Hackathon Helps Create Brand Value

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How Hackathon Helps Create Brand Value?

A hackathon is a combination of two words: ‘hack’ and ‘marathon’. The hack is used in this context to refer to people working really hard and fast to break new ground. A marathon is a test of endurance. A hackathon is sometimes referred to as a hack day, a code fest, or a datathon.

Hackathon Helps Create Brand Value

It is an event that usually lasts for 24-48 hours where technology companies bring together computer programmers, software developers, graphic designers, and other technical professionals to engage in rapid and collaborative projects. The end goal of these events might be to develop a new application or solve an existing problem. The first hackathon event to occur was the Open BSD hackathon, held on June 4, 1999, in Calgary, Canada.

In the world today, a hackathon is no longer an event that is exclusive to tech organizations. Other organizations, such as hospitals and universities, now hold hackathons where groups of professionals come together to create solutions to existing problems.

Types of Hackathons

There are various types of hackathons that can be held, some of which are:

  • Internal hackathon: hackathon organizers could decide to hold an event that is specifically for the already existing employees of that company. In this case, it is referred to as an internal hackathon as no new members are invited.
  • External hackathon: in this type of hackathon, various people from all over the world are invited to take part in the event. It usually involves a larger audience and would require extensive planning.
  • Hackathon for a specific demographic: hackathons are sometimes held specifically for people of a certain demographic, such as women, teens, or people of a specific ethnicity. This could be done to promote inclusivity.
  • Hackathons to develop applications: sometimes, hackathons are held by tech organizations to drive innovation and the development of new applications. Some famous applications that have been developed as by-products of hackathons include Twitter, GroupMe, and Zapier.
  • Online/Virtual hackathons: some hackathons that call for the participation of people from all over the world are sometimes held online. They involve the use of collaborative apps such as Zoom, Slack, or Skype. This enables the participants to still function as a team despite differences in their geographical locations.

How Does a Hackathon Work?

10 Reasons why Hackathon is Important to Make you Industry-ready



Some basic principles for planning a hackathon event follow. These could be said to be the characteristics of the event, and some of them are:

  1. Short duration: typically, hackathons are held for 24-48 hours at a stretch. This means that there is some form of camping situation where the participants stay in one location for that duration. They are kept away from outside distractions and have to only focus on the task at hand for that short time.
  2. Quick results: because they have to focus on only one task for a given period of time, it is easy to brainstorm and come up with new ideas. Participants get to put in their best effort and test their limits by driving hard at a problem until a solution is created.
  3. Competitive environment: sometimes hackathons are held as competitions. There are rewards and prizes for the teams that come up with the best product or solution to the given task. This competition fosters innovation because the promise of a reward will motivate the participants to work even harder.
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To organize a successful hackathon, various things need to be taken into consideration. The organizers need to carry out appropriate research and decide on the logistics of the event before it is time for it, to avoid unforeseen complications.

Typical Schedule for a Hackathon

The general series of events that usually occur in a hackathon is as follows:

  • Introduction/Preview: At the beginning, the organizers will address the attendees and give them a brief overview of what the program is about.
  • Brief Summary of Rules: Here, the rules guiding the program are laid out, particularly if it is being held as a competition. It is important to go over the rules so that people are aware of what is allowed and what is not.
  • Product Pitches: The attendees now come forward to share their innovative ideas and methods they will use to tackle the task at hand.
  • Team Formation: At this stage, teams are formed as people come together to form their own teams. These groups are formed based on similar interests, hobbies, or ideologies.
  • Product Pitches: At the end of the hackathon, participants show and talk about their finished or unfinished products to the judges, in the case of a competition, or to the audience if there is no competition.
  • Judging and Prize-Giving: The products are judged by a group of judges, who are usually the sponsors of the event. If there are prizes to be given out, it is at this stage that they are presented.
  • Networking: At the end of the whole program, people get the opportunity to connect with other people. They get to build relationships with other people in their field of work that they would love to work with.

How Does A Hackathon Help Create Brand Value?

A good definition of brand value is that it is the way a brand is perceived by its customers and the general public. It is like the standing that the company has in the general competitive market.

Now that we know what a hackathon is and how it works, how can it add to the value of your brand?

  1. It Promotes Inclusivity and Relationship Building: Holding a hackathon event is a way of promoting the inclusion of different people with different ideas. Particularly if it is an internal hackathon, it fosters employee interrelationships and helps them network. They also get to form bonds with people from other teams and departments.
  2. It Is a Way of Managing the Brand Image: Usually, hackathons have some level of media coverage. This could be an opportunity to present your brand as innovative and appeal to a wider audience. This could, in turn, open the doors for new business opportunities and new potential employees.
  3. Development of New Skills: Your team could grow with the opportunity to participate in a hackathon. Soft skills such as teamwork, leadership, and communication can be learned in the process. Also, technical skills like project management are added to the individuals’ skill sets.
  4. Create Viable Solutions to Problems: Holding a hackathon is an age-old method of creating innovative solutions to problems. It is also a cost-effective method of doing so. This is because it takes a shorter period to brainstorm and come up with solutions.
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A hackathon is a social event where professionals come together for a short duration of time to find solutions to problems and develop new ideas.

It could happen online or physically in a large space, and it could be internal or external, depending on the resources of the organizers.

Hackathons can be particularly useful for improving your brand’s image. This is achieved by helping to create solutions to problems and adding to the skill set of your employees, among others. It is a worthy idea to incorporate to grow an innovative and efficient organization.


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