Halloween-Themed Membership Drive Delivers Sweet Results

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This post has been updated. Halloween is not only about wearing fun costumes and going trick-or-treating. It’s also a great opportunity for businesses and organizations to host playful events to engage with their members and clients. [caption id="attachment_16520" align="alignright" width="300"] The HBAMV's office was decked out in Halloween decor to create a spooky membership drive headquarters.[/caption] When the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of the Valley (HBAMV), based in Youngstown, Ohio, began planning for its October membership drive, organizers decided to go with a Halloween theme to liven things up. Cobwebs, lights, posters and other decorations throughout the HBA's office quickly helped set the stage. But what really jumped out for members was the drive's tagline: "Don’t Be Afraid to Recruit New Members." "We know that for many, recruiting can seem daunting and intimidating, largely because no one likes rejection," said Jennie Brewer EO of the HBAMV. So Brewer and her staff focused on using the festive theme to help members overcome any apprehensive feelings. Volunteers and staff leaned on that tagline as they got to work, and then carried the Halloween theme through to the motivational messaging displayed on a variety of the office decorations. Some of their creative puns included sayings like, "Being an HBA member is fangtastic! Ask someone to join!" and "Don’t be haunted by regret! Ask someone to join!" to "Ask other businesses you know to treat themselves to an HBA membership!" One of the more popular decorations was a tombstone that read, "R.I.P., Mr. I-don’t-know-anyone." In the past, the association's members had a difficult time coming up with a list of potential people to recruit and would often use that as a dodgy excuse. But this year, Brewer says the very same members who previously used that excuse quickly realized that wasn't the case once they got involved in the drive. "Everyone knows someone who could be a potential lead," Brewer said. "Many recruiters were surprised how easy it really was."   Prior to its October event, the HBAMV had not held a membership drive for quite a while and was teetering between 185-200 total members for several years. As a result of the two-day drive earlier this month, they brought in over 30 new members a 20% increase in their membership. The success shows how HBAs can harness creativity in their drive efforts and create engaging events that members can rally around  Brewer said the growth gave the association much-needed momentum. "Not only does it help our overall bottom line, but it offers us the opportunity to share the HBA experience with a whole new set of area businesses," she said.     The HBAMV took part in the NAHB membership drive training and the Membership 360 Campaign prior to hosting their October drive. To learn more about this program, visit nahb.org.

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