Meet the new Meetup

Today we re-launch Meetup with beautiful new apps for iOS and Android.

Everyday in thousands of cities, Meetup expands possibilities for our members by offering access to worlds. But it wasn’t easy enough to find the Meetups that could change your life. How can we help you train for a marathon, practice a language, get into tech, write a play, learn to cook, hike a mountain? How can we help more people have the life-changing experiences that happen when they meetup to do things they want to do in life?

  • Shows what you’ve been missing — what’s new, trending, or happening soon
  • Makes it easier than ever to join and start a Meetup
  • Exposes the breadth of Meetups available in 24 categories
  • Seeds Meetups around what people nearby are interested in

Expect more good things in the apps in the months ahead, and for the new Meetup to be on the web, too. (Apps were the priority because they had a lot of catching up to do.)

Meetup Rebrand

by jennifer gergen
Design Director, Brand & Identity at Meetup

Starting today, we’ve got new apps and a new look — bright, bold, energetic, and yes, a little quirky — that captures Meetup as we’ve always known it. For the first time, our outsides finally match our insides. 

The swarm and our new look

There are lots of reasons to love Meetup’s nametag logo, but one important reason to ditch it. The nametag represents the most awkward moment in the entire Meetup experience — the moment you have to say hello to a complete stranger.

We didn’t make the same mistake with our new branding (created by renowned design firm Sagmeister & Walsh). Now our logo represents why Meetup exists in the first-place — to bring people together to do the things that matter most to them. We call it the Meetup swarm, and it’s created when individual dots unite to form the “m” symbol. We love the dynamism of the animation, and all the possibilities it inspires for our product design.

Each Meetup group is a different swarm, made unique by the people who join it and the interests they share. The new Meetup visual identity is inspired by this concept — a brand built by the crowd. In the same way a crowd changes and grows with the people who join, Meetup is constantly evolving with our members. A company like ours can’t upgrade our branding without giving everyone in our community the chance to participate.

meetup_website_29

So, coming soon, each Meetup group will have an easy way to pick a symbol, customize it, and make the Meetup swarm their own. We hope our members and organizers love the new look as much as we do, and that it helps create great looking signs and swag, making it easier to find each other in real life.

Beyond the swarm, all the elements of our new branding system capture the spirit and energy of millions of people meeting up to do what they want to do in life. This includes the bright color palette, the duotone photo treatment, and a set of unique photos created for each of Meetup’s categories (featuring Meetup members as models).

Our new apps

The best way to experience our new look is on our apps for iOS andAndroid. The new visual identity is launching at the same time as a total overhaul of our apps. We’ve redesigned them to expose the best Meetups for our members, and to simplify the experience so that it’s easier than ever to join, RSVP, and start a Meetup.

Meetup Redesign

At the outset of the redesign, we challenged ourselves with a dream assignment: imagine you’re creating Meetup from scratch and build an experience that lays the foundation for the future of Meetup. This was a rare opportunity to create a cohesive end-to-end experience designed to serve member and organizer needs.

The Questions:

The most important step at the outset of a project like this is formulating the right questions since each answer introduces constraints that shape the final outcome.

First and most importantly, the team decided to focus on the Meetup apps for iOS and Android. We’re not delivering on the core promise of Meetup if we’re not using location information and notifications to enrich and enhance the in-person Meetup experience. People want and expect a great Meetup app, and our team was ready to realize the possibility of Meetup as a mobile first product.

Beyond the first clear-cut decision to design mobile-first, the team probed to understand member and organizer motivations and behaviors. We conducted an expansive research phase including user research with our members and organizers, stakeholder interviews, and a company-wide survey to solicit input.

Starting the design process:

The research phase concluded with a design-led offsite involving representatives from every team. We worked in small groups to dream up product solutions to address the different phases of the member journey. In an afternoon, those dreams became paper prototypes, and that same evening, we visited Meetups all over New York City to get real-time feedback from members and organizers.

 With some new insights uncovered, we could crystallize why people are drawn to Meetup, and what our app could uniquely deliver.

An Answer We Could Build On

We learned that people love Meetup for the variety it offers, and ultimately because a Meetup group becomes an outlet for the things that matter most to people. That can include learning a new language, writing that screenplay, running a faster mile. Meetup offers access to worlds by expanding possibilities for our members.

When we mapped this project focus to the member and organizer journey, it was clear where we had the biggest opportunity. Whether you’re a new member, or someone who’s been on the platform for years, there’s something(probably many things) in our network of Meetup groups that would capture your imagination. How could we expose the best Meetups for each person? How could we get more people to join, and go, so they can have the kind of life-changing experiences that happen when people pursue what they’re into? It’s obvious why this is important for our members. But it’s equally important for our organizers, too, because it helps them attract more engaged members to their groups.

So with this redesign, we aimed to expose the breadth and depth of the Meetup network, and unlock the best of Meetup by connecting more of our members to the right experience for them. The new Meetup:

  • Shows what you’ve been missing — what’s new, trending, or happening soon
  • Makes it easier than ever to join and start a Meetup
  • Exposes the breadth of Meetups available in 24 categories
  • Seeds Meetups around what people nearby are interested in

Download for iOS and Android today and find Meetups you’ve been missing.

Revealing Meetup’s core values

We pride ourselves on building the company we want to work for. In recent years, the team grew, we took on more ambitious projects (check out our new apps!) — and we realized it was time to better define our core values so we could clearly express what kind of company that would be.

Codifying the values became an ambitious project in itself. But on the other side of it, we ended up with a strong point of view about how we work together and what characteristics matter most when we hire new Meetuppers.

If you see something that moves you, leave us a note.

A — Always go for maximum impact on lives.

POSSIBILITY > STABILITY
We like stability, but we like the possibility of impacting more lives even more.

SCALE > EDGE
We like to care for everyone, but we like scaling and simplicity even more.

LIVES > MONEY
We like money, but we like making money in ways that strengthen the network even more.

B — Be brave & bold.

FOCUS > SPREAD
We like to take on a lot, but we like doing fewer, high priority things well even more.

ACTION > PRECISION
We like precise measurement, but we like acting when measurability is not possible even more.

PUSHY LOVED ONES > POLITE PEACEKEEPERS
We like not annoying people, but we like confidently encouraging people out of their comfort zones even more.

C — Change the company.

COURAGE > COMFORT
We like our routines and ways, but we like always improving even more.

RISK & EVOLVE > PROTECT THE PAST
We like what we’ve got, but we like making the Meetup of tomorrow even more.

SYSTEMIC FIX > ONE-OFF FIX
We like fixing things, but we like systemic fixes (small and big) even more.

D — Debate & decide.

SPEAK UP > HARMONY
We like harmony, but we like the better ideas that come from people speaking up even more.

ACTION > CONSENSUS
We like consensus, but we like action even more.

COMMIT > KVETCH
We like defending our opinions, but we like being open and recognizing when it’s time to commit (or switch teams) even more.

E — Empower everyone.

UNLEASH POTENTIAL > CONTROL PEOPLE
We like having power, but we like distributing power even more.

OWNING > WORKING
We like people who show up, but we like people who step up even more.

DECENTRALIZED > CENTRALIZED
We each like caring about everything, but we like clear roles and responsibilities even more.

F — Futurize.

BUILD FASTER TOMORROW > BUILD FAST TODAY
We like launching, but we like investing to launch faster in the future even more.

GROWING ROOTS TOGETHER > LIVE FAST, DIE YOUNG
We like hard work, but we like working hard sustainably even more.

REPUTATION > WINNING BY ANY MEANS
We like winning, but we like integrity even more.

VISION-LED >FAST-FOLLOW
We like fitting in today, but we like inventing the future even more.

M — Meetup!

TOGETHER > ALONE
We like heroic individuals, but we like rabid, amazing, caring teams even more.

EXPERIENCING > THEORIZING
We like talking about community and Meetups, but we like living it even more.

FACES > SCREENS
We like avoiding awkwardness, but the best things happen when people meetup.