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Meet Kaila — worldwide community lead on hosting your own meetups (and why NYC needs it!)

Hey! Welcome to the Creator Economy NYC newsletter — the premier place for all things creator economy in the Big Apple.

As if last week's earthquake wasn’t traumatizing enough for us New Yorkers, I spent $10 on an ice cream cone the other day. At least it was warm out 🤷🏽‍♂️

This week, I’m spotlighting Kaila Lim, a brilliant community builder and content creator in our community. With a passion for storytelling and a flair for engaging audiences, Kaila has an amazing background and plenty of useful insight into community building and IRL gatherings.

Let’s get into it.

Other stops along the way:

  • Upcoming events - a few weeks away!

  • Community callouts

  • Community perks - discounted tix for a conference in June!

  • News bits

  • Personal picks

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Meet Kaila — worldwide community lead on hosting your own meetups (and why NYC needs it!)

Kaila Lim’s journey into the creator economy is both inspiring and unconventional. As a child, Kaila dreamed of becoming an anchorwoman, a vision that catalyzed her exploration into content creation. Throughout high school and college, she was the go-to person for capturing memorable moments on video and sharing these snippets of life with friends on Facebook.

Beyond video, Kaila regularly expresses her thoughts and experiences through essays and poems on her blog, embracing the vulnerability, which she finds freeing. Her first YouTube video "What I Learned From Trying to Get Rejected,” despite its modest viewership, underscores her commitment to sharing genuine, reflective content.

Before carving out her niche in New York, Kaila's professional journey took her to Seoul, where, in the wake of an early 2023 layoff, she found herself creating content for Gamma, a presentation AI product. This role not only played to her strengths but also felt like a natural progression of her career.

Additionally, Kaila taught public speaking to Korean founders who were fundraising abroad and meeting with international investors. She told me her whole career has felt like a series of projects (which keeps it fun and fresh IMO!).

Now, Kaila leads the Founder Experience and Community at Antler, located in the Flatiron District, where she continues to influence the creator economy, community-building world, and startup ecosystem. Her story is a testament to the power of embracing one’s passions and the unexpected journeys they can lead to.

Expert Q&A: crafting community and real-world connections

Now, we’ll hear from Kaila herself as she shares her expert insights on community, IRL events, and content creation.

1. In your view, what are the foundational elements necessary to build a strong, engaged community around a brand or mission, especially when bringing people together in real life?

The foundation of community is in communication.

Every time I say that sentence, it always feels corny, but it is so true. 

What I mean by communication -

  1. Showing what the community stands for, whether that’s in the Luma invite, on the social pages, or on the hosts’ online brands, you ideally want people to self-identify with the community’s core. Then, it’s up to you, as the host/community organizer, to curate and filter more in terms of who gets to belong.

  2. Sharing expectations of what it means to be a part of the community is done in many ways, both in its principles/values and its tactics. A simple tactical example: when I eat Sunday Dinners at Fractal, the rule was “wash your dish and 1 more.” That way all the dishes definitely get washed. That expectation was communicated to me.

2. How do you create a sense of belonging and inclusivity at IRL events, ensuring all participants feel valued and integral to the community? Could you share a specific strategy or activity that has been particularly effective in fostering this inclusivity?

Tactically, 2 things -

  1. I like all the events I host to have a greeter, sometimes that’s me as I check people in or it’s a volunteer helping with the elevator. Just having someone greet you is important because there’s just something about it that says, “I’m happy you are here” to the attendees. It makes people feel seen from the start. 

  2. I work hard to design events that require the attendees to participate in them, whether it’s a game to loosen up, breakout group conversations, lightning talks, etc. The activity needs them to do something besides consume and clink glasses. I find that when you get them more involved and have them take part, it proves that this event could not have happened without them here.

3. What are some of your community/event maxims?

The 200th guest should be treated and welcomed as equally as the 1st guest:

Often, the early arrivers get the best treatment and attention just because the room isn’t as full and it’s earlier in the event. Depending on the size of what you’re hosting, many hosts neglect the latecomers or begin to work the room as people are still coming in. I probably over index on fairness and warmth here. In NYC, you have no idea what it took for that person to arrive at your gathering. Of course, it’s not your business to care, but I do, and I can’t help it. I feel for the attendees who might’ve taken 2 trains and a Citi bike with their work bag and gym bag, and they got rained on on their way in, and they finally made it in, and yet no one even cares to greet them/have an empty seat for them anywhere.

You can’t do a good event with a bad host:

I’ve been burned by partnering with bad hosts. People then ask, “what’s a bad host?” In my book, I mean bad in terms of skill (event organization, thinking about email blasts, greeting, etc.) and bad in terms of the intentionality of hosting. I made the mistake of partnering with people who were pure opportunists, trying just to put their name on large events and not actually do anything or, worse, not actually care about the experience. I love co-hosting because almost all hosts are INCREDIBLE people to work with– they’re givers by nature, they’re warm, often people-lovers, and thoughtful. It’s a dream to collaborate.

4. For content creators or community leaders looking to organize their own IRL events, what advice would you offer? Are there any lessons learned or best practices you can share on getting started?

Do it!!! We need more NYC creator meetup lightning talk style events where people share what’s working, what’s not, what they tried, and what’s got their creative block. 10 minutes with another creator and I walk away more energized and wanting to film.

I want to host a Creator Content Roast Night, where a few creators show us their most recent stuff, and the audience roasts it for three minutes straight. Mr. Beast got so good because he let his friends absolutely roast his videos.

Here’s a counter to some of the limiting beliefs I had when I was starting out:

  • “No one will come.” <> Gather 2-3 definite yes’s before opening it to more people.

  • “I have no place to host.” <> Use a park or restaurant cafe or anywhere with good lighting for creators preference, then you’ll eventually find a recurring home co-created with the attendees.

  • “I don’t know what to do together.” <> If you were attending your dream meetup, what would you have to have happen? Sometimes, it’s as simple as a deep conversation.

Then, as you host your first, CAPTURE CONTENT and post, and I bet you’ll attract way more the next event around.

5. Recently, you've shared more personal content, like 'day in the life' videos, giving your audience a glimpse into your daily routines and behind-the-scenes experiences. What inspired you to start sharing these more intimate aspects of your life, and how do you think this type of content contributes to building a deeper connection with your community and work?

Love this question. I started doing these vlogs specifically because I feel like a lot of the “office management” part of my role doesn’t get seen. Also, I love watching founders and creatives bring us into their offices and studios and show us how things get made with their hands (and heart!) After I see the process, I want their products even more. 

It’s natural to walk into an office space and look on the counter and see fresh yellow bananas and open the refrigerator and see sparkling waters and hear the study lofi booming out of the speakers and feel the buzzing energy of the place. I film my day in the life to show that it was a human being who went to Trader Joe’s to buy bananas at 8:30am, restocked the refrigerator with her own 2 hands, unpackaged and installed the Sonos speakers, and everything you see was done by a person who cared to make things feel good. 

I also like to demystify what working in tech is. My role is a bit unconventional. I cover a breadth of things. If you’re a student or not in the industry, a lot of people have no idea what the office culture is or looks like at VC/tech companies today. I love getting to be the storyteller who “pulls back the curtain” for them.

Most rewarding part is making friends on the internet 100000% and my favorite part of creating content is when someone resonates and then you get to meet them irl and it’s pure vibes.

The Big Apple’s influence

Kaila is originally from North Jersey, so the city was never too far away. But her deep connection to the city is anchored by her personal community and friends, whose presence infuses her daily life with immense joy and inspiration. This support network not only enhances her creative endeavors but also reinforces her commitment to building and nurturing communities.

A frequenter of cultural staples, Kaila often visits McNally Jackson’s Bookstore, a renowned spot in the city for avid readers and thinkers. Here, she indulges in her love for journals and books, resources that no doubt fuel her creativity and broaden her perspectives.

Connect with Kaila

To keep up with Kaila’s tech events and personal stories about her career, follow her on LinkedIn! And you should also follow her TikTok, Writing & Poetry and her YouTube!


It’s time to come together again! In just a few weeks, we'll host a live interview with one of NYC’s top content creators. Our interview will explore their unique journey through the world of content creation — from early triumphs to the challenges they've overcome. We’ll also uncover insights into their favorite platforms for creating content and building a strong audience.

Of course, in addition to the interview, come mix and connect with fellow creators, marketers, brands, managers, and founders who are shaping the creator economy in NYC.

We’ll have bites and beverages thanks to Whalar — a global, independent, creative powerhouse on a mission to liberate the creative voice.

Space is close to capacity, so RSVP to secure your spot.

We have a lot of exciting events scheduled in the coming months — check them out here and be sure to RSVP to save the date and secure your spot!



  • Conference: Connect with fellow influencer marketers, creators, and brands at the Influencer Marketing Show, which will take place here in NYC June 3-4. Save $50 with the promo code CENYC50. I’ll be moderating a panel there — come hang!

  • Newsletter: Enjoy 20% off your first 3 months on any beehiiv paid plan. This comes after a complimentary 30-day free trial, exclusively for our community members! Snag it here.

  • Link in Bio: Get 3 months FREE on the Linktree PRO plan using the code creatoreconomynyc.


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Thanks so much for reading! Let me know what you thought of it by replying back to this email.

See you next week,


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