“Oh no, we missed it!”
Parents across the country may be having this realization right now. Others may have attended a local sign-up night but didn’t register. These families deserve a second chance to join our life-changing program.
Host a Second-chance Recruitment Event
Don’t be scared by the word “event.” You can create a second-chance event by simply promoting the first pack meeting after each sign-up night as another chance to join. These pack meetings should include a fun activity that new, existing, and prospective members can all enjoy.
Dan Beard Council has made this a standard operating procedure throughout its service area. “We ask all of our packs to hold at least one second- chance sign-up event, which is usually during the pack meeting,” said Director of Field Service Lawerence Norman. He also made two recommendations for packs planning a second-chance event:
- Designate a few volunteers to welcome every new family
- Provide the same welcoming materials you offered at your initial sign-up night
Send a personal email invitation to each family that attended a pack sign-up night but didn’t join. Make sure to send the message from an email account that the recipients will recognize and use a simple subject line like this one: “It’s not too late to join Cub Scouts!”
And don’t forget about the families that didn’t attend a sign-up night. Facebook is an easy and effective tool for reaching this audience. Packs can create a free Facebook event in just a few minutes through their unit Facebook page. The Facebook page you use to create this event should be up to date, easy to understand, and appealing. Parents may dismiss the joining opportunity after clicking the event if the page isn’t up to snuff.
To reach a broader audience, packs can boost the event. Boosting means paying a little bit to reach people who otherwise likely wouldn’t see the event. As little as a dollar a day for a week or two can propel a joining opportunity to hundreds of prospective Cub Scout families in your area.
Learn how to quickly create and boost your second-chance events by downloading the Making Social and Paid Media Work for Recruitment. Skip ahead to the Facebook section.
Take it to the Next Level
If you have a bit more time and resources, you can create a whole new event geared toward getting your new members outdoors right away and recruiting even more families.
Lake Erie Council held one such event at a local elementary school and even offered overnight camping on the school’s grounds.
“We saw this as an opportunity for new Scouts and families to camp overnight without having to leave the confines of the city. This can take away the fears and concerns of many new families without the risk of being far from home,” said Director of Field Service John Fabsits.
This event and others like it included archery, BB gun shooting, fishing, water bottle rockets, a portable rock wall, kickball, a monkey bridge, cooking, a mini-hike, and more.
Remember What’s Really Important
It isn’t important whether you decide to offer a brand-new experience or if you simply promote your next pack meeting to prospective Cub Scouts. What matters is that you give families another chance to join our life-changing program.