Communication is really important within any club setting, as you need to share information with various groups of people from rowers to coaches to volunteers, as well as external organisations.
With British Rowing
It’s really important that the contacts we have listed for your club are up to date. You can update club committee members on the club management system or by emailing email@example.com.
Within the Club
Think about the people associated with the club that you will need to communicate with at some point, eg: members, volunteers and parents.
For committee members, especially those people who will be dealing with potentially sensitive information such as Club Welfare Officers, it’s a good idea to set up separate email addresses and phone numbers to ensure there is no confusion with any other people having access to their accounts. Gmail, yahoo or hotmail will let you create a free email account and a mobile phone with a pay-as-you-go sim card can be bought for around £20.
Outside the Club
- Navigation Authorities
- Local partners
- Local Media
- Local education institutions
- Technical advisors and Contractors
Make sure that the right people have access to the right lists of up to date contacts. This not only saves time when you need to use them but also when volunteers hand over roles or delegate tasks to other people.
Club members, especially social members, may not be able to be at the club as often as they would like so a regular newsletter will keep them involved and informed. Think about which format would be best for this: post, email or maybe both.
Social Media for Clubs
Social Media provides a fantastic opportunity for clubs to showcase their activities to their own members and stakeholders, as well as to the rowing community and to the wider world. However, do be careful that you are always aware of best practice in using social media. Guidelines can be found at: Safeguarding and Protecting Children Guidance WG5.4 – Using Social Networking Services and Social Media.
A Twitter account, Facebook page or other social media profile enables your club to:
- Communicate instantly with your club’s existing members and fans – enabling you to send out messages (about training or river conditions, for example) quickly and efficiently
- Engage with existing and potential members in a friendly and informal environment – social media is able to host content more flexibly than an official club website
Rowing clubs should consider the use of Social Media as a valuable extension to their public relations and press activities – utilising the following tips:
- There are many different types of social media account (ie. Twitter/Facebook/Google+), each with specific advantages and drawbacks. Consider each one carefully before deciding which best suits the needs of your club.
- Appoint one member of your club to oversee your social media activities, and make sure that they have read and understood British Rowing’s SPC Social Media Guidance. This will avoid repetition of content, whilst ensuring that you always know who is accountable.
- Work out your overall strategy before launching your account. What do you hope to achieve: advertising your club to potential members, sharing information with existing members, or both? Have a clear idea of when and what you want to post will keep your club’s social media presence cohesive and relevant.
- Always be aware of what people are posting to your social media account. If people are posting inappropriate/offensive content, act quickly and decisively. Remember that all posts – whether made by your official account, your club’s members, or any posts that are left on your own page – represent your organisation.
Take a look at some good examples of clubs using social media:
On Twitter: Leeds RC and Minerva Bath – they both strike a good balance between promoting rowing at their club and in the region, as well as being personal and engaging. By doing this they have built up followings that far exceed their membership.
For more advice on promoting your club, see the Marketing and Promotion section.