Home > Marketing > Marketing Updates for State/Territory Secretaries > April 2014

Membership growth

Given the age demographic of members of your affiliated clubs it is essential that club administrators focus on growth to ensure our sport is sustainable into the future.  Our competitions and our club sessions need a continual influx of new blood to keep the sport alive and thriving!

Regional marketing plans need to focus on the best way to achieve growth.  From a National perspective, it is exciting to see the great initiatives and support being provided for teachers  (a critical aspect of obtaining new members) and, as a result of the recent ABF Marketing Special Grants applications process, many clubs and Regions are currently trialling new ways of attracting and retaining members.  Learnings from these initiatives will be shared over the coming year as initiatives are rolled out across the country.

Membership growth is the lifeblood of our sport!

I will forward a table of growth figures for the period 2010-13 under separate cover.  The figures have been extracted from the masterpoints centre at the same time for each year to ensure we are comparing 'apples with apples'.  Pleasingly, all States/Territories are registering growth for the period.

Essentially, growth rates for each Region in 2013 were:

  1. South Australia - 9.4%
  2. Victoria - 7.3%
  3. New South Wales - 3.8%
  4. Tasmania - 3.2%
  5. Queensland - 2.8%
  6. Northern Territory - 1.6%
  7. Western Australia - 1.6%
  8. Australian Capital Territory - 1.09%.

The National growth rate for 2013 was 4% (1411 people).



Marketing tips for growing membership

Suggestions for how to grow membership within your Region include:

  1. Planning - Develop a Regional Marketing Plan so that activities are aligned to your Regional Business and/or Strategic Plan (and to the National Marketing Plan once completed).  Without an agreed, well considered approach your Region is unlikely to achieve success.  Ad hoc strategies are not a way to achieve good outcomes.  Set a growth target - I would suggest a minimum growth rate of 4% per annum.
  2. Ensure that you distribute the Marketing Updates to your club administrators.  These are designed to assist your clubs in their marketing endeavours by providing marketing tips, information about what's happening and working elsewhere and providing links to ABF materials and resources designed to support them with their activities.  With the recent introduction of this format I am now able to track the reach of this product to determine its effectiveness (ie if it should be continued).  For those of you who are not distributing it to affiliated clubs, please do so as the information should assist clubs in growing their membership.
  3. Evaluate your marketing activities.  If your region has been doing the same thing to attract new members for years and it is not working, then stop doing it !  Keep across what other Regions are doing and if it works, try it in your Region.  My Marketing Updates share best practice for this reason.
  4. Ensure your Region has a focus on supporting marketing activities at the grass-roots level.  Advertising campaigns or marketing activities to attract new players are best conducted locally - not Regionally.
  5. Promote the ABF and any local membership benefits (exercise due diligence where necessary).  Offering membership benefits is an opportunity to provide your members with additional reasons for becoming a member of one of your affiliated clubs - at no cost to you. You should be promoting these through your State/ Territory website, through your State/Territory Newsletter and by encouraging your clubs to do the same.  Word of mouth promotion of our sport, by happy members, is an excellent way to increase membership.  They become ambassadors for our sport and sell it to their family and friends.  

Under separate cover I will be sending each of you a list of our current national Membership Benefit offers.  If you need logos or flyers about the offers let me know at marketing@abf.com.au .

A representative from our new National sponsor, Get Wines Direct, will be addressing attendees at the AGM in May.  In addition, a new sponsor (coming on board in May 2014) will also address attendees. This will give representatives from your Region an opportunity to be briefed on each of these new deals!  Promote them to members of your affiliated clubs - and thus give people another reason to join up!

Note:  I am the ABF National Account Manager for  these sponsors.  Therefore, to maintain a professional and co-ordinated relationship, and to protect the ABF Brand, all dealings should be facilitated by me.  Please do not approach these sponsors direct if you would like to negotiate something for your Region or major event (let's act as one organisation).  

Contact me at marketing@abf.com.au and I would be happy assist.