Internet Marketing for the Largest Hackathon in the World

By Glenn Cameron

Angelhack is the biggest hackathon competition in the world. It boasts 6,000 hackers, travels internationally to 30 cities and will take place May thru June of 2013. Tech giants such as Google, Facebook, PayPal and more sponsor the massive Hackathon.

I was recently invited to do their social media and search engine marketing. This is an exciting challenge because I get a thrill out of this type of marketing. It will also be a nice addition to my portfolio at which is my Internet marketing business.

A hackathon is a gathering of programmers to collaboratively code in an extreme manner over a short period of time.  While programmers are working under a particular project, the idea is for each developer to be able to work on whatever he or she wants.

Right now I am in accelerated planning stages of the marketing campaign. The first two events are in Los Angeles and London. They will take place on the weekend starting April 27th. For these events we will be using three channels of Internet marketing. The first two methods will utilize Facebook and Meetup. For the Facebook channel we have built special landing pages for each of the cities. To drive traffic to these pages we will be running highly targeted Facebook CPC ads and sponsored stories. The ads will be shown only to people who are interested in computer programming and live within 10-25 miles of the event. The sponsored stories are essentially just Facebook posts that we will pay to promote in the local area.

The Meetup campaign is experimental. I have never used Meetup before. But when I searched “Hackathon in LA” Meetup was the first website that showed up. Upon further inspection I found that there were a few existing Meetup groups with developers in L.A. I also found that Meetup has an advertising program in which you can offer “Perks” to Meetup groups. So we offered a perk to these groups with a 40% discount on entry that they can distribute to their members. It will be interesting to see what the response is from this.

The last part of the campaign that I am currently planning is the sponsored search strategy. We want to show up prominently for the keyword “Hackathon in City Name.” So we will be running Google Adwords ads for each of the cities that we are hosting an event in.

If you want to read more about Angelhack or see photos from the events visit

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