4th July, 2018

Are there too many startup meetups?

Founders are spoiled for choice when it comes to startup community meetups, but time is precious, so how do you decide which meetups are worth it?

Some nights, I’m sure you’d rather chill on the couch with a glass of wine and catch up on some Netflix.

But with the sheer number of meetups around the ecosystem, it can be mind-boggling to figure out which one will suit your needs.

It’s enough to make you give up before you’ve begun.

Luckily, we’ve curated a list of some of Australia’s best meetup groups and events to get your startup off the ground and into the stratosphere.

Whether you are looking for inspiration, connection with other founders or to upskill, we’ve got you covered.

So, here are some reasons to ditch that glass of red and get amongst the community on a weeknight.

Getting inspired

Running a startup is tough. It requires long hours and dedication.

Amid the day-to-day grind, it’s crucial to keep your eye on the bigger picture. A great way to do that is to hear from founders who have done it all before.

Startup Grind is the largest startup community network in the world with large communities in every state of Australia.

They host monthly fireside chats with well-known founders.

If you’re looking to hear from the big names in the startup ecosystem, this is a meetup not to be missed.

Or, maybe you’re looking to turn that idea or side-hustle into a business and need that little bit of inspiration.

READ: Turning your passion into a product line

The Masters Series by WeTeachMe in Melbourne provides just that.

It’s is a series of workshops for aspiring and early-stage entrepreneurs and a great way to pick up some tips and tricks from founders of successful startups.

Connecting with the community

Meetups are the perfect place for you to widen your network, and you never know when a new connection can open up a new business opportunity.

You might be on the hunt for a co-founder with a specific skillset. You may be looking for new clients.

Or, maybe you just want to ‘talk shop’ with like-minded people.

READ: Face to face v social media: what’s better for networking?

You can achieve all of that at a startup meetup, and co-working spaces are a great place to start.

Wherever you are across the country, check out your local co-working space’s meetups.

Some well-known spaces include: Fishburners, Tank Stream LabsWeWork, Creative Cubes, Inspire 9 and The Commons.

Innovation Bay is a community that exists to help accelerate the Australian technology ecosystem.

They aim to provide opportunities for founders to network and raise capital by hosting breakfasts, founder dinners and workshops.

If you’re a female founder, check out LMBDW.

It’s a community network of over 80,000 members, started by Showpo founder, Jane Lu and Oneshift founder, Gen George.

It’s a place to have that glass of wine and a frank discussion with likeminded business owners.

Broadening your skillset

So, you want to broaden your skillset as a founder?

Look no further than educational institutions like General Assembly , Academy Xi and WeTeachMe.

They run courses and meetups where you can to upskill yourself and connect with others in the community.

Whether it be digital marketing, UX design, coding or something entirely different, you’ll be able to find the course you’re looking for.

Girl Geek Academy runs hackathons and workshops, and is on a mission increase the amount of women in tech, and back female founders.

You’d be hard-pressed not find a meetup that aligns with your upskilling goals.

Mastering your pitch

Pitch nights are the hot thing in the startup space right now – it seems like there’s at least one every week.

If you want to avoid burnout, I wouldn’t recommend attending all of them.

They do, however, provide great opportunities to perfect your pitch or see how it’s done.

In Melbourne, independent body, Startup Victoria run monthly industry themed pitch nights, where four startups pitch for prizes.

They’re also a great place to connect with the wider community.

Silicon Beach Australia are a network of different communities aimed to connect the Australian startup ecosystem.

They run regular networking events and pitch nights.

It’s an informal and supportive environment where anyone can pitch and connect with the community.

So, while it may seem there are too many meetups, the key is finding what you’re after and focusing on the ones which meet your goals.

Next time you’re deciding between a glass of red and Netflix on the couch or attending a meetup, go with the latter.

You never know where it may take you.