Boy Scout Recruitment IdeasTim Ahern | May 21, 2019
The Boy Scouts of America is already a well-known organization, with a top reputation and plenty of brand recognition. All of the recognition considered, recruiting new Scouts can still be a bit of a challenge, especially for adults who only know some of the parents of local kids. Keeping your troops strong means attracting new members to replace the ones who grow out of the organization each year.
Here are a few tips that can help you attract new members to strengthen your troop.
Host an Open House
An open house invites local residents in to learn more about your organization. You can hold this on a troop-specific basis or have a district-wide event to cover all local troops. It’s important to find an easily-accessible meeting place, such as a local school or community center, and start planning as early as possible. The sooner you can start spreading the word, the more likely you’ll be to get results!
Play a Game
An open house is meant to showcase your offerings, while a game is geared toward having a good time. Fun activities like geocaching or paintball will draw the adventure-lovers in your community, and those are likely to be the most interested in what you have to offer. In addition to getting the word out locally, make sure existing Scouts invite all their friends to participate. You can even charge a small amount to cover the cost of the rental space, supplies, and refreshments.
Your best recruiters are your current members. Offer an incentive for referrals in the form of a prize of some sort. You’ll find your members can’t wait to tell everyone they know. You can either reward the person who brings the newest members or enter everyone who successfully refers someone into a drawing and then choose a winner. Make sure you build in an easy way to track which member sent a new person your way. Having signup forms with the Scout’s name on it may help.
Network Within the Community
There are plenty of opportunities for local organizations to get involved in the community. Sign up to host a booth at a local fair or attend Chamber of Commerce luncheons. This type of networking will help you meet people who will tell others about you. Plus, some of the people at those events will have children of their own who may be interested in joining!
Sponsor Local Events
Look for sponsorship opportunities, such as youth sporting events. If you can get your troop mentioned on a banner, your name will be in front of some of the very people you’re trying to reach. This option may depend on whether you have the budget for it or not, but if you can set some marketing money aside for this, you’ll likely find it’s well worth the expense.Bringing in new members is an ongoing challenge, but with the right approach, you’ll find it’s easy. As you try new things, pay close attention to how well they work so that you’ll know whether to repeat them next year. You’ll likely find even small things in each recruiting effort that will reveal what works best within your own community. Use our fundraising resources for more tips on how to make your fundraiser a great success!