#FoundersFriday – It All Ad(ds) Up

Happy Friday everyone!  It’s time once again for Founder’s Friday where I get to ramble about all things behind the scenes of HavenCon.  Grab a cup of coffee or tea (I’m still working on mine) and join me as we talk about advertising (and then some).

I have a mental (and sometimes written) list of frequently asks questions that people pose to me while at HavenCon, generally during the Ask The Organizer panel but also during opening and closing ceremonies.

One of those questions is: “Are you going to do more advertising?  I have a lot of friends that never heard of HavenCon and weren’t able to go because they didn’t hear about it until it was too late!”.

My response is always YES..but…

Advertising is not cheap..even boosting a post on Facebook so that it reaches our followers can cost a lot.  And when we’re working with a very small budget, every dollar is precious.

It’s also time consuming.  Creating ads, the text, the images, posting them, etc can eat up a lot of time.

I’ve arrived to posting and promoting purely informational stuff (we don’t do *too much* fluff like memes or what have you because we want the show information to be readily available when people visit our pages.

It’s very practical for a show that centers around the feeling of community we are all a part of.  If that makes sense?

I’m hoping to eventually bring someone on that can help make things a bit more fun..but this is where we are right now.

And then there’s the truly bad part of advertising.

It attracts the wrong attention.

With Facebook and even Twitter, we can target groups, individuals, etc to ensure we are reaching the people who the show may matter most to, with little bleed through to the “wrong types” though it does still happen.

With traditional advertising, we don’t have that same control. And let me tell you, there are people out there that don’t think a show, heck, a community like ours should exist.

Every day I check our social media messages, website comments, and other places of communication and EVERYDAY I see a lot of hate.  There is hate directed at me from without AND within our community (some believe I am not the right type of person to be doing what I do), I get threats and told that I should not be here and on and on.

It’s draining, it causes me to question what I do and if I should keep doing it.  The stresses of trying to build a place like HavenCon is a lot on its own.  I have to find a balance between being a professional and being a part of what I love.  So when others force their view of me not being deserving of what we have built, well, it all adds up.

I shut down, and I don’t want to continue doing it and I want to just..give..up.

What does this have to do with advertising?

Well, when I can see that X boosted post drove those people to the website that then lead them to leave a comment.  I don’t want to advertise any more.  Why should I spend money to be abused? Right?

Now imagine if I put an ad out in the paper?  Or we did another radio ad?  What sort of people would THAT attract?

What if it gets to the realllly wrong person and they make a direct threat towards the show?

I say this a lot:  “Yeah we’re in Austin, but we’re also still in Texas”.  And we all know the current state of affairs in Texas and beyond..and we try to get people from all over to join us, not just in Austin, so we get a lot of outside influence.

And I hate to say it, but there are just mean people out there from all walks of life that would rather see us fail.  What-ya-gonna-do?

But, I won’t stop doing what I do.  I may gripe, vent, (nerd) rage and then spend a day on the couch eating junk food and watching cartoons, but I always come back.

I also won’t open us all up to more hate (I worry it could come off the internet and into the real world like that girl from The Ring crawling through the TV).

That’s why I ask, and will ask again, to share the information that is out there.  Try tagging friends, tweeting @ people, sharing in the various groups/forums you are a part of.

These are all things I have done to get us to *this* point, we just need to get to that next level (speaking of, we will be running a fundraiser later this month, and part of that will be for more advertising more on that later).

I will work on becoming more brave, and facing these fears for the betterment of the show, but right now…I..hate..the..internet..lol.

And that’s that!  I would love to hear your thoughts on this, please feel free to comment below!  I LOVE new ideas and trying new things (if it doesn’t cost money lol), so feel free to chime in below!

P.S. I am so sorry for the formatting of the posts.  It’s a theme issue and I don’t want to risk destroying the site trying to fix it. <3



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