5 easy steps for running a successful Go demo

kuro with rustic sign 300x350 picture

Teach how to play Go in your town. It’s fun!

So you want to run a Go demonstration for Learn Go Week, but aren’t sure what to do?

You’re not alone. Since proposing Learn Go Week in July, we’ve received more questions about this than anything else.

The good news is that it’s not that hard, and we’ll work with you to make it as easy as possible.

We have customizable posters, brochures, printable Go sets and much more ready for you to use.

1. Choose a good location

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Don’t run a Go demo on a deserted island!

If you’re only going to do one thing right and don’t have time to worry about anything else, make it your choice of location.

A good location for your Go demo can partly make up for a total lack of promotion and other preparation (as long as you still have a Go set).

On the other hand, a poorly chosen location can ruin even the most meticulously planned event.

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Choose a location with a lot of foot traffic.

Choose somewhere which:

  • Is fairly well known (so it’s easier to tell people where it is and for them to remember if you tell them).
  • Is easy to get to for people who’ve seen your advertising.
  • Has a lot of local foot traffic at the time when you’ll be there.

Examples of good locations are public spaces near popular shopping areas, popular parks and tourist attractions (check whether you need permission to use the space).

Read more about choosing a location

2. Promote your event

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Use this customizable poster to promote your event AND your Go club.

If more people know about your event, more people will come. It’s that simple.

And the more ways you promote your event, the more people will know about it.

You can promote your Go demo on shoestring budget in each (or all) of the following ways:

  • Posters – stick them up anywhere and everywhere!
  • Local media – reporters are looking for interesting stories all the time.
  • Social media – get your friends involved too.
  • Word of mouth – once you start promoting your event, people will tell their friends.
  • Register your Learn Go Week event – let us help you promote your event.

This brings us to one of the main reasons for Learn Go Week. Three Go players running a local teaching event isn’t that remarkable, but the same three local Go players who are now part of a global phenomenon involving thousands of players is a completely different story.

That’s another reason why you should register your Learn Go Week event, to help create a tangible list of events which you and other Go players can show to the media to credibly claim that x people are involved.

If you’ve been involved with your Go club for years, I’m not asking you to do anything different to what you usually do (unless you want to). I’m just asking you to do what you always do to promote your club, and to do it on the same day as everyone else.

3. Be prepared

This isn’t boy scouts, but the principle is the same. The more prepared you are the more smoothly things will run.

We have all kinds of material for you to print and give to people

Have a look at our event checklist to get ideas about what you’ll need on the day. You can find all the Learn Go Week checklists here.

4. Teach and enjoy yourself

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Keep it simple! Don’t lecture people or they’ll fall asleep.

Now that you’ve got people’s attention, teach them! That’s why you’re doing this, right?

Remember, you love Go so it should be easy to talk about it with enthusiasm.

When teaching beginners, keep things simple to start with and get people playing and having fun as soon possible.

Read more about teaching

5. Follow up with people

After a satisfying day of teaching people to play Go, it’s tempting to think that your job is done.

However, if you have a Go club (or want to start one) you’ll be selling yourself short if you don’t follow through afterwards.

This requires a little preparation too, but it’s as simple as asking people to write down their email address on the day (if they seem interested).

Once you have some new contacts, email them to invite them to other local Go events and meetings. If you don’t have any events, invent one!

Further reading

All of these tips come from our Guerrilla Go Marketing Toolkit. Check out the toolkit for many more suggestions and resources.

What are your tips?

What we’ve discussed here only scratches the surface of what’s possible when promoting Go.

I know a lot of you also have a lot of experience promoting Go and have been doing this for years. I’d love to hear your ideas about the best ways to run a Go demonstration.

What are your top tips for readers who are new to all this?

To share your ideas, click here and leave a comment below.


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