Membership Building Programs

In 1924, Dr. Ralph C. Smedley had a dream – to help people improve their communication and leadership skills in a friendly, non-threatening environment.

That dream remains alive today throughout the world, as members of Toastmasters clubs everywhere are benefiting from the program.

One constant that has been evident over the years is the need for clubs to operate continuously at “charter strength” – twenty or more members.

Only then will the club reach its potential, and be most beneficial to its members. Because of attrition, each club must have a constant influx of new members. The need for Toastmasters’ service is everywhere.

We all want to see more people served by the Toastmasters program.

Most of us are eager to seize any chance we get to put the talents and techniques we are developing to use – but there are selfish reasons for wanting growth as well.

With more members, we gain:

  • Better club programs; more variety, experiences, and resources to draw upon and enrich the entire program
  • Depth of club leadership
  • More enthusiasm at club meetings
  • Greater representation of Toastmasters throughout your community or organization
  • Greater financial resources for club programming and projects
  • More people served and helped by Toastmasters’ programs

Growth Factors

In the long run, the growth of your club depends on six factors:

  1. Effective club meetings that make Toastmasters worthwhile for new and veteran members alike
  2. Continuous promotion of Toastmasters throughout your community or organization
  3. Use of proven “sales” techniques to develop guests from prospects and members from guests
  4. Retention of current members
  5. Competition within the club, area, division, and district
  6. Recognition of those Toastmasters who go out of their way to sponsor new members and make other contributions to the club’s overall strength.

Take all these factors into account when preparing for membership growth.

Clubs from all over the world have given the ideas on which this manual is based. Not all of them, of course, will apply to your situation.

You will, however, find plenty to choose from.

Prepare your club for growth

Do your members look forward to your next Toastmasters meeting? Are most of your guests joining your club?

If your answer to either question is “no,” it’s time to find out why.

Every club gains a new member now and then.

But do those members stay? If not, why not?

If new members generally don’t stay with a club, the club is not meeting their needs. For sustained membership growth, make your club worth belonging to!

Start by evaluating your club using the Moments of Truth analysis on the following pages.

After the inventory is compiled you have a benchmark – a starting point for club improvements in every factor needed to sustain growth.

Let’s begin….

The Moments of Truth:

A Moment of Truth is a brief window of time in which a critical objective must be achieved.

An example of the first moment of truth experienced by a prospective Toastmaster is when he or she walks for the first time into the club’s meeting room.

Is the prospective member greeted warmly and introduced to the members of the club and made to feel at home? If the answer is yes, then your club was successful during this particular moment of truth!

Marketing — It’s the need that matters

Now let’s introduce the concept of marketing for your Toastmasters group.

The Moments of Truth evaluation you’ve just completed will help you to unite what may have been a fragmented assortment of programs and activities into a cohesive marketing system.

  1. The Marketing
  2. Your Marketing Mix
  3. Programming Toastmaster
  4. Promotion
  5. Build Value
  6. Use showmanship
  7. Closing Techniques

see page 7 at this link for details.

From prospect to guest to member

If you have done your marketing, you are indeed ready to sell your product.

This is an activity for every member.

Provide them all with copies of the booklet From Prospect to Guest to Member (Item 108) which gives a brief review of important selling techniques.

Promoting membership is a human experience. It’s a relationship between you and the potential member.

Find the people who are interested in Toastmasters and cultivate their interest.

  1. Identify the Prospect
  2. Get Their Attention
  3. Tell Them About the Benefits
  4. Prove Your Case

see page 8 at this link for details.

Membership Building Programs for Clubs

Smedley Award (Program Dates: August 1 – September 30)

Can your club add five new, dual, or reinstated members with a join date between August 1 and September 30?

Accomplish this goal and you’ll qualify to receive a “Smedley Award” ribbon, named in honor of Ralph Smedley, which you can display on your club’s banner.

Qualifying clubs can also earn a special discount code for 10-percent off their next club order. (The discount code expires six months from the date of issue and is not valid with any other offer.)

Applications and payments for members with a join date between August 1 and September 30 must be received at World Headquarters or online no later than September 30. The addition of transfer and charter members does not count toward “Smedley Award” credit.

The winning clubs will be revealed online within a few weeks of the submission deadline. Winning clubs should allow up to 10 business days to receive their award if they are in the United States, and up to 21 business days if they are outside of the United States.

Applications and payments for members with a join date between August 1 and September 30 must be received at World Headquarters or online no later than September 30. The addition of transfer and charter members does not count toward “Smedley Award” credit.

The winning clubs will be revealed online within a few weeks of the submission deadline.

Winning clubs should allow up to 10 business days to receive their award if they are in the United States, and up to 21 business days if they are outside of the United States.

Talk Up Toastmasters (Program Dates: February 1 – March 31)

Toastmasters love to connect, so take advantage of it. The “Talk Up Toastmasters” membership program is the chance to encourage your members to invite guests to a special meeting where prospective members can learn about Toastmasters’ many benefits.

Then add five new, dual or reinstated members with a join date between February 1 and March 31, and you’ll receive a special “Talk up Toastmasters” ribbon to display on your club’s banner.

Qualifying clubs can also earn a special discount code for 10-percent off their next club order. (The discount code expires six months from the date of issue and is not valid with any other offer.)

Applications and payments for members with a join date between February 1 and March 31 must be received at World Headquarters or online no later than March 31.

The addition of transfer and charter members does not count towards Winning clubs will be revealed online within a few weeks of the submission deadline.

Winning clubs should allow up to 10 business days to receive their award if they are located in the United States, and up to 21 business days if they are outside of the United States.

Beat the Clock (Program Dates: May 1 – June 30)

Toastmasters are taught to run meetings on time, finish speeches on time and reach membership goals on time.

In that spirit, “Beat the Clock” is a great motivator for finishing the year on schedule—on time and with record numbers!

Make it your club’s goal to earn the “Beat the Clock” award and encourage every member to take part.

Clubs adding five new, dual or reinstated members with a join date between May 1 and June 30 receive a “Beat the Clock” ribbon to display on the club’s banner.

Qualifying clubs also earn a special discount code for 10-percent off their next club order. (The discount code expires six months from the date of issue and is not valid with any other offer.)

Applications and payments for members with a join date between May 1 and June 30 must be received at World Headquarters or online no later than June 30. The addition of transfer and charter members does not count toward “Beat the Clock” credit.

The winning clubs will be revealed online within a few weeks of the submission deadline.

Winning clubs should allow up to 10 business days to receive their award if they are in the United States, and up to 21 business days if they are outside of the United States.

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