The benefits of social media and an online presence.

Posts tagged ‘Membership Drive’

How to Help Your Pledge Drive Volunteers

Some general tips of how to properly prepare your volunteers with plenty of reading material! Check it out:

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A Successful Fundraising Drive

"Delmarva Public Radio. This is Michelle! May I take your pledge?"

“Delmarva Public Radio. This is Michelle! May I take your pledge?”

Congratulations to Delmarva Public Radio for raising more than $95,000 during its fall membership drive “The Future is Now.” And all thanks to the listeners!

I was never sure what I wanted to do with my public relations degree when I began school because there were so many different career paths available. However, I know working with a non-profit organization is something I am overwhelming happy to say that I have been able to experience in my lifetime. Delmarva Public Radio is a “listener-supported” public radio station and Delmarva sure proved that during this last drive.

I’m happy to share with you some of my favorite aspects of the fall drive!

1.) The Volunteers: Sitting in the phone room waiting for listeners to call seems like one of the most boring jobs a person could be tasked to do. However, it was fantastic! I was able to meet and chat with listeners, members of the Community Players of Salisbury, Blackwell Library workers and employees for the Siedel School at SU. I established a relationship with several key members of the DPR community and can’t wait to work together in the future.

2.) The Listeners: If you thought sitting in the room sounded boring, imagine answering the phones and recording pledges for the drive. But you guessed it; it was just as great! All of the pledges I took came from loyal listeners or new members who were happy to share their favorite shows as well as how much they couldn’t live without our station. Several times they began their call with a small explanation of how they didn’t have much to give but they would be happy to contribute $30. And I was amazed. Someone who didn’t have much to give still put aside funds and had it in their heart to call and support the station. Speaking with those pledging was a humbling experience.

3.) Pitching: I’m an actress and a huge fan of public speaking so going on-air at the station sounded like an exciting opportunity.  But for the record, it’s terrifyingly exciting. Dead air is the one thing a radio station cannot have, so losing your train of thought or running out of things to say sounded like my worst nightmare. But it felt amazing. I went on to explain the drive hashtag and to encourage listeners to call in their pledges and speak to me. Pitching was a success!

I know working at a public radio station is something very specific and not something that everyone will be able to experience, but I feel great doing it. And I hope that each of you find your niche and have the opportunity to participate in something you enjoy as much as I did this.

Live Tweeting Your Event

It’s here!

Delmarva Public Radio’s fall membership drive is in full swing and we aren’t holding back in the social media world.

We are live tweeting the drive to spread our name online and you can do the same for your event!

1.) Create a Hashtag.
This will allow you to see what Twitter and Facebook users are saying about you and your event. If your hashtag is specific enough, it also creates a linkable thread grouping everything you and others have said about the event so far. Our drive hashtag is #SupportDPR. Short yet specific.

2.) Post
Common sense, guys. You can’t create a buzz around your event with no content. Don’t spam your followers’ news feeds but be consistent! DPR has shared behind the scenes photos of volunteers answering phones, the cutting of a decorated DPR cake by our GM, and funny moments like when those on the radio asked our news director for a list of his awards and he carried in a stack of his plaques instead. Have interesting and relevant posts that will get people talking and use your hashtag to link them.

3.) Get Others Involved
Have volunteers and participants tweet or Facebook about the event using your hashtag too. This way the number of people you are reaching is much greater.

4.) Promote your Hashtag
Pass out small cards with the event hashtag on them and make sure to include it on all flyers or advertising for the event. Delmarva Public Radio has the added advantage of being able to pitch the membership drive on air so our classical host Kara and I spoke to our listeners about what hashtag is and how to #SupportDPR. Be sure to announce your event and hashtag on Facebook and Twitter and invite everyone involved to participate and spread the word!

Good luck!

The Importance of Swag

Two days to go!

Delmarva Public Radio’s fall membership drive begins on Thursday and there is nothing but hustle and bustle at the station. Especially in the membership department.

And today we learned a valuable lesson about the importance of swag.

Think about all the organizations on a university’s campus. Or the hundreds of charities that you could name off of the top of your head. Now, think of how many of them you learned about because you saw someone wearing a t-shirt with their logo on it.

That’s swag!

Delmarva Public Radio has lacked swag for quite a while. Sometimes the extra push to get listeners to donate to your cause is the promise of some free merchandise. The merchandise we received today just so happened to be bumper stickers! Check them out!

Delmarva Public Radio bumper sticker.

 

If you’re searching for swag to support your cause, here are some great suggestions:

1.) Pens: How many dentists have you discovered because of pens that got passed around?
2.) Lanyards: They’re not just for sports teams!
3.) Keychains: For some reason, no one can resist attaching just one more key chain to their link.
4.) Mugs: I bet if I tell you to picture your kitchen cabinet, you could name for me at least 4 or 5 cups and mugs that you got for free.

Bumper stickers, decals, stress balls, bags, flash drives, notepads…

There’s an entire world of promotional products out there. Go find your swag.

Membership Drive Basics

If there is one thing I’m learning at Delmarva Public Radio, it’s that a membership drive is no walk in the park. A pledge drive for radio is not just an event, it’s a week-long affair. Almost a conference. So if you’re planning a conference, maybe these tips will help you too! The purpose, mission statement, and nitty-gritty management details are majorly important, but for now I just want you to try to remember the basics.

1.) Set goals.
Set a goal for how much money you are hoping to pull in. This will keep everyone motivated to earn and gives you the ability to evaluate if your drive was a success or not.

2.) Find volunteers.
Send out emails or mailings to members and past volunteers letting them know the dates and requirements of the pledge drive. Ask them for their help! Contact local community service organizations or schools and tell them that hours answering phones count towards community service requirements.

3.) Schedule, schedule, schedule.
Have a schedule for who is going to pitch on air, at what time, on which day. Your coworkers will appreciate the schedule and it allows you to know that all shifts are covered. Also, have a schedule for volunteers. Make sure they are committed to at least 1-2 hours of work so there is enough time to at least train them on how to handle callers and fill out pledge forms. Have a spreadsheet with a row for each hour of the day and a column for each phone that will be taking calls. Fill in the volunteers names to keep track and once again make sure that all shifts are covered.

4.) Give perks to staff and volunteers. The “what’s in it for me?” mentality will always be present in even your most dedicated volunteers, so show them! Call local restaurants and coffee houses and ask them if they’d be willing to donate breakfast or lunch to the pledge drive. Create another schedule of who is going to be donating on what day and make sure that if they are unable to deliver the food or drinks to you, that you are able to arrange transport to get them.

5.) Have fun!
Create a theme! Decorate the volunteer room like it’s Saturday Night Fever or a Winter Wonderland. A cheery atmosphere and satisfied volunteers will spread the feeling of a positive organization while keeping everyone enthused to pull off the best drive possible.

Good luck!

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