Sunday, October 18, 2020

How do you attract guests for your meetings, online?

Today, right from shopping of groceries to finding a bride or a groom happens online. The moment COVID-19 pandemic struck us, we the Toastmasters swiftly switched to online medium for our regular meetings, as online meetings offer a number of benefits to guests and members. However, club officers are finding it difficult to attract guests to their online club meetings. As the traditional ways of finding members for your club are not feasible in a world that is locked down and maintains social distance, there are alternate options to promote your club and it's meetings, online. This blog post captures the various options available for you to promote your club meetings, online. 

1. Quora - Quora is the most popular "Question & Answers" platform. Club officers can create or join groups where public speaking and leadership related topics are being discussed. They can respond to queries regarding communication / leadership skills development to demonstrate their expertise and to attract guests to their club. One wise VP Public Relations (VP PR), looked for questions such as "How to develop your communication skills in Chennai" and posted details of his club. This resulted in a steady inflow of guests to the club. 

2. Youtube - Now that most of the clubs meet online, it is easy to record the online meetings. Start a Youtube Channel for your club and regularly upload videos of prepared speeches, educational sessions, table topics speeches or evaluations. In fact, you can upload the entire meeting week-on-week and make it available for guests to watch it. If the guests like your meeting, there is a high chance that they'll show up for your online meeting. 

3. Facebook / Instagram / LinkedIn - Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn are powerful marketing tools. Facebook/LinkedIn allows you to create online groups or Pages. You can either create a Facebook Page (which is more open than a Facebook Group) or a LinkedIn Group for your members and guests. Instagram allows you to create a fan following. You can keep sharing updates related to your online meetings or accomplishments of your members (for ex., their educational milestones). You can even share some snippets of your regular meetings by publishing pictures or videos from your online meetings. This helps in increasing the engagement with the audience. 

4. - allows you to organise and share details of events in a specific locality. People go there to find out events happening in their locality. You can promote your club and club meetings, by creating events in You can also establish a "membership" base for your club, online. Your members include people who would be interested to learn more about events organised by your club. subscription costs money. So, this is recommended for clubs that have some cash in hand for marketing. is for clubs that are serious about maximising the opportunity provided by the portal. Unless you post regular updates and conduct regular events, you'll be wasting your subscription. 

5. Whatsapp - Most clubs have a Whatsapp group for their members today. However, you can also create a separate Whatsapp group for guests. Add new guests to the group, with their consent. Keep sharing updates regarding your club meetings, various achievements of your club and it's members. Most importantly, when there is a contest, don't miss to promote your club contests in various forums including the Whatsapp group for guests. Make the Whatsapp group an "admin-only" communication group - to prevent spams or unwanted messages from the participants of the group.

6. Website - Though this is an outdated medium of online promotion, it still is a very reliable medium for attracting guests. Most content published in your website are static in nature and they are available for future reference. It also contains only important information such as contact information of club officers, address of the club, past newsletters of the club, blog posts and club's history/accomplishments. On the contrary, a Whatsapp group contains just transient information and may not serve as a repository of static information. When your website has a lot of rich and useful content, it shows up high in the search engine ranking and it attracts a lot of guests. 

7. Classified Listing - List your club details in Classified portals such as JustDial, Sulekha and Google Business. When someone is looking for a "Speakers club in Adyar" either through a Google Search or through a search in JustDial, your club details would show up. These portals ask for details such as phone number, email id and address. Ensure that you are sharing legitimate information in these portals. Also, you need to ensure that these details are kept up-to-date, when new club officers are sworn-in. Otherwise, the notifications or queries would go to a past club officer - who may not find time to stay in touch with the guests. Preferably, the email id listed in the classifieds portal should be a or, so that there is continuity when new officers takeover from the old officers. 

These are some of the online mediums where you can promote your club. You can still rely on traditional ways of finding members for your club. For example, publishing in local dailies regarding your online meetings would still have the desired effect. But, complimenting the traditional ways of promoting your club with online promotions will tremendously increase the inflow of guests to your club. This help you in taking the benefits of Toastmasters to a large number of people. 

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