When Erika Brunke ran Garage Technology Ventures' Bootcamp for Startups, her mantra was ‘lean and mean.’ “I didn't want to charge [attendees] a penny more than I had to.” One of the ways she saved money was by recruiting cash-poor entrepreneurs as volunteers. “We always had people who could not afford the conference but [who] asked if there was any way they could come, or how they could help,” Brunke says. Not to miss an opportunity, she would select two volunteers and comp their registrations. She traded the $600 or $700 Bootcamp ticket for one day of work stuffing agendas into the badges before the show started. “It's very rewarding,” Brunke says. “These are entrepreneurs, and they are going to be as creative as possible to get to this conference.” Besides free help, Garage benefited by cultivating “a whole collection of fan club volunteers.” For more on Brunke's meeting management, see our cover story, “Practically Paperless,” starting on page 32.