DrupalCon is the twice-yearly international event that brings together the people who use, develop, design and support the Drupal platform.
It’s the Drupal platform that we, Access, use to develop and deliver the majority of our web projects and Content Management Systems. So, in August (is it that long ago?) we attended and chose to sponsor our first Drupalcon.
Keynote, Sessions, BoFs and Beer
Drupalcon events typically kick off with an opening 'state of Drupal' keynote from Dries Buytaert, looking back on recent developments, outlining the challenges for the industry, but more importantly delivering the vision for future versions of Drupal. The days are then structured around other keynote speakers and ‘sessions’ – talks and discussion panels featuring Drupal experts and other industry visionaries from around the world. There’s something for everyone with topics themed around Code and Core Development, Design and UX (user experience), Business and Best Practices. For those looking to spend time on more specific topics or interests there’s the BoF (birds of a feather) meetings – breakouts of much smaller, ad-hoc groups collaborating to solve issues or share knowledge.
And of course, in between and after, there’s plenty of time to chat, network and drink a few beers. The event was very well run and the organisers and volunteers did an excellent job of making the DrupalCon London the biggest yet.
The stats speak for themselves…
- 1751 attendees
- 73 Sessions/presentations
- 87 BoFs
- 6,620 cups of coffee consumed
- 150 pre-conference training events
- 9GB of Twitter data through conference wi-fi
- £241,533 raised from sponsors
- £38,000 profit back to the Drupal community
- 400 person pub crawl around London
- 1 (accepted) marriage proposal!
Sponsorship and ‘what’s in it for us?’
Above all, we chose to sponsor Drupalcon London as a way of contributing back to the Drupal community – it’s this community or ‘eco system’ that has produced one of the most flexible, innovative open source Content Management Systems in the world, and one that has helped us over the past five years to develop our business, expand our team and capabilities, and deliver some excellent projects for our clients.
We got to share the screen and event branding with some great companies (Google. You’ve heard of them too, right?) but, from the level of sponsorship and visibility we got, we didn’t expect it to directly generate any new business. That’s not the point though. It was an easy way for us to get involved, rub shoulders with fellow Drupal developers and discuss some burning issues with other experts. We’re already seeing the benefit of attending through potential partnerships, training and knowledge exchange.
The cost of sponsorship needn’t be prohibitive as there’s an option to suit most size of company or individual. If you’re using Drupal I can thoroughly recommend the Feel Good Factor of contributing to Drupal via sponsorship. It’s an excellent way to support Drupal and be part of something that’s changing the way people build the web.
And, when a potential client asks, “'what's the size of your team” We can show them…
Photo by: Drupal Association
Drupal Association: https://association.drupal.org/