TU IT membership campaign
by Peter Kelly, President, Rotary Murwillumbah Central
 
When I joined my Rotary club, I became the thirteenth member of the club. We went along at this number for some time. Later two of our members left, dropping the numbers to eleven. At this time, I became Membership director and after twelve months of operating the promotion I am about to describe, we have increased our membership to 21 individuals.
 
Being from a smaller country town, where human resources for our club were limited, the club and myself decided on a promotional strategy to attract new members. It had been the personal experience of members that a direct approach to the public met with some distrust and rejection, because people were sick of having things sold to them. As a result of this mindset, it was surmised that if people were approaching the club members that a large proportion of this negativity would be eliminated.
 
With this in mind, our idea was to get peoples' attention in a simple way. Hence, the TUIT was invented. It is a simple concept of getting people interested and to get them to make the first verbal contact. We produced round discs with a black background and reverse print to gain maximum visible impact. These were simply printed on a light cardboard on a home printer and cut out. Whenever the members were participating in activities, each member wore one of these tuits pinned to their shirt.
 
Upon noticing the tuit, most people would ask "what is a tuit?". Our immediate response would be "I have already got a round tuit, have you thought about getting a round tu it?"
 
At this stage people either think you are mad, or you have them intrigued. Either way, as a result you have broken the ice with them and are three quarters of the way to inviting them to come to one of your meeting. Depending on the person, we would talk and interact with them on various subjects and inevitably the person would again ask what a tuit is. Again, there is some degree of intuitive feel involved, but normally we would be saying "I have already got a round tuit, I have joined Rotary. Have you thought about getting a round tuit?"
 
Suddenly the penny drops with them, and they are happy to have been involved with a bit of fun, if nothing else. In our experience, though, a good proportion of these people want more information.
 
The last thing we try to do, is not to be too forceful. We take a very low key approach and give them a professional and personal invitation to our meeting. While in the process of inviting them, we give the person some information about Rotary and the great work the organisation does, as well as letting them know how much fun and interaction with like minded people they can enjoy.
 
These are printed on a home printer and A5 in size then folded in half. 
 
The individuals name and contact number are recorded so we can liaise we them along the way. The interest and number of people responding positively was to a degree where to give each individual the best care within our club, we restricted ourselves to having only one or two invitees come along at any given time.
 
Once they attended our meeting, every member became a mentee, mixed socially with them and ensured they were engaged and felt they were the most important person in that room.
 
This gives a basic outline of our promotion and honestly!...it works, and we've had a really great and fun time doing it. The other plusses are that you get to meet some great and interesting people, as well as increase the general awareness of Rotary itself.
 
We are always ready to share and give more information as required, so feel free to contact us if you want more clarification. After all, we are all Rotarians and like-minded people, so we want your club to grow and prosper as well.