Welcome to a very important job. Your help is essential!
Membership Tips & Helpful Hints
Plan your programs for the year. List the calendar of events in your membership brochure. Give contact numbers for officers.
Encourage members to bring friends to council programs.
Make sponsors of a new council member eligible for a prize drawing.
Offer free or discounted membership to Building Reps.
Give a membership discount at the first fall meeting.
Offer incentives to join. Eligibility for a drawing. Door prizes at meetings.
Take local/WORD brochures to meetings and classes to give to potential members. Follow up with a phone call.
Host a breakfast for administrators.
Sponsor a “Bring Your Boss” at a program in the fall. Prizes for schools with most staff and principal in attendance.
Offer a reduced rate for early renewals.
Recruit local businesses to give discounts to members. Provide each member with discount coupons.
Give free memberships to first year teachers.
Offer free local membership for recruiting 5 members.
Contact IRA members in your area who do not belong to a local council.
Give free local council memberships to those who join IRA within a specified time.
Conduct a drawing for an IRA membership for those who renew local membership early.
Reward school and/or schools with largest number or % of members.
Make your council visible in the community.
Target audiences such as administrators, supervisors, and reading specialists.
Send brochures, publicity mailings and announcements for programs to:
both public and private libraries
daycare and preschool centers
members from previous membership lists
Membership Chair Timeline
Please mark these dates on your calendar.
First of all, dues: collect $20 from each “regular” member and $10 from each associate member.
We go on the assumption that WORD and all its councils run their membership campaigns in early fall by:
1. Contacting in person or by mail all previous members with a reminder to renew or
2. Hosting a kick-off meeting or activity where dues are collected.
May/June: Spring Leadership
Around the time of Spring Leadership your council will receive the latest computer printout of your membership list, via an Excel spreadsheet emailed to your membership chairperson. Your task as membership person is to revise this during the summer and fall as members renew and new members join.
The WORD membership year runs July 1 through June 30. As members renew, change the date in the “year” column to reflect the year for which they are paying and make any address changes if needed. Indicate with an “n” or “r” in the last column whether new or renewed. By doing it as people join/renew, it will save you time in November. For new members, add the names and information at the end of the alphabetical list on the Excel spreadsheet you received.
You work hard; relax and rest over the summer! With others in your council, determine your goals and plan your membership activities for the coming year.
Kick off and run the membership campaign you planned!
If members haven’t renewed by around October 15, send a note or email or have someone call those non-renewals. Realize that some people need a second and third reminder. Many successful councils use a system of building liaisons to help out. A one-to-one conversation with a staff member friend is often the most effective way to generate memberships. Consider offering an incentive to buildings with early returns.
Finalize your council’s memberships, and prepare the spreadsheet file to email.
Email your updated membership lists to Nancy Gill on or before December 1.
After the membership committee reviews and records your new information, you will be sent an updated council list by email. Check it for accuracy and email any corrections back to Nancy by January 8 so that all members of your council will receive the January newsletter.
Once a final membership list has been compiled, you will receive a bill or credit statement for your council’s memberships. Please check it for accuracy and then give it to your treasurer with instructions to send a check to Nancy Gill as soon as possible.
Email to Nancy any changes, corrections or add-ons as they come in or periodically through the rest of the school year. All new information will be kept in our files, and you will receive an updated and final membership list around the time of the spring Leadership Conference.
To protect members’ confidentiality, WORD and IRA policy dictates that no membership list or information is shared with any outside entity.