New Members
Posted: 24 October 2010 09:49 AM   [ Ignore ]
Total Posts:  1
Joined  2010-10-24

We are an average sized civic society (100 approx), but facing an aging membership population.  How are other societies recruiting new members to avert a collaspe?

Posted: 01 November 2010 12:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
Total Posts:  24
Joined  2010-03-11

Dear John

It is important to remember that everything you do has a recruiting effect. Potential members (and supporters) will make decisions to join your group based on what they see and hear about your group. Therefore, recruiting is a year-long continual process. Be prepared to always discuss how others can get involved in your group.

If you attended the recent Civic Voice AGM and Convention, you will know that we had a session dedicated to “Membership Development” and you will have heard from Alan Morris, Bristol Civic Society tell societies that they should not start recruiting members until they are clear about what members your organisation needs them for - is it to increase your bank balance; give you a bigger voice, or both! Think about your group’s long term goals and plans and discuss who you should target to become members - for example: are you looking for people with a specific expertise or maybe from a specific constituency i.e. teenagers? or people with specific skills or people with specific views.

A really effective and simple method to follow is the Marple Civic Society’s initiative whereby they used the electoral register to recruit members. You can find out about this idea at

Some other methods include

Target key people for recruitment
Door-to-door - Identify a target area in your community and sent recruiters from door-to-door to discuss your organisation and to try and persuade people to join.
Information tables - Tables staffed by recruiters can be set up in public places like shops, sport events and taxi or bus ranks. You should always have a table at all your own meetings or public events. Make posters and decorate the table so that it attracts attention.
Personal contacts - The best recruitment method is through personal contacts. We all know people who share our interests and members should be encouraged to bring their friends to meetings.
Meetings and Advertising - Advertise in local papers and community radio that you are looking for members. Invite them to a public meeting or provide a contact person for them to approach. You can also send letters to individuals or use pamphlets to encourage people to join your organisation.

Ian Harvey
Civic Voice
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