What happens when you get 45 university students to sink their teeth into marketing Scouts Canada?
You get nine wonderful and energetic plans on how to help recruit more young adult volunteers for our movement. To get us there, the participants got marketing industry speakers, workshops and testimonials from fellow students on their own in-the-field experience. Finally, they got to hear from us, revealing who the mystery case study would be.
UBC’s AdvertisINC (The first student-run, non-profit marketing agency in Vancouver) put on the Insight Conference, and they put on an amazing line up of speakers. These guys do good work. If you ever have the need to do marketing in Vancouver, consider them. They have Warner Brothers and Coca Cola as clients!
When it was our turn, we gave a brief 7 minute background on our organization, and then set them up with today’s question: How can Scouts Canada attract post-secondary young adults to become volunteer leaders?
They were given 50 minutes (which was unnecessarily cruel in my opinion) in their groups of 3-5 to come back with a plan. Then each room of three groups battled it out to advance to the final round. They were graded by industry professionals and Scouts Canada representatives on content, use of market segmentation, budget, how to differentiate from the competition, creativity, estimation and the presentation itself. Nine teams entered, three survived.
For the final round, each of the finalist team were given time to polish their proposal, and presented to the entire conference. Our three judges comprised the entire panel, with our judgment the deciding factor.
The final decision went to Team 9, who advocated a very rubber-soles-to-the-ground approach of visiting other similarly minded UBC clubs and groups (outdoor or volunteering clubs for example) and talking to their members. These types of people are already doing similar activities and are the most likely to want to do more.
We felt this team had the best understanding of the problem and a solution with the best possible results. We’ll be working with them over the coming year, and I look forward to their plan coming to fruition.
Now, that’s not to say the other teams didn’t have some fantastic ideas either.
- Work with UBC REC (student recreation body) to put on a “Survivor on Campus”; a one day challenge/obstacle race. Possibility of having it as a faculty challenge, to drive up the competitiveness as different faculties vie for supremacy.
- Set up a live camp site in the middle of campus and have volunteers there to talk up Scouting. Add a different groups idea of having youth (Scout aged) that challenge adults in different tasks. Mix this in with another groups idea to give away smores, and you might be on to something.
- Have a mock tent hanging off the side of the building with a banner attached (Not a guerrilla operation)
- Our differentiator is or variety
Some fun little tag lines that they came up with:
- Lead an ordinary life or…. Lead extraordinary Lives?
- Pass on the Fun
- For a funner Summer
- Summer’s runner-up
- Leadership & Fun, All in one
- You may not think it… (Superman Logo) But you’ll be a Super Hero in their eyes.
If you’d like to do something similar
For your benefit, I’m going to make available the documents we used during this conference. If you like to use them, you are free to do so. They are only slightly Vancouver centric. Wouldn’t take more than a few minutes to change them to give the information about your location. If you do use them, I’d love to hear about it.
Scouts Canada Overview handout
This was the handout the teams were given.
Over all, a great success. 60 young adults got to learn about Scouts Canada, and spend an afternoon thinking about how to market it. We got a team of young, smart students who are willing to work with us in exchange for building up their experience. Win-win if there ever was one.
Can you think of any great tag lines for a campaign to convince young adults to become volunteer leaders?