Marc Barto is an organiser of the popular Spring of Code Meetup, which is targeted at giving open source and social change projects a stage and a development team. Having attended two Meet a Project events he recently wrote a post which included the following advice to projects at upcoming events to maximise the effectiveness of the event:

– Printing:

At events, printing hand-outs about your project including all the useful details will be a very helpful follow-up to your short presentation.

– Mentors:

Obviously I don’t have to convince anyone here on the interest of getting a mentor attached to a project. We encourage all our project owners to look for at least one mentor. They don’t have to be based in London as they can support your project by Skype.

– Documentation:

Having a basic site, a wiki or at least at decent github page with the project specs will really help convincing people your project is serious. Whatever the stage of the project is, we encourage project owners to answer the “7 evil questions”, inspired from the Knight news challenge.

– Follow up

It is key to build on the momentum created during a matchmaking event. That’s why we always schedule a Tech meetup hosted by the project owners no later than a week after the social event.

They can then meet developers again for a more hands-on event, which can sometimes be a mini-Hackathon. Try to limit the attendance to a minimum to avoid distraction/crowd management. We usually advise project owners to pair up together to organise the event and divide the brainstorming/hacking time in half for each project.

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