DrupalCon LA Experience
This year the North American DrupalCon was held in Los Angeles, from May 11 to May 15, and we sent a few of us down there to man our kickass booth, hand out t-shirts like a roadie at a 1 Direction concert and shake a lot of hands.
In my previous articles about DrupalCon, I talked about having your Survival Kit ready for the experience, and this year was no exception for Cheeky Monkey Media. Since the last DrupalCon a lot has happened for the monkeys.
We have partnered on a few projects with the Drupal Association and being at the mica of Drupal, we had our chance to throw out a few humblebrags. Last year, we had successfully launched the Drupal Jobs site which our team built for the community with the Association. This project provides a new source of revenue to the association and allowed the community to have a single place to easily find great talent.
Our biggest claim to fame this year was that we partnered with the Association and provided all the design assets for DrupalCon LA 2015. We are very grateful to have been chosen to do the work with them on this, as it gave us a chance to flex our creative muscle on a very large scale instead of our development skills. While in Los Angeles, we had many people come up to our booth and ask us “What is an example of something you’ve designed lately”, which was always met with a cheeky smile and us pointing out that every sign, badge, map and program was designed by our team!
At last years DrupalCon in Austin, we were just in the process of deploying our rebranding for Cheeky Monkey, while this year we had it locked in. Our booth collateral looked amazing and helped us stand out in the LA Convention Centre as we had a 10 foot monkey in our backdrop it would be hard not too :) We realized with our new branding that we had to follow the K.I.S.S. principle (Keep It Simple Simian ). With that mentality, we prepared a very easy new pitch for our company: “Making stuff look great. Making stuff work great.” Again, this was easy for us to showcase at the conference.
As always, our shirts were a hot item on the first day, Monday afternoon. This time we had people coming to the booth as we set it up, asking if we had made more “Cheeky” shirts since they loved the ones from last year. We even had a handful of people who came and found us and thanked us for sending out shirts to them last year and how no one had ever done that for them before. This year we thought we’d be smart and only give out one shirt per person, instead of being out of shirts in 40 minutes like the previous Austin con. We had 10 t-shirts left after two hours and before 10am the following morning, we were cleaned out.
DrupalCon this year had a different breed of attendee …. potential customers and a lot of them. In our past experience with DrupalCons, there is always a few universities walking around, but this year we barely had time to sit down for 10 minutes for the first 3 days because we had so many folks coming to our booth looking for our type of expertise. During some downtime, I had the chance to go talk with colleagues at other agencies and they all reported they same thing.
What is DrupalCon without some great evenings out networking, laughing and partying? Between CommerceGuys, Lullabot and Pantheon, there were some amazing sponsored social events. After a day on your feet, there is nothing better then sharing a beer (or glass of wine in Denis’s case) with our fellow Drupalers, while trading war stories and usually wildly inappropriate jokes.
With another DrupalCon under our belt, we are looking forward to the one in New Orleans in 2016 and even more excited to be the group helping with the look and feel of it with the Drupal Association. If you attended the Con, hope you had as much fun at it as we did.