch your audience and give details about your group, like what the purpose of your group is and why the group is established and what type of content your group is related to. 

This is because the user needs to know whether the group suits according to his/her requirements or not.

  • Tip #4: Information on Target Audience for your group


It is important to let the users know who can join the group? For example, for online dating groups targeting adult age groups, it’s an unnecessary hassle to have teenagers signing up and joining in on events. 

Careful instructions in group descriptions can limit this from happening. Also, for anyone looking at the group headline and description,  the user should get an idea of what the group is all about so they can join according to their interests.

  • Tip #5: Information for What’s in it for members


You should also mention what you will do in the events while organizing which will give a clear idea for group members and attract them. 

For example, someone who is looking to build a community of movie enthusiasts can mention what movies genres they are looking to critique/review in meetups.

  • Tip #6: Promoting your Group


Spread the word to attract more users in your target audience and grow your community. 

Bylde promotes every group on its platform on all its socials at no-extra cost.

For more information check out this article.

How to Host Successful Meetups for your Group

  Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

 

To run successful meetups where your attendees keep coming back for more and even refer their colleagues/friends/family to join, you can do the following:

  • Keep consistent Host events regularly.


For example, every Saturday or any day of the week of your choice based on when most people in your group can attend. 

Secondly, to repeat meetups and gatherings at frequent intervals to catch up often and stay connected. 

This way, the members get to know each other personally and it also establishes a bond between all members.

  • Engage with all the members of your group.

    Plan activities and fun tasks that involve everyone in the group. The main purpose of creating a strangers group is for everyone to socialize, connect, and network leaving no room for anyone to feel left out.
  • Gather Feedback


You should Accept suggestions both positive and negative from other members which will help in keeping the harmony of the group. 

Feedbacks will also help you plan and create events based on your group’s likes and interests.

  • Establish Leadership


Having the right attitude will help you and the members have a lot of positivity. 

You must be friendly and meet the expectation of a leader the group members want.

  • Take Reports and Complaints seriously


Do not overlook reports and complaints and always take action against wrong-doers. 

Community Guidelines must be followed at all times and anyone dodgy should be reported asap. 

There should be no room for false language, bullying or racism. 

  • Rewards and Giveaways
    It’s always good to give back to the community. Therefore, You should give some rewards such as Amazon gift cards or plan giveaways through games or competitions.


How to promote your Strangers meetup group?

Working on marketing

 

If you want to spread the word and grow your community, you can follow the steps below:

  1. When creating a group of a certain category you should know your target audience. 
  2. You can share links to your group on social media with some relevant hashtags. Social media has a broad audience which will help you to reach maximum people.
  3. You can also use emails for promoting your groups which will be some unique technique in its own way. 
  4. You can also send mass messages to your contact list. 
  5. Ask members of your group to share in their circles and communities and place some rewards for the referrals. 
  6. Keep on repeating these steps monthly and you will definitely see traction.


Bylde users automatically benefit from the promotion feature enabled for all the groups and events hosted on the platform.

The main aim to grow your group is believing in yourself and your reason for creating the group.

Types of Stranger Meetups Groups

Here are a few categories to help you can create a Strangers meetup group 

Designed by Freepik

 
  1. Technology
  2. Fitness
  3. Sports
  4. Photography
  5. Dancing
  6. Fashion
  7. Movies
  8. Pet lovers
  9. Music
  10. Educational
  11. Gaming
  12. Business
  13. Arts


The reason to categorize according to interests is that it will provide information about the characteristics of people who belong to certain interests. It will narrow your audience and focus on the target niche where you will find people with the same interests according to their searches.

Final Thoughts

Overall meetup must be fun-filled and interesting for everyone and you should try to take every possible effort to ensure safety and security of everyone in your group.

But, don't be afraid to create a meetup group for strangers. The experience you will get can turn out rewarding and satisfactory just with precautions and rules set in place. 

You and your members will make a lot more connections with various peoples across the globe where you will learn and improve your skills by connecting to different peoples.

Let us know in the comments, what your favourite category is for stranger meetups?

 
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