Month 3: The follow-up phone call | Month 6: The get-involved e-mail
Month 3: The follow-up phone call
Check your rosters monthly for new members. Send them a welcome e-mail; let them know about your website and upcoming events. Follow-up with a phone call to new members by the third month to let them know there are live human beings behind your chapter. To get this information, download a chapter roster and sort by join date to see who has joined in the past 3 months. Depending on the numbers, divvy up the calls among your board leadership. Heres a sample script to follow:
Hi, Im Jane Journalist and Im membership chair of the Gotham Pro Chapter of SPJ. Thank you for joining SPJ. Were glad to have you in our chapter. I wanted to touch base to see if you have any questions. [Give them time to respond.] Thank you for your very good questions. I have a few questions for you:
Are you receiving Quill magazine, SPJ Leads, and chapter-related news?
Have you attended one of our chapter events?
Have you visited our chapter or national website?
Please be my guest at our upcoming mixer on XYZ date.
Let your new chapter members know that there are warm bodies ready to welcome and engage them in SPJs efforts.
Month 6: The get-involved e-mail
After six months of membership, your chapter members should have been personally invited to attend an event and should be receiving all national and local information. Now is the time to start planting the seed for volunteering. Download a chapter roster and sort by join date to see who has joined in the past 6 months. Below is an e-mail template to encourage members to get involved with your chapter. Customize and adapt to suit your chapters needs.
As an organization of volunteers, SPJ relies heavily on the expertise, talent, energy, passion and enthusiasm of its 8,000 members. Like most volunteer-driven organizations, you get out of SPJ what you put into SPJ. Here are a number of ways and levels in which you can engage as a volunteer.
Your local chapter needs you!
The needs for volunteers are many at the local level. Here are just a few:
Volunteer to make membership calls to new/renewing members
Offer to sit on a committee
Find story ideas and get inspired by helping to judge awards competitions from other chapters
Help select students for scholarship awards
Mentor student journalists
Set up partnerships with SPJ student chapters at local colleges
Organize a job fair for journalism students in your area
Help SPJ evangelize by being an ambassador in your newsroom
Offer to plan a program
Suggest fundraising opportunities and run them!
Write chapter news releases
Run for an open board seat
If you have some skills youd like to share, please contact us and let us know how you can help. Thank you for your support and contributions to SPJ!