Public Relations is a fun and exciting role where you get to try different forms of media and communication to promote your club. Here are some tips and resources to get you started.
Tips for Effective PR
Maintaining an up-to-date website is key to attracting new members.
- FreeToastHost – You can request a website for your club via https://www.toastmastersclubs.org/welcome/
- Easy-Speak – This online tool allows Toastmasters clubs to automate their meeting planning and track and support members’ educational development. Click here for more information about Easy-Speak.
Why have a website/page? Having a vibrant website or page will attract guests and improve your guest conversion to members. Online tools make setting up and maintaining a site easy.
What tools can we use? Here are a few ideas. Some are free to use:
- Hosted website from a cloud provider (e.g. Wix, Squarespace, GoDaddy, etc.)
- WordPress site
- Facebook Page
- LinkedIn Company Page
Just remember to always ask for a non-profit discount for any Toastmaster business.
2018-2019 PR Award for website (ePresence):
Next Step Toastmasters updates their website home page after each monthly meeting and major event involving their members to showcase club activities and member achievements.
Brief text descriptions enhance collages of quality photos that provide a summary of each event/meeting. A mix of posed and action photos are used to give the viewer a sense of the club members, culture and activities.
The website is hosted by FreeToastHost, which offers free hosting for Toastmasters Clubs, providing a standard format for users to follow, including a customizable table of contents and a secure area (login required) for members to access club materials.
The home page includes helpful information for visitors, including:
- Member benefits
- Membership requirements
- Video clips of notable workshops and meetings that are not only educational, but showcase what the club has to offer
To create a collage of pictures and text to post on your website:
- Create a one page PowerPoint slide with pictures and text
- Save it as jpg and upload to the FreeToastHost website
Note: The image will be reduced in size when you upload to the FreeToastHost website. The Next Step VPPR normally creates a large PowerPoint slide (30 in by 45 in) – so that the picture quality will be better. The important thing is to keep a good aspect ratio (portrait works better than landscape).
A newsletter is a great way to keep club members and guests informed, in case they missed some meetings. Highlight recent activities, let members know about upcoming events, and be sure to include the latest promotions from the District 101 website. Newsletters can also be used as an invitation for potential guests.
- You can create your own
- Or you can start with the downloadable template from the Toastmasters International website
- Below you can find sample newsletters from District 101 clubs
Newsletters can be made to look more professional by utilizing the official graphic elements from Toastmasters International.
Toastmasters International recommends using their color palette, found on Page 12 of the TI Brand Manual, on all promotional material.
Newsletters are a great opportunity to recognize member achievements, highlight past activities, and promote upcoming events.
Using photographs of members and club events helps readers get to know the club and see members enjoying club activities.
Why have a newsletter? A good newsletter will help engage your current members and if you can add guests to your newsletter, can help turn guests into members. Many of these email services allow you to gauge your campaign’s effectiveness.
What tools can we use? Here are a few ideas. Some are free to use and others charge. Just remember to always ask for a non-profit discount for any Toastmaster business.
- Toastmasters International Newsletter Templates sent via E-Mail
- Email services like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Vertical Response, etc.
- Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, Microsoft Publisher, etc.
- Online Newsletter Design Apps
2018-2019 PR Award for best Newsletter (Golden Quill):
Toasters R Us publishes quarterly newsletters to remind members of recent activities, accomplishments, and exciting events. A team of editors help contribute to the publication, which highlights outstanding members and member accomplishments. A Table of Contents informs readers of what to expect in the 2-page newsletter.
Colorful graphics as well as different font styles and font colors capture the reader’s attention.
A special sidebar section on the second page is used to share short tips and information in graphic form.
The Intel Innovators club creates and distributes newsletters to remind people about their club. As a corporate club, members may forget to come to meetings, or may drift away from the club when they become too busy. The newsletter helps remind members of the fun atmosphere the club creates, and shares some of the memorable moments from the past month. Creating the newsletter every month can be daunting, but content and articles are divided amongst the officers so no one person is overloaded.
Why should our club post to Social Media?
An active Social Media presence — showcasing members advancing their personal growth through improved communication and leadership skills will advertise your club and immediately increase your guest rate. Many of these Social Media sites allow you to gauge your campaign’s effectiveness.
What tools can we use? Post regularly to free Social Media channels, for example:
- Facebook – If your club has a Facebook page, be sure to update it with photos, invitations to events, recognition of member and club achievements
- YouTube Channel
Pro Tip: Use automation tools like Buffer, Hootsuite, Zapier to auto-post to multiple channels at once
Did you know District 101 has a Meetup site? You may request to add a club event to the District 101 Meetup site by submitting event details using the request form at https://d101tm.wufoo.com/forms/meetup-posting-request/ . You will get a notification from the District Meetup Manager when the event is posted on Meetup. (PS: Don’t forget to RSVP and ask all your club members to do the same so potential guests see that your event is well-attended.)
What our members are saying about us
At Toastmasters you get a chance to embrace your fear of public speaking and tap into the leader in you. It transformed me into the professional I am today. Such growth is necessary for everyone!
I’ve been a Toastmaster for 5 years. I wish I would have joined Toastmasters much sooner than I did. Who doesn’t want to speak with confidence? We know it opens new opportunities for us. Speaking skills are essential tools to getting ahead in life.
Learning to communicate is something I wish for any person, no matter who you are. And if you practice it regularly you get better and better.