Increasing membership is an important goal for all PTAs and PTOs. But the age-old question is: How do you get people to join? Here are 8 practical tips to help you plan an effective PTA membership drive.
1. Know your constituents! Be sure that you know who your prospective members are. Getting to know the parent population of your school can really help direct your campaign to address specific needs of your members.
- Do you have a lot of single-parent households at your school?
- What about language and cultural issues?
- Have you specifically thought about the fathers? Grandparents? Foster parents?
- How do the teachers, administrators and staff at your school want to be involved?
2. “Sell” your PTA/PTO. Letting everyone know about your achievements last year tells your prospective members know what you are capable of accomplishing in the future. We discussed the importance of providing a lot of value – and reminding members of the value you provide – in another post.
3. List the goals for the upcoming school year of your PTA/PTO. Be sure to spell them out so prospective members can see where you are going.
4. Describe what member benefits are available. Be sure to include the benefits from National PTA, your State PTA and any Council or local benefits they may be entitled to. Don’t forget to list more fundamental benefits like child advocacy, legislative concerns, educational policy, etc. But also talk about what benefits are unique to your school.
5. Assemble a great membership committee. Having friendly, enthusiastic, dedicated committee members not only helps the task at hand, but also offers prospective members a glance at how your PTA/PTO operates. Being greeted at various school events or at school drop off by one of the committee members will create a warm and welcoming atmosphere for your group.
6. Establish a membership drive goal. Be sure to advertise your goals and even “challenge” your school to meet them by a certain date.
7. Develop a campaign theme. Having a theme can set the tone for your PTA/PTO, develop camaraderie, and create some fun. Here are some fun and unique ideas.
8. Communicate with everyone all along the way. Keeping people updated on the progress of your membership campaign will also keep the topic of joining your PTA/PTO in the forefront. Use SimplyCircle to spread the word about your membership drive. Don’t let your PTA be like the proverbial tree that falls in the forest, and nobody hears it fall.
Hope these tips will help you plan a successful PTA membership drive. Happy growing!
For other useful, free resources for PTA and PTO leaders, visit our PTA Leader Resources page.