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Today makes my three years involved in the coworking community, and what a three years it's been.

I’ve learned a lot from these three years, and not just how to pose for headshots, though I think I'm getting there. I've absorbed a lot from the time I've spent with expert community builder, Jessica Samson .
I wrote in her recommendation, which I still stand by, that her ability to balance the professional with the personal is truly unparalleled. This is something that I’ve aimed to emulate over the years, and I feel like I’ve arrived at a place that I’m confident in this ability, I always find that meeting with existing, new or potential partners is often the highlight of my day. So thanks for that little nugget Jess!

Something else I’m going to steal from Jess is from her ode to 6 years in coworking post from last August. As my time is half that, I’ve got three keys, but they’re good I swear.

So, without further ado, here are my keys to marketing in coworking!

PLATF9RM 2023 coworking interns

🗝️Key to Marketing in coworking nº1

You can be impact driven and still provide real monetary value to your company

Let’s be real, the term impact-driven is overused, but I do believe it is possible.

Something that I realised with thanks to Maya Battle is that I’m an impact-driven professional – meaning that I am motivated by the value I can drive and provide to existing communities or people within the PLATF9RM space. This means that for me to feel fulfilled in my role, I have to know that that work I’m doing is providing continued value for those it affects.

But, as a student of Sustainable Development, I also know that to continue to provide value to your community, you need to cover costs and provide economic value. It’s pretty hard to drive any value if there’s no vehicle left to drive. So, everything that does provide value needs to at least work from a financial perspective. This is something I’ve consistently been challenged on but it’s something that I always think about when fostering a new partnership.

I invite you to check my article on Creating Shared Value for an insight into how I approach these situations now.

Credit: Kitty Wheeler Shaw

🔑Key to Marketing in coworking nº2

Networking doesn’t just happen at conferences, and it doesn’t need to be boring

Something I hear a lot of people complain about is networking. I get it, stuffy events, name tags and transactional conversations can be exhausting. But this is not the only way to network, networking can be anything from chatting about making fresh pasta with a fellow coworker, looking at you Obe Arif, or planning out how to make valuable events with a new team member, eyes on you Lucy Evers.

Basically, networking is just relationship building. And you can make it fun by making it human. People like to talk to people with common interests, values and drivers. I recently had a coffee with Sophia Luu of Secrets Worth Sharing and we just chatted about what we care about right now. As a side note Sophia wrote a wonderful post about why we need to be trauma-informed as managers in the workplace, that you can check out here. This was everything from innovation, to tips on how to feel confident in front of a camera. Technically this was networking, but meeting in person over a coffee in an informal environment added that human element. This made it feel much less like work and more like getting to know a likeminded professional.

This meeting also bore fruit and Sofia has partnered with us to host some incredible events, photographed by some incredible people (Roxy van der Post 📸).

Secrets Worth Sharing Event at PLATF9RM Credit: Roxy Van Der Post

🔐 Key to Marketing in coworking nº3

Use the Product you’re Selling

One main thing that sticks out to me as a marketeer (not marketer, mainly because It reminds me of the word musketeer and that’s quite fun) is that I’ve gotten so much better at understanding our member needs by adopting the lifestyle of a PLATF9RM member. This means I do my best to utilise all of our different spaces, come to different events that interest me and try and have some lunch-time chats with other members!

This is something that I recommend to any new staff members and especially our interns, Zoë Khurshid-Madsen and Sebastian Atienza, that there’s no better way to understand member needs than by being a member. It’s also a way to get valuable insights from members. How many other businesses work amongst their consumers and customers? Not many, so make the most of it, and have a nice chat whilst you’re at it.

Those are my main three keys to Marketing in Coworking, though I’m keen to hear from any other marketing professionals, so comment below your thoughts, or better yet, give me a shout when you’re in Brighton and we can have a nice coffee at The Grounds café.

All the best,

Ethan Phoenix

Ethan Posing his pants off Credit: Kitty Wheeler Shaw