How to Obtain and Retain Members

FIND
OBTAIN
RETAIN

Are you fishing for new members but you're not getting any bites?  Do you see potential new members but they are not seeing you? Are your members slowly leaping out of your boat?  Here are a few tips to help you become "fishers of garden club members".

Do potential new members know your garden club exists?
1.  Advertise your events in the newspaper, community blogs,
     community calendars. 
2.  Have your garden club sign at your project sites and events, at
     nurseries and other stores or have a booth at Home and
     Garden Shows.
3.  Develop a website.  
4.  Develop a Membership Kit to take to Plant Sales, 
     Flower Shows, Garden Walks and other events.  Include Club         Brochures, Business cards, Information Sheets
     Membership Applications, Newsletters.  Contact information
     on all items such as name, email and phone number.
4.  Develop a membership brochure and have them at stores and
     events for  people to pick up.
5.  Have information in you city's "Welcome Wagon".
6.  Speak about your club and up coming events on radio, 
      television and post on social media.
7.   Leave a membership kit with Realtors for new residents in
      town.
8.   Develop bright Club Tee Shirts to with your club logo.  Be a
      walking billboard.
9.   Promote your club during National Garden Clubs, Inc. Garden
      Week by having a display at your local library.
10. Ask Business/Banks to put publicity on their electronic
      billboards.
11. Choose "Gardens or Landscapes of the Month" of residences
       and businesses and invite owners to join.
Do ask people to join your garden club.
12.  Asking a person to join is still the best way to obtain a new
       member.
13.  Hold a tea, dessert reception for potential new members and
       ask them to join.  Discount the membership dues if they join
       at the event.
14.  Ask each club member to bring a friend for a Club Fun Day
       with special food, speaker, artistic crafts or other fun
       activities.  Don't forget to ask the friend to join.
15.  At events, give a prize of a garden club membership for a
       limited time.
Do make your new members and old members feel welcomed and needed.
16.   Have the telephone committee keep in touch with new
        members and old members who have missed meetings.
17.   Give a small welcoming gift to the new member like daffodil
         bulbs.
18.   Introduce them to the membership at least three meetings
        so everyone can get to know them.
19.   Give the new member a yearbook so they will have
        information on the club.
20.   Members should wear name badges.  Permanent ones are
        the best.  This way no one will forget members' names.
21.  Have the new member fill out a brief survey of their likes
        and dislikes and experiences.  
22.  Get the new member involved right away.  They will have a
        sense of ownership in the club and feel that they are needed.
23.   Assign a mentor or Buddy to the new member to help them.
        This person may offer them a ride to the meeting and will
        look out after them so they are not ignored at the meeting.
24.   Give Honorary Life Membership to encourage participation
         and longevity in your club. 
25.   Have a period before and after the meeting for members to
        socialize.
26.   Give awards to your members who have perfect attendance,
        who have done a great job on a project.  People need to have
        a pat on the back reassuring them that they are doing a great
        job.
27.   Have tours and other fun activities on the weekend when
        everyone can participate.
28.   Have both day and evening or Saturday meetings so
        working members can join your club.
29.   Develop a club business card that new and all members can
        use and pass out.  Remember, new members have friends
         that may want to join.
30.   Remember to always have fun and treat people with respect.
Have Fun