After months of pre-planning, preparation, hard work and execution, me and my team managed to put up a good show at WordCamp Baroda 2013 happened on 26-27th January 2013 in Baroda. Here I present you my experience, the difficulties I faced and each and every detail which I went through in a hope that I’ll inspire a few to organize such events in a successful way. Let me also warn you that this is going to be a bit of lengthy article so keep your red-bull handy!
Before I proceed, I’d like to thank everyone who were associated with this wonderful event. I am sure you all had a lot of fun and made new connections which will be helpful as you go on a journey with WordPress.
This was the phase which required a lot of patience as getting the permission to host a WordCamp takes a bit of time. It took me around 6 months to get the first reply from the WordCamp officials from which I can take things over and made further announcements. Andrea is the spokeperson at WordCamp who helped me getting all things done from the WordCamp side and no complaints to them as I understand they have a plenty of WordCamps to handle worldwide. If you’d like an approval to host a WordCamp, you can check out plan.wordcamp.org and fill out the necessary details and wait for the response.
At the WordCamp Baroda 2013, I wanted to have a complete new lineup of speakers unlike all the other WordCamps happened so far in India which were having all the same speakers speaking everytime but this time, I wanted to give fair chance to all the new faces and in which I succeded to a further extent.
There were a few “celebrities” whom I invited as a speaker but as you know, they don’t have time out of their busy schedule to help and grow WordPress community, unfortunately. Never mind. The speakers who went on the dias at the WordCamp Baroda were appreciated and they all were good about their respective topics.
This was the first event for me as an organizer and I learned a lot dealing with people. Somewhere I succeded, others I failed but learned. Baroda, not being a metro city, not being an IT hub, it was actually tough getting sponsors but with a bit of luck and help, we succeeded. I’d specially like to thank all the sponsors ResellerClub, BlackID and WP Hub for trusting in us and deciding to sponsor us. I am sure we’ve lived up to their expectations.
Those who denied to sponsor us were in fact in a dilemma whether we will be able to deliver what we’re saying but that’s fine, the next WordCamp Baroda will attract a lot of eyeballs.
Spreading the Word
It is actually a necessity to get the Website working first and have a Facebook fan page plus a twitter account while holding a WordCamp. I started with the website and published a few required information like dates of the event and then slowly started inviting interested people to the Facebook Page. We couldn’t do much this year on Twitter due to time restrictions but hopefully next time.
As you know, there are a few Facebook Groups which are being run with a motive to help WordPress bloggers and Developers but when a couple of my volunteers tried to post and spread the word about WordCamp Baroda which can interest them, the posts were deleted. . and you can understand the reason. I can not. Because, they say it is a spam. Oh come on, spreading the word about a WordCamp is a spam? I am sure it is!
I firmly believe that just having a volunteer badge and a volunteer tshirt doesn’t make you a volunteer. I thank all of them who have worked really hard, backed up, helped us in a silent, hidden or in an open manner because without them, we couldn’t have succeeded.
Trust me when I say that the team have really worked hard. I have seen it. Being a WordCamp organizer, I give all the credits to the team. It’s tough being an organizer but kudos and full marks to the team.
I’m overwhelmed with the response and love I’ve received after the event making it a successful event. It is all a payback of the hardwork we’ve put for months before the event. Looking at the future, I’m definitely planning a WordCamp Baroda every year, same month so that I can honestly keep giving something back to the amazing WordPress community without any self benefit.
About WordCamps in India
I see a lot of WordCamps being planned in India for next one year and to me, it all looks better. Just one thing I’d like to add to the organizers is that if you’re doing a WordCamp, please be honest, dedicated and a servant of WordPress. Because if you fail to provide a quality, people will lose interest from WordCamp and eventually, the trend will die. Sponsors will lose interest and attendees will stop traveling states to attend this wonderful meetup.
That’s it from me for now. Once again, thank you all for making it a wonderful event See you soon!
Meanwhile, you can check out the WordCamp Baroda 2013 Pictures.