In 2012, JCI Barnsley celebrates 60 years of providing young people in Barnsley with opportunities to develop themselves and their local community. To celebrate this important year in our history we set ourselves the challenge of reaching a total of 60 members by 31st December 2012!
Now, for some chambers this may seem an easy challenge but for JCI Barnsley, one of the smaller chambers in the UK it is going to be just that, a challenge but we like challenges after all isn’t that what JCI is all about??
In January 2012 we started with just 12 members but I’m pleased to report that as we come to the end of June we now have 24 members. This means 100% growth so far in 2012 and we’re only half way through the year!! In 2011, we had just 1 new member join us, however I can now report we’ve had 12 which means a 1100% growth in new members compared to this time last year. This my favourite statistic so far!!!
You are most probably be asking just how did we achieve this so here are my top tips for increasing your engagement with potential new members. Well let me tell you how:
1) In 2012 we have launched an assault on Twitter to raise our profile, to increase the number followers and to engage with the local community. Connecting with influential people in your area who can help by retweet is a must as often they have a large follower base. Tweet people who are following you, ask them if they want to know more about you, after all they have chosen to follow you so find out why!
Sample twitter conversation
2) Follow up emails: I have designed a template email that I send to people we connect with on Twitter who ask for more information or people who attend any of our events and want to know more. Making the email introduction personal is key, referencing where you connected with the person so they know it’s not a spam/junk email is important. The email contains info about what we do, who our members are, our next events and also the all-important booking link to join JCI Barnsley.
3) Personal Development launch night: This year we held an event to launch our PD programme and each of the trainers had 10 minutes to speed pitch their event to the room. We used local media to publicise the event as well as onTwitter, Facebook and our mailing list. Half of the people who attended this event were not JCI members so it was a great chance for us to sell JCI to a new target audience.
Launch of our personal development with Faye
4) Ambassadors- Every member is an ambassador for JCI Barnsley and can help to spread the word about what we do. We have several new members who are entrepreneurs and are often attending networking events as part of their normal day so they are spreading the word about JCI Barnsley as well as about their businesses.
New member Statistics
Summary of methods used that attracted our new members:
PD Launch Night attendees:1
Members networking at non JCI events: 3
Senators recommendations: 2
Patrons memberships package:4
Through increased PR coverage this year we now have on board three new patrons; two are supporting by providing free meeting rooms for the personal development programme, from one patron we have aquired 2 new members.
Marketing tools used
The key tools that have helped us to generate our growth this year have been:
• Rebuilding the relationship with Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber of Commerce by attending representative meetings.
• Newsletter- 23% increase in subscribers this year.
• Use of Eventbrite to email our events direct to our mailing list.
• 10 members have JCI Barnsley branded T-shirts which are worn to events across the region.
• JCI Piggers our mascot that has his own Twitter and features in as many photos at events as possible
Piggers at President’s and Deputies Day in April
Members take it in turns to take Piggers to events and he’s even been to European Conference this year!
As we enter the second half of my presidential year we are refocusing on our objective for the year, and as a chamber we are stronger than ever with new Directors on board thanks to the enthusiasm of our new members. The future looks very bright for JCI Barnsley and I am so proud to be part of what is turning out to be a successful year.
JCI Barnsley President
Categorised in: Charity
This post was written by Gemma Nicole Fletcher