How to Nail Freshers Fair Recruitment:
Freshers fair is a huge event where all sports teams claim their sport is the best sport in the world in the hope that they’ll attract the best new talent club. Luckily, dodgeball is the best sport in the world, so that's a great start. And with the addition of BUCS, dodgeball could see it's most fruitful recruitment drive to date!
A recent survey conducted by @dodgeballstrawbs found that 65% of people that play adult dodgeball started at university. And that's why we're writing this blog. Because universities are an essential part of the growth of the dodgeball, we want to give you the best chance to nail freshers fair and gains some new recruits!
We've put together this checklist of things you’ll need:
1. A Team of Volunteers
Dodgeball is a team game and freshers fair is no different. Assemble your strongest and most passionate salespeople and set them to work. Be sure to have a good mix of recruiters where possible to have a broader appeal (i.e. guys, girls, newbies, veterans). And make sure you all look the part. Wear your team kit if possible, or at least be representative of the sport. New recruits need to remember who you are so being warm and friendly is key!
2. Taster Session
Make sure you have a taster session planned BEFORE your freshers fair. It is advisable that you plan an very basic session, Five D's of Dodgeball... blah blah blah, as you will likely have a very large number at your first session, making impossible to run normal dogdeball. Pack it full of fun games such as prison-ball, infinity, and of course, last person standing.
However, run your normal sessions too, and extend the invite to those who really would like to take it seriously. You can perhaps offer this as the end of the session, or get your team to speak to new recruits throughout the session and invite them personally. It's a nice personal touch
Throughout all of this, make sure your team of volunteers know the date and time of the taster session and any subsequent sessions!
3. Team Social
Similar to the training session, organise and book a social event before your fair. Ideally, have this social close to your taster session so that people don’t forget about it. We recommend booking a venue/activity, such as laser-tag or bowling, that's fun and accessible to all. It's a great way for everyone to get to know each other off the court, and out of a pub. And it may be worth organising a drinks social too, but remember it's not always for everyone!
Friendship groups will start to spawn here, and it could be these groups that are doing the recruiting next year!
4. Online Presence
Set up a club page on social media or create a website, get your team of volunteers to direct people to follow so that they can see future communications about training and socials in case they "forget" to come to the first one. Give them free sweets if they show you they have followed your page, everyone loves a bit of positive reinforcement.
5. Sign-up Form
This can either be a good old-fashioned pen and paper or spread-sheet. You could even create a fancy website! Social media events also work pretty well too. Either way, you want to be able to contact anyone that shows an interest in coming to a taster session or social to remind them at a later date. Quite simply aim to capture an email and telephone number so that they can be easily contacted.
This is optional, but a very effective. This can be flyers or little business cards that you hand out to remind new recruits about your taster session/regular training sessions are. They may get a number of these from different sports, so be sure to make yours stand out!
Promo videos are a must-have. Often people don't believe dodgeball is a real sport, but when they see it being stream on Lad Bible or ESPN, that's when they start to believe their potential. So you'll need a screen to showcase dodgeball in all its glory! Ideally be connected to the internet so that you can jump about between videos if necessary, otherwise if you have some downloaded ones, that works too. Alternatively, a show-reel of images which includes your university in-game or on social events also works.
Some great videos from:
World Dodgeball Federation - General high-level dodgeball matches
British Dodgeball - Informative and top-tips
8. More Visuals & Props
The more visuals you can get the better. Put anything else on your stand that makes you look like a fun club to join. Photos of socials you've hosted in the past, medals, trophies. Oh, and don't forget some dodgeballs! Make sure you find some nice ones, or grab some brand new ones from our store here!
People love to get a feel for the balls and understand that dodgeball isn't as scary as they first thought.
The angling society could probably tell you more about this one, but, it's a really good idea to get some bait to draw people in. Use your imagination to create some sort of fun game that will create a buzz around your stand. This could be something small like a free bucket of sweets if you guess how many sweets are in the bucket. Or if you have enough space you could get a speed gun and see who can get the fastest throw and give the winner a prize at the end of the day.
10. Can-do Attitude!
And finally, have fun with it! The majority of people that join uni clubs want to have fun. Go and show them what Uni Dodgeball is all about!
We hope this helps you have the best recruitment drive in your clubs history! If you have a really successful freshers fair, we would love to hear from you so that we can share your knowledge in the future to help out other clubs. So, reach out on our Facebook or Instagram, or drop us an email us at firstname.lastname@example.org