I have recently tried helping my DM organize a campaign. It isn't going well. We've had one session thus far, and players are really being flakey, and using their social loafing skills religiously. Here is an example of our two attempts at sessions:
DM: Hey, so how would Sunday work for everyone?
1: I cannot go; I have a funeral.
2: I am out of town. Let's do an online session.
3,4,5: I can go.
DM: Yes, we'll meet up and build our characters, then do an online session together.
Result: DM, 4, and 5 all meet up to make characters, then have an online session with 2. 3 is not there for the online session. 1 and 3 are nowhere to be seen.
DM: So, would Monday at 3 not work for anyone?
24 hours with no response ...
DM: Alright, see you guys at 3 on Monday.
2PM Monday ...
4: I cannot go; I'm out of town.
Result: DM and me (5) meet up. 1 is a ghost. 2 is still out of town, and we knew this. No fault there. 3 we end up messaging; says they don't want to participate unless everyone's there. DM and I nearly toss him out of the group then and there. We both know that's not happening. 4 is not there and gave us a 1 hour notice.
We ended up hanging out and whatnot instead, and came up with 3 solutions to what we call "Flake hell".
We invite many people, and cull out those who don't arrive. Rinse and repeat as players stop arriving.
We work with the players on an individual level and prevent social loafing. Make sure to call them physically on their phone, make it a personal commitment for the players.
Invite strangers to play with us. Not bad, but it's a real wildcard.
Abandon the project.
We really don't want 4, but if no players show up, the group will just fade away. What strategies could we use to market our campaign to people, and further more increase the retention of players? Are there other options that I have not listed?