Promote Your Event
When promoting your hackathon, it’s useful to keep in mind that most events have a 50 to 30 percent drop-off in attendance. Given these stats, it’s your goal to over-market and overbook!
Tell Your Hackathon’s Story
What’s your hackathon’s "brand?" How is it unique? Why would you want to attend?
The more tailored your message, the better. Make it school-specific.
Use the same messaging to stay consistent and build momentum
Highlight hackathon benefits perks and the ease of attending: it’s free of cost, transportation will be provided, etc.
It would be great to include a short case study or example "about us" page from a successful hackathon here to show, rather than just tell, organizers how effective branding works.
Get The Word Out
Invite students from other schools to attend
Select at least three schools within six hours of your campus
Look at schools that have previously hosted MLH hackathons
Don’t overlook community colleges — they’re often rife with promising participants
Reach out to student groups and departments on all campuses
Groups: ACM & IEEE, SWE, SHPE, etc.
Departments: computer science, design, engineering and applied math, physics
Speak in-person during the first 5 minutes of relevant classes and student group meetings on your campus.
- Explain what it is, why they should care, when and where it’s being held, and how they can get more info.
Launch a social media campaign
Get pre-event press coverage
- Tell your school’s paper
Resources to get potential pre-event coverage in local and tech media
Reach out to parent groups (more useful for high school hackathons)
Share our Parent Hackathon Guide with parent organizations that are interested in hearing about events for their children.