#GivingTuesday: 6 Ways to Increase Online Donations Starting Today

By this point, you know all about the post-Thanksgiving lineup: Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday. Basically, every sales outlet from big business to small business and the internet has staked its claim on a day in late November in order to promote sales with discounts. But have you heard about the newest addition, the inaugural GivingTuesday? As you can imagine, it’s a day dedicated to giving rather than shopping.  Continue reading

What is Software as a Service (SaaS) for Recreation Organizations?

All types of recreation organizations have been doing more with less over the last few years. That trend will continue as budgets remain tight, but service expectations continue to rise. One way to save time and money is with technology, specifically software that can help automate back-office tasks. But organizations have many options when it comes to software ranging from solutions they host themselves to ones hosted by the provider (in the cloud). Today, we’ll break down the latter and why it makes sense in this economy: Continue reading

5 Resources for Collegiate Recreation Professionals

No matter what profession you are in, it’s important to keep up with trends, news, and ideas. If you’re a social media person, that’s easy with blogs like Mashable and Social Media Today. But it’s a bit harder for campus recreation professionals. So today, we’ll cover five resources that can help you stay on top of the industry (note: we’ll lean heavily on NIRSA). Here they are: Continue reading

How to Say Thank You to Your Volunteers

Remember what your parents taught you about being polite? Things like, “Where are your manners?” and, “Don’t forget to say please and thank you.” Well if you’re a recreation professional who relies on volunteers in any way, it’s time to dust off those age-old teachings. Saying thank you to your volunteers is crucial for many reasons. Here’s how to thank your volunteers effectively while gathering the right information and improving retention rates:

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The Secrets Google Is Keeping About Your Members

Here’s a scenario to think about today: You offer tons of programs over four seasons of the year, so you have a good idea of what classes, times, and parts of the year are popular with your customers. You know when people register. But do you know when your customers get motivated to register?

To find the answer to that question (as is the case with many questions these days), just Google it. Actually, “Google Trends” it. Google Trends is a tool that shows how search volumes change over time. YMCAs, for example, can put in different search terms to see the peaks and valleys of the term through Google. That way, you know when your customers want to kick off a new journey of exercise and can market to them in a timely way. Continue reading

10 Examples of Social Media Updates You Need to Make

Source: thenewecologist.com

Coming up with social media posts for your organization is like buying clothes for a growing baby. After a few uses, you need new material. And on Facebook, if you find one type of post that resonates with your audience, it probably loses its luster after a few uses. That’s why having an endless supply of social media examples is critical for maintaining an engaged audience.

Here are ten examples of social media posts from recreation agencies that you can add to your repertoire today:  Continue reading

Top 5 Places to Find Volunteers

What if this guy turns out to be your new star volunteer? It looks like he’s working hard, but you can do better. That’s why you need to find volunteers in the right places. Whether you need them for events, camps, or back office tasks, finding good volunteers can be crucial to your organization’s success.

Here are five places where you can find volunteers around your community:  Continue reading

How to Make Membership Management Easier

Source: imdb.comThe average Joe may not think much about managing members: you get someone to sign up…what’s the big deal? Even the gym, Average Joe’s from Dodgeball, may not consider it too hard: a signup sheet, a handshake and some cash – we’re good!

But let’s look at it from the perspective of the real-life YMCA. YMCAs and gyms that offer memberships have a number of tasks to do to collect just one member. From information and money collection to enforcement, membership management can be a time-consuming task. If you’re behind the desk, you know what goes into it.  Continue reading

5 Old-Fashioned Ways to Increase Online Registrations

On this blog, we talk a lot about increasing online registrations through marketing, social media, your website, and more. We do this because online registration has benefits for staff and customers. Staff members can focus on other projects than in-person signups and customers can save time and register when is convenient for them. Most of the time, we discuss tactics like improving your calls to action or using Facebook apps, but today we’re going to take it old school. As ironic as it sounds, even your online registration numbers can be increased with these throw-back ideas:   Continue reading

Parks & Recreation: Avoid These Common Budget-Cutting Mistakes

Image source: umn.edu

This is an excerpt from a report by Barbara Heller, President of Heller and Heller Consulting: Making the Most of Your P&R Agency’s Resources. Well known throughout the industry for her expertise in leading park and recreation agencies and her commitment to innovation and best practices, Barbara operates outside of the typical parks and recreation industry mindset. This reports covers six key areas where parks and recreation agencies can become more efficient:
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