How I encouraged my clients to attend CiviCamp Birmingham

2020-02-20 06:53
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I've been providing CiviCRM services to clients for nearly 10 years but they've never come to an event. So I CiviMail'ed them the following to explain why I thought they should come. One client thought the way I'd explained things was "so useful it should be on the web", so I'm posting it here


Dear {contact.first_name},

There's a CiviCRM training/mini-conference event in Birmingham on 3 March - please consider coming to it. Please invite other colleague(s) as appropriate.

You use CiviCRM, and you ask me for help, which is fine, but there's much more to learn from spending some time with the wider CiviCRM community. I think attending this event will be well worth your time.

  • Get ideas from other organisations that use CiviCRM

  • Learn about features you didn't know it had
  • Find out about new things being worked on
  • Feel part of the community - get with the bigger vision of people working together, learning from each other etc. It's not a stuffy business environment - everyone is working to make things better/fairer/safer like you are.

Download the full programme (PDF) Book Now

Where, when, cost

Central Birmingham - very near New Street Station (7 Cannon Street, Birmingham, B2 5EP)

3 March, 9:15 for 9:45 start, 16:15 end (if you can, stay for a drink after!)

£45 including lunch. Bargain.

Is it really worth it?

Yes, I think so. I didn't go to my first CiviCRM event for years - didn't see the point, I knew what I needed to know - I thought - and conferences aren't massively my scene and are costly in time and travel even if tickets are reasonably priced.

Then I went to one and now I try to go to as many as possible because it helped my understanding grow a lot - not just of the technical how-to stuff, but of how different organisations work, what they're trying to achieve etc. It's very easy to get siloed and rigid and miss out on the benefits of others' experience.

Also, I believe that politically we need software that we own and we need to be able to collaborate. You're a part of making CiviCRM better; it's gets better by people sharing space and ideas, frustrations (as if...!), and solutions. It's not a product to drive profits for a massive tax-dodging corporation; it's a way for people like us to communicate and work better.

Community works - personal example

Example: one of my clients (you know who you are!) wanted a new system for automated email journeys, so that supporters could be goaded from newsletter subscriber, to cash donor, to regular giver.

I build this for them and released it under a Free Software licence to make it available for others. At a CiviCRM event, like the one in Birmingham, I did a "lighning presntation" (you get 2 minutes, 5 if you're lucky) to show it off.

Lots of people were interested. Several organisations now use that themselves. One organisation funded some extra development to add some cool new features. My original client now benefits from the improvements they paid for.

This could not have happened without community.

Take a look at the programme

You can download the full programme (PDF) - there may be some updates before the event but hopefully it should give you an idea.

Visit the main event website to book.


Hope to see you there! Let me know if you are coming/sending someone.


Artful Robot

(Photo by The Climate Reality Project)

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Great post, thanks for sharing this with your clients and the rest of the community as well!