by Matt Mattson
If you’re a chapter trying to build your growth plan for the upcoming term, try out this model to make your life easier. Remember, “3, 3, 3″
Make a three week plan. You should continue to grow beyond those three weeks, but let’s keep things simple for you and your members. Put in a lot of effort and energy to find success over the first three weeks of the semester.
Smart chapters will have three themes that are featured in each of your three weeks (don’t limit yourself to only these activities during each week, but think of the themes as the most important priorities for each particular week).
Week 1 Theme = “Build Your List” During the first week your goal is simple… put 200+ names on your Names List. Meet as many people as you can. We know that in a virtual environment, the best practices include referral campaigns, inbound social media marketing (paid and unpaid), mind joggers, list acquisition (i.e. council interest/registration lists), value-add webinars/events that are for non-members, and social media follow/follow-back/DM work.
Week 2 Theme = “Build Relationships” During the second week your goal is to have as many 1:1 and small-group interactions with as many of the names on your list as possible. You’re probably using ChapterBuilder, so you want to move as many D’s and C’s to become B’s and maybe even A’s as you possibly can. One-on-one and small-group interactions are the most important tactics of the week.
Week 3 Theme = “Build Your Class” During the third week, your goal is to turn all the outreach and relationship building you spent the last two weeks doing into new members. Your efforts should be about moving B’s to A’s, and A’s to A+’s. You’ll be doing a lot of pre-closing. You’ll be doing a lot of member selection. You’ll be “closing the deal” all week.
3 Workhorse Sessions per Week
Three times each week, gather your chapter’s “workhorses” for an hour and do that hard grunt work of recruitment. Maybe it’s Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Each of those nights during each of your three week recruitment plan, gather together the 5-10 members you know you can trust… your “workhorses.” These are the members that are willing to do the hard unglamourous work that actually drives results. Put these “workhorses” in a room together (a real room or a virtual room). Have them all open up ChapterBuilder. Their job is simple: send texts, send DMs, make phone calls, and update ChapterBuilder. The texts, DMs, and phone calls can be to referral sources to ask for their help or to prospective members. The goal is simple: grow your names list and invite prospects to have interactions (1:1 meetings, small group activities, or chapter events) that will move them up the list. These workhorse sessions may not be the flashy and exciting part of recruitment, but they are the part that drives results.
3 Events Per Week
During each of your three weeks, plan three events each week. Remember though, that the small group work you do (one-on-one meetings, interviews, small group activities) between events are where the real relationships and trust are built.
These events would fit great for members you already have trust built with, and who already know some members (“B’s” and “A’s” if you’re using ChapterBuilder). It’s less likely that strangers will just pop into your Zoom room because they saw a flier or a social media post. For those “C’s” and “D’s” (folks you are still getting to know), try 1-on-1′s, interviews, small group conversations, virtual coffee meetings, and other smaller interactions.
Here are our Top 10 Virtual Recruitment Event Ideas we’re seeing right now.
- Video Game Tournaments/Livestreaming Multiplayer Games
- Virtual Alumni Networking Night (presentations, breakout rooms, stories, etc.)
- Virtual Sporting Event/Live TV Watch Parties
- Online Trivia Night or Game Night or Poker Night (with prizes and breakout rooms)
- Virtual Chapter Presentation (and/or House Tour)
- DoorDash/UberEats/Grubhub Delivers Food to Everyone at the Same Time; Shared Meal via Zoom
- Zoom Presentation (and Discussion) about things like “How To Survive Your 1st Semester” and “The Best Ways To Get Involved” and “10 Secrets About Our School Only Juniors and Seniors Know;” add value to the lives of incoming students.
- Virtual Group Workout or Fitness Class
- Virtual Service/Philanthropy Projects (Like these, or these)
- Games/Apps built for on-line group interaction (Like this or this or this or this or this)
Remember: all of our best virtual marketing and recruitment resources are available here.