Recruitment Season is Here — Free Geofencing for Your Pack

In partnership with the BSA’s National Service Center, the Michigan Crossroads Council will be supporting your pack with digital recruitment marketing this fall.  Through digital ads, we’ll ensure that families in your community understand the incredible benefits of Cub Scouting and know how to join.

Layered on top of your pack’s recruitment efforts will be geofenced calendar ads in Facebook to drive people to your specific joining events.

We’re not asking you to do anything differently than you already do! Continue to plan your recruitment event.  We’re simply adding digital ads on top of those plans in a seamless, turnkey way.  The work of executing those ads will be handled between the Field Service Councils and the national office.

What will it cost your pack?  Nothing!  This service is being provided by the council and the BSA.  There is no cost to your pack.

No additional tasks…no additional cost…what’s the catch?  There is no catch! 

We’re working hard to ensure families understand that Cub Scouting can help them make the most of the time they have together, and that Cub Scouting can help them set their children on the path to success. With a strong recruiting effort, we can ensure every family has the opportunity to join Scouting.

Here’s what we need from you:  the date, time and location of your joining event (open house, school night, etc.)  That’s it!  We’ll take care of the rest!

[READ MORE]


Scouts BSA Geofencing

In partnership with the BSA’s National Service Center, the Michigan Crossroads Council will be supporting your Scouts BSA Troop with digital recruitment marketing this fall.  Through digital ads, we’ll ensure that families in your community understand the incredible benefits of Scouts BSA and know how to join.

Layered on top of your troop’s recruitment efforts will be geofenced calendar ads in Facebook to drive people to your specific joining events.

We’re not asking you to do anything differently than you already do! Continue to plan your recruitment event.  We’re simply adding digital ads on top of those plans in a seamless, turnkey way.  The work of executing those ads will be handled between the Field Service Councils and the national office.

What will it cost your troop?  Nothing!  This service is being provided by the council and the BSA.  There is no cost to your troop.

No additional tasks…no additional cost…what’s the catch?  There is no catch! 

Here’s what we need from you:  the date, time and location of your joining event (open house, recruitment night, etc.)  At least three weeks in advance. That’s it!  We’ll take care of the rest!

[READ MORE]


Tips and Tools for Preparing for Fall Recruitment

In 1907, Baden-Powell, founder of the Scouting movement, devised the Scout motto: Be Prepared. He wanted young people to have the tools to face challenges. With that in mind, our goal is to be able to help our fellow executives to be prepared for a successful membership campaign this fall.

Councils refer to Join Scouting Night by different names. Some use the term Sign-up Night, Open House, etc. For purposes of this article, we’ll use the term Join Scouting Night. If your council uses a different term, simply insert that term wherever you see Join Scouting Night (JSN).

Having a great Join Scouting Night (JSN) training is another key to success! During recent conversations with Scout Executives who experienced growth in 2018, many of them attribute their success to the execution of their membership plan. Below are some areas to consider when preparing for this fall.

Read More


Free Geofencing for Cub Scout Packs this Fall

In partnership with the BSA’s National Service Center, the Michigan Crossroads Council will be supporting your pack with digital recruitment marketing this fall. Through digital ads, we’ll ensure that families in your community understand the incredible benefits of Cub Scouting and know how to join. Layered on top of your pack’s recruitment efforts will be geofenced calendar ads on Facebook to drive people to your specific joining events.

We’re not asking you to do anything differently than you already do! Continue to plan your recruitment event. We’re simply adding digital ads on top of those plans in a seamless, turnkey way and it’s FREE for your unit.

Sign up here >> michiganscouting.org/geofencing


An Update from the Michigan Crossroads Council

Dear Scouting Friends:

The National Council of the Boy Scouts of America (the “National Council (BSA)”) has confirmed that a Youth Protection oriented segment that was expected to run on the TODAY Show tomorrow (July 10th) has been postponed and that a new air date has yet to be confirmed.  As the nature of content could change in the interim, the National Council (BSA) will continue to stay in touch with the producers of the segment so that it can provide our Council and other Councils with helpful information before the expected airing of the segment.

Like the National Council (BSA), we will continue to monitor these news reports and endeavor to keep you appraised of further developments.  We also will provide you with information relating to these matters that you can share with business associates, friends or Scouting leaders and families.  [READ MORE]


Where is the best location for a joining event? The data may surprise you.

Article contributed by Michael Ramsey, BSA Director of Marketing and Brand Management

As part of the National Service Center’s 2018 fall Cub Scout digital media buy, we learned just how important it is to hold joining events in locations that are familiar to parents. Those marketing efforts, which included recruiting messages delivered via paid search, paid social, and Facebook geofenced events, also provided a detailed look at the performance of different types of joining event locations.

We’ve discussed the highly successful geofencing efforts previously, and we’ve offered insight on how to use geofencing for Scout recruitment in your community. In addition to driving impressive gains of more than 7 percent in new Cub Scout growth for units that geofenced their joining events, those efforts produced data that confirmed what many may have already suspected: the best place to hold a single-unit joining event is at a school.

Schools are typically familiar locations for parents. Often, their child attends the school, and it is close to home and easy to locate. For families that may be unfamiliar with Scouting or unsure of what to expect, the familiarity of the school location helps ease concerns.

Second to schools, the next most successful recruiting events were those where multiple units collectively held a joining event in a public, non-school location. For instance, these units may have held their collective joining event at a community park. While the data didn’t offer specific details on why these multi-unit, centralized joining events did not perform as well as the single-unit events at schools, it is reasonable to believe that families unfamiliar with a location and/or event format may have been less confident about attending such events.

Similarly, events held at religious institutions also drove lower levels of success for Cub Scout recruiting when compared to schools. In fact, statistics showed that events held at schools performed on average 5 percentage points better than events held at religious institutions when looking at new Cub Scouts recruited versus the prior year. Again, the data doesn’t offer specifics on why, but it is possible that families may have assumed that if the event was at a church, they had to be members of that church to join that Cub Scout pack. Or, they may be unfamiliar with the location.

Of course, that isn’t to say Scouting units shouldn’t have regular meetings or hold other activities at religious organizations. Quite the contrary. We rely on religious organizations as valued partners. But when seeking to reach new families who don’t understand the relationship Scouting has with its chartered partners, holding a recruiting event at a church, synagogue, or mosque could be confusing.

Instead, consider hosting the joining event at a familiar location like a school, a community center near where the youth attend school, a library, or a park near where the pack meets. And, of course, the pack should continue to be chartered to its religious organization and hold its regular meetings there, if that’s the case.

Remember: Families who may not be familiar with Scouting will not necessarily understand the chartered organization concept or how units are organized. Everything is a new experience for them, so it is important to invite families to the adventure of Scouting in ways that are easy, familiar, and welcoming.


Put Your Scout Unit on Google Search

Do you know that the highest Google Search term is “Find ______[BLANK]_____ near me?” If someone was looking for a Cub Scout Pack, Scouts BSA Troop or Venturing Crew near them, would they find you and would your unit appear in the Google Search? Check out this video tutorial to help your unit appear in Google Search so parents can find you easily and join Scouting all year round.


Two essential Scouts BSA resources for new and longtime leaders

Better make room on your bookmarks bar.  The BSA has refreshed and retooled a pair of online resources for Scouts BSA volunteers.

The first is the Program Resources page. Think of it as your quick-start guide to Scouts BSA. Here, you’ll find a collection of links for starting a Scouts BSA troop, helping Scouts earn merit badges, guiding youth leaders toward more effective troop meetings and more.

The second is the Program Updates page. This one’s for both newcomers and veterans, and it’s where the National Scouts BSA Committee posts the latest information on any changes to the program. If there’s a new program initiative, updated requirement or any change to Scouts BSA printed material, you’ll find it there first.

https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2019/04/11/bookmark-these-two-essential-scouts-bsa-resources-for-new-and-longtime-leaders/


Tips for working with school digital communications platform Peachjar

Many school districts are beginning to use digital communications platforms like Peachjar for delivering items like activity fliers to parents. For Scouting, that means learning how to follow some basic guidelines to optimize communications items for that platform. Here, we explain more about what Peachjar is, how to follow their guidelines, and their expert design tips!

How Does Peachjar Work?

Peachjar streamlines school-to-home communication by distributing fliers, community resources, and vital school updates directly to parents through their digital service.

Over 600 school districts and more than 20,000 community organizations use this tool to deliver communications to school parents. And if a school district is using Peachjar, then they are contractually obligated to send all school communications through the Peachjar digital platform rather than through printed materials.

Every Flier Must Be Approved by the School District and Must Follow Their Individual District Guidelines.

Yes, that’s right. Each district has a set of guidelines that determine what kids of fliers they will approve to be sent out to parents. Peachjar links these guidelines in their program provider accounts under a “District Guidelines” tab. An example may be requiring your flier to have both an English and Spanish version.

Peachjar Fliers are ADA Compliant!

Peachjar fliers adhere to ADA compliance. That means, for example, that parents that have visual impairment can receive information from Peachjar fliers via screen reading devices that detect text, then read it back to them.

For this process to work properly, there is a step in the flier upload process that populates the text from your flier into a box as it will be “read” by Peachjar systems. If the text in that box does not match what is on the flier, you run the risk of the flier being denied by the district, so be sure to check that it is correct.

Over 14,000 schools use the Peachjar system.

That’s close to 20 percent of all schools in the United States who use the Peachjar system. The platform has heavy coverage on the West Coast, East Coast, and throughout the South. To see if your school is a Peachjar school, check this list.

Peachjar Design Tips are Easy to Follow!

Peachjar recommends strong, clear calls to action, simple copy, and large images. This fits our Scout Me In! fliers perfectly! If you’re looking for some great fliers to get you started, check out the options in the BSA Brand Center. You can find fliers for Cub Scoutsfliers for Scouts BSA, and more!

Although the Peachjar system is free to school districts who utilize the platform, there is a fee for organizations, such as the Boy Scouts of America, to distribute their fliers through the platform. Costs can vary by timing and number of schools.

This article is part of an ongoing series that covers digital platforms used to deliver items like our Scout fliers. Please be sure to look for more of our other articles on different platforms.


National Scouts BSA Committee – LIVE OFFICE HOURS

Join the National Scouts BSA committee and Scouters from around the country to learn more about the Scouts BSA program on April 18, 2019 during our live office hours.

Time:  Apr 18, 2019 8:30 PM (Eastern Time)

This Q&A session is great for new Scouts BSA leaders to get answers to any question they have about the program. For example:

  • How to help new Scouts advance in rank
  • How to reinforce the Patrol Method
  • How to prepare for weekend overnight outdoor experiences
  • How to grow your new Scouts BSA troop

Please submit any questions you’d like to have addressed via email to family.scouting@scouting.org by April 15th. All questions will be answered, either during our live presentation or at a later time.

REGISTER