With fall registration just around the corner, there’s no better time to start planning and budgeting for your registration events. Securing your venues, getting advertising and booking special guests like DJs and players can make for a great registration event, but they can also be expensive. Keep the following four tips things in mind to lower costs without sacrificing the quality of your next registration event.
Find Cheap Advertising: Try getting business cards for your Board Members with registration information on the back and make it a fun competition to see who can hand out the most cards in a certain time period. Also, try yard signs, car magnets and flyers to pass out at your Region's schools and youth centers. Bookmarks are another low-cost advertising opportunity. Use the templates in the Marketing Toolkit and add your registration information.
Develop a Customer Referral Program: Word of mouth marketing is powerful stuff. Having your Region’s families tell friends and friends of friends about joining AYSO is incredibly valuable. Try putting together a low/no-cost program to persuade parents and kids to spread the news about registration. This can be a small discount for each person a player brings in to sign up with them or a gift certificate prize to the player who brings in the most friends for each age group.
Food and Entertainment: Food always makes events better and more people will want to come. You can provide low-cost food such as pizza and snacks or bring in vendors to sell their food at your event in exchange for a percentage back to your Region. If it’s cold out, provide or bring in vendors that sell hot drinks and warm foods. As for entertainment, see if your local sponsors want to get involved with samples, giveaways and contests at your event. And for smaller towns, try contacting your local radio stations to broadcast live at your events.
Find Top Players to Volunteer: To spotlight the soccer credibility of your Region and to help with advertising, invite your top players to talk with the parents and answer any soccer questions families may have. Contact local universities or semi-pro soccer teams to have a players come out to your registration event and sign autographs.
When planning and budgeting for your next registration event, try reusing ideas that have worked well for you in the past and add in a couple of news ones that you think might benefit your Region. Pay attention to what works so you can keep the good ideas, then add in a couple more to try next year. Most importantly, make it fun!